February 28, 2012
Being a father of one, and another one coming in a few months, I had decided we needed a larger car. In the beginning, I thought a regular family wagon would be the best option, however my wife suggested looking at 6 passenger cars.
We also had my wife’s mother and father staying with us from interstate when the new baby arrived, so I began to think that it was possibly a good idea to check out what choices were out there for 6 passenger vehicles. I generally enjoy looking for a new car (well, not necessarily brand new, however “new to us”, at least) and investigating, so this was no exception. After doing a bit of initial research, there seems to be three forms of six passenger vehicles:
- SUVs that have a second row of back seats (often removable and often rearward facing).
- Mini-Vans (sometimes referred to as “People Movers”.
- Family wagons with a second row of back seats (often removable and commonly rearward facing).
Actually, there are sedans that claim to accommodate six passengers, however they’re actually not all that convenient. And forget about a six-seater sedan if you want to install a child seat. It’s just very crowded. We actually didn’t like the look of rearward facing chairs. The kids might enjoy it back there, however I don’t think the adults would get much of a kick from it.
So I concentrated my research on SUVs that had a back seat, or a choice to place a rear seat. It ends up that some SUVs have the additional seats stow away beneath the floor in the back. Looks like a pretty good idea, and maybe it is. Yet I don’t think we would have much call to temporarily stow the extra seats.
Which means that what would normally be stowed under the floor, now has to be stowed somewhere else. I suspect that might include stowing tools, the jack and spares etc. Somewhere else in the car. It seems that the extra row of seats in most of the six passenger SUVs (and family wagons for that matter), had the potential to remove the extra seats fairly easily, via bolts on the floor mounts as far as I could tell.
Appears pretty straight-forward even for a mechanically-challenged guy like me! Many other SUVs I’ve seen have the potential for the extra car seats to be folded up against the side of the vehicle when not in use anyway. So, precisely what did we go with? Well, believe it or not I haven’t made a decision yet. The new baby is here (3 months old) and also we are making do with our 4 door sedan.
We have two child seats in the car, however we can’t take any passengers apart from my wife and I. Are we still going to buy a 6 seater car? Absolutely, but the urgency we had previously has diminished, and the in-laws have been and gone, getting around just fine thanks to help from my sister-in-law. Anyhow, we’re going to need an SUV soon, so that I can take the older girl out camping and fishing. I’m seriously anticipating more space.