A Buyer’s Guide to Family-Friendly Vehicles

Family-friendly vehicles now come in all shapes and sizes. But which vehicles offer the best value, safety, and reliability for families without breaking the bank? Here are 5 standouts from the 2015 model year.

2015 Honda CR-V

No list of family-friendly vehicles is complete without the legendary Honda CR-V. It was one of our top 3 small SUV/crossovers in the 2017 Used Car Awards, in part thanks to its stellar Test Drive Review score of 8.5/10.

The National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) awarded the CR-V 4 stars for overall safety, with the front driver’s side earning 5 stars. In addition, 2015 CR-Vs have just two recalls, involving replacement engines and connecting rods.

2015 Hyundai Santa Fe

The Hyundai Santa Fe won the 2017 CarGurus Used Car Award for the full-size crossover/SUV category. Why? The announcement said,

The third-generation Hyundai Santa Fe proved to be a true jack of all trades, scoring well with our experts, and no full-size crossover can match the Santa Fe’s expected value retention. Over the course of 12 years, 2013-2016 Santa Fe values are predicted to perform nearly 18% better than the segment average.

This crossover is also ideal for families with a lot of passengers because it offers three rows of seating.

According to NHTSA, the Santa Fe has only one non-engine related recall. And it offers 5-star safety for front and side crashes.

2015 Toyota Highlander Hybrid

The Toyota Highlander is another standout for those who need space, but are also interested in going green; the gasoline Highlander gets an average of 22 mpg, while the Hybrid gets a boost to 28 mpg. It can seat seven, with captain’s chairs available for second-row passengers, and still has cargo room to spare.

The Highlander Hybrid earned 4 stars for overall safety and 5 stars for passenger side safety. NHTSA issued only one recall for the Highlander, regarding its electric power steering.

2015 Chrysler Town and Country

Chrysler didn’t debut the Pacifica until the 2017 model year, but no family-friendly vehicle list would be complete without a minivan. Like the Pacifica that succeeded it, the Town and Country has Chrysler’s infamous Stow ‘n Go seating, offering 143 cubic square feet of cargo space with all seats down; when the seats are in use, this minivan can seat seven comfortably.

NHTSA has issued 3 recalls for the Town and Country, with only one being engine-related. It earned 4 stars for front-crash safety.

2015 Ram 1500

Who says a truck can’t be a family car? According to our 2017 Used Car Awards, 58 percent of CarGurus users favored the Ram 1500 as their truck of choice. While the regular cab can hold only three passengers, the quad cab can hold up to six. The Ram also offers towing capacity of approximately 4,000 pounds (depending on the engine type), which could make it perfect for towing a boat or camper.

NHTSA awarded the Ram 1500 4 stars for front-crash safety. While it is a much-loved ride, there are several recalls, so make sure to bring a Ram to an experienced mechanic before signing the papers.

What family-friendly vehicles would you add to this list?


Find Certified Pre-Owned Cars and Used Cars in your area at CarGurus.

Used Honda CR-V
Used Hyundai Santa Fe
Used Toyota Highlander Hybrid
Used Chrysler Town and Country
Used Ram 1500

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