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You have the point! Just driving in snowy road can be an issue... we got stuck several times on small roads in winter up north
Mini vans have a lower clearance than even smaller SUVs. If you primarily on the city and don’t have icy or snowy roads to get over, that would be our choice. However. I live in a hilly area and even my SUV would occasionally get stuck. Forget about driving during a mountain snowstorm
 

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Our Sienna from 2006 and doesn't have AWD :( . When we buy next minivan (only Toyota or maybe some European brand) - I'll make sure that it's AWD.
it was an expensive add on feature. ToyLTA was the only company that had an AWD back. There may be some more now, but that’s why Albertams who drive to the mountain and cabins a lot with have SUVs.

i Don’t know why, but there aren’t many mini vans with AWD.
 

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Mini vans have a lower clearance than even smaller SUVs. If you primarily on the city and don’t have icy or snowy roads to get over, that would be our choice. However. I live in a hilly area and even my SUV would occasionally get stuck. Forget about driving during a mountain snowstorm
We don't have mountains in ON :) .99.9% Sienna with no AWD is fine..... but when you have a cottage booked in winter and there is even small snowstorm and may be a problem....
 

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We have Hamilton mountain.
 

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But.......some of the Japanese vans are just sooooo ugly.

The new Toyota Sienna is a pretty cool vehicle......but costs like over $50,000.

The guy doesn't like the front end, which I like and it is pretty trick inside.

Personally I like clean sharp straight lines and none of that old school "malibu" roundy bubble look.

I wonder if it comes with a full length power moonroof.

When it comes to family vans I would much rather have reliable, well built, and long lasting quality vehicle over a possibly better looking bucket of bolts competitive product.

Most people want to have the van last at least as long as the car loan does!

When it comes to investing in a highly depreciable asset, value wins out over style all day long with us. That is why although I had years of domestic brands (a new one each year) as company cars the experience led us to look elsewhere when it came to acquiring a personal vehicle.
 

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We don't have mountains in ON :) .99.9% Sienna with no AWD is fine..... but when you have a cottage booked in winter and there is even small snowstorm and may be a problem....
Fair enough. I have seen your ski bumps in ON, so I can understand why no AWD is fine. :p

Albertans get criticized about just wanting big gas guzzling SUV's and trucks. I can tell you there is really a necessity. I don't even want a AWD car because it doesn't have enough clearance to go over snow banks.

If you don't need the AWD, then a mini van is great for hauling people.
 

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Most minivans never go in tough places. They are people and cargo haulers.

However, I would still go AWD in Canadian winters. Our '91 Dodge Caravan was AWD and it was a blessing to use in Calgary winters. So is my current '07 Infiniti an AWD. It doesn't take much in the way of slippery condition to make it worthwhile. Our current 2020 Mazda CX-5 has AWD to handle our local hills in the Okanagan including the lane to our house. I won't have anything but an AWD for a winter vehicle any more.
 

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Still loving our 2011 Dodge Journey.

Bought it new in July 2011. Lots of deals back then.

Entry/exit is ideal and seats are high for geezers and there is power to spare with the big 3.6.

There is an incredible amount of storage with the seats down.

Mrs. Zipper is a crafter and we filled it to the brim with product and carried shelving on the roof rack to shows.

Carried loads of limestone rocks and flagstone for our landscaping.

All in all the perfect vehicle for us.

Now that we are slowing down we will go a step lower next time, maybe a Tucson or a Forester.
 

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Most minivans never go in tough places. They are people and cargo haulers.

However, I would still go AWD in Canadian winters. Our '91 Dodge Caravan was AWD and it was a blessing to use in Calgary winters. So is my current '07 Infiniti an AWD. It doesn't take much in the way of slippery condition to make it worthwhile. Our current 2020 Mazda CX-5 has AWD to handle our local hills in the Okanagan including the lane to our house. I won't have anything but an AWD for a winter vehicle any more.
Depends where you live! If you drive only in GTA, you may not see even snow on the roads some winters
 

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I agree it depends on where one lives and their winter sports. Here the likelihood is not necessarily heavy snow in Dec and Jan, but ice forming on the roadways with small amounts of snow. Navigating 6-8% grades or more with just 2 wheels is difficult but not impossible. Folks near sea level on the west coast certainly don't need AWD, except for those that head off to the mountains for snowshoeing and skiing..
 

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minivans are definitely looked down upon. Maybe up to a certain age. And then it's like, hey this is really practical!

My wife has been dead set against one. Forever. I didn't mind the idea, but I wasn't going to be the one driving it. We eventually got the Subaru Ascent. 3 row Suv. Can't say I was blown away. Kind of tight, poor gas mileage. Fun AWD. We eventually got rid of it when we went to 1 vehicle and stuck with the F150. Our full size truck hauls more, drives for longer, better gas mileage and can tow more for the odd time you need to. Seats 5 adults very spaciously, whereas nothing but a full size SUV like the expedition would match the head and foot space. Of course, we can't bring friends with us. We camped with friends last weekend and they had a Sienna. Wife was very impressed at what they managed to stuff in there. I can see her stance softening as she gets older.
 

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I am amazed to hear that some people look down on minivans. Cannot imagine why. Even more amazed that anyone would care or base their buy decision on this. Surely it is a decision of what works best for me and/or my family.
 

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Some folk have an 'image' problem with minivans for esthetic purposes that I don't understand either. A certain family member was adamant their Honda minivan not be replaced with another one much to the chagrin of her husband. So they have a 3 row Pilot instead. He is waiting to see if she will relent someday although the likelihood is they will eventually downsize to a 2 row SUV/CUV when the teens are out of the house in 5-7 years..
 

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We're nearly resigned on getting a minivan... maybe sigh. The new 21 Sienna and new 22 Kia Carnival are brand new overhauls of the design and they look pretty darn OK.
The Kia Carnival has a recliner chairs in the back rows and it looks pretty close to an SUV. I would have bought one if I could have gotten one. Ended up with the Ford F150.

 

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We camped with friends last weekend and they had a Sienna. Wife was very impressed at what they managed to stuff in there. I can see her stance softening as she gets older.
The flip side is that you always pack too much stuff in a minivan. Because there's always room to put more. Just in case. Filling one takes forever. Seriously.

Another thing to consider is that while sliding doors are awesome with young children (no bumping other cars, large opening to access the child seats, etc), they don't age quite as well as regular doors. The electric type are prone to failure. Even manual ones have issues; they're complex mechanisms with rails and rollers which eventually gum up with debris. A bit more prone to freezing shut in the winter too.

Regardless, I don't think minvans are really looked down upon that much. Certainly not among parents. It's probably what marketing would have you believe because it's more profitable to sell huge SUVs.
 

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If people spent less time worrying about their so called 'image' and more time thinking about what is best for their finances they would be far better off.
 

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I have been looking at new cars and I thought I wanted a new Camaro convertible and one hit the dealer lot the other day. They are rare to find because they don't make many.

I went in and put down a deposit to hold it until my wife and I could test drive it. We arrived, put down the top and I wanted the sales guy to come along to ask questions.

We are driving along and the first thing I notice is I can barely see over the instrument panel. Then I try to put my arm on the door and it is too high....level with my ears.

Then I have to change lanes, look in the mirror and all I see is the sales guy because he can't put his legs down and has to sprawl across the seat.

I couldn't see anything and almost side swiped a car next to us. We get back to the dealer and put the top back up. Now......I really can't see anything.

I ask the wife to sit in the driver seat and go outside to the front and look at her. All I can see is the top of her hair.

The sales guy says.....yea, there is no space in the rear seats, the visibility sucks, there is no trunk and you will need good winter tires and even then it will be iffy on a bad road. He says you can move the seats up and down, and I think......sure, from one extreme to the other every time we get in.

So, I decided I didn't really want a convertible anymore.

The next day, the sales guy calls and says they took delivery of a few cars which was great because they didn't have any due to the chip shortage.

One of the vehicles was a 2022 Chevrolet Trailblazer RS AWD with all the options. We take delivery on Wednesday.

So I guess we are a small SUV/Crossover "ute" or whatever it is family now......but no fancy minivan or convertible sports cars in our future.

At least I got a sunroof.
 

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An aside... I did some research and GM now has an option to get a rear view mirror camera to replace the mirror type.

With a camera mounted on the back of the vehicle the driver can clearly see all the lanes behind them. There is even a camera washer included in the package.

I would think it is an option that will soon be standard equipment on all vehicles, like the back up camera is today.

I wonder how many accidents are caused by "blind spots".

Also noteworthy.......some new vehicles have wireless connection to Android Auto or Apple and wireless charging.

Vehicles keep getting better and better.
 
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