Ask LH: What Should I Look For In A Family Car?

Dear Lifehacker, Me and my wife are in the market for a new car. We are also getting ready to start a family. What car would you recommend that is suitable for an expanding brood? Thanks, Sire Of Beings

Family car picture from Shutterstock

Dear SOB,

This largely depends on the amount of kids you plan on having. If you foresee a whole troupe of rugrats in your future, a minivan or similarly plus-sized vehicle might be the way to go.

If you’re thinking of the more traditional “2.5”, get something with a spacious boot, preferably a hatchback — this will be indispensable when it comes to packing for holidays and carting around prams. Just be mindful that some hatchbacks aren’t designed for baby seats. That said, getting an anchor point professionally installed usually isn’t too difficult.

You also need to consider whether you want to stay in the new car market or not. If you want your car to last you ten-to-twenty years, you obviously need to plan ahead to ensure it’s suitable for currently non-existent family members. However, if you’re planning to upgrade every few years, this wont be an issue. (Tarmac Rally Champion Samantha Stevens offers some good car buying and selling tips here.)

Otherwise, the most important consideration is safety — check out the safety records of the models you’re considering.

We’ll leave it up to our readers to nominate specific models. Let SOB know which cars are perfect for families in the comments section below.

See also: 30 Essential Things You Should Keep In Your Car | How Can I Make Travelling With Kids Less Of A Nightmare


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