1972 Ford Carousel (photo courtesy: forum.chryslerminivan.net)
What is the deal with minivans? I was thinking the other day that as an outdoor person, minivan’s are perfect. They have lots of room for people and gear, AWD (in some cases), lots of roof space, and better MPG’s than an SUV. But apparently I can’t own one because they’re not cool. I could get a wagon though. Isn’t a minivan just a super-sized wagon?
Supposedly they should to able to hold six or seven.
But the truth is the buyers of these vehicles rarely have room for three these days.
See, I have dealt with hundreds of minivan buyers over the years as a small town car dealer and a writer here at TTAC. Nearly everyone I deal with considers no more than three minivans. To be frank, the majority won’t even consider two which is why Chrysler, Toyota and Honda minivans now control more than 88% of the North American minivan market.
What chance does the Nissan Quest have? Even after 20 years in the public eye?
Two weeks in a minivan with three kids? There but for the grace of god goes this childless 20-something. Luckily our man Karesh is made of sterner stuff, and was happy to put the 2011 Toyota Sienna through its real-world, families-are-no-place-for-the-weak paces. Here, in pictures, are some of his impressions.
My in-laws live in an Arkansas county that only received its first traffic light in the late 1990s. So it goes without saying that there’s no major airport nearby. Pay airfare for six then still need to rent a three-row vehicle and drive for a few hours? We simply drive the full 800 miles. Extend the route to include Nashville, Memphis, and Chicago, and could there be a better way to test the redesigned 2011 Toyota Sienna?
And the hits, they keep on coming: The Nikkei [sub] has it that Toyota will recall 740,000 Sienna minivans that have been sold or operated in cold-weather areas in the United States and Canada. They’ll be checking for corrosion of the spare tire carrier cable. (Read More…)
Fiat 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.