I just completed a week driving around in a Chrysler Pacifica minivan. Did I dread it? Yes. Did I feel like everyone was staring at me, pointing and laughing? Absolutely. Did I want to keep it and not send it back? OH HELL NO. The big question is, can I make a case for a minivan for people who have three or more children? I believe I can.
Moms and Dads, if they were honest, would admit that a minivan would make their lives easier and their children would love it and be very happy. They just can’t swallow the stigma of being a “minivan Mom” or worse, a “minivan Dad.” So, can you suck it up and do what is best for everyone, or will your pride get in the way?
While you ponder that, let us take a look at the basic differences between the two.
The pluses of an SUV (for purposes of this article, I will assume with three children you need a third row seat) is the exterior appearance. Some SUVs actually look pretty cool. They sit up taller, and many have capability of four-wheel or all-wheel drive, which is essential in many parts of the country. In those places, usually ground clearance is important and SUVs certainly have an advantage there. Given the recent love affair in America for SUVs, you have many more choices in crossovers and SUVs, since there are only about six real players in the minivan market.
Your practical side will not want to hear this, but here are solid reasons to go with a minivan. First, the side doors. Those sliding side doors are sweet, you know they are! You don’t have kids banging the doors into other cars, walls, or anything else. Now virtually all of them are opened and closed with the push of a button, so no wrangling with them.
Also, you can’t possibly ignore the legroom in a minivan. Depending on which minivan you choose, you can get two or three people in the middle, then at least two and possible three people in the third row, none of them cramped like they are in SUVs.
The windows in minivans are generally larger, so visibility is better for you and for the kiddos, which will keep them occupied. Minivans often come with DVD players, and places to plug-in games. They also tend to have electrical plugs for charging cell phones or computers, and some even have a built-in central vacuum system.
Putting things in perspective as a daily driver, minivans ride better, are smoother, and are generally quieter inside. There are cup holders and often juice box holders everywhere, and even mirrors to see all your little pride and joys to make sure they are as snug as a bug in a rug.
Parents, it is time to suck it up and do what is right for your family and get a minivan. I have made a strong case for them and you should seriously consider putting your selfish pride aside, and doing what is right for your family.
Just in case you are wondering, if I had three kids, would I be putting my family in a minivan? OH HELL NO.