Monday, July 28, 2008

Minivan Here We Come

News Alert! Husband is breaking down and thinks we should get a minivan (Honda Odyssey). What would make Husband agree to get a new car in light of the excessive spending we've been doing (baby nurse, central a/c, landscaping)?

A broken CD player. Yup, my much loved Honda Accord's 6 chamber CD player no longer works. Husband HATES the radio (although I make him listen to Mattie in the Morning). It would probably cost $600 to replace. Plus we are having some other "noises" that warrant attention - and likely up to $300 (probably new brake pads).

Husband wants us to get a 3 year lease on the Honda Odyssey which apparently we can get with our Honda Accord as trade in plus $169/mo (although this assumes our car is in pristine condition which, ahem, it is not). That is cheap! Of course one of the reasons it is so cheap is because Husband wants us to get the lowest model - the LX (here is an option comparison). Here are the biggest problems - (1) 1 chamber CD player - which maybe I could live with; (2) NO AUTOMATIC SLIDING DOORS! I feel like that is a deal breaker. I really want the option where you push a button on the key remote and the doors slide open. Hey, you try to wrangle 2 infants into a car without that in the winter and tell me what you think.

Yes, some of the other luxuries I'd really want (navigation system, push button seat modifications (with 2 memory settings), seat warmers/coolers) we aren't going with. I can live without all that - maybe we'll have more money when the lease is due in 3 years (doubt it - we are having twins).

Moms of Minivans out there - back me up, isn't the automatic doors worth the additional price?

16 comments:

Stacey said...

I say go for all the options. After all, this is a lease so you should try them all out before you decide which ones you want to actually purchase when you come to that point. I can't imagine it would up the monthly price that much...

Make sure you put lots of extra miles on the lease. Think of the number of times that Mom's been screwed because of all her driving. You don't want to have to use the 4 door because you are too high on your miles for the year.

By the way, have you two thought about what you are doing post maternity leave? What's up with daycare options?

Alyson said...

I don't have a mini-van and am not generally a fan. However, the sliding doors thing seems to me to be the BEST feature of the whole darn vehicle (especially considering the twin wrangling)!!!

Mimi said...

When are we going to find out the names of the tykes? (maybe a private email :) ) Re: the car. Right now most of the car dealers are giving big discounts, gas cards, etc.. . .just a thought before leasing arangements. (and try this year's models before the new ones come out in Sept)

Nancy said...

We got a Kia...same "stuff" as all the big name cars for a fraction of the price. And, I believe, higher safety ratings - but I'm not 100% sure about that one.

We got a new, last-year's model that the dealer was hot to pretty much give away (GREAT deals!!). We don't have the automatic doors...they might have been nice, but definitely not necessary - I'd just put one of the car seats down beside the car and open the door. It's impossible to put them both in at the same time, so you'd have to put at least one down anyway.

The thing that I wouldn't *EVER* give up now though is the remote starter. It's SOOOOO nice to go to a car that's warm in the winter or cool in the summer. (we have a garage, but the van won't fit into it.)

It might be just me, but I'm not sold on the leasing thing - nothing to trade in next time!

Krissy said...

I am with Nancy...I bought a 2006 Kia Sedona in 2007. It had 15,000 miles, and was one year old which slashed the price dramatically. And of course we have the balance of the warrenty. The safety ratings are EXCELLENT, but the Sedona is slightly more expensive to insure than the Odyssey.

I don't have sliding doors...they would be nice, but it wasn't a deal breaker for me. But I am definitely going to get a remote starter installed before winter rolls around again! With onstreet parking, this would be so helpful!

I also am not a fan of leasing. I think you definitely lose money when leasing.

Mommy, Esq. said...

I think Husband wants to lease because he thinks we can get out of minivan hell in a few years. I also should mention that the reason the auto sliding doors are so important is that we have high retaining stone walls on either side of our 1 car driveway - you can't really "put a baby down" on the side of the car.

Nancy said...

Ahhh- that does make a difference...I can see how the sliding doors would help in that case...

Tell Husband that Mike wasn't a big minivan lover either (heck, neither was I!), but I don't think he'd trade it now (he actually even mentions now and again that he LIKES it! *gasp* ) ...and with car seat/booster laws being what they are we just won't fit into a non-minivan until the kids are well over 8 years old or so...even then, being able to spread 'em out a bit will be nice ;)

Helen said...

So you think that A and B are going to require less stuff in a few years, you and husband are adorable! You won't be getting rid of that van.

I think you'll be driving that car a lot more than you realize, so you'll have to look at all the options if you guys go with a lease.

Speaking as someone who learned to drive on a minivan, you will probably come to love it. They get a bad rap.

SMNYC said...

I think husband needs to put his foot down and fight for the Dodge Magnum.

-The voice of testosterone

Helen said...

Ironically, the Magnum was a car that Mommy herself said she would like to drive. However, it would easily take up their whole driveway and it has been discontinued:( No more power stationwagons.

SMNYC said...

3.0L Subaru Outback is a LOT of fun to drive...

a crapshack in nova said...

Call me a snob, but I never want to have a minivan. :-P

What A Card said...

Here you go: yes, the auto sliding doors are the greatest! In the winter, you're not going to want to put one of the buckets down in the slushy parking lots/driveway. But why I really like it is for the safety: it moves somewhat slowly and won't close on kids. It has sensors that stop the door if something is in the way.

As a child of a soccer mom :), believe me when I say all of us, at one time or another, got a finger slammed in the door of minivan.

We got the Odyssey one up from the bottom. I love the 6 CD changer. I can keep a kids CD or two in there, and then my own CDs in the rest of the slots so I'm not always forced to listen to kiddie music.

A. said...

Our car has a jack for an iPod - if you can score one of those, a 6-CD changer is not necessary. But I would totally go for the automatic doors. I think the trunk opens automatically, too. Way convenient because let's not forget, it's not just the twins you will be carrying. When Finn was a baby, I had to carry with me to work everyday the following: my purse, the cooler bag w/his bottles for the day, extra clothes to replace the ones he spit up on the day before, pump bag, my lunch bag, travel coffee mug (commute to work could not have been accomplished without).

On days when I had to bring in diapers and wipes, I needed a 6th arm, never mind a 3rd one.

stevep33 said...

A minivan will never be the it car, but moms in cramped sport station wagons everywhere will envy the ease of your automatic doors and ample cargo space as they watch you quickly pack up the kids and go. Smile and wave as you drive away.

...and get all the options. Thank yourself later. What's the extra cost - $2 a day?

Goddess in Progress said...

I have the automatic doors on my van, and it is/was CRITICAL with two babies!! I wouldn't bother going half-assed with the one automatic door, either. Make sure it's both doors AND the rear liftgate. Totally, completely worth it. Love my van.

Oh, and I have the 6-disc CD player because I couldn't get it without it, and I never use it. Just the iPod jack and NPR.