Edmunds Moms on Car Features They Love and Car Features They Want | Edmunds

Edmunds Moms on Car Features They Love and Car Features They Want

Third-Row Seats, Vacuums and Bluetooth for Sing-Alongs


Moms do a balancing act when they buy their cars. Finding one with the features they need and the features they love can be tough. But sometimes everything just clicks. There's ample cargo space and maneuverability. There's a vacuum and a moonroof. There's utility and a dash of attitude. For Mother's Day, we asked moms who work at Edmunds to tell us about the features they love in their cars, minivans and SUVs. It turns out their cars get the job done and make them happy when they're behind the wheel.

But there's always room for improvement. So we also asked these Edmunds moms about the features they'd want in their next cars and got answers ranging from the practical to the futuristic. At least one mom wants a self-driving car. Our editors took their wish lists, worked their perfect-car magic and came back with suggestions of cars with features that could make driving even easier and more enjoyable. Alas, a built-in CarRoomba is not available. Yet.

Jeep Cherokee
Brittany Angert, team lead, customer care
Number of kids and their ages: two children, 2 and 3
Car: 2015 Jeep Cherokee
Favorite mom-friendly feature: Bluetooth media connectivity
Mom-friendly feature Brittany wishes her car had: Third-row seats
What Brittany really loves about her car: "I love the Jeep Cherokee for two BIG reasons: Bluetooth connectivity for rocking out to the Moana soundtrack or putting on a movie for the kids, and the fact that the backseat legroom is adjustable for when the kids get older!"
For Brittany's next car, Edmunds editors recommend: The Dodge Durango. It has road-going attitude like the Cherokee but is roomier, has a third-row seat, and can be optioned with a thumping Beats audio system.

Audi Q7
Julie Merges, chief people officer
Number of kids and their ages: three children, 4, 7 and 9
Car: 2008 Audi Q7
Favorite mom-friendly feature: Third-row seat and full-length moonroof
Mom-friendly feature Julie wishes her car had: Built-in vacuum cleaner
What Julie really loves about her car: I love that the Audi Q7 drives like a smaller car, even though it has the room to fit my three kids and their friends.
For Julie's next car, Edmunds editors recommend: The Chrysler Pacifica. It's a van that drives small and it has built-in vacuum cleaners in two different locations.

BMW i3
Kelly Hellwig, managing editor
Number of kids and their ages:
one child, 16
Car: 2016 BMW i3 REX
Favorite mom-friendly feature: I chose my car primarily because it has a beautiful cabin with unique materials — bamboo trim, hemp upholstery — it's a fabulous tactile experience.
Mom-friendly feature Kelly wishes her car had: None. That's the best part!
What Kelly really loves about her car: With my carpool duties now behind me, I like the fact I could finally buy any car I wanted and not have to worry about young kids tearing up the interior.
For Kelly's next car, Edmunds editors recommend: The BMW i8. It takes everything that's great about the i3 and turns it up several notches.

Toyota Sienna
Lynette Favorite, operations manager
Number of kids and their ages: three children, 2, 8 and 11
Car: 2009 Toyota Sienna
Favorite mom-friendly feature: Three rows! I have three boys so it's nice to put space in between them. Helps alleviate fighting.
Mom-friendly feature Lynette wishes her car had: Built-in vacuum for sure. But in dreamland? Hands-free driving so I can multitask.
What Lynette really loves about her minivan: It works for me because having all of that space allows us to transport our three kids and usually our kids' friends, too!
For Lynette's next car, Edmunds editors recommend: Honda Odyssey. It pioneered the built-in vacuum and has more than enough room in its three rows to give the kids space. When it comes to hands-free driving so you can multitask: We're not there just yet. But your kids will probably be able to get it in their cars.

Hyundai Sonata
Cynthia Rafael, operations manager, dealer initiatives
Number of kids and their ages: one child, 8 months
Car: 2014 Hyundai Sonata GLS
Favorite mom-friendly feature: Proximity of the driver seat to the rear passenger seat, which is where the car seat is located. It allows me to hand toys and bottles to baby with little disruption to driving control.
Mom-friendly feature Cynthia wishes her car had: Limo tint that adjusts with the brightness of the sun
What Cynthia really loves about her car: My car works for me because of the spacious backseat that fits both baby and mommy comfortably for long car rides. #babyonthego.
For Cynthia's next car, Edmunds editors recommend: BMW 3 Series Gran Turismo. This 3 Series hatchback is family-friendly and you can get it with retractable rear window sunshades.

Audi Q5
Carolann Kowalski, director, product marketing
Number of kids and their ages: one child, 17 months
Car: 2015 Audi Q5
Favorite mom-friendly feature: Keyless entry and push-button trunk closure
Mom-friendly feature Carolann wishes her car had: I have a toddler, so definitely the limo-style, soundproof power privacy screen.
What Carolann really loves about her car: My car provides the convenience and safety features I needed to feel confident driving through the streets of Los Angeles with my first-born child.
For Carolann's next car, Edmunds editors recommend: Stay with the Audi Q5. A small luxury crossover SUV should continue to suit Carolann well. The new 2018 Q5 is a little roomier and quieter than her current Q5.

2017 Subaru Forester
Dianne Leviste, implementation specialist
Number of kids and their ages: two children, both 7
Car: 2017 Subaru Forester
Favorite mom-friendly feature: Cargo mat and roomier backseat for growing kids
Mom-friendly feature Dianne wishes her car had: Spill-friendly, dirt-proof seats and special compartment for small doll parts
What Dianne really loves about her car: The safety features (EyeSight system) in my Subie are awesome. I cannot find any faults with this car!
For Dianne's next car, Edmunds editors recommend: The Subaru Forester. Sometimes a particular vehicle is just ideally suited for your life. A new-generation Forester will likely be out by the time Dianne is ready for her next car.

2017 Toyota Highlander
Lacey Plache, chief economist
Number of kids and their ages: three children, 3, 12 and 15
Car: 2017 Toyota Highlander
Favorite mom-friendly feature: Giant console holds my purse
Mom-friendly feature Lacey wishes her car had: Built-in vacuum cleaner
What Lacey really loves about her car: My Highlander works for me because I need to haul a lot of people and a lot of gear on a regular basis. And even when it's just me, I like its comfort and style and feeling like I won't get crushed on the crazy roads of L.A.
For Lacey's next car, Edmunds editors recommend: The Toyota Sienna. Toyota's minivan will give her the room and versatility she needs for her growing children. The next-generation Sienna that's coming out in a year or two will likely have a vacuum cleaner.

Hyundai Sonata
Yoshi Wilson, workplace experience team member
Number of kids and their ages: three children, 20, 21 and 22
Car: 2014 Hyundai Sonata
Favorite mom-friendly feature: Roomy seats for tall boys
Mom-friendly feature Yoshi wishes her car had: Privacy screen
What Yoshi really loves about her car: My car is practical, roomy and fun to drive with my boys.
For Yoshi's next car, Edmunds editors recommend: The Hyundai Azera. Its backseat has plenty of space for adult kids. And while it doesn't have a privacy screen, it is quieter than the Sonata.

Honda Odyssey
Alison Steinlauf Anziska, director of product, membership
Number of kids and their ages: five children, 1, 4, 6, 9 and 12
Car: 2014 Honda Odyssey
Favorite mom-friendly feature: Automatic doors
Mom-friendly feature Alison wishes her car had: Better placement for my smartphone
What Alison really loves about her car: I love the driver seat, which I refer to as "command central." The automatic doors and easy-fold middle seat are critical to my kids getting in and out in short order. Though there are some rambunctious carpool days when I wish the back-row seat belts had an automatic buckle function so I wouldn't need to climb back to fasten seat belts for younger passengers.
For Alison's next car, Edmunds editors recommend: The Honda Odyssey. The redesigned 2018 Odyssey won't buckle your kids' seat belts, but it has many new features, including a new smartphone charging and storage pad.

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