Any Wagon drivers out there?

Looking for folks to share their 3 and 5 series wagon experiences. I'm currently driving a 330ci convertible, but with one child and another on the way, it's just not cutting it any more. Time to grow up, I
guess..
Although most likely I'll be hauling kids around, I'm also interested in how well full-size adults fare in the rear seats. Thanks!
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I'm gonna guess that you're going for a car that is essentially the same year, or newer, than the 330 that you have.
I had '94 4-door 3 Series that I drove from San Diego in a long day (10-ish hours), with 4 adults in the car and luggage in the trunk. We stopped in the dessert to take some pictures (two of the adults are from Germany, and the desert was a new experience for them), had lunch and bought gas in Lake Havasu. The seats were pretty good for such a long trip. We then drove to Las Vegas, then back home. The ride to Vegas was a a short day, probably about 5 or 6 hours, and the trip from Vegas to home was 5 or 6 hours. We put two days in between stuffing our guests into the back seat again.
The babies are going to be a bigger issue for you than more adults. As much as the 3 Series touring will get you around, I think the 5 Series touring will work better with pair of car-seats for your kids strapped in the back.
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Thanks! Definitely good info for the considerations. It's been long enough with our current kid that I'd forgotten how huge those rearward facing baby seats are!
slip
On Mon, 12 Oct 2009 17:54:49 -0700, "Jeff Strickland"

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The rear-facing seat is a temporary condition that lasts, what, 9 months. The forward facing seats will be with you for 5 or 6 years. That's the situation you really need to plan around.
I told you the story of driving to the Grand Canyon (my bad, I forgot to mention the destination of the 10-hour road trip), with two adults in the back seat. My assumption is that the seats in the 4-door and those in the wagon are equivelent, and better suited for adults than the rear seats in the convertible. Having said that, I have a '94 convertible now that has never carried anybody in the back seat for more than a few minutes at a time.
wrote:

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From what I can remember we had three seats for our boy, a basket for the baby stage, then two different seats, both facing forward, positioned on the back seat, never on the front seat.
The last can be one with removable back.
DAS
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... back seat in the center, never in the front seat.
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The bigger kids can use the booster next to a door, I'm okay with that. but my kids lived in the center position as long as they still needed a car seat. I routed the car's lap belt through the frame of the car seat -- as the directions said to do -- and yanked it down tight. I have no clue if it worked, I never got to test it. I assume it worked because the people that made the seat said to lash it down the way I lashed it down.
Our car seat had its own shoulder straps and breast plate to hold the kids in place, all I had control over was holding the seat in place. As far as I could tell, the car seat was one with the car. And it was in the middle. Having said that, they don't make them like that anymore, so perhaps it had a serious flaw that I never knew about. I liked it, and I thought it was an excellent design -- easy to secure, easy to lock the kid into, and adjustable as the kids got older.

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Now that I have read this description I am wondering how the previous seat was secured because I think it also had its own straps to secure the child.
Our son not so long ago outgrew all (child) seats.
Am getting old...
DAS
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When your kid is old enough to bring home his own kids, you'll be on the threshold of getting old.

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:-) ... even tho' I am late fifties (Schmettterling's "Hard to Believe but True)...
DAS
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PS. See, I can't even spell my own name (it doesn't have 3 tees in my passport).
DAS
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Yes, but then your grandkids will do to your kids what your kids did to you - and you can facilitate the process, just as your parents and grandparents did!
Tom
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Hi! I'm the owner of a 2000 model 325xi station, and I'm quite happy with it. It has now 220'000 km (136000 miles) and the engine and the body are perfect. I would say it's a bit small for adults in the rear seats, except if the passengers are much smaller than 6 ft. However, I would say that the biggest issue is the lack of storage in the boot (trunk), due to the sloped rear window. Just my $.02 Regards Giovanni (Switzerland).
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I would agree, with two caveats: 1) for shorter trips, our E46 has room for my wife and two grown sons; one 6'4", one 5'10". I'm 6' and my wife is 5'4". 2) there is hardly more room in the touring than in the sedan trunk. However, it takes larger items, as the hatch on the touring is much larger than the sedan's.
FloydR
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I have an E36 328i touring ('96) and have had an E30 318i touring (89), my mate has a '94 525iX touring.
E36 touring is a great car, but I don't think it was sold in the US. OK for two adults in the back but the centre bit really is for emergency transport or small children only. Amazing how much stuff you can cram into one :-)
The load bed is fairly high though, the seats fold forwards but sit on top of the seat cushions. On the E30 the seat base folded forwards and up with the seats backs going into the space that provided. It was a fair bit lower. So it's not ideal for tall objects. Nice wide tailgate entrance, unlike the E30.
E34 touring is a good deal larger in every dimension and many had hydraulic self levelling suspension for dealing with heavy loads.
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We were in teh same boat and looked at the 3 series wagons. We ended up with a X3 since it is about the same dimensions as the wagon but taller. I sit in the back seat while my wife drives. It is quite comfortable for me (6'2"). btw - Since the right front seat is usually empty, I take the headrest out so I have a better view of the road. Hope you find one you like.
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My brother has a 330T - kids all grown up so just the two of them plus dog. He tows a caravan a lot. And finds it far too small. Reckons his previous E28 520 could hold more when going off with the caravan. He wanted a 5 series tourer, but simply couldn't find a manual one secondhand in his neck of the woods. I'm 6 ft tall and slim(ish) build, and fine the back a bit tight for space. My E39 is fine in the back - for two.
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Finding a manual shift is tough. Looking on eBay, I found only one current-model 5 series wagon nationwide that was equipped with a six speed manual tranny. For me, not having three pedals is a deal breaker..
Anyway, the search is on hold for a bit as it turns out my wife, usually the SUV driver, doesn't want me to sell the 330ci!! I guess she likes the top-down driving as much as I do, so we'll make it work as long as we can.
On Wed, 14 Oct 2009 18:40:39 +0100, "Dave Plowman (News)"

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My brother also wasn't willing to travel far to look at one - and wouldn't buy off Ebay etc unseen. He did find a 540 manual - but those are simply too thirsty for him. He wanted a 530 - or possibly a 528.
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On Mon, 12 Oct 2009 17:40:33 -0700, Guppy Pilot

Have both 2007 E-91 xiT and 2008 E-90 xi. 2 adults in the back of the touring no probs. Wouldn't try 3 adults back there unless very short distance. But took our son with us on a 1,400 mile trip to tha black hills and back and no issues for him in the back seat. He's 6-3 I am 6-2. The XT is my wife's car and she luvs it. Tried to get her in an X3 or X5 initially (she had a Jeep prior to that) and the x3 was to unstable she claimed (I agree with her) while the X5 was bigger then her Jeep Grand Cherokee. With 2 little kids it should be a perfect fit and the occasional adults in the back seat should be no issue in the Touring. The fuel consumption on her xiT is phenomenal IMHO. Did 34 mpg on the highway.
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