If you and your partner are soon going to be welcoming an adorable baby girl or boy into your lives, first I’d like to say congratulations! Becoming a parent was the best thing I’ve ever done, and I can tell you that even though you’re going to face some big challenges soon, the joy you’ll receive from bringing a new life into the world will make all of your toils and fears well worth it.
That being said, I’m sure you’ve been thinking a lot lately about what you’ll need to do to get ready. You’ve probably prepared the nursery, may have already gone through and baby-proofed your home, and have a carseat, stroller, and playpen already picked out.
But have you given any thought to your car?
I know everybody’s different, but before I had kids, there were only two things I cared about for my personal vehicle – fuel economy, and reliability. I didn’t give a rat’s behind if I had Bluetooth built in, had power windows and doors, or if that bad boy would go from 0 to 60 in no time flat. I cared about how much I was blowing at the gas station, and ensuring it wouldn’t break down after a year of driving. I tend to think that’s what most people look at in a vehicle, before they have kids
As soon as my son came into the world, it dawned on me that my old truck, while she had served me well for many years, probably wasn’t the safest thing in the world. It was an older model, and hadn’t been certified with the latest and greatest in safety features and technology. The thought of my baby boy getting hurt in a crash because I put him in a vehicle that’s wasn’t the safest thing in the world terrified me, and within a month, I’d traded in my old pickup, and had a mini van.
If you haven’t given any thought to how safe your vehicle will be for your newborn, then I suggest you start now. To help you get started, here are the three best 2019 models for safety.
1) The Honda Insight ($22,000 – $28,000 New)
One of the most popular hybrid cars of this year, the 2019 Honda Insight is a great choice for small families, who don’t need a lot of storage space in their vehicle, to stay safe out on the road.
In addition to standard staples like anti-lock brakes and driver/passenger airbags, the Insight also comes equipped with side and overhead airbags to protect drivers and passengers in the event that you’re side swiped, or the vehicle is rolled over. The car also has built in stability control, which will detect when you or your car is behaving erratically (say for example you’re falling asleep at the wheel), and will automatically decelerate, and apply the brakes to a certain degree to prevent a loss of control.
As far as other features go, the Insight handles incredibly well, average about 55 MPG for city, and 49 MPG for the highway. The Insight can handle up to five occupants at a time, but for comfort and safety, I wouldn’t recommend going above four. The seats also contain hooks for all modern car seats, so you can comfortably fit baby in the backseat.
The only real drawback of the Insight is it’s storage space. The trunk holds about as much as a standard cubby drawer in your home, and even the built in space behind the back seat won’t help much.
2) Acura RDX ($39,000 New)
For a midsize luxury SUV that will ensure your safety and comfort while driving, the 2019 Acura RDX is going to be pretty tough to beat.
The has front, side, and knee level airbags for the driver and passenger seat, as well as curtain airbags for the first and second seat rows in the back. This SUV also includes child protection locks on all doors, as well as an anti-intrusion alarm for unauthorized entry into the vehicle. It even has built in accident avoidance features, including a lane-sway monitor to let you know if you’re veering too far out of your lane.
The RDX also includes stolen vehicle tracking that works whether the car is running or not, so in the event that your car is jacked, the police will have a much easier time finding it.
The RDX gets around 21 MPG in the city, and 27 MPG on the highway. It can seat up to 5 passengers comfortably, and has a good amount of storage space.
The biggest drawback for the RDX is the price. Since it’s considered a luxury SUV, it comes with plenty of bells and whistles, including seat warmers, built in satellite radio and bluetooth functionality, and an LCD screen for movies, but you’re definitely paying a premium for all of that.
3) KIA Sorento ($25,000 – $45,000 New)
The KIA Sorento has been an incredibly popular car across the years, and it’s a perfect fit for small families who take long trips frequently.
The car comes with a host of safety features that not only help keep you safe in the event of an accident, but help you avoid them in the first place. The car’s electronic stability control monitors helps to maintain positive control of the vehicle, even while hydroplaning or swerving to avoid a collision, and the built in Hill-Start Assist Control will help engage to keep your Sorento running smoothly in adverse conditions.
In addition, the 2019 Sorento tested extremely well in all manner of collisions, and has built in Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children (also called the LATCH system) that can adapt to almost any car seat, and help ensure the safety of your children.
The Sorento gets about 22 MPG in the city, and 29 MPG on the highway. It can seat up to seven passengers, and has extensive storage space.
Honestly, there aren’t many drawbacks with the Sorento that I could find. While sitting closer to the ground makes the vehicle much safer, it also means that taller people will have a difficult time getting in and out, and may feel more uncomfortable while driving.
The Peace of Mind that Matters Most
I hope that this has been helpful for you, and that you’ve got some ideas about what kind of car you’d like to buy. I’d strongly encourage you to use other blogs and resources as well to compare even more vehicles, and test drive any model that you’re thinking about for yourself. If you have a good experience with these or any other models, take the time to let other couples who are planning on having children know, so they can be thinking about it as well. Spread the word on your social media, or online forums and even your own personal site.
I really wish someone had asked me what I was planning when it came to my vehicle and my newborn, so I wanted to give you the heads-up that I never had. I appreciate you taking the time to read, congratulations again on your forthcoming baby, and I wish you and your family all the best!