By on October 11, 2017

2018 Chrysler Pacifica S Appearance Package, Image: FCA

You’ve decided to stay in the minivan fold. Or, to Fiat Chrysler’s delight, you’ve decided to join it. Just because your Pacifica spends its days shuttling around colorful little Playskool houses and playing Paw Patrol videos on the seatback media screens doesn’t mean it shouldn’t also strike terror into the hearts of passers-by on the mean streets of America.

Right on cue, or perhaps a little belatedly, Chrysler is adding a hint of menace to a decidedly non-menacing model with the return of the S Appearance Package to its minivan stable. Last offered on the defunct Town & Country, the package does for the Pacifica what it does for the 300 and what it did for the departed 200.

Bring on the darkness.

“The Chrysler Pacifica definitely stands out in the school drop-off line, and its class-leading style has won over many new customers,” says Tim Kuniskis, head of FCA’s North American passenger car brands.

Well, with the S variant, available for the 2018 model year, those parents might wonder if the child of a custom motorcycle builder/reformed gang member just enrolled at the school. Adorned with black accents in every conceivable nook and cranny, the package transforms the Pacifica into a stow ‘n go gangstermobile. To be fair, the Pacifica pulls off the look better than the Town & Country.

2018 Chrysler Pacifica S Appearance Package

Included in the $595 package are a bevy of gloss black accents. The list of newly darkened items includes the grille surrounds, headlamp eyebrows, daylight opening molding, rear valance molding, roof rails (in most cases), wheels, seats, steering wheel, and basically all interior features ahead of the rear seat. Light gray stitching and lettering helps breaks up the inky void. Outside, 18-inch wheels with “Black Noise” finish comes standard, but 20-inchers will run you an extra $995.

If generating schoolyard mystique is your plan, the S Appearance Package is available on Touring Plus, Touring L, Touring L Plus and Limited trims. Only the base LX model shuns the dark side.

Regardless of trim or package, all Pacificas undergo a tech upgrade for 2018. Now standard across the board are FCA’s SafetyTec suite of driver’s aids and upgraded Uconnect 4 systems with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. 4G LTE Wi-Fi with unlimited data becomes an available feature later in the model year.

Given its meager lineup, any spice capable of sweetening the Chrysler sales pot is a good thing for the brand. As sales of the full-size 300 sedan continue a downward slide, U.S. Pacifica sales rose 18 percent in September, year-over-year.

[Images: Fiat Chrysler Automobiles]

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24 Comments on “The Murdered-out Chrysler Pacifica of Your Dreams Is Just a Dealer Away...”


  • avatar
    fr88

    Blacked out trim is so three years ago. Murdered out cars look perpetually dirty, especially with black wheels that either look brakedust encrusted or look like the car us running on temporary spares. Bring on the chrome!

    • 0 avatar
      CaptainObvious

      ^ This – so much this.
      I can’t stand the black/dark gray rims – always look dirty to me.
      Give me chrome or silver rims.

    • 0 avatar
      whynot

      No no no, chrome is gross and should be banned.

      I don’t mind the blacked out trim, it is only tacky when it is only offered with black wheels and black paint. With actual color options and nice silver aluminum wheels blacked out trim is perfectly fine.

      • 0 avatar
        someoldfool

        To each his own, to me black plastic trim around the windows looks cheap. As do body color painted door handles. And I agree, black wheels look like they need a good scrubbing.

        • 0 avatar
          whynot

          Black plastic trim around the windows depends on the quality of trim and the specific design. I agree sometimes it can look cheap but it is all in the details.

          Have to completely disagree about body color door handles, that is how they should be. Along with the side mirror caps. Nothing looks more ridiculous than chrome mirror caps, even black plastic would be preferable to me over that.

    • 0 avatar
      Lorenzo

      Chrome detracts from the desired menacing look. Unless it’s a LOT of chrome, with a mirror finish that deters dogs from peeing on it. Otherwise its sheer size should be menacing enough, no matter the color.

      It’s hard to believe now the original minivan was just 175 inches long, 8 inches shorter than a current year Corolla. The Pacifica is longer than a 300, with more bulk. That alone should be enough to intimidate other drivers and pedestrians alike.

  • avatar

    I’m shaking my head. Chrysler cannot seem to elevate its taste level beyond what was popular in 2002.

    Perhaps Ja Rule could advertise this for them.

    • 0 avatar
      PrincipalDan

      Imagine this with Arizona legal window tinting.

      If I saw one on my block I’d assume there was a sting operation going on.

      Or I’d think that someone was filming an episode of “_ _ _ _ Bus”.

      • 0 avatar
        tallguy130

        Ha! Drop the kids of at 9:00, hardcore shoot all day (thanks stow and go seats !), wipe down those leather seats at 2:30, pick the kids up at 3:00.

        One car really can do it all!

    • 0 avatar
      arach

      An alternative is they actually know who their market is, and it aint you or I…

      Style and design is tied to culture and demographics, and is far from universal.

      The murdered out look was “so 2002”, but this car is geared towards a demographic that wasn’t even in the market for “modern style” in 2002.

      It wasn’t until 2008 that the blacked out look was actually hitting the highlines, and those cars are becoming “cool” (IE 10 year old highlines) in the type of demographics that would be pursuing a car like this.

      You’ll notice some other Chrysler cars that design for this demographic.

  • avatar
    Cactuar

    Black in the car biz is a funny color. It’s used on the lower trim models to show the world how cheap you are. But on the expensive “sporty” trim (who decided black was sporty anyway?) the once-painted trim will go back to black.

    So black is either low rent or sporty. Funny that.

  • avatar
    RS

    I like the look – but I’d go with natural finished aluminum rims if it was mine.

    It also looks like a government or movie vehicle in all black. Maybe that’s an angle FCA is also playing.

  • avatar
    jeoff

    Well, it’s great that SafetyTec is now standard. I don’t know why the domestics are so slow in doing this.

  • avatar
    JEFFSHADOW

    It’s time for the release of TWISTER II. We now have the proper minivan for the starring role!
    Beautiful van in every way.
    Time to turn in my 2017 Pacifica lease for another one, earlier than planned.
    FCA, are you listening?

  • avatar
    kurtamaxxguy

    Interesting report and a sign that either automotive marketers or customers just can’t get enough of black everything in a car. IMHO black’s a nightmare to keep clean _and__ roasts the exterior/interior on any sunny day. Could that be why S. Calif. drivers, who prefer black cars, go road crazy so often? Also, any bets that autonomous cars will have black-opaque windows either as factory or aftermarket option?

  • avatar
    SixspeedSi

    See you may think this is a tacky design element, but all of our dark apperaence package cars fly off the lot. Ram, any Jeep Altitude, even 300s all sell faster then their regular counterparts. Might seem silly but it works..well at least for FCA

  • avatar
    Chocolatedeath

    I am a little older so and I never kept up with same sayings. I dont know what murdered out means. However I do sorta like the look. I think they should do it it a white or a (Mazda) Black Cherry color.

  • avatar
    Chocolatedeath

    I love the way one of commentators kept saying “certain people”, thats funny.

  • avatar
    bkrell

    Seriously, who the hell buys a car like this? My wife would have divorced me if I’d bought her a “murdered out” minivan. Minivans are an embarrassment enough. One “trying to be cool” just makes it worse. We all know it’s still covered with french fries, cheetos or goldfish no matter the exterior.

    • 0 avatar
      Meat

      On the contrary, I’m quite proud of our minivan. It’s even black too. It may see its fair share of kid snack detritus, but then again it does get a deep cleaning and interior detail once every few weeks.

    • 0 avatar
      threeer

      “Embarrassment enough?” Well, guess I’m about to be an embarrassment to the world in a few months when I go to buy one. How will I stand myself as I load up everything and drive down the road in comfort, with no worry about being crammed together with family, dogs, gear and luggage?

  • avatar
    Mike N.

    I don’t know which demographic other commenters are alluding to when discussing this minivan’s appeal, but TBH I’d be all over this. Rented a Pacifica and loved it. I also hate chrome trim, when I was looking for a lightly used X5 it was worth the effort to find a slightly higher spec version with the “shadowline” (high gloss black) trim. It looks so much better to my eyes.


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