My children will grow up knowing the value of a dollar. They will appreciate hard work. They will understand the long-lost art of pleasure deferral. They will be able to withstand both mild discomfort and moderate boredom from time to time. They will not be coddled, swaddled, mollified, and catered to.
In other words, there is no way in Hell I’m going to let them ride around in this thing.
Welcome to the new top-of-the-line Kia Sedona, a vehicle that places second-row occupants above all else. Flip-up footrests like a Mercedes-Maybach? Good grief: in my day, we had to work twenty-five hours a day down at the mill and then come home to our paper bag in the middle of t’road and our mum and our Dad would stab us to death and then dance around on our graves singing, “Glory, hallelujah.” Try telling that to young people today. They won’t believe you.
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But then again, fewer and fewer parents are buying minivans these days anyway. Minivans aren’t ‘cool.’ They aren’t ‘with it.’ They aren’t ‘hip.’ If minivans could use ‘air quotes’ improperly, they would.
It’s a shrinking market, so you have to wonder why Kia is even bothering sending out this sliding-door yacht to founder against the sales-figure rocks of the Dodge Caravan, Honda Odyssey, and Toyota Sienna. (There’s no Nissan Quest rock. More of a pebble.)
But the fancy-pants Sedona top-trim isn’t really for broodlings anyway, it’s for empty nesters. Parents are short on three things: time, money, and sanity. You know who’s got plenty of the first two, and loves to spoil the heck out of the backseaters? You know who just loves to holiday in the actual town of Sedona, AZ? Grandparents!
Do boomer grandparents love chrome wheels and rich Merlot paint? You bet they do. Will they note LED-accented touches like the neighbour’s Audi Q7? Naturally. Are they big fans of a shiny corporate grille that looks like a giant bottle opener? Well… possibly. Hard to say.
But when Sedona shoppers slide into those soft seats and look at their lavish surroundings, filled with piano-black trim and buttery leather, they’ll know they’ve come to the right resort. As a parent of two young children, I look around at things like I’m seeing Pompeii circa late 78 AD, just before the ash-cloud came. It’s so pretty, and so doomed.
But let’s suppose that eighty percent of the time, only the front seats are occupied. Well that’s lovely then: both thrones are heated and ventilated, cushy as all get out, and most of the touchy bits are nice. Compared to the austerity of the Odyssey’s cabin and the sheer functionality of the Sienna, the Sedona isn’t particularly van-like. It’s a big ol’ cruiser with easy ingress and egress.