Minivans have traditionally been the preferred choice for individuals requiring ample space for passengers and the versatility to accommodate cargo. While minivans are ideal for families, numerous best minivan alternatives are now available as three-row SUVs.
These SUVs offer comparable passenger capacity, cargo room, and desirable features families appreciate. Here is a curated list of the Best Minivan Alternatives, providing options for those seeking family-friendly vehicles without the traditional minivan design.
1. 2017 Ford Expeditions
This is the first on our list of best minivan alternatives. You can find the 2017 Ford Expedition as a spacious SUV that can accommodate up to eight people. It offers ample cargo capacity and the capability to tow heavy loads.
If you need even more space, a long wheelbase version is available, providing 130.8 cubic feet of cargo space behind the first row, 85.5 cubic feet behind the second, and 42.6 cubic feet behind the third. Additionally, it has a towing capacity of up to 9,200 pounds.
The starting price for the base Expedition is $47,125. However, the Platinum EL variant is priced at $66,860 if you prefer a more luxurious option. It comes with advanced safety features like forward sensing, reverse sensing, and blind spot monitoring with cross-traffic alerts. Higher trims come standard with Sync 3 featuring voice recognition, and you can add dual-headrest DVD screens.
2. 2017 Kia Sorento
If you’re considering the 2017 Kia Sorento, you’ll find it an affordable option for a three-row SUV, serving as an alternative to minivans. The starting price for the base Sorento L is $25,600, while the fully-loaded SXL is priced at $44,100. If you prefer a two-row configuration, the Sorento is also available with seating for five passengers. You can choose between front-wheel or all-wheel drive, which has a towing capacity of up to 5,000 pounds.
In terms of cargo space, there are 73.5 cubic feet available behind the first row, 38.8 cubic feet behind the second row, and 11.3 cubic feet behind the optional third row. Some notable features include an upgraded Infinity 10-speaker audio system, dual-zone automatic climate control, and third-row air conditioning with individual controls.
3. 2017 Toyota Highlander
This is one of the best minivan alternatives. If you’re interested in the 2017 Toyota Highlander, you’ll appreciate its ability to accommodate up to eight passengers and its extensive range of standard safety features. You can choose between front-wheel or all-wheel drive, and there’s also the choice of captain’s chairs for the second row instead of a bench seat.
One notable aspect of the Highlander is that every model, including the base version, comes equipped with Toyota Safety Sense P. This comprehensive safety suite includes a pre-collision system with pedestrian detection, lane departure alert with steering assist, automatic high beams, and dynamic radar cruise control. The Highlander offers eight different models, including three hybrid trims. Pricing starts at $30,630 for the base model and goes up to $44,760 for the Hybrid Limited variant.
4. 2017 Chevrolet Tahoe
The 2017 Chevrolet Tahoe is a noteworthy contender among the best minivan alternatives, boasting a generous array of standard features and the ability to accommodate up to eight passengers. You can choose between rear-wheel drive or four-wheel drive, and what sets this vehicle apart is that it comes with standard safety and technology features often not found in base trim levels.
Some notable standard features include OnStar with 4G LTE and a built-in Wi-Fi hotspot, providing connectivity on the go. Additionally, five USB ports and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration across the Tahoe lineup allow seamless smartphone connectivity.
Regarding cargo space, there’s an impressive 94.7 cubic feet behind the front seats, and the Tahoe has a towing capacity of up to 8,600 pounds. Standard safety features include daytime running lamps, forward collision alert, rear park assist, and a teen driver mode.
5. 2017 Hyundai Santa Fe
With the 2017 Hyundai Santa Fe, you can choose between front-wheel or all-wheel drive. The base SE model starts at $30,800, while the top SE Limited Ultimate model is priced at $39,400, making it an affordable choice even in its most luxurious configuration. Hyundai simplifies the options by bundling them into packages rather than offering them individually.
Regarding cargo space, Santa Fe offers 80 cubic feet behind the first row, 40.9 cubic feet behind the second, and 13.5 cubic feet behind the optional third row. While it may be slightly smaller than full-size SUVs, it still provides ample room. Standard features include Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration, a 7-inch infotainment screen, and a six-speaker sound system.
6. 2018 Chevrolet Traverse
This is next on our list of best minivan alternatives. The 2018 Chevrolet Traverse is a completely redesigned model, offering to seat eight passengers and boasting the best-in-class cargo space of 98.2 cubic feet behind the first row.
It features a hands-free liftgate that allows for convenient loading, and it even projects the Chevrolet logo on the ground in the precise spot where you should place your foot to activate the liftgate.
The Traverse incorporates Smart Slide seating, which enables easy access to the third row by sliding and tilting the seats forward. This feature works even when an empty car seat is still in place. The vehicle also provides ample storage options, including underfloor storage in the cargo area and a hidden compartment behind the infotainment screen. Pricing for the Traverse starts at $29,930.
7. Mazda CX-9
If you’re not a fan of minivans, you’ll be pleased to know that there are still many best minivan alternatives on the market. One notable option is the 2017 Mazda CX-9, perfect for those seeking a more exhilarating driving experience. Mazda has a reputation for crafting vehicles that cater to driving enthusiasts, and their three-row SUV is no exception. With seating for up to seven passengers and a luxurious interior, the CX-9 offers style and functionality.
The starting price for the base Sport trim is $31,520, while the top-of-the-line Signature trim comes in at $44,315. All-wheel drive is available as an option for all trims. The CX-9 boasts generous cargo space, with a maximum capacity of 71.2 cubic feet behind the first row of seats. Notable features include a power rear liftgate, three-zone automatic climate control, Nappa leather seats, and a premium Bose surround sound audio system. The 2017 Mazda CX-9 is an excellent alternative to minivans, offering the passenger capacity, cargo room, and luxurious features that families desire.
8. The 2018 Volkswagen Atlas
The last on our list of best minivan alternatives is the 2018 Volkswagen Atlas. This brand-new model represents Volkswagen’s first foray into the three-row SUV segment.
It offers seating for up to seven passengers and provides the choice between all-wheel drive and front-wheel drive. The base price for the Atlas starts at $30,500, while the top SEL Premium variant with all-wheel drive is $48,490.
One of the standout features of the Atlas is its spaciousness, with 96.8 cubic feet of cargo space available behind the first row, 55.5 cubic feet behind the second row, and 20.6 cubic feet behind the third row. Additionally, an optional hands-free power liftgate adds convenience when loading the vehicle. Standard features across the Atlas lineup include LED headlights, daytime running lights, a panoramic sunroof, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration.