Minivan or 8 passenger SUV

We are looking to replace our POS honda odyssey (worst BUY EVER! please dont suggest another one…its been nothing but problems since we bought it…its finally paid off and we are selling/junking it)

We need 8 passenger. We have 2 infants, 2 in boosters, 2 teens.

Im looking at either a 2021 Toyota Sienna (we have a 2015 Sienna SE we are keeping) or something like the Subaru Ascent or Kia Telluride. I dont really need a bunch of cargo room behind the 3rd row (i just carry a stroller that’s about it)

I will have both my infants in the 2nd row, my 2 in boosters in the 3rd row and each of my teens in the middle seat in each row

Those of you with 6 kids, what would you get? appreciate any input or suggestions.

A minivan. An suv is a non-starter with daily access to the 3rd row with kids in car seats.

Pacifica hybrids have been amazing purchase targets recently. I’d start looking there.


Arent the pacifica only 7 passenger?

@cody_carter is discounting siennas in CA. I am on the east coast too, so it’s definitely a leasable option.

I believe there is an 8 seat option, but I don’t know for sure it’s available in the hybrid.

The “middle” seat in the third row of the Pacifica is useless when there are two boosters back there. You need to be thinking Suburban or Expedition MAX.

Third row hip room looks to actually be slightly higher in the Pacifica. Neither of those options are great for three in third row when you have two boosters in third row thought.

OP - I would test drive Pacific/Sienna and see which has a better third row with boosters installed/access to third row with car seats in place.

Suburban/Expedition may also work but they are much more expensive. Seems like a base Suburban is gonna lease for about the same as a well equipped Pacifica. Of course, if you are purchasing again then price comparison is much simpler.

I’m speaking from personal experience - 2 boosters in third row of Pacifica means middle seat you basically need to be slenderman to fit. I think Ford is running 0% apr on Expeditions right now if financing.

How does one enter the third row of a Sub or ExMax when there are two RF infant seats in the second row bench?

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Must have been making it work with the Odyssey already. But yeah I have no idea. My infant seat pops out so maybe you can slide the middle row forward first.

That’s why the extra large sliding doors and the travel of the sliding second row in a minivan is key

Ingress issues with two RF infant seats in place + middle row bench required for 8 passengers = rules out every SUV i can think of.

The OP’s only question should be whether a minivan will work or whether they need a full-size van like a Transit.

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Transit is probably a good one. With 6 kids, the OP is stretching even feasibility of minivans (which I am typically largely in support of).


I think the OP’s teenagers would be infinitely happier in a 4-row van rather than being sandwiched in between car seats all the time

NTM they are probably still growing


Ive found a few remaining 2020 Odyssey Elites left at a few dealers in so cal. Since this model is now technically 2yrs old… whats the best way to get a great deal on an aged model? Id prefer a lease but we are also already approved for a purchase at 4.9% through my bank.

(I want the hondavac that was discontinued on the 2021/22 model…)

Dealer has floor costs for warehousing that model and mounts up each month. The owner wants them gone. I would remind them of that then offer them a price that reflects depreciation and age of the vehicle. Be aggressive and hold your ground. They should be all over you to get you to take it off their hands

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What happened to this statement?

Besides that, ss @Jeff_BeachCitiesAuto previously explained to you, the 2020’s have terrible programs now. Even if you got 20% off MSRP, your monthly lease payment would still be well over $500/mo.


Get a sienna or a 21 man. You missed the boat (pun intended) on these.


The 21 sienna is smaller than our current 2015 sienna. Thats what we were originally going get… And the 2021 odyssey doesn’t have the vacuum anymore and we want that option (our Sienna has it, best thing ever with kids)

We ended up purchasing a 2019 elite from carmax but they failed to disclose it was in a severe front end accident that caused frame damage and air bag deployment… If im paying 38k for a van i dont want one with an accident. We are returning it under the buyback/30 day guarantee for a full refund.

Yes our 2006 odyssey has been a POS and unreliable…and i am hesitant on the 2019-2020 but it seems to be the best option for our family… it’s definitely improved a whole lot.

If we purchase, payment is going to be over 500 anyways, not a big deal…our bank is financing us at 4.9% for 72 months(same as our other auto loan with them)…I just prefer leases so im not stuck with it after 3yrs.

2020 Odyssey - No rebates and 0.00205

2021 Odyssey - $1000 rebate and $1000 loyalty, 0.00112 (Or if you finance its 0% 48 months, 0.9% 60 months, 1.9% 72 months)

I know a 2020 would seem cheaper but its not when there is a big incentive gap between the two


But i bet there are no 2021 elites with the vacuum available? Thats a must have option.