Bringing cars and kids together in one thread

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  • Bringing cars and kids together in one thread
  • Markie
    Member

    The familys I know with 3 including babies have (for the most part) either Range Rovers, Discoverys or Citroen Xsara Picassos. All have three seats of varying types (booster and baby) across the back.

    Similar situation here. Just about to change from a nissan x-trail to a volvo xc 90. Would prefer an lpg petrol, but diesels are more common

    Premier Icon midlifecrashes
    Subscriber

    Cheapest advice is to find smaller baby and kid seats, they are out there, moving eldest onto booster cushion only helps a lot. Car wise we have had a Volvo 940, a Honda Stream which is pretty narrow and now an S-Max. All have been seven seaters as we often take mates/grandparents/girl guides along too. (mrsmidlife runs the local guides). Brother has Multipla which is super wide too if that’s what you’re after. Three kids and usually two dogs means roofbox too for holidays.

    If I didn’t care about repair costs I’d go for an Espace. Great looking (for what it is) and soooo spacious.

    Riofer
    Member

    Thanks, I think Range Rovers, Discovery and XC90 may be out of my budget especially with fuel and other running costs. I’ll have a look at the Hyundai and the S-max.

    MLC, 7 seats will be useful to be able to carry extra family and friends. And a roof box is also already on the shopping list. Good point about narrower car seats, I may take a trip to Halfords and try a few variations out.

    djglover
    Member

    can one go in the boot. We did that all the time in the ’80s

    Riofer
    Member

    It was much easier back then, I remember rolling around in the back of my dads Cortina fighting with my sisters. No kids seat to take up the space back then. Also enjoyed the chance to ride in the boot when my Grandad was coming out for the day with us, just had to duck if dad spotted the police. 🙂

    petrieboy
    Member

    VW caddy maxi life look usefully huge. We’ve got a zafira which is great for 2 kids, but no way you’d get 3 seats across the bench.

    FunkyDunc
    Member

    C4 Picasso/Grand Picasso.

    Had one for a week in France. Well made, loads of space, great for families.

    Shocking suspension on slow speed big bumps, and not the quickest, but after all its a relatively cheap big family bus!

    FD – same as the Espace, when they go wrong (and they do) they are expensive.

    Riofer
    Member

    No Hollyoaks plot parallels here, look elsewhere for relationship drama. This thread is on the STW theme of frustrated middle aged dad in an MPV…

    Child number 3 should be joining us before the year is out and having tried to fit the baby seat in between the 2 kids seats already in the back of the car found it don’t fit. So I’m after some advice on family wagons that can fit 3 kids seats and carry a big load for family camping holidays and the occasional MTB trip for me (possibly in 2 years time :-)). I currently have a Mondeo estate that we currently manage to fill to the roof even for a weekend away.

    So far I’ve had a sit in a Galaxy which seems to fit the bill and had the usual MTB lifestyle dreams about a Transporter in Caravelle guise. It is going to be used for short local journeys in the week and then longer trips probably every other weekend. Planning to keep it for as long as possible, budget wise max is £15k but preferably less if there are good reliable options out there.

    Any experience from others carting 3 kids and their stuff around appreciated.

    Thanks
    Rio

    Premier Icon seadog101
    Subscriber

    Transit Tourneo – Shockingly cheap, in all respects. And will comfortably accomodate a pod of whales, with all their luggage and squid based snacks.

    And it’s a transit, which are fab, cos they are transits.

    Premier Icon mikewsmith
    Subscriber

    VW Caravelle?

    Pop the seats out plenty of room for kit.

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    3 kids + stuff ought to fit in a mondeo estate tbh- I’ve seen 3 child seats in the back of a Focus. Changing seats is cheaper than changing cars 😉 And if there’s not enough space in the cargohold, sorry, boot, then the roof?

    DrP
    Member

    I sat in the sister-in-law’s Kia sedono – made me want to vomit in my own mouth, but…….. It was massive and comfy inside, with ‘airline’ like seats I.e. each person gets their own seat with arm rests etc, which can be removed to leave a massive van like interior.
    Once I’d swallowed my vomitus, I tried to come up with more reasons not to get one as it IS a very practical car!

    DrP

    Premier Icon franksinatra
    Subscriber

    Ford S-Max, without a shadow of a doubt. I had one for three years when I had 3 kids under the age of 5. Could always fit all combinations of baby and booster seats with plenty of room to spare. The older kids were able to do their own belts up without having to shove booster seats around.

    Tonnes of room in the boot for everything that you need to lug around. Most importantly though, there car drives really, really well. Many reviews say that it is the only MPV that you would want to own rather than need to own.

    I’ve got a Hyundai Santa Fe now and although the car is much bigger, there is far less useable space inside.

    With your budget you could get a Titanium spec with all of the bells and whistles. Great car, highly reconmended

    glupton1976
    Member

    VW caddy maxi life look usefully huge. We’ve got a zafira which is great for 2 kids, but no way you’d get 3 seats across the bench.

    We must be doing something wrong then. Three kids seats fit in there with no problems at all.

    To the OP – save your cash and get some smaller car seats or one of these:

    http://www.multimac.co.uk/3_child_car_seat

    Premier Icon SaxonRider
    Subscriber

    This may sound sanctimonious, but I grew up with two brothers in a family that regularly travelled THOUSANDS of kilometres in a 1984 Jeep Cherokee* and before that, a 1972 Chevrolet Chevelle Wagon*. Packed to the gills, and without using the roof bars, we did alright.

    I do think that modern folk tend to have unnecessarily high expectations.

    Examples shown here, for entirely gratuitous purposes:

    and

    This may sound sanctimonious, but I grew up with two brothers in a family that regularly travelled THOUSANDS of kilometres in a 1984 Jeep Cherokee* and before that, a 1972 Chevrolet Chevelle Wagon*. Packed to the gills, and without using the roof bars, we did alright.

    I do think that modern folk tend to have unnecessarily high expections.
    But did you back then have to (by law) have car seats fitted?

    No, I thought not.

    Premier Icon SaxonRider
    Subscriber

    You’re right, m_f. I didn’t consider that. But did you see that Chevelle? Nice, eh? :mrgreen:

    Premier Icon franksinatra
    Subscriber

    Don’t forget you need to be able to fit the baby seat in the middle to use as a physical barrier between the two older kids who will fight on longer journeys.

    Riofer
    Member

    True Frank – currently on long journeys there is usually a bag in the gap between their kids seats to keep arms and legs apart.

    That Multi mac looks an interesting idea, have you actually used one Glupton?

    MrsMugsy
    Member
    glupton1976
    Member

    Riofer – I haven’t used one personally, but some close friends have one and it is an extremely well built bit of kit and does the job superbly well.

    Saccades
    Member

    How old is the mondeo? We have a 04 model and have gotten 3 seats in there ok, generally we have 2 and a big adult sat inbetween. We often go on the Ferry abroad for 2 weeks and we use a roofbox for the pram (the big beast of a thing, fits in the 175L (might be 275, the biggest halfords do) roofbox with room spare for bringing pressies home with us), then everything else we need goes in the boot covered with the tonneu cover. We then have 1 bag each at the feet of the kids, one with loads of food/snacks and the other with emergency supplies (nappies/wipes/clothes etc). Leaves the car with tons of space in the cabin and able to see behind you fine.

    I’d deffo be looking at smaller seats and maybe cutting down on how much stuff you really need to bring with you? Wife makes the mistake of packing to fill up the space she has as opposed to packing what we need.

    Have just re-read the OP, you are going camping which has a lot of quite large bulky things included on top of regular going away – I’d suggest a transit

    winston
    Member

    I always think of French cars as like printers – the actual machine is cheap to buy and looks great bristling with the latest tech….then you start to need ink and toner

    S- max is your only real option here if you want sensible running costs

    or you could go down the route I did and buy a Landcruiser!

    Riofer
    Member

    Seems new kids seat could be viable option. Any recommendations for slimline but safe child seats then?

    Currently have a 5 year old and a 3 year old in Britax 123 seats, admittidly these are a bit bulky due to the side proteaction they offer. When these are fitted you can squeeze a skinny adult in between as long as they are happy to sit with their arms up on the seat backs for the journey. with slimmer child seats the baby seat should fit, and the extra stuff should be accomodated in a giant roof box.

    Premier Icon jambalaya
    Subscriber

    With 3 kids it really is better to have a 7 seater, sooner or later 3 in a row will fight.

    The Galaxy type vehicles are very efficient users of space, huge with seats removed (make sure the model you pick has that feature). 3 of us with 3 bikes, tent, luggage (all inside) went to the Alps this year with tons of spare space.

    Then you have the Volvo V70 type vehicles.

    Finally the genuine 4x, we had 2 Shoguns over 10 years and 250 trouble free miles. However, with current road tax regime not sure I’d do the same again.

    The MPVs are a bit dull, perhaps if you had a second fun car too it would numb the pain !

    Premier Icon chaos
    Subscriber

    Transporter option doesn’t need to be the very expensive Caravelle.

    A basic panel van which you can have side windows and a rock’n’roll bed added to afterward would do the job very nicely (and legally/safely). AKA a ‘kombi’.
    I’ve used this basically as my daily drive to work vehicle for the last 5 years and love being able to chuck a muddy bike (or even windsurfing kit) in the back for a quick ride near where I’m working.

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