There's no doubt that with its HEMI-powered engine, the 2005 Dodge Magnum RT is marketed towards our male counterparts. It's quite comical, if you think about it: A man's station wagon? Well, those guys are just now catching onto something us women folk have known for a very long time. Station wagons equal practicality. The Magnum is no exception.
Driving the Magnum around was an open invitation for people to comment on it. Nobody was shy in expressing what they think about the way this car looks. I heard a full range of opinions from "very cool and modern," "the Munster-mobile," "looks like something fell on it and squished it" and finally, the very extreme, "the ugliest thing I've ever seen." Whether you love or hate the way it looks, our mommies all taught us not to judge a book by its cover. I spent two weeks driving the Magnum so you won't have to judge it by its cover.
I have breaking news for the families of America with 2.5 children. Not only can the Magnum fit three child car seats side by side, but it also has Latch connectors in all three rear seat positions. Surprisingly enough, this is the first car I've tested that (in addition to the outboard seats) has a Latch connector in the center rear seat position. Kudos, Dodge!
Loading up the baby gear in the cargo area is effortless. The cargo floor folds back to reveal extra space underneath and I found the recessed storage bins on either side great for holding junk that normally slides around every time I turn.
The center console is very functional with clip-in pen holders, a tissue dispenser, coin holder and 12 volt outlet for charging my cell. My CD case and overly large coupon book bought from a friendly neighborhood girl scout, both fit as well.
I like how simple and straightforward the thermostat controls are. One knob adjusts the fan speed, another adjusts the temperature and the third lets me adjust which vents blow. I really don't need anything else.
Driving the Dodge Magnum RT is a kick in the pants. Although not publicly admitting to breaking the speed limit, I had no problem racing the clock when running a touch late for a doctor's appointment - and I enjoyed every minute of it. Oh, come on! I spend my days changing diapers and playing Candy Land. I'll take a thrill wherever I can get it.
As you can imagine, the squatty rear windows and low roofline of the Dodge Magnum make rear visibility something to be desired. The fact that the curtain side airbags are only available as an upgrade just plain sucks. Is Dodge telling us that higher income families deserve safer cars than others? Keeping that in mind, the Magnum still manages to perform well in NHTSA's crash test results.
All in all, The 2005 Dodge Magnum RT pleasantly surprises me. It's not just a station wagon for men, but a very functional mom-mobile for this new generation of savvy young women.
* For more information on the 2005 Dodge Magnum RT and its safety features visit Cars.com.