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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm not sure where to post this but TIA for any input:<br>
I'm seriously considering buying a small SUV in order to drive my parents to my dad's dr.'s appts (he has a hard time getting into regular sized cars, is very weak, etc.). I want to get one with decent fuel economy and so I've been looking at Ford Escapes, Honda CRVs, and Toyota RAV4s. I just figured out that the Escape will not seat a person in the backseat in addition to the two carseats. I have a really basic run of the mill baby bucket seat for the baby and a Britax Boulevard (huge seat!) for the toddler. The backseat of the Escape is 49 inches. An adult will not fit back there in addition to the two carseats that I have. Does anyone out there have a small SUV with decent fuel economy and still have room for infant and toddler carseats AND an adult to sit back there with them? What kind of SUV do you have? What kind of carseats do you have? Does anyone have a minivan that gets decent mileage?
 

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IME you're going to have real trouble getting two full sized car seats (buckets are big...) and still have hip room for an actual adult in ANY car/truck/van.<br><br>
One solution might be to replace both seats with radians- as those are the narrowest seats out. But still, it's going to depend on the size of the person who is planning to ride back there with them.<br><br>
-Angela
 

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Yeah, that's what I was going to say . . . get two Radians. That is what I will have to do at some point . . . but I drive a Subaru Legacy Outback which might be slightly smaller but I'm guessing it is more or less equivalent to a SUV in interior space.
 

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We have a Boulevard in the back of our Forester, and it definitely squeezes any brave adult sitting back there already. I don't know if that's helpful....sorry.<br><br>
~Shawn
 

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We have a Toyota RAV4 (DH drives it to work), and while it is a great vehicle with good gas mileage for 4, the seatbelts overlap in the backseat for the middle and side to where it does not work to have 2 carseats and an adult back there. The only way to get 2 carseats in is to have them on the sides, and then the adult would be really squished and would be hard to get into the middle.
 

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I know nothing about SUV sizes, etc. However, isn't the Honda Pilot really a honda odyssey except in SUV clothes. Don't they have 3 rows of seats?
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>mybabysmama</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10704931"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I know nothing about SUV sizes, etc. However, isn't the Honda Pilot really a honda odyssey except in SUV clothes. Don't they have 3 rows of seats?</div>
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The pilot does have 3 rows of seats. Though I find the 3 rows to be much easier to use in an Odyssey than a pilot... Not sure how much similarity they really have.<br><br>
-Angela
 

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Almost any SUV with a third row of seats are going to be a PIA for regular use unless you are taking about a massive SUV. Most of the mid size SUVs with that option have a spilt seat in the second row to access the third, that means no carseat can go in that spot or in the middle and you will be leaning over a folded seat to buckle, unbuckle in the rear. Not fun at all, BTDT, got a minivan for that exact reason.<br><br>
I think even with the Radian seats, it would be a very small adult that could ride in the back, I'm fairly small myself, and it's just not feasible in our wagon. I think the Odyssey is supposed to have the best fuel economy in the minivan segment.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Peony</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10705118"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I think the Odyssey is supposed to have the best fuel economy in the minivan segment.</div>
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The Odyssey and the Sienna are basically the same. One lists one MPG better than the other on either highway or city (don't remember which either... <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol">)<br><br>
-Angela
 

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We have a pergeut (sp? french car forgive me any french speakers here) wagon and 2 radians. If one radian is RF and one is FF the fit very nicely next to each other and the adult can sit comfortably behind the passenger. I would try different combinations and see. I agree about it being a PITA to get into a 3rd row in a smaller suv / wagon. I can put one chidl in teh back (buckle through the back door) but I can't put two in the back unless I lean over the sides and it's a PITA. I can't wait until they can buckle themselves!
 

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We have a 1998 Volvo Cross-Country wagon and we can fit 2 Britax Decathlons (one rear-facing, one forward-facing) and my DH, who is 6'3" and is stocky with very broad shoulders. It's the best car we ever owned. It doesn't have the high ground clearance like a regular SUV, but it is higher than a regular car.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thank you all so much! I hadn't heard of Radians but researched them, and sure enough, it would take a Hummer to fit two of them in addition to someone with a butt the size of mine. I think I have no other choice but to get a minivan... I'm looking at the Kia Sedona because the fuel economy, though not great, is about as good as the Odyssey and the Sienna (and it's cheaper). I feel so naive. I thought surely any SUV would be big enough to seat two carseats and an adult in the back. I had no idea how much room carseats really take up. I just remember being a teenager and piling maybe 8 people into a Honda Civic--not safely, of course.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>mandymichel</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10710877"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I'm looking at the Kia Sedona because the fuel economy, though not great, is about as good as the Odyssey and the Sienna (and it's cheaper). I feel so naive.</div>
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How do Kia's do with maintenance, longevity, and safety? I always had the sense they were cheaply made and you get what you pay for. However, I don't know for sure, I just always had that impression. For me, safety is the top priority.<br><br>
Have you noticed how your attitude on death changes when you have kids? At least mine did. I used to avoid car accidents because I didn't want to die. Now I avoid accidents because I couldn't bare the thought of my son growing up without his mother.
 

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Just to reiterate "not gonna happen with a small to midsize SUV". . .we have both a Honda CR-V (new body style) and a Ford Explorer and neither would fit a average-sized adult and two carseats in the back.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>mandymichel</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10710877"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I thought surely any SUV would be big enough to seat two carseats and an adult in the back.</div>
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IMNSHO... the SUV is as much about image as it is about sport and utility. Many of them are really not so great for hauling people. Some of them, you really won't have any more people capacity than with a car... but with a v6 or v8 engine you can be sure you'll have crappier miles to the gallon. (And yes when there is a back row of seats in an SUV getting in and out of it is a PAIN)<br><br>
MIL had a Chrysler Sebring (sedan) and we could put my son's carseat (Marathon) in the middle in that car and an adult could fairly comfortable sit on the side. I don't know that I'd want to ride that way for a 14 hour road trip but around town, not a problem. You could certainly find a full size sedan where you can get a car seat in the middle and end and still have room for an adult on the other end. Not luxury accomadations but it could work.<br><br>
If you really want people to have space you will need a van but I don't think this sounds like the sort of thing where you NEED that much space.<br><br>
I am confused though about your wanting an SUV because your father has trouble getting into cars and is weak... the climb into an SUV seems like it would be harder to me?
 

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What about Kia Rondo? It is small or mid sized SUV with optional third row that you can put up or down. Although, I'm not sure how easy it will be to actually get into the third row.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>RunnerDuck</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10711953"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
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I am confused though about your wanting an SUV because your father has trouble getting into cars and is weak... the climb into an SUV seems like it would be harder to me?</div>
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For people with lower back pain/leg weakness, having to bend down to get into a car, or push themselves up to get out of it can be very difficult. The seats of a small SUV are right at hip level so they don't require strength to get into or out of <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
I discovered this when i was pregnant with my first. We had to trade in my car for a Santa Fe because I was phsyically unable to get in and out of my sedan.
 

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You might want to look at the Mazda 5... it's a bit taller/higher than a regular sedan, but the footprint is similar. It has three rows of seats, and even the largest Britax seats fit in the third row. There are cautions about the seat belt pathing in the third row, so you'd want to find a safe solution for that before your kids were out of harnesses, but otherwise it's a pretty nifty vehicle.<br><br>
There's a looooong thread about it somewhere on car-seat.org (is that URL right?), including pics of seats installed and kids buckled in.<br><br>
As far as I'm concerned, it's practically the ideal car except that it's not made by Honda. ;-)
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Kia Sedona is supposed to be the third best minivan (after Odyssey and Sienna). It has the same fuel efficiency and it's way cheaper. It's kind of a bummer that SUVs don't really accommodate more people, since the small SUV fuel economy is so much better. And yeah, my dad has a lot of trouble sitting down and standing up... he's very tall and his legs are really weak. Hopefully he won't hate me for driving him around in a gas guzzler.
 
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