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Parents Magazine and AAA have come out with their list of best vehicles - I bet you can guess where this is going.


Parents and AAA's best vehicles are:

Sedans:
1. Honda Accord
2. Toyota Camry
3. Nissan Altima


Wagons:
1. Ford Taurus Wagon
2. Volkswagen Passat Wagon
3. Volvo V70


Economy Vehicles:
1. Honda Civic
2. Mazda Protege
3. Volkswagen Jetta


Sport Utilities:
1. Honda Pilot
2. Ford Expedition
3. Volvo XC90


Minivans:
1. Ford Windstar
2. Honda Odyssey
3. Dodge Grand Caravan


Source: Parents magazine and AAA
 

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Looks great, except for the Windstar over the Odyssey??? :13:
 

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sorry, but I have a serious problem with any list where a Taurus, Expedition, Windstar, and Caravan finish in the top 3.
 

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Depends on what factors they're looking for. I suspect they're giving points for space, creature comfort features, and safety (Caravan? Maybe not). And not so much for factors such as reliability, true cost to own, initial quality, etc.
 

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Trucks are considered a poor choice for a family car. They're *generally* not as safe and don't have the same family-friendly features. Of course, many people end up using them as family vehicles anyway.
 

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I agree with Qbrozen. I traded in our 98 Windstar for the Pilot. During the 6 years of Windstar ownership I went through(off the top of my head):

1) Strut Replacement - $500
2) Transmission rebuilt 3 times(thank GOD for AAmco and lifetime warranty) - $2500
3) Head Gasket blowout at 118,000 miles - $1500
4) Weird CLONK noise in front when going over bump(very loud and nobody could find out what it was)
5) Right side door lock made loud "craaaaank" noise when locked. Never fixed.
6) Replaced Starter $300
7) Gas tank gasket seal broke and interior smelled like gas - $150
8) Serpentine belt "tensioner pully" broke twice - $100
9) Back end continually rattled while driving. Never fixed.
10) Muffler had an O2 sensor "socket" blow out. Had to have the threaded nut welded back into the muffler - $25(got lucky on fix)
11) Power Steering "creeked" and was hard to turn. Never fixed.

The Windstar is just a plain piece of junk. Worst money I've ever spent in my whole life. In fact the Firestone repairman constantly said the Windstar and the Taurus were the 2 worst vehicles on the road. During the past 2 years we NEVER felt comfortable taking the Windstar on a long trip. The last trip was 12 months ago through Virginia and we swore the transmission was slipping. When we got back home the AAmco guy rebuilt the transmission for the 3rd time!

Needless to say I'm done buying Ford. Thought I'd try Honda for a change. So far so good! Everything on the Pilot feels very sturdy and well made. Time will tell...

My other vehicle is an Oldsmobile Intrigue. Switched from the Z24 Cavalier(240,000 miles after 10 years - ran good). The Intrigue is like a Cadillac compared to the Cavalier. It also has the Northstar engine which is pretty highly rated. I'm sure time will tell on this one too.

-Dave
 
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