Car Buyers' Guide: Moving a lot of people? The answer’s clear
Kane and Sofia have four children aged between 5 and 12 and are looking for a vehicle that has easy access for the kids.
They mainly stay within the inner city limits, with the occasional trip from Auckland to Whangarei or down to Tauranga.
“We have looked at a number of SUV-type vehicles with a third row of seats but, in our view, the rear seating is badly compromised, uncomfortable and it’s a hassle trying to get the children in and out of the vehicle,” said Kane.
“We mention the words ‘people mover’ to our friends as an alternative option but they seem to screw their noses up and say there are far better options out there.
“Well if there are, we can’t find them,” says Kane. The budget: $45,000
Well Kane, people movers just don’t seem to be on the shopping list for new vehicle buyers with large families any more.
That segment struggles to get above 1 per cent of the total new vehicle sales in New Zealand while SUVs are sitting at over 30 per cent.
Compromise is the perfect way to sum up a multi-seat SUV because often owners are looking for a vehicle than can multitask. But for the family on the move, the people mover is a big hit in the second-hand market and is a big seller as a used import.
From my experience the new people movers are hard to beat if you do have a large family but they are not designed for the rugged outdoors and apart from a light load, towing can be restricted.
The all-new Odyssey comes in two spec levels; the eight-seat S ($45,900) and a seven-seat leather L variant ($52,500).
The addition of automatic power sliding rear doors means the vehicle can be easily accessed and exited by grown adults. The Odyssey has a 2.4-litre engine producing 129kW of power and has a claimed fuel consumption of 7.8L/100km.
Kia Carnival EX
There are three models in total in the Carnival range, two with the V6 3.5-litre petrol engine (LTD $51,990) and a 2.2 -litre diesel ($55,990). It offers similar benefits as the Odyssey, but because it’s on run-out, it lacks the latest and greatest in specification levels.
The good news is price reductions of up to $8000 are being advertised to clear stock.
Dodge Journey RT
The seven-seat RT model is being offered pre-registered for a discounted price of $44,990 at selected dealers.
With a V6 petrol engine, it also features leather trim, heated seats and a 9-inch DVD-compatible LCD screen in the rear. The Journey may slide under the radar and be viewed as a station wagon more than a people mover.