Do any newer vehicles exist that are NOT SUVs, vans, or minivans that seat 7 or more people?

I am looking for a family vehicle for 2 adults and potentially four children that is not an SUV, van, or minivan. Are there any station wagons that are being made today with a third row that faces forward?

The definitions are completely blurred these days.

I would consider the Ford Flex to be a really nice station wagon ( low and flat to ground and seating for 7 available )…but it’s not classified as such…yet it meets your criteria.

Example ; my 06 Escape hybrid is classified as an SUV… BUT it is built on the Ford Contour chassis…I would call it a car, in fact a small AWD station wagon…but not so according to the auto industry know-it-alls.
And the current Explorer ( seating for 7 available ) is built on a car chassis…in ‘‘station wagon’’ body…yet classed as an SUV…go figure.

Hence the newer classification…’‘crossover’’…where you’ll now find most of your station wagons.

You need to not worry about the labels. The Flex and the Chevy Traverse are two that fit your needs, “SUV” or not. And no, there are no 7-passenger station wagons available, but these are better, anyway.

But a minivan would be better still.

Perhaps if you explained why the ‘no’ list, we’d have some additional suggestions.

How about a Limo and have the interior set up the way you want it…Travel in style…

Thank you for the suggestions. There is no major reason I do not want an SUV or van other than I prefer small, low-to-the ground cars. I feel like everything is so big these days, but not necessarily always bigger on the interior. I’ve always been a Camry and Accord owner. My siblings and I grew up in a Caprice Classic station wagon which I inherited as my first vehicle. My husband and I joke about trying to find an old one of those to restore! Thanks again for the help.

I was raised with station wagons too, like the white and red Bel Aire I remember most.
My childhood neighbors always bought Mercurys with the dual hinged tailgate.

That’s why I point to the Ford Flex ( seating for 7 available ) as the most station wagon like vehicle I know of.

This was very helpful! Thanks again!

You had me until ‘Caprice Classic station wagon’…that was much bigger than anything we’ve mentioned. But yes, 7 people need much more room than an Accord or Camry-sized vehicle. If you’re going long distances with 2 adults and 4 kids, think also about all the stuff you’ll want to carry. Something like the Flex, or a minivan, would come in very handy.

Yes, I see the irony; I do sound silly. I guess I when I say I’m not fan of bigger, I mean the vertical direction. I think I’d probably chose a mini-van over SUV.

OK, just know that many current ‘SUVs’ share lots of basic design elements with minivans and sedans. The old style SUV, like a Suburban, is pretty rare now.

Thanks for the advise. I think I just need to conform.


You are making two mistakes, IMHO.

You are getting hung up on labels.
You are not dealing with reality if you think that something “small” will hold 7 (or more !??!) people.

The best bets, IMHO, would be the Toyota Sienna and the Honda Odyssey, but these vehicles are definitely BIG. Some SUVs would also serve the purpose, but probably would not have the total carrying capacity (passengers + cargo) that a van would have.

Shop in person for fit and function…regardless of labels.

This is how we decided on the Escape hybrid ( seating for 5 ) when moving out of the old 91 Explorer.
And when upsizing the 92 Explorer we got an 08 Expedition EL ( seating for 8 )…now that has some roooom in it ; )

Shopping in person is probably the best idea…then I’ll get hooked on something, regardless of what I think I want!

The labels really do hurt the market.But SUVs and vans are designated trucks in CAFE standards and have replaced station wagons for that reason,

A lot of minivans feel a lot like station wagons. They are taller and do put you higher off of the ground. But the “feel” of them is wagon, not van. It sounds to me like you should get your mind set if having some fun test driving lots of different vehicles. I think that eventually between the crossover SUV/Wagon things and the minivans you’ll get in something and it will “feel” right to you.

I don’t know if you have kids yet, but when you do, you’ll be amazed at how much easier it is with a minivan. I have an Odyssey, and the seating arrangement puts some distance between the kids so it is harder for them to irritate each other. The Odyssey handles pretty well and doesn’t feel as unwieldy as some large vehicles do. Some minivans I’ve driven feel rather clumsy in comparison.

We have a family of 5 and find that a minivan has been great. We are on our second one now, with over 120,000 miles on it. A SUV or crossover will seat 7, but there is not much cargo space. You can seat all 6 of you and still have plenty of room for luggage in a minivan. From a utility standpoint, noting beats the minivan as a people and cargo hauler. Go to a Honda dealer and look at a Pilot with a 3rd row and an Odyssey. You will see the difference immediately.

Yes but they are called boats.