2020 Lemon Aid New Car Reviews - Minivans

From an equipment, versatility and comfort standpoint, minivans offer better value than similarly-equipped mid-size sedans and SUVs. Despite the value proposition minivans represent, the segment, whether because of fashion or demographics, lost a lot of momentum over the last decade and a half. The Minivan section of Lemon Aid 2004 mentioned 24 different minivan nameplates, compared to the five nameplates covered this year.

There is no news for this segment this year.

The safety record of minivans is generally very good, a function of their height, large size and usually careful drivers. Bulky vans with deep-tinted glass can be challenging to park, especially at night. However, rearview cameras and proximity parking sensors take a lot of the guesswork out of parking.  

Chrysler Pacifica Honda Odyssey Toyota Sienna
Dodge Grand Caravan Kia Sedona   

2020 Dodge Grand Caravan

 


 

 

 

What’s new
Reduced model range, with only the SE, Premium Plus, Crew and GT trims returning for 2020. In July, FCA announced the end of the current Grand Caravan, which will be replaced , year 13 for the current Grand Caravan. In July 2020, FCA announced that a decontented version of the Pacifica will be mareted as the Chrysler Grand Caravan for 2021.

Performance
Good performance and refinement from the 3.6L V6 that is a bit lacking in torque at low revs. The main quest of the automatic transmission is to reach the highest gear possible means a lot of downshifting when a bit of extra speed is required. There is no creep function when the vehicle is in gear with the brakes off, making low-speed manoeuvres tiresome. Heavy steering is reassuring on the highway, but combined with the firm throttle, makes the van feel ponderous in town. Strong brakes. The suspension swallows road imperfections on the highway and ably handles all but the biggest urban potholes. Noticeable body movement on sinewy roads. Big, clear gauges. Elegant dash and lots of padded surfaces. Simple, logical controls for a full-featured van. Supportive front seats. Available features such as adjustable pedals and telescoping wheel make all drivers comfortable. Enormous, clear, cargo hold. The second and third row seats enjoy good legroom and the foldable Stow 'N Go seats are acceptably comfortable.  

Comments
This van is getting very old now. A replacement based on the new platform created for the Chrysler Pacifica has not yet emerged, nor has an affordable version of the Pacifica, which could take the place of the Grand Caravan, been released. Only one powertrain, a 3.6L V6 hooked up to a six-speed automatic transmission sending power to the front wheels, is available. Properly equipped, maximum towing capacity is 1633 kg (3600 lbs.). Made in Canada and the United States. 

Pricing
The base SE trim is very basic and lacks the sought after second-row Stow 'N Go seating. The Premium Plus, with features such as the aforementioned Stow 'N Go, alloy wheels, deep tint glass and a power driver's seat, creating a van that suits most buyers, but the trim upgrade is significantly overpriced. The Crew trim is odd as it lacks some of the equipment, like an auto-dimming rearview mirror, remote starting, alarm system and some trim features that are standard on the Premium Plus, but costs more money. That said, the Crew 29L package, with leather seating, power front seats, power sliding doors and tailgate, is great value and makes moving up the the GT trim unnecessary. The GT range-topper adds leather seating, a power tailgate and numerous comfort and convenience equipment, but is priced beyond the value of its additional content. The age of the Grand Caravan is demonstrated in that there are no active safety features, other than Blind spot and rear cross traffic monitors, available. Leasing is not available for the 2020 model year. 


Reliability

Below average since the current model was released as a 2008. Aftermarket parts and independent servicing are readily availabillity. The lower body and the rear climate control lines are vulnerable to corrosion. An oil based anti-rust treatment is recommended. Reports received regading air condiitioning maladies and general electrical problems. Rapid brake wear. 

Specifications


Body Style:  4SW
Occupants:  2/2/3

Engines:
3.6L-V6 (283 HP) 

Transmissions: 6A 
Drive Layout: Front-wheel drive

City Fuel Economy:  13.7L/100 km
Highway Fuel Economy:  9.4L/100 km
Active Safety Features: Optional blind spot and rear cross traffic warnings
Additional airbags: Driver's side knee airbag

Warranty: 3/60,000, 5/100,000
Current Generation Debut:  2008
Country of Origin:  Canada, United States

IIHS Ratings:

Sm. Front Driver: P

Mod. Front: G

Side: G

Roof: G

Sm. Front Pass.: NR

Head/Seat: G

Rear: G

Headlight: P

NHTSA Rating:


2020 Chrysler Pacifica

 

 

 

 

What's New
Package and packaging changes and Thirty-fifth Anniversary editions are the key Pacifica updates for 2020.  

Performance
The Pacifica delivers a surprising amount of driving pleasure for a vehicle in this category. The 3.6L V6 accelerates with verve and is nicely mated to its nine-speed automatic transmission. The Pacifica's ride-handling compromise is near ideal for a family but, its steering is precise and its brakes are strong and easy to modulate. The hybrid model is quicker and quieter than the conventional model as well as being more economical. The 16 kWh battery pack can propel the Pacifica up to 50 kilometres in full electric mode and can be recharged in as little as two and a half hours. Fuel economy of eight to ten litres per 100 kilometres once the battery pack has been depleted is quite parsimonious for such a large vehicle.

Comments
The Pacifica was expected to eventually supplant the Grand Caravan but it hasn't happened yet. The Pacifica moved away from typically minivan proportions toward something sleeker and more sporting than its predecessor and the plethora of three-row crossover vehicles potential buyers might also consider. The range-topping model has a very elegant, luxuriously appointed interior. Most Pacificas will be powered by a 3.6L V6 sending power to the front wheels via a nine-speed automatic.

Pricing 
The new L base model lacks both second-row Stow 'N Go seating and alloy wheels and won't really meet the needs of most buyers but does allow FCA to advertise a low MSRP. The LX trim includes alloy wheels and some minor trim details for what looks like too great a price bump. The Touring upgrade adds the practical Stow 'N Go middle-row seat, power sliding second row doors, a power tailgate and a power driver's seat at a tempting price. The Touring trim is also the least expensive model that lets buyers add active safety equipment. The Touring L model adds leather seating, heated front seats and a number of other comfort and convenience equipment, at a reasonable price. The Touring L 35th Anniversary edition does add a DVD system but does look pricey. The Touring L Plus is spectacular value. The price to migrate from the Touring L to the Touring L 35th Anniversary edition lacks content for the money. While the range-topping Limited trim adds plush Nappa leather upholstery and xenon headlamps, it is overpriced. The $1995 Advanced Safetytec Group encompasses a forward collition warning with autonomous emergency braking, adaptive cruise control with stop and go, lane departure, blind spot and rear cross traffic warnings and a lane keeping assist system, among other things, at a very good price. The hybrid powertrain carries a premium of $3200 (Limited) to $8700 (Touring) more than a Pacifica with a conventional powertrain. Large taxpayer funded rebates when purchasing a Pacfica PHEV are available from Quebec ($8000 for purchase or lease of 48 months), B.C. ($1500) and $2500 from the new Federal Government program that began May 1, 2019. The Pacifica is a poor lease value for 2020.
Reliability
Little data on relibility but few complaints have been received than normal for a new FCA vehicle. Complex and unproven hybrid system. An FCA extended warranty is recommended if you plan to keep the Pacifica past the basic warranty period but the warranties are very expensive. Below average purchase and after-sale service experiences from FCA dealers. 

Specifications


Body Style:  4SW
Occupants:  2/2/3, 2 3 3

Engines:
3.6L-V6 (287 HP)*, 3.6L-V6 H (260 HP combined) 

Transmissions: 9A*, E-CVT 
Drive Layout: Front-wheel drive

City Fuel Economy:  12.9L/100 km
Highway Fuel Economy: 8.4L/100 km
Active Safety Features: Optional forward collision warning, autonomous emergency braking, blind spot, rear cross traffic and lane departure warnings, a lane keep assist system and adaptive cruise control with stop and go
Additional airbags: Knee airbags for both front occupants
Warranty: 3/60,000, 5/100,000 

Current Generation Debut:  2017
Country of Origin:  Canada

IIHS Ratings:

Sm. Front Driver: NR

Mod. Front: G

Side: NR

Roof: NR

Sm. Front Pass.: NR

Head/Seat: P

Rear: NR

Headlight: NR

NHTSA Rating:


2020 Honda Odyssey

 

 

 

 

 

 

What’s new
A ten-speed automatic transmission is standard on all trims this year. 

Performance
Tested in Touring trim, Honda's V6 is smooth and very punchy. The ten-speed automatic works seamlessly and harnesses the power of the big V6 very well. Good fuel economy is aided by both the multi-speed automatic transmission and the cylinder deactivation system that is standard on the Odyssey. The stop-start system could lead to increased fuel economy but the system did not engage very often as the westher rxperienced during the test period required the use of air conditioning. The push-button gear selector is unusual but works well enough once you are used to it. 
The gigantic 19 inch wheels of the Odyssey Touring lend a crisp edge to its steering but Honda has managed to combine precise steering with a comfortable ride. The Odyssey's ride becomes firmer when heavily laden but never becomes uncomfortable.

Comments
Most automakers have left the minivan market but Honda is doing steady business in the segment with its fifth-generation Odyssey. 
The new Odyssey is powered by a 280 horsepower direct-injected V6 that sends power to the front wheels via a 10-speed exclusive to the range-topping Touring model.
The Odyssey offers very generous space and cabin materials are luxurious. The so-called Magic Seat centre row seats can either be used as captain seats, moved laterally together to ease access to the third-row seat, and forward to be permit front row occupants to reach second row passengers more easily. Comfort and convenience features include WiFi as well as CabinWatch and CabinTalk devices that permit the driver to monitor second and third-row passengers visually and communicate with them through the audio system of the van.
Available active safety equipment includes collision mitigation braking and road departure mitigation, adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assist and blind spot with rear cross traffic warnings. 

Pricing
At just over $33,000, the base Odyssey LX is quite nicely equipped and will suit many buyers. Stepping up to the EX trim, which includes desired equipment such as a sunroof and power sliding rear doors, tri-zone climate control and a right side view monitor, is very good value. The EX-RES trim, which includes the rear entertainment unit, is priced to reflect the value of its extra content. The EX-L Res is significantly overpriced. The EX-L Navi is overpriced as a vehicle but is at least priced to reflect to lack of the RES packagle. The Touring range-topper lacks value for the price but is fully equipped. The Odyssey represents a good value lease for 2020.  

Reliability
Good reliability predicted. Unproven automatic transmissions. Power sliding door durability could be a trouble spot. 

Specifications


Body Style:  4SW
Occupants:  2/2/3, 2/3/3

Engines:
3.5L-V6 (280 HP)

Transmissions: 10A 
Drive Layout: Front-wheel drive

City Fuel Economy:  12.2L/100 km

Highway Fuel Economy:  8.5L/100 km 


Active Safety Features: Standard forward collision warning, autonomous emergency braking lane departure warnin, a lane keep assist system and adaptive cruise control. Optional blind spot and rear cross traffic monitors. 

Additional airbags: Dual front knee airbags


Warranty: 3/60,000, 5/100,000
Current Generation Debut:  2018
Country of Origin:  United States

IIHS Ratings:

Sm. Front Driver: G

Mod. Front: G

Side: G

Roof: G

Sm. Front Pass.: G

Head/Seat: G

Rear: G

Headlight: P

NHTSA Rating:


2020 Kia Sedona

 


 

What’s new
Sedona trim variants have been reduced from seven to four for 2020.

Performance

The 3.3L-V6 and eight-speed automatic transmission are well matched and deliver good acceleration, flexibility and refinement. The transmission upshifts smoothly and downshifts without hesitation. Nicely weighted steering with good directional stability on the highway. The Sedona rides very well under most conditions but its ride can deteriorate on poor pavement when heavily laden. Very quiet operation overall but some road and wind noise can be heard.

Comments
The Sedona is a very sleek looking minivan. The dashboard features big, clear gauges and uncluttered controls. The cabin has with plenty of soft-touch surfaces, two-tone colour schemes and piano black and bright metal accents. Second-row seats fold compactly as they move forward, allowing for very good access to the third row. Thanks to a deep well between the third-row seat and the tailgate, cargo capacity is ample with the third-row in place. The Sedona is powered by a 3.3L-V6 sending power to the front wheels via an eight-speed automatic transmission. 

Pricing

The base LX model is nicely equipped and the LX+ represents good value if you like its equipment. Buyers need to step up to the SX trim to get blind spot and rear cross traffic monitors, but it is overpriced by about $1000. The range-topping SX tech is good value and the only way to obtain active safety gear such as active cruise control, forward collision warning with autonomous emergency braking and lane departure warning. The Sedona is a reasonable lease value for 2020.   
Reliability
Average to above average reliability predicted, like other Hyundai-Kia products that use this powertrain. Below average sales practices common at Kia dealers, who try to pad the invoice with superfluous charges. Five yearé100,000 km warranty is a draw for some buyers. It is important to keep all oil change and service receipts in the event of a warranty claim.  

Specifications


Body Style:  4SW
Occupants:  2/2/3, 2/3/3

Engines:
3.3L-V6 (276 HP) 

Transmissions: 8A 
Drive Layout: Front-wheel drive

City Fuel Economy:  12.7L/100 km
Highway Fuel Economy:  9.9L/100 km
Active Safety Features: Optional forward collision warning, autonomous emergency braking, blind spot, rear cross traffic and driver awareness warnings and adaptive cruise control
Additional Airbags: None

Warranty: 5/100,000
Current Generation Debut:  2015
Country of Origin:  South Korea

IIHS Ratings:

Sm. Front Driver: G

Mod. Front: G

Side: G

Roof: G

Sm. Front Pass.: A

Head/Seat: G

Rear: G

Headlight: P

NHTSA Rating:


2020 Toyota Sienna

 


What’s new
The Nightshade appearance package is about the only update for the current Sienna in its last year on the market.

Performance
The Sienna's powertrain delivers, punchy, flexible performance. Well-judged ride-handling compromise. Its light steering lacks feel and has a "dead" sector when driving straight. Prominent torque-steer on spirited acceleration. Strong brakes despite spongy initial brake feel. The cabin is carefully constructed but some design elements, like the gauges, look tacky. Comfortable seats are located in a roomy cabin that can easily handle six large adults and all of their luggage.

Comments
All Siennas are powered by a 3.5L V6. Front-wheel drive is standard, with all-wheel drive optional. Seven and eight seater versions of the Sienna are available. Properly equipped, the Sienna can tow up to 1585 kg (3500 lbs.).

Pricing

Offering all-wheel drive has proven to be a successful strategy for Toyota as up to 60 percent of Siennas sold are all-wheel drive variants. Many Sienna buyers return again and again with the only vehicle even getting a look at is the Honda Odyssey. Sienna buyers don't really care that other vans exist. The most popular variant of the Sienna is the all-wheel drive XLE trim, demonstrating buyers are relatively unconcerned about price. Front-wheel drive: The LE8 passenger model is the most interesting variant of the Sienna and equipped in a way to suit the needs of most buyers and is fairly priced. Upgrading from the LE8 to the SE8 includes a blind spot monitor and leather seating, but is a bit overpriced. The SE Technology package is rich in content but about $1000 too expensive. All-wheel drive: While moving up from the LE to the SE does include a wealth of equipment such as blind spot and rear cross traffic monitors, leather seating and a rear entertainment system, it is significantly overpriced as is moving up to the XLE trim. The Limited package on the XLE trim lacks content for the price asked. The only place where the front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive lineups overlap is on the LE trim, where Toyota charges $1800 more for four driven wheels. The Sienna is a very good lease value for 2020.  

Reliability
Above average reliability with few issues reported if the van is serviced according to the recommendations of its maker. Power sliding doors are now more durable on the Sienna than on other minivans equipped with this feature. 

Specifications


Body Style:  4SW
Occupants:  2/2/3, 2/3/3

Engines:
3.5L-V6 (296 HP) 

Transmissions: 8A 
Drive Layout: Front-wheel drive*, all-wheel drive

City Fuel Economy: 12.4L/100 km
Highway Fuel Economy:  9.36L/100 km
Active Safety Features: Standard forward collision warning, including pedestrians, autonomous emergency braking, a lane keep assist system and adaptive cruise control. Optional blind spot and rear cross traffic warnings  
Additional airbags: Driver's side knee airbag and a passenger seat cushion mounted airbag

Warranty: 3/60,000, 5/100,000
Current Generation Debut:  2011
Country of Origin:  United States 

IIHS Ratings:

Sm. Front Driver: A

Mod. Front: G

Side: G

Roof: G

Sm. Front Pass.: M

Head/Seat: G

Rear: G

Headlight: A

NHTSA Rating: