Although going back to school this year differs depending upon where you live, if piling kids into your vehicle to get them there is still part of your routine, you want to make certain you’re putting them in the right vehicle for you.
Comfort, safety and, of course, infotainment systems – along with price – are all part of making the best choice for your family.
With hundreds of potential choices ranging from large sedans to midsize crossovers to large SUVs, it can be really difficult to even whittle down a top five or 10 choices, even with getting feedback from friends and family.
Fortunately, the editors at Cars.com have put together their list of Best Family Cars for 2020 to help make it easier to make a choice. The top five vehicles run the gamut of what you’d expect: large SUVs, midsize crossovers and – of course – minivans.
“Back to school looks very different for families this year because of the ongoing pandemic,” said Jenni Newman, editor-in-chief, Cars.com. “Because of this, parents are turning to their personal vehicles as the best mode of transport for kids returning to in-person learning.”
Since family vehicles are part transportation, part playroom, part restaurant, there are plenty of options and the reviewers at the website have experienced most of them. For 2020, the Volkswagen Atlas took the top spot.
The Atlas can be configured as a 7- or 8-seat hauler with the third row being able to handle three car seats, which is something most vehicles cannot handle.
“It wowed the parents on staff for its cavernous interior, long list of creature comforts and long-trip-worthy road manners. It also easily accommodates a bunch of car seats and has a full complement of standard and available advanced safety features,” the website noted.
The rest of the top choices for 2020 included:
- 2020 Ford Expedition
- 2020 Hyundai Santa Fe
- 2021 Chrysler Pacifica
The Expedition made the list, in part, the inside results matched the outside expectations. “Expedition is one of the few full-size SUVs that provides the spacious interior suggested by its exterior bulk, with the hands-down roomiest third row even if you don’t opt for the extended Expedition Max,” according to the editors.
Along with that size, it was well-equipped to not only get around town, but also handle those long-distance events like soccer tournaments, camping and family vacations. The Hyundai Santa Fe made the list because of “its blend of comfort, safety and value.” The five seater gets high safety ratings, but also offers plenty of creature comforts important to families.
The Pacifica basically beat out is longtime rival, the Honda Odyssey, because of its room, comfort and family-friendly features.
“The Chrysler Pacifica provides families spending more time in the car a comfortable escape with a spacious interior to carry extra supplies or snacks and digital features to entertain while traveling to-and-from school and beyond,” Newman said.