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  1. #1
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    Toddler + Newborn Twins = Do I need a minivan and which one :)

    Good morning!
    I'm looking for guidance on the best car seats and vehicle for my quickly growing family - newborn twins and a 3 year old. Three rear facing seats in my 2016 dodge durango with 2nd row captains chairs seems like an unsustainable solution. Optimally I would like to keep my three year old rear facing as long as possible to ensure he's as safe as possible. I imagine this means a minivan may be in my future but, from what I have found, many would have similar challenges to my Durango. Can anyone out there provide some first hand experience or general guidance on approaching three rear facing smartly and also maintaining some cargo room? Which vehicles and Which car seats have worked for you? And in what arrangement?

    Thanks so much!
    Dave

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  3. #2
    Admin - CPST Instructor murphydog77's Avatar
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    Re: Toddler + Newborn Twins = Do I need a minivan and which one :)

    Hi Dave. You're correct that with some minivans you'll run into the same issues with 2nd row captain's chair seating. The Honda Odyssey seems to be the best options for 3-across the 2nd row from what I've read; I've never owned one. The definite advantage to a minivan is the sliding doors. When we had our Sienna many years ago, they were truly awesome, and vans are like mini apartments on wheels.

    Another advantage to a minivan, if you find one you like where you can't do 3-across, is to remove one of the captain's chairs and put 2 of the kids in the 3rd row. This allows you to step in and buckle everyone from inside.

    Since your 3 yr old will probably be turned FF sooner rather than later, if you decide to look at new vehicles, look at top tether anchor placement since that will determine where you can place his carseat safely. I'd caution you against the Town & Country van if you're looking at used, Dodge Grand Caravan, and the Chrysler Pacifica. They all have major issues with the 3rd row and carseats/booster seats.

  4. #3
    Car-Seat.org Ambassador Nedra's Avatar
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    Re: Toddler + Newborn Twins = Do I need a minivan and which one :)

    Hi Dave! Congratulations on your growing family!

    I have had a Honda Odyssey (2019) since October and I have to say I'm totally in love with it. I have had two car seats installed in the second row (passenger side and middle) with plenty of room for a third adult to sit next to them. No seatbelt overlap or digging for buckles next to the seats -- everything installed smoothly. (I did select narrow seats, so for maximum comfort I would recommend that you look at the Diono Radians, Graco Slimfit or Chicco Keyfit seats.) I have also had two seats in the second row and a third in the third row. My kiddos are forward-facing now, but I don't think rear-facing would be an issue either, as the second row seats are very adjustable and you can set them far enough back that there is tons of front-back room for a rear-facing seat.
    Mama to G. (born March of 2013, riding in a Diono Everett booster, in a Chicco MyFit in BPB mode, and a Graco Slimfit in BPB mode)... and L. (born June of 2015, riding FF in a Graco Milestone, an IMMI Go, and a Britax Marathon)

  5. #4
    CPS Technician cookie123's Avatar
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    Re: Toddler + Newborn Twins = Do I need a minivan and which one :)

    Also avoid the VW Routan. I don't know if they have newer models that are different, but my daughter had one a few years ago and it's pretty much the same as the Grand Caravan.
    PEG - Gramma to:
    Hannah - 16 - Seatbelt! Reya - 1.5 4Ever/BLVD/Peg
    Brett - 15 - Seatbelt Nolan - 2.5 - 4Ever/Fllo
    Matt- 11 - Seatbelt Baby Boy due 1/17/19 Pipa
    Griffin - 6 - Parkway SG

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