Family Vacation: 2007 GMC Acadia and 2007 Mazda CX-9

David Axberg
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It's a matter of survival. Do you want to make it to your destination with your sanity intact? Family vacations aren't always a picnic, so it's in everyone's best interest to choose a vehicle that will minimize the stress of being confined to a small space with your loved ones. Consider a crossover, like the new GMC Acadia. It's large and roomy, but much easier to maneuver than a full-size, truck-based SUV, like GMC's own Tahoe. Powered by a 3.6-liter V-6, the Acadia's engine produces 275 hp while returning better fuel economy than V-8 powered gas guzzlers. Inside, you'll find most everything you need to make everyone comfortable. There's room for eight people, with three climate zones to ensure all passengers maintain their desired temperatures. Passengers in the two rear rows can watch a DVD with headphones, while the front seat occupants enjoy the Bose stereo system. The Acadia even has a power tailgate for times when your arms are full of suitcases.

Taking the MX-5 Miata for a weekend run to the coast isn't always an option after marriage and family come along. But is there life after kids? Well, no, but you can still take Mazda's other offering, the CX-9, on your road trip to Disney World. First of all, it's not a bad looking wagon. Pretty swoopy really, with those fender bulges over the front wheels. And the interior is quite attractive, with three rows of spread-out-room and seats that flip, fold, and slide every which way. So the family will be happy with the quiet and roomy interior, and you can have fun wringing the living daylights out of its 3.5-liter V-6 all the way to the Magic Kingdom. Just think of it as a four-door Miata with a 1400 pound knapsack on its back.

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