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What do Moms really want? When it comes to cars, that is.

edited November -1 in The Show
We hope you liked our little chat with Kristen from Motherproof.

So, tell us... are you a mom... or just a lowly dad who's busily toting kids around?

Join our discussion and tell what you think is important in a car, if you just so happen to be toting around your contribution to the next generation of drivers!

Got a mom-related car question? You can share it right here, too.


Thanks!
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Comments

  • edited September 2008
    Well, let me kick things off!

    I'm a mom with two kids, 2 and 6, and a third on the way. We need a new mom-car, but due to the present economy, we're not too thrilled at the idea of car payments. My inlaws, who live in Portland, have offered us a 10 year old Dodge Caravan, that seems to be in good condition. (Runs fine, no obvious problems. It has something like 130,00 miles on it.) I'm not so keen on driving a 10-year-old minivan, but I'm wondering-- how reliable should this be? Should we sell it or trade it on for something newer?

    My husband says we should definitely take it, and see how it goes, but I'm not so sure. And no, we don't have a bet on what folks will say, and I'm not calling into Car Talk. I'm sure not I could handle the grilling!

    Thanks.

    By the way does Motherproof answer questions like this? I wasn't sure.
  • edited September 2008
    You will probably get several good years out of it. But even if you only get one, that's better than the alternative. It's worth about $3000 if it's in good condition. Where else are you going to find a car and owners that you know so well? You still might want to get it checked as if you were buying it to see if there are any hidden surprises.
  • edited September 2008
    I second jtsanders' remarks. We try to pass cars down thru the family simply because we know the maintenance history and believe that a properly maintained car inside the family is superior to most used cars in the same price range.
  • edited September 2008
    Cup-holders.

    Seriously, I'm not a mom or a dad but I have much experience with both. Mini-vans are just about ideal for carting around SEVERAL kids. My wife's family came for a visit recently and we had 6 adults and three small kids to cart around. We almost all fit in a rented Chrysler town and country.

    If you only have one or two rugrats, a decent four door sedan or small wagon will work. If Honda made a four door Element it would be great for small and messy kids (is that redundant?). Actually, I don't know why no one makes a mini-van with a rubber interior like the Element. It would be highly kid resistant! (Nothing is Kid-Proof.)

    My sisters-in-law value utility over luxury in vehicles. They should be easy to use but the extra goo-gaws like DVD players and sat-nav aren't needed. Car seats should be easy to attach and remove. One sister-in-law even wishes she had vinyl seats for spill protection!
  • edited September 2008
    Moms generally *want* small sporty 2 door cars. I know my mother did, and my wife does. They settle for 4 door sedans, mini-vans, or wagons for practicality. There are some who get SUVs for paranoia reasons thinking they and their kids will be safer, but I suspect even those moms would really like a Miata if they didn't have to worry about kids . . . ;)
  • edited September 2008
    I'm a mother of two and can't figure out for the life of me why automakers can't build a car that works for families and be something you actually want to be seen in. Is that too much to ask? I'm frustrated with the options out there. I refuse to drive an SUV and yet the minivan just isn't exciting. I'm not prepared to drop $30K on a minivan that just doesn't excite me. Where are the exciting family cars?!
  • edited September 2008
    Cherryl, I agree with those who say go ahead and enjoy it and see how it runs. Accept their generosity.
  • edited September 2008
    Have you seen the new Infinty line? And the new Nissan Maxima is sweeeeeet!
  • edited September 2008
    What I wished I had with a baby in the back seat: seat belts that didn't require your fingernails and 360 range of motion to get buckled; cup-holders!; a built-in vacuum to scoop up all the crumbs before they fell down into the seat's crevices, only to be found as fossils years later; a back seat that actually allowed me to get in and unbuckle the seat belt, rather than forcing me to stretch beyond my capacity; a larger rear view mirror for better views of the tikes in the back; an automatic baby ejector, making it easier to lift the infant seat up and out of the car. Yes, some of this is fantasy. Truth be told, of our two vehicles we preferred the VW bug for ease of use, and the Saab for safety peace of mind.
  • edited September 2008
    My wife has always been pleased with her cars.

    When we were first married she had a little German Ford (like a 4-door Mercury Capri).

    Then a tiny economical Toyota Starlet which was easy to handle and park, and 'cute'.

    When the kids got to preschool age, a Volvo wagon with a rear-facing third seat hauled the kids and their friends everywhere. It was considered a bit 'Yuppy' at the time, but at least it was nicer and safer than a minivan.

    When the kids got older, she downsized to a bright red 328 BMW which she loved. This was her first car with an automatic transmission. After 10 years, that car got passed down to one of the kids, and she replaced it with a bright red 330 BMW which she loves. She is a high school teacher and I think she enjoys being the envy of the students and the staff.

    I'm still driving the '91 Volvo wagon.
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