Our Favorite Family Haulers For Holiday Road Trips
It's almost December, which means the snow is coming down and Christmas lights are beginning to pop up on store shelves. Before you know it, the holidays will be here. For millions of Americans, that means hitting the road.
So why not get a new sled to ferry your family between parties and parents' houses? It just so happens that right now is a great time to buy a new car. Prices have hit rock bottom as manufacturers offer tons of customer cash and other incentives to entice consumers into showrooms. The end of the year brings even more deals, since dealers are trying to clear their inventories ahead of January 1.
Go over the river and through the wood to Grandma's house in style, safety and comfort with these excellent family cars.
Sticker Price: $24,896 - $32,995
Invoice Price: $23,407 - $30,860
Fuel Economy: 25 mpg City / 33 mpg Highway
Some say the Outback is the original SUV. Whether or not that is the case, Subaru has had five generations to hone the Outback, and the latest version is as close to perfect as you can get.
The new Outback boosts their roomiest ride yet, as well as a whole host of safety features to keep families on the go safe, such as ten airbags including new front seat cushion airbags, vehicle stability and traction control systems, anti-lock brakes, active front head restraints, tire-pressure monitor and rear-vision camera. You can get really fancy and add leather seating, a 576-watt twelve-speaker Harman/Kardon audio system, dual-zone automatic climate control, power rear gate, 18-inch wheels, heated rear seats and the EyeSight Driver Assist System.
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GMC TerrainSticker Price: $26,560 - $37,240
Invoice Price: $25,232 - $35,378
Fuel Economy: 22 mpg City / 32 mpg Highway
The GMC Terrain is the best-quality compact SUV for 2014, according to J.D. Power. The Terrain employs polarizing design, a luxurious interior, car-like handling and lots of interior space. It is powered by either a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine with 182 hp, or a 3.6-liter V6 engine with 301 hp. Both engines achieve solid fuel economy, making this vehicle a practical purchase. A long wheelbase and wide tracks contribute to car-like ride and handling traits while reducing body roll for a safe, stable driving experience. Cargo space is a bit more cramped than expected, but the Terrain still boasts a high level of versatility.
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Sticker Price: $35,400 - $45,650
Invoice Price: $33,276 - $42,911
Fuel Economy: 24 mpg City / 31 mpg Highway
The 2015 Volvo XC70 is a wagon with an identity crisis. It sits high above the road like an SUV, but drives like a sedan. Whatever it is, the XC70 provides comfort, stability, security and peace of mind on rough roads or when the weather turns bad. Even the most modest trim level comes with a zippy direct-injected turbocharged 240-hp 2.0-liter four-cylinder matched with a new 8-speed Geartronic automatic transmission.
And since it's a Volvo, it comes decked out with all the latest safety gear, including park assist, adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, collision warning with full auto brake, driver alert, active high beam and road sign information.
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Land Rover Ranger Rover
Sticker Price: $83,495 - $186,495
Invoice Price: N/A
Fuel Economy: 17 mpg City / 23 mpg Highway
This slick SUV isn't necessarily in everyone's reach, but if you have the means, we highly suggest picking one up. The Range Rover is one of the most iconic luxury SUVs today due to its combination of a superbly comfortable interior and rugged, off-road driving capabilities. Here is a SUV that can handle winter weather and look good while doing it. The light body sitting on top of a 375-horsepower V8 engine means you'll never get bored in the driver's seat.
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Kia SoulSticker Price: $15,100 - $20,700
Invoice Price: $14,804 - $19,603
Fuel Economy: 24 mpg City / 30 mpg Highway
With it's funky styling the Kia Soul may seem like it was designed to suit city-dwelling Millennials, but the Soul is actually a solid family car. It's roomy and well-appointed interior will be a boon on those long car rides, and the Soul is priced just right for a growing family. Even the Pope digs the Kia Soul.
The Soul comes in three trims - Base Soul, Soul +, and Soul !. The Base front-wheel drive, five-passenger Soul is powered by a 130-hp 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine through a six-speed manual or optional six-speed automatic transmission. All the other trims are powered by a 164-hp 2.0-liter four cylinder engine attached to a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission. Standard safety features on all models include electronic stability control, traction control, four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes, brake assist, six airbags, active front head restraints, and hill assist control and a tire pressure monitoring system.
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Sticker Price: $30,995 - $43,935
Invoice Price: $29,775 - $41,299
Fuel Economy: 17 mpg City / 24 mpg Highway
No matter what kind of driving you expect, from city highways to mountain roads, there's a Chevy Traverse trim to meet your needs. Eight different combinations are available to consumers. This large crossover SUV is able to haul a truckload of cargo or up to eight people. Built more like a car than a truck, the Traverse uses front-wheel drive and is much lighter than a Tahoe. As a result, Traverse rides like a car, handles well and gets decent fuel economy for its size. And it boosts plenty of room. The third row could even handle seating adults, if they don't mind getting a little cozy.
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Sticker Price: $29,510 - $43,100
Invoice Price: $27,218 - $39,730
Fuel Economy: 20 mpg City/ 27 mpg Highway
For a car not marketed as being upscale, driving a Pathfinder sure can feel like living in the lap of luxury.
The Nissan Pathfinder is a mid-size SUV perfectly suited to the urban family lifestyle. It is offered in both front- and four-wheel drive configurations, allow it to handle diverse terrain without sacrificing comfort. Safety features found standard on the seven-passenger Pathfinder include electronic stability and traction control systems, anti-lock disc brakes, active anti-whiplash head restraints and a tire pressure monitor with Nissan's Easy-Fill Tire Alert system.
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Sticker Price: $23,320 - $32,770
Invoice Price: $21,905 - $30,751
Fuel Economy: 27 mpg City / 34 mpg Highway
Some say CR-V stands for comfortable runabout vehicle. If true, this CUV certainly delivers on its namesake. The CR-V isn't limited to a grocery-getter, however. It's smooth ride and roomy interior makes it an excellent long-haul vehicle, as well. Its loads of interior space, eight trim level options, convenient features and reliability have made the Honda CR-V one of the best-selling crossovers in America. The CR-V is also one of the safest crossovers out there, as well. It
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Sticker Price: $22,995 - $30,395
Invoice Price: $22,645 - $29,353
Fuel Economy: 22 mpg City / 31 mpg Highway
It's nice to have the Cherokee back on the road again after its hiatus. And we have to admit, we're pretty partial it. After all, we're getting to experience first hand what a great car it is in our long-term testing. It does employ polarizing exterior styling, but everyone can agree that the interior is roomy, comfortable and filled with great features.
The Trailhawk edition makes rough roads a breeze, whether it's a country two-track or a ramshackle city street. Off-roading is a thrill in this Jeep, with plenty of space to load up kids or cargo. It also offers a ton of standard safety features, including ten airbags, electronic stability control and ABS. Optional safety features include ParkSense Parallel/Perpendicular Park Assist, Adaptive Cruise Control-Plus, Forward Collision Warning-Plus and LaneSense Lane Departure Warning-Plus.
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Sticker Price: $28,100 - $39,550
Invoice Price: $26,484 - $36,881
Fuel Economy: 19 mpg City, 27 mpg Highway
The Ford Edge is a great buy right now. Not only is it a stylish, roomy crossover, but there is a new model coming out in early 2015, so dealers are motivated to clear out the older ones.
Standard safety features on all models include six airbags, four wheel anti-lock brakes, AdvanceTrac with Roll Stability Control, auto-locking power locks, an occupant classification system and a tire-pressure monitoring system.&
The edge is powered by either a 285-hp 3.5-liter V6, a 305-hp 3.7-liter V6 or a 237-hp 2.0-liter turbo I4. The Edge was the top quality midsize SUV in the J.D. Power IQS. Comfortable, versatile and decently fuel efficient, the Edge is a solid choice if you need a little more room, but don't want to totally sacrifice driving dynamics or exterior design.
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