For the past year, I’ve almost exclusively been driving 3-row vehicles, which has served me well as a mom of two young kids. First, I bounced between minivans, from the Chrysler Pacifica into the Honda Odyssey, and then moved into the Mazda CX-9 midsize SUV. After that, it was back into a minivan — this time the Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid. I got very used to driving a larger vehicle and I loved the extra space for all the superfluous stuff you tend to have in your car when there are littles in tow. So a few weeks ago, when I got the keys to our long-term 2019 Volvo XC60, I was a little uneasy about driving a compact SUV. No third row, no sliding doors, no low floor for easy ins and outs. Is this really a practical option for a mom?
Why, yes. Yes, it is.
Car Seat Considerations
Here’s the thing. My kids are almost eight and five. The older one is in a booster seat, which can be taken in and out very easily, despite the more narrow door opening than what I’d gotten used to over the past year. My son is still in a convertible car seat, which is definitely a bit of a beast to install, given the compact nature of the XC60. But he’s over 40 pounds (the weight minimum for most boosters), so I expect to transition him within the next few months. Once that happens, we’ll be golden. Now, if you have smaller kids that you expect to be in convertible car seats for several more years, I would absolutely look at the 3-row Volvo XC90 instead, which will give you more room to maneuver. But given the fact that I only have two kids and both will be in boosters sooner than later, I see a lot of value in the smaller XC60.
I forgot how nice it is to drive a compact crossover. It’s really the perfect size for me. I’m not a large person, so sometimes bulkier, wider SUVs and minivans can be overwhelming. They’re not the easiest to drive through the carpool line, let alone park in a crowded school parking lot! Parking the XC60 is effortless. And while I may not have a third row anymore, I haven’t felt hindered whatsoever by the cargo area. I still have plenty of room for groceries, sports equipment, folding chairs for soccer games and seemingly endless Amazon return boxes. Of course, if you’re still at the stage where you’re toting around a double stroller on the daily, you’ll probably want something that’s a little bigger in the back.
At my stage of life and given the size of my family, a compact SUV totally works for me. I do think the fact that my husband has a 3-row SUV for road trips and occasional carpooling helps my cause. Either way, I’m loving my time with the 2019 Volvo XC60 and I’ll be interested to see how my feelings evolve as I spend more time with this cute little luxury crossover. Find a Volvo XC60 for sale