Later this year Mr. Boo and I are looking to change our family car. I still love our Citroen Xsara Picasso (after all, this is our fourth one), however, as a growing family, it no longer works for us so we are looking at other models to see what would work best for us. We were lucky enough to test drive the Peugeot 5008 when we went to Butlins in May and it really made us think about what features we are looking for in a family car.
Since welcoming Piglet into our family last year we no longer have a spare seat in the car to take friends and family with us on travels. I really like the idea of having the additional seats tucked up in the boot for when we need them, yet can be put away when not needed.
Given the recent weather, the fact that our current car doesn’t have air conditioning is a big thing. We tend to travel quite a lot in our car and being able to keep the car at a comfortable temperature is important, trust me nobody wants to be stuck in a traffic jam with hot, cranky children and there is nothing you can do about it.
Having had a Picasso for many years I have become accustomed to a large boot space. We can just about fit in Piglet’s pushchair, travel cot, suitcases etc whenever we go away for a few days so I need something that has at least the same amount of space if not bigger. Plus I like to have impromptu visits to IKEA (sorry Mr. Boo) so it needs to cope with impulse purchases too.
Fits three car seats
When we found out that we were expecting Piglet we moved Roo from her ISOfix high back booster to a standard high back booster as it was slightly narrower and our car doesn’t have an ISOfix point in the middle seat in the back. Whilst Roo is getting taller and is getting to the point where she will soon no longer require a high back booster I still want to have the ability to have three car seats in the back seats so that if I have friends or families little ones in the car they can be strapped in securely.
Something that up until this year I’d never used and always assumed it was the lazy option when you are driving long distances, however, I’m a convert. Mr. Boo had it on a previous car and loved it especially when he had to drive for meetings etc. Having used this feature on both days out and shorter trips to the coast etc. I can see the benefit of it so if we were able to get this on the new car it would be a great addition.
Tinted windows or built in sun blinds
Since having the children it has become a great importance that they are shielded from the sunshine as we are driving along. I don’t want to think about the amount of money we have spent on window blinds for them, they never seem to fill the window. So I’d love either tinted rear windows or built in sun blinds so that I don’t have to listen to the chorus of ‘the sun is in my eyes’ when I’m trying to drive.
A couple of years ago I was lucky enough to test drive a Volvo XC60 and one of the great features of it was the clear screen. Simply switch on and in less than a minute the windscreen was clear, perfect for cold and frosty mornings or when the condensation has built up inside the car. Currently, we have to have the blowers on the windscreen for a good five minutes if not more in order to get it to start clearing so we can see out.
Having driven the same make and model of car for so long I know exactly how much space I have to park etc. Whether I am getting too close to the car behind etc. but with a new type of car I wouldn’t be so confident, so I really like the idea of parking sensors so I can park just as easily.
Financing our new family car
There are a few options available when it comes to purchasing a new car, leasing is something that we haven’t considered before, however, we have a couple of friends who do this and I quite like the idea that the servicing etc is all included within the cost. Leasing does involve a fairly big deposit so car finance can be another avenue to look at. Getting car finance if you have poor credit might seem like an uphill struggle, however, if you look around you can find specialist companies who are able to help. I’ve got my redundancy package hopefully coming my way soon so we might use some of that to get a new car.
What features do you have on your family car that you couldn’t live without?
Disclosure: This is a collaborative post, however, we really are looking for a new family car