3rd row SUV on a budget

Wife’s lease on her Impala is up on Halloween. We have baby number 2 on the way and she really wants an SUV with a 3rd row. Her current payment is 322. Ideally we would like to stay in this ballpark and are having trouble. Her first choice is a Traverse. We tested the equinox and decided for sure we need the 3rd row space. The only other vehicle we thought about was the Sorento. She hardly puts any miles on the car as she has about 10k to spare on her current 36/10k lease. Any advice would be great. We are in Western New York.


Base QX60, although not sure if they will do a 7500 mile lease. Since she doesnt drive much, have you thought of buying a used minivan or old 4wd SUV?

Her response to the minivan was, and i quote, “Not in my driveway” lmao.

Im fine with a 36 or 24 10k lease as when my lease is up im not renewing and will use her car more. New york state doesnt have MSD available, is the Q60 still an option?

You just need to wear her down more. My wife said the same exact thing and ended up driving minivans for 12 of the last 15 years. There has been quite a bit of competition in the QX60 space the last couple of months. Last month, a base AWD qx60 in NY area would have been in the 350 range with no MSDs. I think we are waiting to see if May pricing will be as aggressive. RV and MF are the same, not sure if the floorplan rates are still high in May, causing dealers to want to get rid of them.

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Ill have to pop in to infiniti and drive one. Thanks for the input. We still have time obviously so no hurry, just starting the process

I’ve done the third row deal, it’s handy but at the same time kind of useless on the smaller vehicles, no storage behind it. Unless you’re planning a 3rd kid it’s kind of overkill.

@joeblogs The issue we have with a conventional 2 row suv is once theres 2 car seats in the 2nd row, that basically eliminates all but maybe one really skinny person/kid as a passenger besides our family.

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And the problem is? I found that the times we actually used the third row were few and far between. And good luck accessing that third row with car seats in the way or installing a car seat or putting a kid in that car seat in the third row. And in a few years the car seats just go away. I think i kept our third row vehicle for 3 years, i prefer my inlaws in a separate vehicle. If anything do a smaller SUV like the tiguan with a third row, will fit your budget and have a third row if you really need it.

@joeblogs sorry i didn’t clarify as much. We frequently have a need to put an additional passenger, or two in the vehicle. The traverses second row captains chairs are ideal for this situation. Most likely will eliminate the Q60 as an option as well.

Check this https://youtu.be/o0HVHtGIcZE

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Might be a tough deal on that budget, captain chairs will probably be the way to access that third row. Maybe someone can chime in with a model suggestion

@brunot99 thats definitely a game changer. @joeblogs my SIL closed a deal on one just under 400 with a 15k lease, so was hoping to see better deals negotiated here.

If the deals stay the same this month you should be able to do qx60 base with MSDs with 10k

Minivans are generally more expensive to lease anyway.

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@brunot99 sadly MSD not available in NY

If you have this issue with a 2 row SUV, you will have it with QX60 or most other 3 row SUV too. I have a QX60 and 1 rear facing car seat now. If you have two car seat, + 2 other passenger of often, I don’t think QX60 is a good choice. If you have 2 car seats in 2nd row, 3rd row isn’t quite accessible even in QX60’s design. If you car seats is rear facing, you can just for get about access 3rd row. Putting car seat on 3rd row isn’t likely to be possible for rear facing. The knee room, or distance between 3rd row seat back to 2nd row seat back is quite limited. Forward facing should be possible, but accessing the 3rd row to the baby will be difficult.

I would say this, 2 parents in front seats, 2 car seats in 2nd row, QX60 will do just fine. If you need to carry 2 more passengers often, minivan is the right way.

Not really. If you place car seats in 2nd row captain chair, especially rear facing, you won’t be able to get pass the car seat and get to the center channel into the 3rd row. Because your rear facing seat back will be touching the front seat back already.

Again, putting rear facing on 3rd row isn’t likely to be possible with even the largest 3row cross over. Since OP is having the 2nd baby, at least he will have a rear facing seat for the next two years. Leave a minivan for 2 years. Once both kid graduate to forward facing, there will be a lot more possibility.

One more suggestion, make sure you take your car seats, stroller, or whatever you plan to put into the car, with you to test drive and test fit them. The worst can happen is you bought a car that doesn’t fit your need

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My wife has said no to minivans too. When she threatened to shut off various adult-oriented activities, she essentially beat me into submission. She may have been bluffing, but I wasn’t taking a chance. CUVs it is, honey!


With 2 kids and ocassional adult passenger, I know the buick envision isnt a 3 row, but second row is for 3 passengers and has a huge storage area. I havent driven one but I saw one in person. Pricing on it that one of the fellow hackers took was $289+tax. I think that was a great value offer. Highlander maybe?

The Jeep Grand Cherokee is also ok for 2 car seats + 1 other passenger in the 2nd row… but still has no 3rd row.

You could check out the Dodge Durango, I have no experience with it, but it’s bigger than the Jeep (not sure how much it leases for though).

With the space you’re looking for, I can’t think of any 3rd row that would be large enough within your budget. Could be looking at a used Suburban or Yukon XL to purchase, but that may still be tough to do within the budget.