What car do you have and how do you find it size wise with children?

(32 Posts)

DH and I are looking to change car so I'm wanting to research practicalities of boot spaces with children.
We've got a 10 week old so she has a pram with carrycot at the moment although she'll only need to use that until 6 months. DH plays a sport in the summer that means lugging a huge bag about. We also like to go camping every so often although we don't need to carry a tent as that goes in another car.

I seem to be wanting the boot space of a big car with the size and price of a smaller family car. I know not everyone has a huge car so it must be manageable.

Could you tell me what car you have and your positives or negatives of it size wise? We'll probably be buying new or up to 3 years old although I'm still undecided on that too

JiltedJohnsJulie Mon 04-Feb-13 19:50:48

We've got a kangoo and while its not hugely stylish I just love it. Yesterday we got my bike, 2 kids bikes and the 3 of us in comfortably. The passenger doors slide so its really, really easy with the baby.

Izzybuzzybuzzybees Mon 04-Feb-13 20:39:36

We have a Honda jazz but are looking to get bigger, possibly a zafira. I'm interested in your replies!

DieWilde13 Mon 04-Feb-13 20:43:55

We have a seat Alhambra, mainly because we need the 7 seats. Great car.
I would happily go back to a Golf, though. My favourite car of them all.

ChunkyChicken Mon 04-Feb-13 20:45:36

Ford Focus (Sport, 06)

Pros; *big ish boot (as long as you have space saver space tyre)
*takes a roof box
*reasonable price, insurance etc
*seats comfortably accommodate both dc car seats

Cons; *sport model has slight bucket seats, making a seat base or isofix base impossible, and no car seat sits on it 'properly'
*seat belts VERY short making car seats hard to fit
*boot door dribbles rain on to parcel shelf

A C-Max might be a better option for a Ford.

Vectra, 2 children. Huge boot, great car for shedloads of tat. Think the insignia that replaced it has the same boot space.

Fishandjam Mon 04-Feb-13 20:50:37

VW Touran. An austerity S-Max, basically. I love it - not the best handler I've ever driven but perfectly acceptable, and tons of space for balls, sticks, packs of baby wipes, apple cores, bits of Lego, pine cones and broken crayons kids' stuff.

pixi2 Mon 04-Feb-13 20:53:42

We have a ford s-max and a BMW x5. Both good boot spaces. But quite expensive.

MissMummy1 Mon 04-Feb-13 21:05:56

<waves at fatima>

We are having the same dilema. Made more complicated by the fact DP is hopefully about to get a fabby new job with a company car. Currently have a Citroen Xsara which does fit car seat/pram/dive kit/dog (not tried all at once right enough..) and a couple of mountain bikes on the roof; but it's coming up for 10 years old and potentially about to start costing a lot of money sad . So do we:

a) trade it in now for a decent family car (suggestions much appreciated, we've reached a stalemate on this one) but end up paying for a second car we don't really need if he gets the job, we have just finished paying for an audi we got rid of 3 years ago, grr or
b) hold on to the xsara until we find out if DP gets new job (unfortunately this will be after MOT expires), possibly having to spend a fair bit to get it through it's MOT but getting a higher trade in value if he doesn't get job to buy a newer car, and if he does get the job, I'll get to keep it as a run around for myself for another year. Borrowing my mum's corsa a couple of weeks ago proved I can't swap it for anything smaller just yet (as much as I would love a little city car).

If he gets a company car it will be a volvo as they are the company's preferred vehicles (they throw a lot of sponsorships this well known boaty charity's way wink ). Either XC70 or XC90. This would be very practical and both are also on his wishlist of new family cars for us anyway.

If we buy a new car (now or if he doesn't get the job) we are very undecided - causing a few 'disputes'. I think the Nissan Qashqai is lovely and very practical. He wants a Golf or an Audi estate. hmm

Sorry I don't think I've been much help grin , any advice for our car dilemas also appreciated!

Pikz Mon 04-Feb-13 21:06:43

We have an Audi q5. Excellent car, a little expensive even though we bought 2nd hand. Fab boot space.

Ilovemydogandmydoglovesme Mon 04-Feb-13 21:12:58

I looked at a Qashqai and didn't think it looked very big?

For boot size anything like a VW Passat estate or Volvo estate. Or Volvo XC90 as absolutely massive boot. envy

Am currently looking at a Freelander. Seems nice and roomy. Don't bother with a Range Rover Evoque if your budget goes that far, they're bloody tiny inside.

MissMummy1 Mon 04-Feb-13 21:15:46

Ilovemydog It was the qashqai +2 I fancied: much bigger boot with the back seats down. He would' also have a bloody landrover if he got his way (have not long got rid of ancient disco and he has a defender project and hybrid rangerover-defender 'toy' hiding in storage somewhere hmm )

zumo Mon 04-Feb-13 21:17:05

Over the last 13 years we have had the following
Discovery It was excellent
Peugeot 405 estate and a 406 estate but latest ones a seven seater, they are cheap, good on fuel and go for ever, loads of room and comfey, still using it now even theoug we also have a Bongo, thats good but at 22mpg around town we only use it for best and days out etc

IwishIwasmoreorganised Mon 04-Feb-13 21:22:43

DH has a VW Passatt estate - massive boot!

I did have a skoda Fabia estate which I loved when ds's were younger and smaller. That had a great sized boot (pushchair and weekly shop) without feeling like a big car. It was a 1.2, very economical and cheap to ensure but also went well on longer motorway trips.

Now I have a Peugeot 5008 as our 2 dc's are getting bigger, but also to fit more people it. They couldn't both have friends home after school at once when I had the skoda as I couldn't fit 3 across the back seat. Also for parties, beavers, rugby etc it's brilliant to be able to take 6 at a time and not have to go as often

My car has taken over as the main one that we use at weekends too.

newbiebaby Mon 04-Feb-13 21:26:03

In same position just bought a zafira fab boot size

ewaczarlie Mon 04-Feb-13 21:27:35

We have volvo xc60 and it has the most amazing boot and is generally great for space BUT
- hugely uneconomical around town
- parking is a nightmare as it is quite wide so if you can't get parent and child parking you wouldn't get a baby out easily

VinoEsmeralda Mon 04-Feb-13 21:35:37

I just bought a V70 and so far happy with it but same complaint as ewaczarlie
its v uneconomical ( its the D4) on short trips. Boots is great, plenty of legroom and a solid car, parking is ok but its long...

Elizadoesdolittle Mon 04-Feb-13 22:56:18

I got rid of my polo last year (which i loved) and got a 2yr old ford c-max. The quashqui + 2 was my first choice but after much research and taking finances into account i went for the c-max. I was dubious at first, never been a ford fan for completley irrational reasons. But I have to say I love it. Find it very comfy to drive and roomy in the back. I have 2 car seats and can seat an adult in the middle.
The boot is plenty big enough. Today I had in it DD2's quinny pushchair inc dreami carrycot, buggy board and DD1's bike (albeit a small balance bike). DH plays golf and his clubs fit in the back although I think his driver sticks out the top and doesnt lay flat.
It doesnt feel like a huge car when driving it.
Cons...can't actually think of any right now.

Catbag Tue 05-Feb-13 00:31:33

I've a Chrysler Grand Voyager, but only because I was looking for a car that had seven full size adult seats and a boot at the same time; more unusual than you might think. It has a 2.5 lire engine and so is not terribly economical (about 40mpg), but it has full leather interior and is soooo comfy. What I like is the compartments everwhere for storing stuff. It is a big old (Treg) bus, but I luffs her and I can fit all five kids plus twin pushchair/shopping in grin

Catbag Tue 05-Feb-13 00:35:15

Oh, forgot, she has sliding doors on BOTH sides which is so much easier for tight spaces and getting twins in and out. It also has amazing speakers. All tunes sound bass-y and clear. It is essentially my dream car smile

weegiemum Tue 05-Feb-13 00:39:56

We have a Zafira.

Happily fits all 3 large children (9, 11, 13) across the back seat with huge boot. Or on long journeys 2 in "middle" seat and one in the "back".

We can put all 3 in and fit all our camping gear too - 8man tent, sleeping bags, stove etc etc etc in the boot.

It's our second one of them (dh wrote one off in the ice 2 years ago en route to an emergency call-out!) but we'd happily have another!

StuntNun Tue 05-Feb-13 11:08:11

Ford S-Max - it's a great car to drive in terms of handling but a bit tricky to park. Easily fits three car seats across the middle row and two in the back row. The boot is huge with the back two seats down but quite small with them up. The middle and back row all fold completely flat which is great if you need to move something large. There are storage spaces in front of the middle row so if you have a carseat base that stays in the car it has to go in the middle seat. I don't mind that because it's the safest position in the car so the logical place for a baby seat. The car doesn't have a spare which is increasingly common these days so I have bought a full size spare wheel to take on long journeys.

lljkk Tue 05-Feb-13 11:12:40

Of the cars we've had, the one that most matches your requirements was a VW Passat (estate). Cheap to run, big boot, plenty of space, easy enough to park. I would look for something that size & style if I were you.

I now have stupidly big & fairly small car.

Thanks for all your replies. I will add the Ford c-max and s-max to the list as well as the Zafira and passat. May have to make a trip to the Volvo showroom too.

We were originally going to buy a Fabia Estate but decided to wait until after DD was born. DH has now gone off them.
We've also looked the Skoda Octavia - great boot size. Would have to buy used as the new one comes out next month and is a lot bigger

I like the Audi A3 Sportback but don't know if the 370l boot would be practical? If you have an A3 feel free to disagree. I like the Q3 as its not as big as the Q5, but it's probably out of our budget.

We found a fab deal on a new Mazda 3 which DH likes but I think a 340l boot is too small.

We currently have a Ford Focus which is a decent size so we could get another or maybe keep ours a bit longer. DH however is worried it's on the verge of costing us money with faults etc.

DH has also mentioned the Peugeot 5008, I'm not keen on French cars though although again willing to be proved wrong.

JiltedJohnsJulie Tue 05-Feb-13 11:36:24

Our French car has been fab, until it hit its 10 th birthday. Even then it hasn't really cost us that much.

That's good then. We only tend to keep ours 3-4 years before we trade it in so it shouldn't cost much.
It depreciation that worries me a bit too

JiltedJohnsJulie Tue 05-Feb-13 12:19:24

We tend to go for cars that are at least 18 months old. That way someone else has suffered the biggest depreciation and ironed out any faults too smile

fossil971 Tue 05-Feb-13 13:09:09

We are just about to downsize our 52 Passat. (We have 2 dc now junior school age). It has been a brilliant family car, comfortable, loads of room, it has been loaded all over with bikes and camping kit. The biggest pushchair barely half-fills the boot. Reasonably economical as a diesel and relatively little in terms of repairs over the seven years we've had it. Only getting rid of it as we have another vehicle for camping and don't need the pushchair space any more.

You will not go far wrong buying a used Passat, ours is over 140 000 miles now, the only downside is the dull image. Perhaps you can find one in a cheerful colour!

No-one's said Skoda Octavia? Haven't got one yet but it's 90% certain that's what the next one will be.

We test drive one on Friday blue
We liked it, we had wanted to buy one new as they had 20% off but they're bringing a new shape Octavia out next month so there's limited new current shapes about. So we'd be looking at buying one about a year old

Sorry *had a test drive in one

RugBugs Tue 05-Feb-13 15:50:20

We have just upgraded our Citroen c3 to errr a c3 Picasso.
It wasn't my first choice, I think it looks like a tank but DP is the one going to be driving it and he really likes it. The model is 3 yrs old now so lots are coming back to dealerships after being on finance/mobility schemes. Ours is an 09 plate, 23k miles and cost under £7k.

My Dad has a quashai+2 and it's more of a pain to get our (phil&teds) buggy in their boot than it is in a c3, the contouring of the boot door and the depth lost with extra seats mean it has to go in completely flat at the back or wedged on it's side at the back.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now