Two new ad­di­tions to the fam­ily, both with a sim­i­lar but dif­fer­ent amount of love, says Arna Evans.

New Zealand LCV - - CONTENTS - Arna Evans

Suving from a fam­ily and fe­male per­spec­tive, sans pan­der­ing or con­de­scen­sion.

TWO NEW AD­DI­TIONS TO THE FAM­ILY hap­pened this month, and one was a di­rect re­sult of the other. Baby Os­car joined his two older sis­ters, and for those good with ba­sic maths, that is in­deed three chil­dren; which forced us into a more ac­com­mo­dat­ing ve­hi­cle than our VW Touareg. Not for the num­ber of seats, of course, but for their abil­ity to be seated, given three child seats will not fit in the space of three adult seats. At least not our two wide Re­caros and a cap­sule, which is a prob­lem in it­self.

It seems the larger the hu­man, the less space it takes up in a ve­hi­cle. While us adults sit in com­fort on cos­set­ing leather and heated seats, we wanted equally com­fort­able and safe booster seats for our three- and six-year old girls. So we spent a bit on Re­caro Monza Nova seats, se­quen­tially as our girls grew into the first and then sec­ond model, which is al­most iden­ti­cal apart from colours and a bit of trim: like a 2017 model ver­sus a 2015. Clearly three years is not big in booster seat years, as both seats have ipod/3.5mm ca­bles to plug in a tablet and speak­ers in the head side bol­sters.

For around $600-$700, they get ISOFIX clip-in mounts, and span the years from 3-12, and/or 15-36kg, so all the way un­til they’re out of a booster. We be­lieve in buy­ing qual­ity, and buy­ing once… though we did also buy a $70 ver­sion from The Ware­house that floats be­tween cars.

They also fea­ture ‘Ad­vanced Side Pro­tec­tion’… I don’t know ei­ther, but it ba­si­cally means it’s re­ally wide. Our baby cap­sule is a Steel­craft Strider Plus ‘sys­tem’, which is a car base kit and cap­sule that pops out and slides right into a pram, per­fect for keep­ing a sleep­ing baby sleep­ing.

But it’s 70cm long, and ev­ery car we’ve put it in re­quires the front seat to be com­pro­mised and slid for­ward. Which is fine for most peo­ple, but hubby and I are both six-foot­ers. It’s not that wide, but try­ing to fit it along­side two booster seats in the back of a Touareg? No chance!

So baby Os­car forced us into a sev­enseater, and while we liked the look and cache of an Audi Q7, the fea­tures for the price just didn’t add up, and given this would be our fam­ily car for at least four years, we didn’t want an al­ready older Euro car long out of war­ranty to cost us even more for po­ten­tial re­pairs or parts.

The Skoda Ko­diaq was our choice, but the 1.4-litre was a frac­tion lack­ing in per­for­mance – which on its own would have been fine, but we didn’t have the bud­get to spring for the 2.0-litre. And be­ing just a year old, there was sim­ply none on the used car mar­ket, as a new one was a bit over bud­get. Power and price re­luc­tantly pushed us away from the Ko­diaq.

So we ar­rived at a used Hyundai Santa Fe, ben­e­fit­ting from the up­dated 2018 model which pushed used car prices down, and brought in a flood of trade-ins and used mod­els for sale. Our lo­cal Hyundai dealer did a great job find­ing us one from our short­list of specs, and we ended up with a 2015 Elite 2.2 diesel, the last of the Se­ries 1s, be­fore the up­date, for around $40k – ver­sus the $74k when new; just out of its three-year war­ranty, with 50,000km, but a clearly cared-for one-owner ve­hi­cle.

And bog stan­dard, too, which just won’t do for me. If I had to com­pro­mise with the Hyundai badge (a mi­nor is­sue, rather than a ma­jor one), we will be per­son­al­is­ing it, and we have a few ideas in mind. There is so much in the Elite model that it’s more about mak­ing it mine, so we’re just look­ing at 20-inch wheels, and the black-out mods. Cu­ri­ously in the time we’ve had the Santa Fe, yes, we have no­ticed more on the road, as you tend to do, but we’ve also no­ticed a hand­ful of white ones with the same mods we’re plan­ning, too! So we’ll have to be mind­ful of that.

For now we’re just en­joy­ing the new car and be­ing able to drive as a five-per­son fam­ily in the one car. Mo­tor­ways trips have al­ready seen 6.8l/100km, and 9.9l/100km around town. But we are in a hon­ey­moon phase with it, so we will see how the love evolves over time.

used even if it’s a three-year-old new car from a show­room, It’s nice to pick up a to come. and a sign of things was painted upon re­quest car. The black grille booster seats and two chil­dren… large Seats three adults, or out of a five-seat ve­hi­cle, a five-per­son fam­ily cap­sules ac­tu­ally push de­void of ISOFIX points. the third row, of­ten and booster seats into

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