Upgrading your car to accommodate your growing family: what you need to know

A two-door hatchback may have been the perfect zippy little car for running around town when you were single or newly married. But if you’re about to have a kid, and plan to have more, then you’ll need to upgrade your car to suit your growing family.

There are lots of things to consider when buying a family car, we’ve outlined the most important to start the ball rolling.

1. Car safety features

If you’re a parent your top priority when looking at family cars will most likely be safety. So the question to ask yourself is – does this car have the best possible safety features to protect me, but most importantly my kids, from injury?

While you can’t predict when or where a car accident may occur, you can give your family the best possible chance of survival or protection with a car that ranks 5 out of 5 for safety on Ancap. Anything less than 5 star is just not worth the risk.

Whether you’re buying a new or used car, some essential safety features are:

  • ABS Brakes
  • Electronic Stability Control
  • Multiple air bags
  • Backing camera
  • Rear parking sensors
  • Forward collision warning

Some insurance companies may offer discounts on your policy if you have these safety features.

2. Car size: how big should it be?

The size of the car is not far behind on the priority list because let’s face it; you need something roomy enough to fit you, your kids, car seats, prams, their gear and groceries. And that’s just for going to the supermarket. If you plan to take family holidays in your car, then you’ll need something with a big enough boot to fit everyone’s luggage.

Before you even set foot in a car yard (and encounter the hard sell), it will be helpful to research the interior and boot sizes of different car brands and models. Some cars seem huge but don’t have much leg or storage room. Alternatively, many cars look small but actually have a deceivingly large boot. So if you know what dimensions you’re after, it will narrow down the list of options.

If you are planning to have more kids somewhere down the track, go for the larger car now rather than having to go through the whole process again in the future.

3. How much should I spend?

You may have a dream car in mind but if it has a lot of bells and whistles, not surprisingly it will cost more than one that has only a few extra features. Know the maximum price you can afford and stick to it. Don’t get swayed into going over budget as you’ll have to cut costs elsewhere to pay it off. If a new car is out of your price range, there’s always the option of the same car but a second-hand version. You can get your hands on models that are only a couple of years older with low km’s, and the price difference can be quite marked.

4. Fuel Efficiency & Maintenance

How much your new car will cost to run is also an important factor to consider, so it’s good to know the long term costs before you buy. With a growing brood, you’ll be wanting fuel efficiency and low maintenance, so it doesn’t start blowing a hole in your weekly budget. Visit the Green Vehicle Guide to see where your prospective car stacks up both for fuel efficiency and environmental factors.


Need to offload your hatchback to buy a new family car? Give MetalBiz a call and we’ll happily take it off your hands and give you cash in return to go towards your upgrade. Simply call us on 1300 72 72 72 or fill out our online form for a quote.