When we were in Florida, we rented a minivan to take us around, and while I've never been a minivan kind of guy, I have to say that I liked it a lot.
For one thing, it actually fit everybody into it, and did so easily. Our usual SUV at home has no sliding doors and the seats don't go down too far and they don't have any room between or around them, so with the Babies! seats in the middle, it's hard to get into the farthest back row, making it comical/stupid for our whole family to go anywhere.
But the minivan we had in Florida, a Ford one, had a sliding door on the passenger's side, and the middle row of seats was set to the left, so it was possible to get in and move to the farthest back even with two car seats set up in the middle row, and the back seat was wide enough that Middle and The Boy didn't fight (much).
What really surprised me, though, was that the minivan didn't feel like I was driving a minivan. When I drive our SUV, I feel like I'm running a semi-rig. It's all wide turns and long stopping distances and I'm about a zillion feet off the ground. In the minivan, though, I felt like I was driving a regular car -- although one with a better view of the road.
Plus, it was spacious and roomy for the driver, too -- lots of leg room, lots of little cubicles for coffee cups and iPods and things.
I've been working on trying to convince Sweetie, since then, that we should just trade in the old SUV and get one of the Ford Vans that we liked so much in Florida -- she liked it, too -- and I even went so far as to start sending her links in emails to things like Ford Transit, just to whet her appetite for one.
I think she might be starting to bite on it, too, because she sent me a link back for a Ford Ranger and asked what I thought about that.
To which I said, it's not the minivan, but it is neat.
If we get the minivan, it'll mark the first time I've ever convinced Sweetie of anything.