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Fuel-efficient family of four hauler, safe, comfortable,

The Right Car for Me | TrueDelta

dylan.lidgard

My wife and I are expecting our second child. Currently we drive Ford Fusions. We can probably get away with them for two years or so, but once sports and more friends come into the mix we will need something bigger. So, the car we would want needs to be very safe and fuel efficient. Mostly I have been looking at Minivans like the Kia Sedona, Toyota Sienna and the Honda Odyssey. I also become somewhat interested in the Ford Flex. It just seems to have good roomy space. Basically I need a car that can offer the confort and safety for four people and perhaps more. It needs to be roomy enough for car seats and geting kids in and out of those seats without killing our backs. Also, with more kids come more trunk space for food and other items. So please what is best for me?

Priorities: Fuel economy / Safety & braking / Reliability & durability

Need minimum of 4 seats

Will consider both new and used cars
Maximum mileage: 15000
Maximum age: 2 years

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Response from jeffgross84

8:14 am January 11, 2018

Dylan,
Until Toyota or Honda get with the program and create a plug in hybrid model of their minivans you are probably out of luck for a fuel efficiently family hauler. You may consider the Chrysler Pacifica plug in hybrid van as a friend recently purchased one and is very happy. We loved it but we're concerned about what the long term reliability would be based upon Chrysler's reliability history.

Since fuel efficiency and space seems to be a priority I recommend you consider the 2018 Toyota Camry hybrid le which is redesigned to put the battery below the rear seat and has full size trunk with folding seats unlike our 2012 Camry hybrid. Great interior and trunk space for family hauler and great mileage. Our only hang up was lack of charging plug to keep in town mileage up for errands like our Chevy volt. Again Toyota give me a plug version so I can average 95 mpg on errands around town. Prius is bullet proof reliable, fuel, and very roomy inside if you can get over the exterior fugly of the redesign (we unfortunately un couldn't). Good luck on the search.

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Toyota Camry
Toyota Prius

Response from LectroFuel

7:47 pm January 11, 2018

What is your budget?

The Prius has almost twice the cargo space of a Camry Hybrid. The Toyota hybrid powertrains are bullet-proof, personally owning a 2005 Prius with 250,000 miles. I also have a 2016 Prius that I love. I doubt these cars will have enough room for a family of four. We could not have only lived with a Prius when our 2 kids were younger. That is why we bought a 2002 Odyssey after we had our second kid. The minivan can do much more than an SUV or Ford Flex will ever be able to do. The only time you will need an SUV over a minvan is when you need to tow over 3,500 lbs or need extra ground clearance (which most SUVs today do not provide). We have beat up our Odyssey and we couldn't have thought of a better car, which is why we still have it (there is no point in beating up another minivan). For a family car, I suggest a leather interior, all the active safety features, and good crash ratings. Cars I would avoid are the Dodge Grand Caravan, Chrysler Pacifica/Town and Country, Ford Flex (because it feels ancient), and most SUVs (gas gulping, needless ground clearance/AWD, much less space than a minivan while being bigger on the outside). Honda should be coming out with a hybrid Odyssey soon, but it'll be a while. Toyota should also be making a hybrid Sienna soon. The Pacifica hybrid will probably not be reliable because Chryslers rarely are.

So, my top suggestion is the 2018 Honda Odyssey. It is the most family friendly vehicle that is reliable comparing to a Chrysler Pacifica, which I would strongly avoid. All safety features are standard on the Odyssey on all but the lowest LX trim. Has very modern styling and lots of features that families care about.

The Toyota Sienna is not as good of a minivan because it is the oldest, but it is the only minivan available with AWD and has all active safety features standard on every trim. It is not as nice as the Odyssey or Pacifica.

The Kia Sedona has a long warranty, but is not going to be as reliable as the Toyota or Honda. It is not as nice as the Honda, but about as nice as the Sienna. The Kia does not have any standout features except for the warranty. It does not have easily accessable safety features.

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Honda Odyssey
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