2010 Dodge Grand Caravan Minivan Review | Edmunds.com

2010 Dodge Grand Caravan Minivan

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Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) is a category of used car. Often late-model vehicles, they have been inspected, refurbished, if necessary, and are under warranty by the manufacturer.
Dodge Grand Caravan Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 3.8 L V 6-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 6-speed Automatic
  • Horse Power 197 hp @ 5200 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 16/23 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats Yes

Review of the 2010 Dodge Grand Caravan

  • The family-friendly 2010 Dodge Grand Caravan is competitive on paper, but it's too shoddily constructed to merit serious consideration in this segment.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Versatile rear seating configurations, spacious interior, capable 4.0-liter V6 engine, perfect crash test scores.

  • Cons

    Subpar build quality, poor interior materials, aged and weak base engine, confusing option packages, Stow 'n Go seats aren't very comfortable.

  • What's New for 2010

    The 2010 Dodge Grand Caravan gains active front-seat headrests across the lineup and standard tri-zone manual climate control on SE models.

Full 2010 Dodge Grand Caravan Review

What's New for 2010

The 2010 Dodge Grand Caravan gains active front-seat headrests across the lineup and standard tri-zone manual climate control on SE models.

Introduction

The 2010 Dodge Grand Caravan has history on its side, if nothing else. Chrysler invented the minivan, after all, and the "DGC" is the latest in its long line of continually improving family haulers. Sadly, one thing that hasn't improved with this latest Grand Caravan is its interior materials and build quality. It's a shame this Caravan isn't put together properly, because otherwise, it's a pretty competitive product.

We had the chance to spend a lot of quality time with the current Grand Caravan by virtue of our long-term testing program, in which we procure vehicles for a full year and run up as many miles as possible. During our year with a 2008 Grand Caravan, we ran into an extraordinary number of quality issues, including constant squeaks and rattles, a finicky radio, a moody passenger-side sliding door and rear bumper plastic that warped to such an extent that we couldn't open the tailgate (or "failgate" as we called it). It wasn't just us, either; our consumer reviews of the Grand Caravan reveal many similar complaints.

That's a real shame, because when the Caravan is judged on its features and performance, it acquits itself rather well. The optional Swivel 'n Go rear captain's chairs allow passengers to congregate around a table for a card game on the go (though they're only available on the top-of-the-line SXT with leather for 2010), and the standard Stow 'n Go system enables both the second-row chairs and the third-row bench to fold flat into the floor. A dual-screen rear entertainment system, Sirius Satellite TV and hard-drive audio storage are also available.

As expected, the 2010 Dodge Grand Caravan also offers the usual minivan attributes of abundant passenger and cargo space. And we're fans of the powerful yet fuel-efficient 4.0-liter V6 option and its quick-witted transmission -- one of the best powertrains in the minivan business. Unfortunately, these attributes are overshadowed by the Grand Caravan's quality issues and other faults like low-quality interior materials and a feeble base engine. Getting a smoking deal on a DGC might help to offset all this, but in general, rivals like the top-rated Honda Odyssey, the luxurious Toyota Sienna and the value-minded Kia Sedona are superior choices.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2010 Dodge Grand Caravan minivan is available in three trim levels: C/V, SE and SXT. The C/V is a stripper intended for commercial use only. The more common SE comes standard with 16-inch steel wheels, full power accessories, tri-zone manual climate control, cruise control, keyless entry, a tilt steering column, Stow 'n Go second-row seats, stain-repellent cloth upholstery, a flip-down kiddie mirror and a CD/MP3 player. The SXT adds a larger engine, 16-inch alloy wheels, foglamps, an eight-way power driver seat with manual lumbar adjustment, power-adjustable pedals, power and remote-operated sliding side doors (optional on SE), second-row power windows and third-row power vent-style windows (also optional on SE), an overhead console with storage bins and ambient lighting, a leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls, and satellite radio. With the optional 4.0-liter V6, the SXT gets a sport-tuned suspension.

Optional equipment is plentiful but typically grouped in a confusing array of packages. The SE can be equipped with a second-row bench seat, while both trim levels can be optioned with a power tailgate. However, for 2010 only leather-upholstered SXT models can be outfitted with the Swivel 'n Go second-row seats, which include a removable table. Integrated child booster seats can also be added to Swivel 'n Go. The Caravan can also be equipped with an upgraded audio system with a 30GB hard drive for digital music storage, touchscreen controls, satellite radio and a rearview parking camera. An optional rear DVD entertainment system includes the upgraded stereo plus a 9-inch flip-down screen, remote control, two wireless headphones and a 115-volt outlet.

With the SXT, the rear DVD entertainment system includes a swiveling second-row flip-down screen. Also optional on the SXT is the Premium Group that adds rain-sensing wipers, automatic climate control, a power-folding third-row seat, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, Bluetooth phone connectivity with an iPod interface (also a stand-alone option on all trims), and a nine-speaker audio system. The Family Value Group adds second- and third-row sunshades, a sliding front center console and remote engine start. Stand-alone options on the SXT include a sunroof, heated front and second-row seats, a navigation system with real-time traffic, and Sirius Satellite TV with Cartoon Network, Nickelodeon and Disney Channel (as of this writing).

Powertrains and Performance

The front-wheel-drive 2010 Dodge Grand Caravan is equipped with one of three V6 engines. The base SE trim gets a 3.3-liter V6 good for 175 horsepower and 205 pound-feet of torque. A four-speed automatic is standard. Fuel economy for this engine -- at 17 mpg city/24 mpg highway and 19 mpg combined -- is disappointing given its meager output.

The SXT comes standard with a 3.8-liter V6 that produces 197 hp and 230 lb-ft of torque and gets 16 mpg city/23 mpg highway and 18 mpg combined. Optional on the SXT is a more modern 4.0-liter V6 rated at 251 hp and 259 lb-ft of torque, as well as a superior 17 mpg city/25 mpg highway and 20 mpg combined. Both SXT engines come with a six-speed automatic. The 4.0-liter Grand Caravan goes from zero to 60 mph in 8.8 seconds, which is quick for a minivan.

Safety

The Grand Caravan comes standard with antilock disc brakes, traction and stability control, active front headrests and full-length side curtain airbags. Optional on both the SE and SXT trims are second-row integrated child booster seats (requires Swivel 'n Go). Optional on the SXT is the Security Group, which adds rear parking sensors, a blind-spot monitoring system and Rear Cross Path. The latter feature audibly warns drivers of cross traffic in both directions to help prevent a side-impact collision. A rearview camera is also available.

In government crash tests, the 2010 Grand Caravan scored a perfect five stars in all frontal- and side-impact categories. In Insurance Institute for Highway Safety testing, the Grand Caravan also scored the best possible rating of "Good" in the frontal-offset and side-impact crash tests.

Interior Design and Special Features

The Grand Caravan's interior design theme is plain but functional, with high-mounted audio controls for easy visibility and operation. In general, though, the Grand Caravan's materials quality is worse than all its competitors, and build quality is not up to par.

Aft of the comfortable front seats, there are various seating choices. The standard Stow 'n Go setup features a pair of captain's chairs that disappear into the floor along with the third-row bench, creating a perfectly flat load floor and up to 140 cubic feet of cargo room with no hernia-causing seat lifts. Unfortunately, Stow 'n Go's short seatbacks aren't as comfortable as conventional chairs.

The optional Swivel 'n Go seats are more comfy, and as their name suggests, can be spun around to create a trainlike face-to-face traveling experience for second- and third-row passengers. A pole-mounted table can be fitted in between both rows with Swivel 'n Go for family activities. Other innovative features include two rear video screens (one that swivels), a power-folding third row, plenty of under-floor storage, Sirius Satellite TV, ambient cabin lighting, a pop-out cargo-area-mounted flashlight and a driver-seat umbrella holder.

Driving Impressions

The 2010 Grand Caravan's handling will be adequate for most owners, particularly in sport-tuned SXT trim. Still, the Grand Caravan remains a step or two behind the Honda Odyssey in terms of ride and handling refinement. The interior is quiet at highway speeds, and the 4.0-liter V6 makes the Grand Caravan one of the swiftest minivans available, with its six-speed automatic ripping off impressively quick shifts. The 3.8-liter V6, however, delivers only adequate acceleration and worse fuel economy than the 4.0-liter unit. As for Grand Caravans with the ancient 3.3-liter engine, we'd say don't bother -- they're sluggish and marginally less efficient than the muscular 4.0-liter SXT.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews


4 of 4 people found this review helpful

Bad brake design

by on
Vehicle: 2010 Dodge Grand Caravan SXT 4dr Minivan (3.8L 6cyl 6A)

The rear brakes on my 2010 Caravan do not release properly and the brakes wear down in less than 25,000 miles. It is in need of a second set of rotors, pads, and calipers on the rear AGAIN. Looking online, I find this a very common problem...I think because of the poor design. On almost all cars, the braking force goes 70% to the front, 30% to the rear. The 2010 Caravan is designed for 50/50 braking and that seems to be too much to the rear brakes. In addition, the rear calipers do not seem to release fully when the brakes are let off. Chrysler really needs to address this problem since it is causing premature brake failure.



4 of 4 people found this review helpful

2010 great little grand caravan

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Vehicle: 2010 Dodge Grand Caravan C/V 4dr Minivan (3.3L 6cyl 4A)

I bought this one with 101,000 miles on it .. It drove out nice.. No noise problems at all .. It even had a nice storage bin in the back for my parts .. As a Appliance Repair Service Technician I need something dependable and reasonable to operate .. Easy on Gas .. Changed to a K & N air filter made all the difference in the world .. Now getting an extra 4 miles per gallon with a 3.3 engine .. Others say that the engine is a dog but I actually love it !! This Baby really cruises nice on the interstate .. and gives me more comfort than my other Chevy Astro ...



1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Leaking sunroof

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Vehicle: 2010 Dodge Grand Caravan SXT 4dr Minivan (3.8L 6cyl 6A)

My factory installed sunroof has leaked from the beginning and now AFTER 5 times in the shop for 42 days, Chrysler has taken the position I don't clean the drainage system properly and will not do anything. The new design allows water to leak around sunroof and be directed away by a drainage system. WELL when it allows water it ALSO ALLOWS dirt, pollen and maybe tree sap in which clogs the drains VERY QUICKLY (my last incident was only 52 days and I had 1 1/2" of water in my center console) i have a 2005 Chrysler Pacifica with a sunroof parked in same driveway as van and it has never leaked - WHY does this need so much maintaince - EASY POOR DESIGN but Chrysler will not take responsibility



1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Meet babe, the blue ox.

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Vehicle: 2010 Dodge Grand Caravan SE 4dr Minivan (3.3L 6cyl 4A)

Got this Pearl Water Blue SE with a two-tone interior in March 2010 as a work truck. It replaced a 2006 Caravan. Dodge made some improvements and fell short in others. The van handles better thanks to bigger tires and minor suspension improvements, but the 3.3L engine is a dog coupled to the four-speed transmission. If I had a choice I would've gone for the 3.8L; you are not going anywhere fast in this van. Once up to speed it's reasonably stout and stable, and road noise is minimal. I love the Stow 'n Go and the additional storage places, but the cheap plastic on this car inside and out scratches/marks easily and is not as nice-looking as my old van, nor is it holding up as well.




Family car

by on
Vehicle: 2010 Dodge Grand Caravan SXT 4dr Minivan (3.8L 6cyl 6A)

I was all set on an SUV and on a whim stopped in a Dodge dealership. The dodge grand caravan offered so much more space for all the things we bring on family trips. We were sold despite the poor reviews. 3 wks later we took the car on our first trip. There was room to spare even with 2 adults and 3 kids. Finally! However, on the trip the cruise control started acting up. When breaking the transmission would downshift and try to accelerate. You had to turn it off on the button and not with the break. Then it wouldn't shift into drive after we stopped for gas. 920 miles on the car 3 wks old and we had to spend two nights in the middle of no where for a minor repair to be completed.



1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Transmission

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Vehicle: 2010 Dodge Grand Caravan Crew 4dr Minivan (4.0L 6cyl 6A)

after 9000 km the transmission bearing is gone, my first dodge in my life and definitly last one, too much hasle, because of the brand new car............???



Talk About The 2010 Grand Caravan

2010 Dodge Grand Caravan Discussions See all Started By

keithnm14
keithnm14
12-18-2014
My radiator fan is not kicking on. The fan motor is fine. I've replaced the engine coolant temperature sensor but that isn't doing the trick. The ratiator fan resistor has a crack in the green clay c?...


ricsch
ricsch
11-17-2010
Our company has a '10 Grand Caravan SE with the 3.3 V6 engine and at cooler temperatures, below 45 degrees mainly, we experience some slight exhaust resonating when first starting out and prior to the...


skor1234
skor1234
01-18-2014
Same problem here...2010 Dodge Grand Caravan SXT. This van was modified for wheelchair accessibility. Bought the vehicle to transport a family member who has since passed. We would like to sell the...



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Gas Mileage

EPA-Rated MPG

  • 16
  • cty
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  • 23
  • highway
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