“Tailgating is a time-honored tradition that has always revolved around one central item—the perfect car,” said Patrick Olsen, Cars.com Editor-in-Chief. “We’ve compiled a list of the best all-around cars for pre-game festivities in the stadium parking lot. Our list has cars of all sizes, and each one made the list because it boasts features that were made with the tailgater in mind.”
The top tailgating car of the season, according to Cars.com is:
- 2012 Honda Odyssey: The ultimate tailgating machine. Packed full of fan-friendly features, the Odyssey can carry up to eight fans with enough room behind them to pack a small grill. Or, it can carry five fans, collapse the third row and have 93.1 cubic feet for even more storage. The higher trim levels even offer technology features like Honda’s 16.2-inch split screen entertainment system.
“When it comes to tailgating, the Odyssey has it all,” said Olsen. “However, we recognize that most car shoppers are looking for something that suits a wide variety of lifestyles and needs. Our runners-up represent cars from different segments that meet many different driver needs, but also allow them to pack up the grill and head to their team’s parking lot before the game.”
Other top tailgating vehicles according to Cars.com are:
- 2013 Dodge Caravan: With storage galore, Stow n’ Go seats and third row seats that flip back for rear-facing tailgating seats this van is the perfect tailgater.
- 2012 GMC Acadia: This tailgater bridges the SUV-minivan gap best with great storage and top notch entertainment features.
- 2012 Honda Fit: Not every tailgating car needs to be a giant. The Fit is among the most space efficient cars on the market and can handle a lot more than its exterior suggests.
- 2012 Honda Ridgeline: The Ridgeline’s ace in the hole is a standard 8.5 cubic-foot trunk under the pickup bed, which easily becomes a 225-quart cooler on wheels.
- 2012 Nissan Xterra: The Xterra might have modest cargo space, but it was built for tailgating with an available Easy Clean cargo area that covers the cargo floor and second-row seatbacks with an easy-to-clean hard coating.
- 2012 Ram 1500: The optional RamBox is a locking compartment with drain plugs that sits above the pickup’s rear fenders. Ram says that a Ram with the 6-foot-4 inch bed can fit up to 280 cans.
- 2012 Subaru Outback: The Outback’s standard, removable cargo tray means you can make a mess, remove the tray and hose it off—making cleanup a breeze.
- 2012 Toyota 4Runner: An optional sliding cargo deck in the five-passenger 4Runner extends up to 400 pounds of food and beverages within easy reach of tailgaters. Leave the folding table at home; this has one built in.
- 2013 Toyota Sienna: A great option for those looking for on-screen entertainment while tailgating. The Sienna offers a 16.4-inch dual-view screen.
In addition to naming the top tailgating vehicles of the season, Cars.com is also getting back into the football spirit this fall as the Presenting Sponsor of ESPN Saturday Afternoon College Football. Football fans can also catch Cars.com on the NFL Fan’s Ultimate Road Trip and on the site’s custom Pandora station, “Tailgate,” which will back by popular demand for this year’s football season.
For more details on the best tailgating cars of the year, visit blogs.cars.com. Please tailgate responsibly.
Cars.com is an award-winning online destination for car shoppers that offers information from consumers and experts to help buyers formulate opinions on what to buy, where to buy and how much to pay for a car. Cars.com offers thousands of new and used vehicle listings, consumer reviews, side-by-side comparison tools, photo galleries, videos, unbiased editorial content and many other tools. Cars.com put millions of car buyers in control of their shopping process with the information they need to make confident buying decisions. Launched in June 1998, Cars.com is a division of Classified Ventures LLC, which is owned by leading media companies, including A.H. Belo (NYSE: AHC), Gannett Co., Inc. (NYSE: GCI), The McClatchy Company (NYSE: MNI), Tribune Company and The Washington Post Company (NYSE: WPO).