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Minibus Vans 8-9 seats(16 Posts)
Expecting number 4 next year so looking to upgrade the car to a van so we can fit all child related crap like bikes, buggies in plus shopping. Space for suitcases and camping gear on occasion too... We'll have two older children and two babies - two isofix points required! Looking to drive it like a car.
So far I've looked at a ford tourneo - love the fact that the seats can be removed and folded, massive boot. Dislike that it looks like a taxi. Any views on two rear doors Vs one?
Vw transporters/caravelles look lovely but are pricier - are they worth it?
Renault trafic (sport) - looks nice enough on the outside but the middle seat row looks narrow. Is it? Also no option to remove or fold down the outer seat looks annoying.
Wants: Bluetooth, not too expensive to run, known for being reliable enough, under 15k max though more around the 10-12 mark. Cheaper the better without it being something so awful I'll grow to hate it.
Any views on general driving in one of these type things? Eg parking issues?
Any ideas appreciated!
It's going to look like a taxi because they're essentially vans.
The VW Transporter is brilliant and expensive because it holds its value well.
None of them are going to be cheap to run, fuel economy is never going to be impressive as it's a van.
Take the Renault Trafic for example which is diesel in the real world get's around 35mpg on longer journeys but I'd expect closer to 30 driving around town.
We have a Hyundai i800, 8 seats, massive boot and not too expensive.
We have a Tourneo custom and I was rather wary at first but it is fab. We also have 4 kids who as they get older really appreciate the space. We used to have a Ford galaxy which although it has 7!full sized seats it was cramped with car seats and bigger kids.
Everyday driving is fine except very occasionally on narrow roads I have to go slower. Most of the time I really like it though as you are much higher up and therefore have much better visibility.
Parking can be tricky, multi storey car parks are out as it is too tall (some car parks are a cm higher but that's something I don't want to risk) parking at the supermarket etc is fine, I tend to park away from the main bit to not get it bashed by others car doors but I don't use parent and child spaces as my kids are older but you will be able to and that should be fine. The sliding doors are fab!
That's all I can think of right now but if you have any other questions I am happy to be asked.
Check insurance policy first. When I bought a mini van it required business insurance even though it was going to be a family vehicle! Took it back!
Maybe it has changed as was a good while ago!
We have a tourneo.
Parking is an issue - multistoreys are a no go, some car parks are just too tight (not the spaces, but the space to get into the spaces, if that makes any sense). Plus, lots of out of the way car parks round here now have height restrictor on them (to stop travellers) which means they're out too.
It fits in a normal parking space, and is very easy to park - I think because you're higher up, you can see better to park. I've popped mine in spaces that (much) smaller cars have attempted and given up on!
Loads of space inside, and it's dead easy to drive, plus you can see over hedges and stuff. We have 2 erf seats in the back row, with a hbb inbetween, and 2 hbb in the middle row. Front middle seat on mine can have a rear facing seat in it as well.
It's wider than a car, but not hugely, but it's really well designed inside, so feels much bigger. The boot is massive - I don't actually need to fold my big pram to get it in!
It's cheaper to run than the 7 seater I had before it (a Hyundai trajet and a Peugeot 807). It's a minibus though, so needs specialist insurance, which isn't cheap.
Oh, while you can (in theory) remove the rear row of seats, mine comes out in one unit, and weighs (I think) 125kg. It's not something we've ever done, so I don't know how easy it is, but I don't fancy it tbh!
Check insurance policy first. When I bought a mini van it required business insurance even though it was going to be a family vehicle!
Definitely get an insurance quote BEFORE you buy a minibus. We had a 9 seater Renault Trafic but the insurance was astronomical (we're talking thousands). Lots of insurance companies won't even do minibus insurance for private use. I think an 8 seater was easier to insure than a 9 seater.
Other than that it was easy enough to drive but as pp said a bit of a pain when parking in height restrictive/multi storey car parks.
We got rid of it after 4 years as the insurance was just too much and got a Citroen Grand C4 Picasso 7 seater which is so much smaller and has a pathetic boot when all seats are up.
Wow never considered that insurance might be an issue, or that you could get a Hyundai so cheap... Glad you guys are happy with your tourneos as private vehicles (around here there are only a couple and they are taxis) Did have a drive of one and seemed good...
What is the age-gap between the kids?
We haven't found insurance a problem, was just a bit more than our 5 seater.
The back seats come out either as a two or one and dh has taken them out loads without a problem for going to gigs he is playing but he is quite strong.
We have the hyundai i800, it’s road tax is ok but not great, it’s fuel economy is ok but not great.
It does fit in all car parks (just, with mm to spare height wise for the small city centre ones).
It’s insurance is over £1000, and most companies were quoting £2000 (although we have one huge crash on our insurance history).
Brilliant boot space .
Only I row of isofix.
We had a ford Tourneo. It was a shed. Don’t buy mark 6!
We’ve got a Renault Trafic Sport now and I love it. The left hand middle seat folds down for access to the back, middle row isn’t particularly narrow.
Never had any issues with insurance though. Restricted with who but didn’t find the price too bad!
We have a Toyota Proace 9 seater. DH uses it for work sometimes but it's mainly our family vehicle. I love it. Fits in normal car parking spaces.
We have a 8 seater tourneo - firstly so you don't run into the issue of 9 seater insurance and also because with two seats in the front you can climb through into the back which is useful when parking and exiting through the slidey doors.
I've just renewed insurance and the only people who wouldn't quote online were direct line.
We've got sensors so parking is easy, it has a very small turning circle and isn't that much longer than a Galaxy. You do have to check the heights of car parks but Parkopedia is great for that.
Usually the two rear doors mean only 1 side door, if you can find one with two at the back and one on each side that would be great.
The seats are far more versatile than the i800 and it's cheaper than a VW.
The Toyota Proace has 2 sliding back doors. And I think there is an 8 seater version if 9 seats isn't good for you.