PhotoFamily cars, one might say, are the mothers of the car world. They have to be able to do and handle a lot, all while keeping kids safe and happy. So when it comes to selecting a family car, there are many factors to consider. Can it accommodate both the kids and the Costco haul? What about Fido … all 70 pounds of him?

If you’re in the market for a new vessel in which to tow your most precious cargo, be sure to check out Kelley Blue Book’s list of the 16 Best Family Cars of 2016. To make the list, the cars had to endure two weeks of being lived with and driven by the experts at KBB.com.

“We loaded cargo, contorted ourselves into third rows, watched movies on rear-seat screens, toted rowing teams to marinas – in short, we did everything that you and your family might do with a vehicle day-to-day,” said Jack R. Nerad, executive editorial director and executive market analyst of Kelley Blue Book’s KBB.com. And since many of the testers were parents themselves, Nerad says the process drew heavily upon the real life needs and wants of modern families.

Here is KBB.com’s 16 Best Family Cars of 2016 list:

  • Honda Civic. All-around great car, KBB.com’s Overall Best Buy of 2016, generous standard equipment, loads of safety features, cool new redesign.
  • Honda Accord. Roomy, high-quality interior, added style and safety from recent refresh, solid drivetrain, good economy.
  • Kia Optima. KBB.com’s Midsize Car Best Buy of 2016, stylish, feature-packed, family friendly.
  • Chevrolet Malibu. All-new redesign, additional safety and efficiency, comfortable and accommodating interior makes it easy to stay connected.
  • Chevrolet Impala. Roomy cabin and trunk, technologically sophisticated, contemporary looks, multiple drivetrain choices.
  • Hyundai Sonata. Value pricing and class-leading warranty combined with solid resale value and refinement all can take on class leaders.
  • Honda HR-V. All-new nameplate in hot segment, surprisingly roomy second row, great for a small family in the city.
  • Honda CR-V. Versatile, enjoyable and practical, makes excellent use of space, one of the roomiest small SUVs available, enviable resale value.
  • Subaru Outback. Outstanding room for both passengers and cargo, benefits of both wagon and SUV, excellent AWD and capable off-roading abilities provide peace of mind.
  • Kia Sedona. Style and function, modern interior, impressive available safety features at affordable price, less bulky feel compared to other minivans.
  • Honda Odyssey. Unparalleled combination of flexibility, seating, on-road dynamics and features, Wide Mode easily fits three car seats across second row.
  • Toyota Sienna. Versatile, flexible, capable, only minivan to offer optional AWD, high resale value and IIHS Top Safety Pick+ for minivans.
  • Nissan Pathfinder. Available around-view monitor, no child seat hassle with EZ Flex & Glide system, pitch-perfect on the road.
  • Toyota Highlander. Solid combination of comfort, quality, space and convenience features, unsurpassed level of powertrain choice.
  • Honda Pilot. Totally redesigned, “the family-friendliest midsize SUV in existence,” sophisticated suite of available driving technologies, all-star accommodations.
  • Chevrolet Tahoe. Truck-based SUV offers towing and off-roading capabilities, recent redesign, various connectivity features, carries up to nine people and gear.

In addition, KBB.com also took notes on how three different types of child safety car seats fit specifically into each of the vehicles on this year's list. Those notes can be found here


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