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  1. #26
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    Toast, first off, congrats. As a father of twins that are now 22, you'll have some great times, some frustrating times and some hard times. But, once they get about 3 or 4, they have a constant playmate and it's great.

    The best car advice I can give is to go used with a life of 5yrs or so, they will trash it. We were doing lots of road trips from Seattle to the Flathead and the third row that fit an adult was the key. With the kids facing backwards one could feed and entertain as the other drove. It was the only way to make any time on road trips.

    Sent from my SM-N975U using Tapatalk

  2. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Iowagriz View Post

    The best car advice I can give is to go used with a life of 5yrs or so, they will trash it. We were doing lots of road trips from Seattle to the Flathead and the third row that fit an adult was the key. With the kids facing backwards one could feed and entertain as the other drove. It was the only way to make any time on road trips.
    That's a good call. Our friends with kids are good at turning a 5 hour drive into 10 hours because they're constantly stopping to deal with kid stuff. I imagine having mom in the 3rd row cuts down on those problems.

  3. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by plugboots View Post
    Sienna AWD. Get a donut spare or regular sized spare and go with regular tires, no big deal. Our Honda was the same way. If you can wait the 2021 Sienna is hybrid and gets 33 mpg. Pacifica will get AWD for 2021 as mentioned. If you can't wait, go find a low mileage AWD Sienna and don't look back.
    Listen, I have a BMW 340 x-drive MT, and a Golf R w/ MT. Minivans are awesome at what they do. My beat to shit 2005 Odyssey is 265 hp, and climbs in the mountains. I drive it on all the forest roads and double tracks around here. No it's not a jeep thank Ullr, which suck.
    Throw all your crap in it, grab 7 friends and throw all their crap in it, and laugh all the way up to the trailhead, 'cuz it's a powder day, and morons in trucks are outside putting their boots on.

    Edit to add, apparently 2020 Pacificas can be had w/ AWD right before the 2021 comes out. I'd stick w/ the Sienna though due to reliability. This guy mentions the AWD around 3:30 https://youtu.be/cqcqzuAW8mQ
    Best post in this thread.

    Note the new awd Sienna Hybrid retains the 3500 on tow rating. And it has a nose...

    Rear window roll down on 4R is the shizzle. Our cow dog Casper can stand back there farm dog style with his head out taking in the scenery and giving everybody behind us dog high fives. Smile inducing.

  4. #29
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    Another What Car Thread: Big-ish SUV's (or Minivan?)

    Yeah I love the rear window option It’s just hard to buy a car for that one singular reason.

    I am semi-looking for an old US built monster station wagon that had that feature. That would be an awesome spring skiing vehicle.
    Well maybe I'm the faggot America
    I'm not a part of a redneck agenda

  5. #30
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    Just drove an Atlas, Highlander, and Sienna.

    Atlas was pretty good. I liked it better than the Highlander - smoother transmission, a little peppier, and less road noise. And definitely bigger inside. Highlander is probably more reliable, but VW has a better warranty (and is cheaper)

    But now I get all the love for the Sienna. Faster than any of the SUV's I've driven with the possible exception of the cx-5. Also corners better. I'm not sure I'd quite call it fun to drive, but it certainly drives well. And yeah, lots of space in there. And much easier to move about the cabin than in any of the SUV's. I think I just need to get over the mental hesitation re: minivans (and deal with getting a spare tire for it). The biggest issue might just be finding one for sale - the used market sucks for those things.

  6. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by toast2266 View Post
    Just drove an Atlas, Highlander, and Sienna.

    Atlas was pretty good. I liked it better than the Highlander - smoother transmission, a little peppier, and less road noise. And definitely bigger inside. Highlander is probably more reliable, but VW has a better warranty (and is cheaper)

    But now I get all the love for the Sienna. Faster than any of the SUV's I've driven with the possible exception of the cx-5. Also corners better. I'm not sure I'd quite call it fun to drive, but it certainly drives well. And yeah, lots of space in there. And much easier to move about the cabin than in any of the SUV's. I think I just need to get over the mental hesitation re: minivans (and deal with getting a spare tire for it). The biggest issue might just be finding one for sale - the used market sucks for those things.
    Actually totally disagree. Tons of awesome off lease AWD Sienna's. I think 2017 is the first year for direct injection and better fuel economy. Almost all of them are fully loaded and lowish miles for under 30k...albeit most of them are on the lots at Toyota stealerships. I was going to buy one, but I got the cold sweats when I went to test drive one. And my stepson isn't into doing stuff with us anymore, so for the 3 of us we didn't really need it. The demand for minivans isn't what it used to be. Thus the change for the new Sienna to have a nose to give people more of an SUV feel.

  7. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by uglymoney View Post
    Actually totally disagree. Tons of awesome off lease AWD Sienna's. I think 2017 is the first year for direct injection and better fuel economy. Almost all of them are fully loaded and lowish miles for under 30k...albeit most of them are on the lots at Toyota stealerships. I was going to buy one, but I got the cold sweats when I went to test drive one. And my stepson isn't into doing stuff with us anymore, so for the 3 of us we didn't really need it. The demand for minivans isn't what it used to be. Thus the change for the new Sienna to have a nose to give people more of an SUV feel.
    Maybe just none around me. My quick search revealed almost nothing within 150 miles of me, but I'll have to wade into that search a little more. But good info re: model years. I'm hoping I can find a '17 or '18.

  8. #33
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    Another What Car Thread: Big-ish SUV's (or Minivan?)

    Do the Wikipedia search on them so that you’ll know the platforms, and what changes happen each year, then shop those narrow ranges.
    Well maybe I'm the faggot America
    I'm not a part of a redneck agenda

  9. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by plugboots View Post
    Yeah I love the rear window option It’s just hard to buy a car for that one singular reason.

    I am semi-looking for an old US built monster station wagon that had that feature. That would be an awesome spring skiing vehicle.
    Old fullsize Broncos and Blazers had roll-down rear windows too, FWIW. I think full size Jeeps did too, at least on some of them -- the Grand Wagoneer type.
    Quote Originally Posted by powder11 View Post
    if you have to resort to taking advice from the nitwits on this forum, then you're doomed.

  10. #35
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    Feb 2009
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    Another vote for minvan. We had an Odyssey w/ good snow tires, but Sienna AWD would be even better. They just work so well, like everything works really well. That's the reason you see them everywhere as a kid hauler! Go used. Will get pretty disgusto on the inside. Will hold value though.
    Congrats on twins! We've got two 19 yo's, plus 17 yo... twins make having a 3rd seem so easy!

  11. #36
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    Few Sienna thoughts:

    - Better MPG from '17 on with direct injection and 8spd. Unfortunately, feels less peppy than the 6spd from prior years.
    - Next gen gets even better MPG, but warning that reports are 2nd row seats will not be removable. Good luck ever putting a full sheet of plywood in there.
    - Don't get a base Sienna (yeah they do exist) if you ever plan on putting a roof rack on -- it doesn't have the right reinforcements for a roof rack.

    On the Journey's lift:
    - The lift doesn't change ride quality very much on the 3rd Gen.
    - With slightly upsized tires gives you just under 10" of clearance.
    - Does make it harder for small kids to get into by themselves.
    - If you've got over 50k mi on it -- cost to install should probably include new CV axles at the same time.
    - Some Stealerships will install, doesn't necessarily void warranty.

    Build a platform in the back that is removable, and you have a good rig for weekend pow hunting while carrying 7/8 during the week.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Just got back from a weekend of camping down pretty exciting dirt roads.

  12. #37
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    [Python] And now for something completely different...[/Python]

    Half ton trucks make a reasonable modern family vehicle now that they have 4 doors and spacious cabs. Can't believe how fast the vehicle fills with shit for adventures of any length when more than one kid is involved, as has been said.

    For an active fam with piles of gear and supplies, I think it makes sense.

    Just figured it was worth stating in case you hadn't considered.

    We use a small van for urban kid duties and a truck for anything longer than 2hrs or in the mtns.
    life ain't guaranteed, love your people while you can

  13. #38
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    ^^ My buddy has a Tundra for exactly this purpose. Had to upgrade from a Taco when 2nd kid in a seat at the same time demanded it.

    It's a nice vehicle to get rides to the hill in. Rides nicely, very spacious. Second row is solid even at 6'+.

    They tow a small camper (R-Pod? I think) most weekends to the hills. Certainly more capable off-road and you don't have to futz with a lift etc.

  14. #39
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    Another What Car Thread: Big-ish SUV's (or Minivan?)

    Quote Originally Posted by Norseman View Post
    [Python] And now for something completely different...[/Python]

    Half ton trucks make a reasonable modern family vehicle now that they have 4 doors and spacious cabs. Can't believe how fast the vehicle fills with shit for adventures of any length when more than one kid is involved, as has been said.

    For an active fam with piles of gear and supplies, I think it makes sense.

    Just figured it was worth stating in case you hadn't considered.

    We use a small van for urban kid duties and a truck for anything longer than 2hrs or in the mtns.
    And if you get something like the f150 with a 2.7 ecoboost, you can reasonably get 21-22mpg if you keep it stock height/tire size. Every time I drive friends in my f150 they are shocked at how much room the backseat has.

    It is a large rig to drive and park though, and personally I can't do a short bed as wedging multiple pairs of skis in diagonally is dumb. Roof box would fix that though.

  15. #40
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    Congrats on the upcoming twins, toast!

    Chevy Tahoe is the answer to your question if you don't want a minivan.

  16. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by yeahman View Post
    Congrats on the upcoming twins, toast!

    Chevy Tahoe is the answer to your question if you don't want a minivan.
    Tahoe sucks. All the bad mpg of a suburban with none of the cargo.
    Wife went from sienna to Tahoe and can’t understand why it doesn’t fit cargo.
    “Life has become immeasurably better since I have been forced to stop taking it seriously.”
    Hunter S. Thompson

  17. #42
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    Sep 2010
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    We have 3 kids, went the route of the Yukon Denali XL, split captains chairs in the middle. May have been one of the best decisions of my life...highly recommend.


    Sent from my iPhone using TGR Forums

  18. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by yeahman View Post
    Congrats on the upcoming twins, toast!
    Thanks! It's fucking terrifying! But all will be well, I'm sure.

    Re: trucks - I have an F350, so that's covered. It hauls the camper, wood, dirt, etc, so the mini van / suv mostly just needs to haul people. And the truck is also kinda the reason I'm trying to avoid a Tahoe / Suburban type thing. It feels like having multiple massive land yachts is unnecessary and becomes redundant. But the mini van definitely overlaps less with the truck.

    Now the conundrum is that Siennas are hard to find and hold their value ridiculously well. So I can buy a '17 with ~40k miles for around $30k (give or take, depending on trim). Or I can wait a bit and buy a hybrid 2021 for ~$35-38k that gets way better mileage.

    Purely in terms of money, it seems like $5-8k extra for substantial improvements and a full warranty is worth it. But then I'm buying a new car, which seems like a dumb idea for a vehicle that's gonna get wrecked by the kids. And the current crop of used Siennas will probably get cheaper once the new ones come out.

  19. #44
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    After having a few Toyotas, either buy brand new or used with 80,000+ miles to really see a price break that might make it worth it.

  20. #45
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    I went with an older model, but low mileage/one owner/good records for same reason. A '17 with 40k on it was about 12k more than a '13 with 50k.

    Takes a long time at 2mpg diff to make up 10k in purchase price. Especially with gas the way it is right now.

  21. #46
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    Jan 2015
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    94
    Some real good discussion in here - lots of good points every direction for suv/van/pickup/etc.

    We have 3 kids (9, 7, and 4) and bought a Pacifica Hybrid in 2017 due to crazy (at the time) gov't incentives, and a bit of a windfall on a VW dieselgate wagon we outgrew at the same time. I would NOT advise it for your intended use (fwd, low clearance, electronic everything, etc) but it has worked really well for us.

    My point of posting is to say that just because you are having kids does not mean your vehicle needs to turn into a pig sty. We have the weather-tech mats and have had all the traumatic "kid" events - puking, pooping, milkshake upside down, etc. But with a bit of maintenance and staying on top of cleaning, our van still looks decent (and we have white (HORROR) leather seats). We bought seat covers to go under the car seats, and I am always amazed how pristine the seats look when I remove the covers to clean underneath. Point is that you don't need to turn your vehicle into a garbage dump just because you have kids

  22. #47
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    ^^^ Good point re: nicer cars staying nice with seat covers and staying on top of things.

    Although the counterpoint is that my car is pretty dirty right now, and I don't have kids yet. Maybe I could just rhino line the interior and hose it off occasionally?

  23. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by toast2266 View Post
    ^^^ Good point re: nicer cars staying nice with seat covers and staying on top of things.

    Although the counterpoint is that my car is pretty dirty right now, and I don't have kids yet. Maybe I could just rhino line the interior and hose it off occasionally?
    My buddy had an Element, and he said he could hose it down. It was the car's only cool feature.

    The argument I always hear against getting a minivan is some version of "I just don't want to drive a minivan." Pretty silly.
    Well maybe I'm the faggot America
    I'm not a part of a redneck agenda

  24. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by Core Shot View Post
    Tahoe sucks. All the bad mpg of a suburban with none of the cargo.
    Wife went from sienna to Tahoe and can’t understand why it doesn’t fit cargo.
    What "cargo"? Fits everything we need for a family of four easily on trips. Fits a dead elk. Not as unwieldy as a Suburban, much easier to drive around town with kids. Tows ~8,500 pounds with an equalizer hitch, and since toast is going to need a camper trailer now, that's going to come in handy. Chevy 350 is the most reliable engine ever built. Has 2WD, 4WD, and AWD settings (most 4Runners lack an AWD setting?! or did they fix that abomination). In 4WD the thing is a perfectly balanced beast that can get up any snowy, icy, rutted forest road. Plus third row when you need it--yes, then you lose much of your cargo, so if traveling with six people you need to borrow or buy a rocketbox. We found we actually used the third row very little though. I mean you wouldn't want to run a landscaping business out of the back of one, but for a family of four it's a great vehicle that will do everything you want.

  25. #50
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    Its been awhile since I drove any distance in mini vans but they were pretty good for carrying stuff, front wheel drive was pretty good for traction, the long wheel base was pretty stable on ice/ snow and they were comfortable to sit in that upright seat and log a bunch of time

    Quote Originally Posted by uglymoney View Post

    Rear window roll down on 4R is the shizzle. Our cow dog Casper can stand back there farm dog style with his head out taking in the scenery and giving everybody behind us dog high fives. Smile inducing.
    Had an electric rear window on a 1990 4runer and I would much rather have the 1 piece door on later models

    IME it didnt like dirt, it didnt like freezing so it wouldn't roll up unless I was helping pull it up ... the electric roll up window is what fucked up which didnt really induce any smiles whatso ever
    Lee Lau - xxx-er is the laziest Asian canuck I know

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