Fiat Chrysler Celebrates 35 Years of the Minivan

Matt Posky
by Matt Posky
fiat chrysler celebrates 35 years of the minivan

At this point in history, minivans have become an acquired taste. Just like fine scotch and the silkiest of smooth jazz, there are those who appreciate the minivan and those who don’t — likely due to some tragic flaw within their genetic makeup.

However, Fiat Chrysler still gets the minivan and, as a reminder to normal people everywhere that they also still sell them, has seen fit to release celebratory editions of the Chrysler Pacifica and Dodge Grand Caravan. Proud to issue a refresher that Chrysler’s Windsor Assembly Plant gave the world its first modern minivan back in November of 1983, both of FCA’s family haulers receive special 35th Anniversary Edition models for 2019.

Granted, the math isn’t perfect. But you can’t waste time celebrating a segment that’s only slightly healthier than your average retirement home resident.

The 35th Anniversary edition adds some unique badging and all-black leather interior with “Cranberry Wine” contrast stitching. If you purchase the Pacifica Touring L, FCA will also include 18-inch wheels, a memory driver’s seat, and an overhead DVD player from the Mopar catalog.

Though you can always step up the trim line to get the Touring Plus’ dual-pane sunroof and memory driver’s seat, or hop into the Limited for a set of bigger wheels. Hybrid models receive smaller wheel options, but the special edition incorporates FCA’s Premium Audio Group — adding a baker’s dozen of Alpine speakers and Uconnect 4C with navigation and a 8.4-inch display.

However, those interested in the present-day classic that is the Dodge Grand Caravan will be pleased to learn it receives some unique upgrades of its own. Special 35th Anniversary Edition Models receive a gleaming chromed grille and 17-inch aluminum wheels in addition to the special badging and seats materials.

SE trims also receive “Stow ‘N Go” second-row bucket seats and a diver’s chair with power adjustments, while SXT Caravans bundle in the Driver Convenience Group package (heated front seats, heated steering wheel, second-row window shades) and adds navigation.

FCA’s blacked-out S Appearance package can be added to any 35th Anniversary Edition Pacifica or Pacifica Hybrid. However, the same cannot be said for the Grand Caravan, as it comes with that sparkly new grille.

Alright, so there really isn’t much going on here outside of the badging. However, depending on how these special editions are priced, you might be picking up equipment packages at a discount. These could also make for neat collectors cars for those uninterested in seeing a return on their initial investment. The 35th Anniversary Edition Pacifica and Grand Caravan are said to begin arriving in dealerships this summer, with pricing to come shortly beforehand.

[Images: FCA]

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  • Ceipower Ceipower on Feb 06, 2019

    Where's the fake woodgrain? Pretty dull anniversary with no woodgrain. Cowards!

    • WildcatMatt WildcatMatt on Feb 06, 2019

      Yeah, a heritage edition should include Di-Noc with a digital dash that you can set to emulate the original.

  • Thegamper Thegamper on Feb 06, 2019

    My family had one of these, Plymouth Voyager actually. I believe it was the most despised car my family had ever owned. I am guessing it had a base engine as I do recall my father saying it was a 4 cylinder. In any event, I think it was broken more often than running and was traded shortly after for an Chevy Astro.

  • MaintenanceCosts Will the Bronco have a four-motor configuration a la Rivian? That seems to me like the right approach for an EV off-roader. Enables lots of neat tricks.
  • Lou_BC ERay? A southern model will be the BillyRay.
  • Lou_BC I've never used a car buying plan service. My Costco membership did get me 1,000 cash back on my last truck.
  • Jeff S I can understand 8 cars is a bit much unless you are a serious collector. I always loved the Challenger when it first came out and now. I don't need a car like this but I am glad it exists at least for 1 more year. If I had a choice between a Mustang, a Camaro, and a Challenger I would opt for a Challenger but probably with a V-6 since it has more than enough power for most and I don't need to be burning rubber. Challenger has the classic muscle car looks, more cabin room, and a decent size trunk which makes it very livable for day to day driving and for traveling. The base models of the Dodge Challenger has a 3.6-liter V6 engine that gives you 305 horsepower with 268 lb-ft torque. The car attains 60 mph from a standstill within just 6 seconds, which is quite fast. Even with their base engines, the Challenger and Camaro are lightning-fast. The Camaro reaches 165 mph, while the Challenger can go up to 11 mph faster!
  • Inside Looking Out I would avoid American cities if I can. European cities are created for humans and Americans for cars.