For several months now, I've been mulling over the idea of getting dads and dads-to-be to review cars and give accounts of their car-buying-or-not-buying experiences. It turns out DT reader Kaz has been eyeing the Toyota Highlander Hybrid to replace their Subaru Forester for almost as long. So when Kaz wondered about the compatibility of leather interiors and milk-and-crayon-wielding children, I asked if he'd share his Dad's Eye View of the car.
And if "you" means "a guy with a baby contemplating a car that will define him for the rest of his life," his review starts off by revealing exactly the short hairs the car salesman has you by.
It was a pre-emptive strike. At least, that’Äôs one of the ways I justified it. It was also: the same or slightly better gas mileage but more room, safer, good for the environment. But it was a pre-emptive strike to avoid ending up with a mini-van. We haven’Äôt talked about having a second (or third, etc) child, and we promised we wouldn’Äôt until the first one turned two. But we make several trips ’Äúback home’Äù (about 1k miles round-trip) a year, and there were times, especially around Christmas, when the old car (Subaru Forester) was just too jam-packed full of stuff. Even with a car carrier up top.
Overall, I am very happy with it so far. Most of the time I am childless and just commuting to work, but it makes a Ôø‡ hr each way trip much more tolerable. The kid seems to enjoy it. She quickly adapted from seeing the Forester and saying ’ÄúDaddy’Äôs!’Äù to the Highlander. She also likes to see out the moon roof. We elected not to get the ’Äúrear seat entertainment system’Äù because my daughter is at the age where, if she watches a DVD on there once, she will cry for it every time she gets in the car.