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Old 09-10-2021, 12:00 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Fuel Efficient Vehicle with 3rd Row

Growing family means we are getting too big for our rides. I have been looking around for smaller vehicles with a third row and wanted to see what everyone has had success with. Would love to stay on the smaller size, no full size SUVs, and the more efficient the better. I've been looking into the following. I don't care if they are used, I'll be buying used anyway. Hoping to stay around 20k, but lower is better.

Mazda5
Kia Minivans
Ford Transit Connect Wagon
Honda Minivans
Toyota Minivans

Back seats don't need to be able to hold adults, kids only is fine.

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Old 09-10-2021, 12:56 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Isn't the Transit Connect a "mid sized" van? What makes it better than USA minivans like the Dodge Caravan or Ford Windstar?

If there were only a way to get the three row seat Prius v here in the USA...

What about a first gen Honda Odyssey three row station wagon?

I like the Toyota Previa, especially the supercharged models that for some reason got better fuel mileage than the non-supercharged ones, although I wish they would have paired those with a manual transmission from the factory.

I like the MAZDA5 as well.
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Old 09-10-2021, 08:41 AM   #3 (permalink)
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From my perspective you have two options: minivan or full size SUV. Since milage is of concern, minivan it is. We have a 2012 town and country, it's the first non-hybrid we've owned in 3 years and it is definitely strange to feel a vehicle shifting.

Mileage pretty much sucks though, the yukon hybrid does better. However, the savings on purchase price will buy a lot of gas.
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Old 09-10-2021, 09:51 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Maybe look for a used Chrysler Pacifica hybrid, up to 30MPG and seats 7
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Old 09-10-2021, 10:05 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Isaac Zachary View Post
Isn't the Transit Connect a "mid sized" van? What makes it better than USA minivans like the Dodge Caravan or Ford Windstar?
I don't know that it is better - just different. The Transit is more of a "Euro" van - taller but narrower than a typical US minivan.

It does get better fuel economy:
2015 Transit Connect LWB - 23 mpg combined
2015 Grand Caravan - 20 mpg combined
2015 Sienna - 21 mpg combined
2015 Odyssey - 22 mpg combined


It is also a good bit cheaper. A new 2022 Transit Connect Wagon starts at $28,000. The rest are all in the mid- $30's for the base model
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Old 09-10-2021, 11:15 AM   #6 (permalink)
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You should consider lowest in height and weight and longest models.

I have Grand Espace which is all of those mentioned above. Modern version could be caddy maxi family.
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Old 09-10-2021, 12:53 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I noticed you have all minivans is your list but another option might be the Toyota Highlander Hybrid. It got a 3rd row for the 3rd generation (2014 - 2019). It is rated at 28 mpg combined and if you drive a lot of city miles the fuel savings could be significant compared to a conventional gas minivan. You should see a 30 - 40% improvement in city mpg and you will also never need to change the brakes.
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Old 09-10-2021, 03:12 PM   #8 (permalink)
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This is not small but you could get a diesel Ford Excursion for around 10k. It seats 9 and you can get 20+ mpg out of it.
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Old 09-10-2021, 03:59 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ECO-AKJ View Post
Maybe look for a used Chrysler Pacifica hybrid, up to 30MPG and seats 7
Yeah I've looked at these but they are expensive. Hopefully some more used ones will show up on the market soon.
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Old 09-10-2021, 05:52 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JSH View Post
The Transit is more of a "Euro" van - taller but narrower than a typical US minivan
You mean the full-size Transit or the Connect? The Connect has roughly the same footprint of previous generations of the traditional American minivan, yet it's slightly taller.

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