Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Van or SUV? Help me decide!

Alright wonderful readers, I need your help. With baby #3 on the way and my vehicle dying (no AC and sporadically needs to be jump started – oh yeah, it’s been super fun this summer in Las Vegas heat), I am looking at new vehicles, well new to us used vehicles. I've had the same vehicle since high school and I'm super sad to move on, but it's time.

It may still be another couple months before we buy something, but I need your input.

Here’s my pros and cons list for each

My personal favorites: Toyota Sienna and Honda Odyssey
  • sliding doors, no hitting car next to you
  • lots of cargo space
  • better gas mileage
  • lower to the ground is easier for kids to get in by themselves
  • it’s a van
  • lower to the ground limits where it can go
  • not as safe in a front end crash

Personal favorites: Nissan Pathfinder and Armada
  • more versatile, can take it camping or whatever
  • higher off the ground which to me feels safer
  • 3rd row – seats 8
  • More hauling power
  • swing out doors
  • typically bigger/wider = harder to park?
  • not as much cargo space when third row is in use
  • higher center of gravity- can roll easier

So what have you had experience with and what would you recommend? Where would you recommend buying a used vehicle from?

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  1. I love my Honda van. Yes, it's a van--and I never wanted one. BUT for kids, it is so awesome. The automatic sliding doors alone, sold me on it. And it carries so much, we use it all the time to help people move. We are so similar. I loved the Nissan Pathfinder and wanted an SUV so bad. But for us, the van is so much more practical and now, I love it.If it's raining, the doors are opening while we are running to it, all pile in and close the doors and I can move between the seats just great. LOVE it!

    1. Hey thanks for your comment. I love the idea of automatic sliding doors. I actually hadn't thought of that feature. A bonus for sure!

  2. Me personally I would go with an SUV. I had always had a sedan but with four children it was too small. We looked at vans but with the way the front end nose dives I couldn't drive it. As far as which SUV make sure you do your research on it first including recalls on that year. Mine was between a Pilot and an Armada and we marked the Armada off the list because of some bad stuff for the years we were looking at.

    1. Thanks Sheena. I hadn't even thought to look at recalls and stuff. This will only be the second car I've bought and my first was in high school so my dad did most of the researching. haha. Thank you for your help!

  3. Van all the way. They get much, much better gasoline mileage. I get 20 town and 25-28 highway, sliding doors are great for you and kidos too. Makes hands free when you have carseat. Make sure to get dual air and check where the battery is for sure. They are putting car batteries now where you can get to them very good and with 3 children and you need a jump that could be a deal breaker.Loads of cup holders in vans and easier to see when you drive. Not so big that you can't park just about anywhere you find and with sliding doors getting out of tight place is easier. Go for the van girlfriend. From one grandmaw to a mom. I love my van it is 15 years old now. My daughter just gave me her newer one(8 years old) and love it too.Have both.....

    1. Thank you for your help! There is always something I didn't think about. The battery tip is very helpful!


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