Rental: Nissan Maxima vs Pickup with Backseats

Updated on July 22, 2013
H.W. asks from Portland, OR
5 answers

Our family camping trip is coming up. Each year in the past, we've crammed our Honda Accord to the teeth and still haven't had room for anything beyond the tent, food and clothes. Thus, we haven't had room for the grill and have eaten mostly cold food.

This year, we have a bigger tent (think the size of a pack-n-play when packed up), want to take our grill and a small table, some camp chairs, etc. My husband is debating between a Nissan Maxima and a pickup truck with backseat. I'm leaning toward the truck but would love some input from others as the price difference is about $100.

I'd love to hear from drivers of Mazimas and anyone who's had this sort of 'how much can you pack in there' experience with that vehichle. Thanks in advance.
Added: yes, we are talking about renting and no, the minivan costs a LOT more. Not worried about security, as we'll be there the whole time and can put the valuables in the cab or in the tent with us.

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So What Happened?

Okay, Ladies, I think we're going with the truck. There's no way we'll install a rack on the roof and the Honda may be too light for dealing with a trailer. The Columbia River Gorge--where we will camp-- has high winds at times, so I'd rather not risk it.

Thanks for all the helpful suggestions.

More Answers


answers from Austin on

Truck.. The room to pack what you need is the reason..
You will love it.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from San Francisco on

Are you talking about renting?

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Oklahoma City on

Do the pickup. We just got back from vacation and our truck is so loaded down! We haven't even started unpacking it yet. I do wonder though, have you thought about renting a vehicle that has a trailer hitch? Surely you have some friend that has a trailer or something they can haul a lawn mower or something small on. Then you can borrow it and rent whatever you want that has a trailer hitch.

Watch that the vehicle you rent has air vents in the back half. Our truck has one tiny vent on the console between mine and hubby's seat. It is not near enough to cool that half of the vehicle.

Otherwise I love the truck for everything.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

Do you have to rent a car? My husband has a Maxima and while the trunk is large, I don't think you will be able to get everything in it. We got it for our SUV, but can you get a soft cover cargo bag for the top of the car? We got ours from Dicks for either $35 or $45. It works great, stays put on top of the truck and folds up small for storage. I got caught in a severe downpour for almost an hour and everything in the cargo bag was dry. And with the cargo bag, you can use it year after year. You do need rails to attach it to, I don't know how much they cost as our truck has them. Otherwise, I'd go with the truck. Or you can get the cargo holder that goes on the back of the car.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

I would get the truck. Even if all of your gear COULD fit into the Nissan, it would take a lot more work to figure out how to get it in. You'd probably have to be very price about how it was loaded, where things go, etc. Also, does the car company guarantee that it actually is a Maxima? Usually, if you're renting a full size car, it will list a few different ones (Nissan, Dodge, Hyundai), etc. I usually rent this category of car and have yet to actually receive a Maxima, or anything that wasn't American made.

As long as the backseat of the truck is a regular, full size seat, I would do that. If your kids are still in car seats, make sure the truck can accommodate them. I just think having a truck bed will be so much easier with all this gear.

1 mom found this helpful
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