I recently overheard some moms, both with two children, talking about their recent vehicle purchases. They had both needed to go bigger but were proud and relieved to have bought SUVs rather than minivans.
One of them, who had graduated from a sports car, said “as long as it’s not a minivan.” The other agreed with a somewhat evil laugh.
I drive a minivan and I am not afraid to say it.
I once drove a convertible (OK, it was my parents’). Then I drove a small sedan, followed by a ‘sport’ wagon. But with two children in car seats, a large dog and many car trips with numerous bags, even most CUVs or SUVs did not offer enough seating or cargo space. The ones that did were just too expensive.
There was no way to get around it. We needed a minivan.
We went for a test drive. It felt so awkward. I was so high up. I felt so small. When I parked, I was sure I would take out the cars around me.
For weeks after we bought it, I felt funny whenever a friend or co-worker saw me in it for the first time. When I drove with the window down, singing along to a hit song – or worse, a rock song –on the radio, I felt like other drivers must be having a good laugh.
But now that I’ve had my minivan for more than two years, I have grown to love her (we call her Delia).
It is the vehicle to have when doing cross border shopping (you can fit a lot of extra bags in those under-floor compartments). And when we go camping or on a road trip, we wonder what we would do without it. Our dog loves to stretch out in the third row and our kids love to leap out of it when we arrive home.
People see getting a minivan as the end of being ‘cool.’ They think it represents a step into another life. I say just get over it.
What I’ve realized is that getting a minivan doesn’t change you. You can still drive to the same places you would in your sports car or SUV. You can still listen to the same music on the radio and have the same trendy and ‘hip’ thoughts you had before (or not).
You just get to do it with 10 cupholders and all the space you will ever need.