By on December 2, 2009

sienna4Fiat be warned, Toyota is striking at the heart of Chrysler’s market: the minivan. The new 2010 Sienna takes the game one step further, featuring barcalounger class middle seats with leg and foot support. Toyota continues where others have left off, retaining their AWD option as well as a four and six cylinder engines, all equipped with six speed transmissions. The interior doesn’t reverse Toyota’s trend towards cheap and nasty plastics, but at least they should be easy to clean baby puke off of. Middle seats sport a sliding rail feature making it easy to insert three sprogs in the rear, but Kate plus 8 need not apply as seating is still a standard septuplet.

Get the latest TTAC e-Newsletter!

44 Comments on “LA Auto Show: 2011 Toyota Sienna...”


  • avatar
    pb35

    I’ll be in the minivan/family hauler market soon; this looks ok. I just wish they would lose the fake wood already.

    • 0 avatar
      C. Alan

      My guess is that what we are seeing is the van at a high trim level.  My guess is that the fake wood will be missing from the lower trim levels.  We have an ’06 XL, and it doesn’t have the wood, but the top of the line for that year (limited) had the fake wood.

      Im just glad they got rid of the ‘robby the robot’ center concol.

    • 0 avatar
      Richard Chen

      With the outgoing Sienna, fake wood is on the XLE and Limited trim levels, probably something similar will be for the ’11.
      Press release: http://pressroom.toyota.com/pr/tms/toyota/all-new-third-generation-toyota-149431.aspx
      Album here: http://pressroom.toyota.com/pr/tms/toyota/photo.aspx?id=17305&ncid=11092
      The rails and ottoman setup for the 2nd rows buckets have been on JDM minivans previously, this is their first Stateside appearance. There are still separate 7 and 8 passenger variants and the 8th seat is still larger than the Odyssey’s, looks like 40/30/40 and still capable of holding a child car seat. The 8th seat is paired with the 2nd row seat on the driver’s side.
      http://pressroom.toyota.com/pr/tms/toyota/photo/SiennaLE_141-prv.jpg

  • avatar
    Stingray

    It looks as boxy as the current Chrysler minivans.

  • avatar
    ajla

    It isn’t going to make an impact in this segment if it doesn’t have three TV/DVD players, a refrigerator, a diaper changing table, and a two-chicken capacity rotisserie oven.

  • avatar
    Bunter1

    Fiat be warned, Toyota is striking at the heart of Chrysler’s market: the minivan.
    Chrysler hasn’t won a minivan comparison test since the ’99 Oddy came out.
    The Sienna and Oddy own this market for anyone that isn’t buying on price, nothing else comes close.  The current Sienna actually has more luggage room and a better third row than a ‘Burban and gets mileage that beats some large sedans.

    Bunter

  • avatar
    Billy Bobb 2

    If Toyota’s stayed with those #$%^@ Run-Flats they really effed up again. Sure hope that thing’s got a spare tire well!

    • 0 avatar
      Richard Chen

      Only the Sienna AWD’s have run-flats, as the driveshaft runs through what would be the spare tire well is under the 2nd row, towards the passenger side. Consumer Reports had an AWD without tire problems for over a year and thought that underinflation was the culprit.
      FWIW, the Chrysler minivans drop their spare from between the driver and passenger seat thanks to the Stow-N-Go seat wells.

  • avatar
    bill h.

    I like the Hyundai lookalike grille! ;-)

  • avatar
    psarhjinian

    The photo above is probably the worst combination of colour and angle; in other photos it looks like larger Venza, rather than a superdeformed Caravan.  It’s over the top, but so’s everthing these days.

    If Toyota’s stayed with those #$%^@ Run-Flats they really effed up again. Sure hope that thing’s got a spare tire well!
     
    The run-flats were only standard on the AWD models because spare is mounted underneath the car and the driveshaft uses the space.  Front-drive versions have conventional tires and a underbody spare.

  • avatar
    psarhjinian

    The four-cylinder is a nice touch: they six is really more engine than most people need, and having the option of a smaller engine is a good one.

  • avatar

    This new Sienna is nice.

    Honda is supposed to introduce a redesigned Odyssey in 2011. This van may be offered with a diesel V-6.

    • 0 avatar
      vent-L-8

      a diesel would be nice, anyone know when the next Quest is due.  Honestly the shelf life of these minivans is not to be believed.

    • 0 avatar

      A new Quest will debut in Japan in 2010. Nissan has not announced when or if this model will arrive in North America.

      In recent years the Quest’s sales in the U.S. have declined sharply. As of last month, 2009 YTD sales for the Quest have only totaled 8,310 units.

  • avatar
    iNeon

    Anyone shopping a minivan shops by price.

    • 0 avatar

      Price is not the only thing minivan buyers consider. My wife and I recently bought a new Honda Odyssey. We looked at the less expensive Chrysler vans and the Kia Sedona, but went with the Odyssey because of its reputation. We paid a little more, but got a better vehicle.

    • 0 avatar
      KixStart

      “Anyone shopping a minivan shops by price.”

      I’ll echo the “not true,” too.  We bought based on performance (the ’01 Sienna was a standout at that time) and interior appeal (the Sienna interior was much nicer).  We paid more than we might have otherwise for a Caravan or Venture, maybe, but we really liked the car, so we paid it happily.

      The D3 need to be selling cars that people will gladly pay more to get.

    • 0 avatar
      C. Alan

      Not true.  When I last bought one in ’06, I could have gotten a Dodge for much cheaper than the Sienna.  However, the Sienna does not eat transmissions as often and the dodge.  Four years and 50k+ miles later, I don’t regret the choice.

    • 0 avatar
      stuki

                      Some probably do, but certainly not everyone. I doubt Minivans are much different than other categories in that respect. Even supercars gets shopped on price, although in that instance the prices tend to be a bit higher than for minivans.

    • 0 avatar
      hal

      I bought on safety first, price second and ended up with a second-hand 2007 Sedona. Plenty of Moms driving around in fully loaded Odys who certainly didn’t shop on price.

  • avatar
    psarhjinian

    Anyone shopping a minivan shops by price.
     
    Not true, or else more people would buy Caravans.  Minivan buyers shop by price, true, but they’re also more likely to shop with a copy of Consumer Reports and such in their hand.  Price might make the difference between an Oddy and Sienna, or between a Caravan and Sedona, but price is only a part of it.
     
    There’s a reason, for example, I bought a Sienna instead of a Caravan or Windstar.  On a “fun” car I’ll trade a few red dots, but not on this.  I’m not the only person I know who did this.
     

    • 0 avatar

      Agreed. It is more accurate to say minivan buyers look for the best value for their money. Value does not always mean absolute rock bottom price. It means a reasonable price combined with long-term reliability and a low ownership cost over the life of the vehicle.

  • avatar
    iNeon

    Anecdotal, but my suburban mommy Sister and her suburban mommy friend bought vans at the same time. One a 50k mile 2003 Town & Country LX, and the other a new 2005 Odyssey Touring. The reliability information available seems to be my personal reality seen through a funhouse mirror. The Honda hasn’t been reliable, and it’s owner has been trying to convince us of the opposite for years. At a price difference of some $25,000.00, it’s inexcusable.
    In defense of the Sienna, and back to topic– my lesbian used to drive one for work, and apart from a number of icons alight upon it’s gauge cluster, it seemed to be OK. Only if you could get past it’s blatant attack on those poor innocents– pleasing aesthetics.

  • avatar
    NickR

    “my lesbian used to drive one for work”

    iNeon, I think you need a cup of coffee or something.

  • avatar
    Sammy Hagar

    Hmmm…how much will the 6cyl w/AWD and barcaloungers cost?  $38K?
    I think I’ll swallow my pride and get a two year old Grand Caravan for $12K.  Oh, and I’ll shell out the $100 for VW badges, just to be a cool kid.

    • 0 avatar
      moawdtsi

      That’s exactly what I did (buy the 2 year old Dodge van).  I personally don’t know that many young families that could afford something like that for their family, I know I can’t, especially with the wife at home.

    • 0 avatar
      KixStart

      But there are some who can afford $38K.  And if you make the vehicle appealing (and built a reputation for reliability), you can get them to shell out a little more for your product instead of just going to the competition on price.

      It’s not a bad thing to be selling your product at high margins while the competition is selling their vehicles for manufacturing cost.

  • avatar
    SherbornSean

    If you are shopping for minivans on price, then the smart money pays up for the Ody or Sienna, which are much cheaper than Dodge in the long run.  As the saying goes, “The poor can’t afford to buy cheap.”
     
    I am not sure which is more confusing, iNeon, the fact that you have a lesbian or a mommy sister.

  • avatar
    Ion

    It looks like it’s got some Kristen Stewart-esqe lower lip biting going on in the front.
    Not the best looking people carrier around but the interior is top notch.

  • avatar
    stuki

                    Darnit, from what i gather, no steering correcting lane keeping gizmo like the new Prius, even as an option! I was really looking forward to turn on radar cruise and lane keep, stroll between the 1st and 2nd row seats and get a can of soda from behind the third row, while crossing the Golden Gate bridge on “auto pilot” in rush hour traffic :). About the only excitement one can have on CA roads anymore, with revenue collectors working overtime to make up for Ahnold’s spendy ways.
     
                    Perhaps more important, some sites show pictures of the 2nd row removed, with some pretty intrusive sliding seat bases still left behind, instead of the customary flat floor.  Hopefully these are removable too, as the ability to easily carry fragile sheet stock up to 8×4 is one of minivans’ many selling points, especially to people who need this ability occasionally, but not on a daily basis nor often enough to warrant having a full sized cargo van or long bed pickup with a cap, specifically for that purpose.
     
                    2nd row seats that can’t be slid sideways to squeeze an upright tandem bicycle between them is a bit of a letdown as well, but the tandem biker market might not be big enough to warrant that much attention from the world’s largest automaker.
     
                    Other than that, I think it looks nice, and if it rides more like the Venza than the last Sienna, I’ll probably get one, at least if there is a way to remove those 2nd row seat bases. Come to think of it, they look like they could interfere with using the van as a camper as well, so I would assume Toyota wouldn’t let such an oversight slip by them.

  • avatar
    DeadEd

    For those worried about Kate and her 8, Toyota makes a not so minivan that is available in much of the world, but not in North America.  The Toyota Commuter is all over Asia.  It’s has the interior space of the Ford/GM full-size in a reasonably sized footprint.  The driver and shotgun sit on the engine with the front wheels at your feet.  Either gas or diesel is available, and many in Thailand at least have been converted to dual fuel (CNG).  After running around in one for several weeks this summer, I am very impressed with it’s capabilities.   It was comfortable, efficient, and had nuclear air conditioning (but no heater!…not needed)   Of course it probably wouldn’t do well in a crash test, and even if it did, Toyota would have to add an auto trans to bring it stateside (everyone I saw was a 5 speed stick poking from the dash).  The domestics better wise up, because if this one shows up over here, the tradesmen / delivery folks are going to be all over it.

  • avatar

    It still looks pretty maxi for a minivan — as do most of them these days.  We bought an ’06 Mazda MPV before they were discontinued, the last of the minivans that were actually mini.  It’s been a very solid ride — reliable after 47K miles.  Plenty of room for stuff — albeit without as much width as the bigger vans.  Easy to park and without the land barge feel of many SUVs.
    I’ve often wondered why more minivans of the MPVs size aren’t offered.  Everything is bigger and wider except the Mazda5 and the Kia Rondo5 (both of which have third row seats sized for your pet chihuahua).  Urban drivers, in particular, would jump over something that size — and the Toyota Venza doesn’t count either.

  • avatar
    michaelfrankie

    If Honda brings a diesel Odyssey to NA,  I think I’ll bite.  I’m not young but my one and only is 9 months and I’m willing to pay a premium for something well made and reliable.  But I realize most families don’t start at 40 and I’m in the minority.

    • 0 avatar
      pb35

      I’m with you, 42 with twins due sooner than later. We currently have an XC90 that I would like to buy out (and still may do so) post-lease this coming July but the whole Geely thing has me on the fence. So, one of the minivans would make the most sense for us. I’m looking forward to driving this new Sienna but would also like to see what Honda has in store. I would most likely want a Sienna Limited or maybe the SE but carbon fiber in a minivan? Come on.

      I also don’t think any of the minivans are as safe as my XC however, and that’s a big selling point for us. That Volvo is a tank. I do need a reliable car for the wife though, she’s always had the Japanese car in the family (so far).

  • avatar
    Telegraph Road

    Let’s hope this new version improves upon the “Poor” rear impact IIHS crash test ratings for the Sienna. (See http://www.iihs.org/ratings/head_restraints/headrestraints.aspx?toyota ).  Soccer moms don’t want their kids to suffer whiplash.
     

  • avatar
    obbop

    Herd,

    Any idea why the Japanese haven’t tried to compete with Detroit once-BIG 3 in the cargo work van arena as they have kinda’ sorta, I suppose, done with pick-ups?

    I peeked at vans in 2004 before opting to be a fool and grabbing a Silverado (for foolish “patriotic” reasons, mainly).

    I wanted a vehicle I could live in if the past returned and I was homeless again.

    The USA cargo vans (for living in and hauling those passenger van seats are in the way and the bare-bones cargo van is cheaper) were, in my opinion over-priced. The pick-up with a basic camper shell atop the bed would allow living within and the cost was acceptable.

    Many parameters to the vehicle asked about, whatever the manufacturer, so an answer may not be feasible.

    Consider me a cat with curiosity but just kill me gently.

    TIA and good night to all the ships at sea.

  • avatar
    joeaverage

    Yes we’re considering a large van eventually and will be shopping used diesel LWB Sprinters. I’d like to build a van camper out of it. and build an interior similar in looks/quality to the Hobby-Caravans they sell in Europe. Comfortable ride for the family without the bulk of the American style RV. And yes we could live in it if we had to.
    As for the Sienna – I can’t comment on the new Sienna but last year we took a rental Sienna on a trip and then a rental Chevy ??? minivan on a trip. The Sienna beat the Chevy hands down. The Sienna had roll down windows in back, a little better gas mileage, shifted better, and middle seats in the Chevy were a JOKE, and so on. The Sienna also appeared to be aging well where the Chevy had interior parts falling of it (we had two identical vans they were aging similarly).

  • avatar
    M1EK

    If Toyota would just bring over a hybrid minivan that gets 30, American, they’d sweep the segment clean. (They already have one that gets about 35, Japan-only, but won’t bring it over for fear that Americans will get angry they bring over a vehicle smaller than the current entrant in the segment).

  • avatar
    don1967

    It seems that minivan buyers are becoming even more boring conservative than ever.    When my neighbour traded in his beige Sienna for a blue one, he needed blood pressure medication for a whole month.

  • avatar
    50merc

    I second the motion, Steven Marchese. The Mazda MPV was just the right size, and had nice features. I think it didn’t sell as well as it deserved because the 2.5 V6 used at first felt too sluggish, and even after the MPV got Ford’s 3.0 engine Consumer Reports had little good to say about it. But looking back, I wish I’d spent the extra money for a clean MPV instead of buying a bulky “mini”van. Too bad even older (smaller) Siennas command high prices.
     
    The Mazda5? It’s a sliding-door station wagon, not a minivan, and the wife and I agree: it’s ugly, especially those taillights.


Back to TopLeave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Subscribe without commenting

Recent Comments

New Car Research

Get a Free Dealer Quote

Staff

  • Authors

  • Brendan McAleer, Canada
  • Marcelo De Vasconcellos, Brazil
  • Matthias Gasnier, Australia
  • W. Christian 'Mental' Ward, Abu Dhabi
  • Mark Stevenson, Canada
  • Faisal Ali Khan, India