About Family Wheels

Paul skiing in Wyoming. Photo by Chris Valiante

Thanks for visiting FamilyWheels.ca!

I’ve been a CBC radio journalist since 2007 and am a national award winning broadcaster. But long before that, I was a wear tester in the ski world. My propensity for pushing ski gear to its limits had magazines, ski companies and clothing manufacturers lined up to see if their products could stand up to my hard skiing style. I developed a love for testing products thoughtfully and thoroughly in that time.

Hawaii family

Devon, Roger and Paul in Maui, 2014

So when I became a father in 2014, I started to hatch an idea for a website that would review vehicles from a family perspective. Too many sites are obsessed with horsepower and how a car whips around the track. The fact is, most of us want a practical look at the features that take us from our homes to the office to swimming lessons safely and comfortably. And the majority of Canadian couples buy a car when a family is on the way.

Devon, Roger and I look at vehicles the same way you do and give practical day-to-day advice on what makes the right car for your growing family. I’m a member of the Auto Journalists Association of Canada and take great pride in bringing you car reviews from a unique and thoughtful perspective.

So check back often, let me know what you’d like more of and thanks again for stopping by Family Wheels. ~ Paul Karchut

Our test vehicles are supplied by auto manufacturers but content is never subject to approval by those companies before being published. Opinions are entirely those of Family Wheels.

Theme music for the first three seasons: “Highway Lines” by The Nix Dicksons


  • Lou Nischan


    I own three Bluetec’s (05, 07, 08) which have horrendous and very costly problems with their turbos. Thinking to get rid of them and to replace with Foresters. Would I have similar problems with Forester turbos?

    Your advice is appreciated.

    Lou Nischan
    Greenwich CT

    • pkarchut

      I gather there was an issue with Subaru turbos not getting enough air intake (something like that) in previous models but the problem has been rectified, Lou. Sorry to hear your Mercs have been such a pain for you.

  • Guido

    Hi Paul, I have been following on TV and YouTube a lot of car reviews over the years.
    I am drawn to your reviews, by the way you present the car tests and since I live in BC your reviews appeal,to me.
    I would like to,buy a CRV, but I am hesitating now because it does NOT have a CD player, and I have a lot of CD’s. a ALSO, I don’t want a black interior, which a lot of manufacturers seem to want to sell us.
    I wonder if I shouldn’t wait till 2019,maybe the boring CRV Interior will change ? .?
    Thanks , I love your shows.

    • pkarchut

      Hi Guido… thanks for all your views over the last few years. A lot of cars are now moving away from CD players and I don’t imagine that Honda will go back to offering them in the models that have gotten rid of CD players. One work around would be to use the 3.5 mm plug-in point for your infotainment system and plug in an old fashioned discman. That could work… but the times are changing!

  • Andrew Hodge

    Thanks Paul for the great reviews. Have followed the reviews on the 2017 Audi a4 allroad and the 2018 Subaru Crosstreck. Will continue to follow to see your review on the 2018 Volvo XC60 and or “R” series.

  • Darko Biljan

    I just came upon your great web site. While it is very hard to be unique in a vast world web, I believe you carved a niche and badly needed spot; true family oriented reviews. Even better, it is Canadian! As a father of four, I could not stop watching your eloquent and realistic vehicle reviews. Keep up a good work! And yes, Crosstrek is on my radar as a secondary vehicle.

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