We dedicate a lot of blog space to topics on best cars for families. These family units encompass all forms and all sizes. From ones with new teenage drivers to empty nesters we cover all the bases. For many of you, an especially furry member is counted among that unit. No, we don't mean Uncle Leo (or Frank, Maury, etc.) who neglects to use the body shaver you bought him last Christmas. We're referring to that dearly beloved four-legged best friend to all - your pooch.
Today, Toyota introduces you to a line-up of cars that will accommodate family life with a big dog in tow. From long distance road trips to errands around town these vehicles will ensure that not one single soul gets left in the dog house.
The 4Runner is practically tailor-made for households with big dogs, or more than one for that matter. There's even a popular online forum with a thread dedicated to dogs and their 4Runners. For starters, this vehicle is made for the wild from the outside in, with a powerful V6 and reinforced body-on-frame construction. The 4Runner features an independent double-wishbone front/4-link and coil-spring rear suspension that's tough enough to head anywhere in the great outdoors while maintaining a smooth ride in the process. Since your companion can't be buckled up he/she will appreciate fewer bumps on the off-road or trail. Factor in the 4Runner's Locking Rear Differential, Multi-terrain Select, and superior Crawl Control and no expedition is off limits.
This vehicle offers additional comforts and conveniences that suit your big pet, including an available sliding rear cargo deck that can support up to 440 lbs. You won't have to worry about them jumping on to enjoy an elevated view from the back of your 4Runner. Especially spry pups will be able to hop out of the rear power window when they simply can't wait for you to release the lift gate. And with a 40/20/40 fold-flat second-row seat that opens up to 88 cubic feet there is plenty of room to sprawl after a day of running around outside. View more on the new 4Runner.
As the best family vehicle on the market it makes perfect sense to include the Highlander on this list that considers all members of the family. Given that the Highlander comes available with seating up to eight, you can pack in family, friends, and your dog without leaving anyone behind. There are plenty of surprises on the inside that will make your pet travels easier than ever. Smart storage compartments allow you to easily access doggie snacks and squeeze toys when hunger pangs or restlessness kick in.
Your big lovable buddy will fit right in, as Toyota designed the rear suspension of the Highlander to maximize cargo space (83.7 cubic feet behind the front seats), providing plenty of room to stretch those four legs with rear seats folded down. The height adjustable power lift gate in the rear opens with the press of a button and allows your dog to hop in and out with ease. The flip-up rear glass hatch also provides you quick and comforting access to your dog when you want to give a reassuring scratch behind the ears after you park and run quick errands around the corner.
The are other features in the Highlander that make this a truly exceptional pet-friendly vehicle. The SUV's sound-dampening insulation creates a quieter interior for sensitive dog ears while the driver's conversation mirror allows you to see (and talk to) your dog in the back. View more on the new Highlander.
When it comes to a family life that crosses over from day to day suburban life into weekend adventures this crossover SUV is the perfect match, especially when Spot comes along for it all. This sporty vehicle is perfect for those that love to stick their head out the window (or available power moonroof) and play spot the fire hydrant, cat, or squirrel. The RAV4 interior is accommodating to your dog, with available SofTex seats that may be soft and supple, but are also strong and more resistant to scratches and tears.
The RAV4 is as simple and convenient as possible for drivers with big pets. The available height-adjustable power rear lift gate with a low, flat-load floor lets your dog jump in (and out) with the push of the key fob. The 60/40 split rear bench and open back also serves as a cozy place to sit side by side and enjoy the sunset together. View more on the new RAV4.
If you and your four-legged friend spend most of your waking moments together, be it on the worksite or on off-road adventures, you'll be hard pressed to find a better match for your driveway. The powerful V6 Toyota Tacoma has been manufactured with advanced off-road technologies and heavy-duty components that allow this truck to take you and your trusted companion to places others wouldn't dare.
There is plenty of room in the Tacoma for your dog to join you up front or in the rear with a dog bed for added comfort. That being said, when you hit a mellow country road, the cab, with an easy lower tailgate, awaits if he/she prefers the open air. The cab can be outfitted with accessories such as access cab dog platforms and barriers. However, the interior is no slouch, complete with an available moonroof and advanced engineering (complete with Bilstein® shocks) that reduce noise and vibration in the cabin. Your dog will remain calm, cool, and collected, no matter how rough the road. View more on the new Tacoma.
Ready to test drive a new vehicle to ensure it's a great fit for you and Fido alike? Contact our Greater Vancouver Toyota dealership today to schedule an appointment.