As the new models begin rolling out for 2012, car designers are proving that they have heard what the families have been saying. Just because they want a comfortable family sedan, does not mean they want the same old boring things specs in a shiny new package. Families want to enjoy their cars too!
This year, several companies are bringing out fun and fashionable cars that are good for a family. They are highly rated for safety, have great gas mileage, and do not make onlookers think “soccer mom” when they drive down the road.
2012 Hyundai Sonata
First up is the 2012 is the Hyundai Sonata. Because Hyundai put so much into a redesign of this model in 2011, there will be no major changes for the year 2012. Those in the market for a new car will either love the look, or hate it. There does not seem to be much middle ground. While the streamlined sedan may make it seem as though it was flattened a bit with a rolling pin, its value alone makes it worth a second look. With a base model running near $20,000 and the Hybrid model costing less than $30,000, the price point is great for a family needing an environmentally addition to their home.
The Hybrid version has been rated at an impressive 36 city and 40 highway for MPG. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) rated the Hyundai Sonata at five out of five stars in nearly every category of safety testing.
2012 Buick LaCrosse
The next car that is garnering some attention is the 2012 Buick LaCrosse. Those who are familiar with Buick will not be disappointed by this full-sized luxury sedan. The clean lines, high-end electronics, and roomy interior shout extravagance. However, at a price point of around $30,000, the LaCrosse is anything but a waste of money. In fact, for the first time ever, the base model will come standard with eAssist Technology. This technology is what gives the LaCrosse an amazing highway rating of 37 MPG.
While the 2012 test results are not yet available, the NHTSA crash testing gave the 2011 LaCrosse a five-star rating overall. Some safety features that were instrumental in this rating included multiple air bag systems, blind-spot warning alarms, and rear-view cameras that have been integrated into the navigation system panel. The LaCrosse also includes head-curtain air bags that are meant to give the occupants greater safety should the vehicle have an accident that includes a roll-over.
2012 Volkswagen Passat
For those who endeavor to spend the bulk of their earnings on items that are made in the USA, a close look at the 2012 Volkswagen Passat may be in order. This sedan will be the very first car to come out of the new Chattanooga, Tennessee Volkswagen factory. The Passat has many available options, making the vehicle nearly as well put-together for the individual owner as having a burger made “your way” at a fast food joint. The Passat is more comfortable than ever as four inches have been added to the wheel base in comparison to previous models.
The gas mileage ratings are very good for the Passat. Especially after one release stated that it could drive nearly 800 highway miles on one tank of gasoline. After many changes since previous years, this car is expected to have a very high NHTSA safety rating as well.
2012 Dodge Charger SRT8
Not everyone in the market for a family sedan looks at gas mileage ratings. Some want power, even if it comes at the slight expense of gas mileage. Not for those who are weak at heart, the 2012 Dodge Charger SRT8 is a family sedan with some serious power. This 6.4-liter HEMI V8 uses all 465 horsepower to get to 60MPH in just five seconds. Besides serious power, it has serious technology as well. The 8.4-inch touchscreen display handles navigation as well as a 19-speaker surround-sound audio experience.
Since it is not due out until late 2011, safety testing results have not yet been released by the NHTSA. However, the 2010 Charger SRT8 received five out of five stars in nearly every category. No one ? has any reason to think the 2012 model will fare any differently. In fact, as an added feature, the 2012 Charger SRT8 comes with a Ready Alert Braking system that anticipates a driver’s need to stop suddenly.
At a price point of right around $40,000, the Dodge Charger SRT8 is a bit higher priced than the other sedans mentioned here. However, the added power and capabilities for fun make this a great choice for families who want to stand out in the soccer mom crowd.
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