2011 Dodge Grand Caravan Minivan Review | Edmunds.com
 

2011 Dodge Grand Caravan Minivan

 
 

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Dodge Grand Caravan Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 3.6 L V 6-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 6-speed Automatic
  • Horse Power 283 hp @ 6400 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 17/25 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats No
 

Review of the 2011 Dodge Grand Caravan

  • The Dodge Grand Caravan gets a host of mechanical, styling and interior improvements for 2011, yet still trails the competition in terms of refinement.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Versatile rear seating configurations.

  • Cons

    Drivetrain lacks refinement; stiff-legged ride quality; limited driver legroom.

  • What's New for 2011

    Though not fully redesigned, the 2011 Dodge Grand Caravan receives numerous styling, powertrain, suspension and interior revisions.

 
What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

  Average Consumer Rating (38 total reviews)


Bad brake design

by on
Vehicle: 2010 Dodge Grand Caravan

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

by on
Vehicle: 2010 Dodge Grand Caravan

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

by on
Vehicle: 2010 Dodge Grand Caravan

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



 
 
 
Gas Mileage

EPA-Rated MPG

  • 17
  • cty
/
  • 25
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Full 2011 Dodge Grand Caravan Review

What's New for 2011

Though not fully redesigned, the 2011 Dodge Grand Caravan receives numerous styling, powertrain, suspension and interior revisions.

Introduction

In the time since the Dodge Caravan ushered in a new era of family transportation way back in 1984, minivans have seen their fair share of changes. But nothing will likely compare to the 2011 model year, as every vehicle in this category offers significant improvements or full redesigns.

The 2011 Dodge Grand Caravan is one such minivan. Though the van's underlying structure is the same, Dodge has changed just about everything else in hopes of making the "DGC" a more appealing model this year. More aggressive exterior styling and a lower ride height give the latest Grand Caravan some attitude, but the improvements run more than skin deep. Unlike in years past, there is just one engine choice: the new 3.6-liter Pentastar V6, which makes a class-leading 283 horsepower and returns better fuel economy than last year's top 4.0-liter V6.

Inside the cabin, the new DGC sports a more contemporary design as well as welcome improvements in both materials quality and workmanship. Dodge engineers also have refined the suspension, yielding better driving dynamics and road-holding confidence. The Swivel 'n Go seating option is gone, but Stow 'n Go seats return with added strength and comfort. These second- and third-row seats fold flat into the floor to provide a level surface for loading. (Other minivans require the manual removal of their second-row seats to achieve maximum cargo capacity.)

While the 2011 Dodge Caravan and its twin, the Chrysler Town and Country, are much improved, they still come up a bit short when compared to the Honda Odyssey, Nissan Quest and Toyota Sienna, all of which have been redesigned for this year. The Odyssey and Sienna remain the segment leaders, with better all-around capabilities, more refined drivetrains and additional available features.

If you regularly change your minivan's interior configuration from passenger transport to cargo hauler, the 2011 Dodge Grand Caravan beats the competition with Stow 'n Go seats. Otherwise, we recommend checking out the competition first.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2011 Dodge Caravan minivan can seat up to seven passengers and is offered in five trim levels: C/V, Express, Mainstreet, Crew and R/T.

The C/V is intended for commercial use and its limited features include 16-inch steel wheels, heated mirrors, a suspension tuned for commercial use, cruise control, rubber floor coverings, cloth upholstery, power front windows, keyless entry, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, dual-zone air-conditioning and a two-speaker sound system with a CD player and auxiliary audio jack.

The Express model is the entry-level passenger model and features a touring suspension, carpeting, tri-zone air-conditioning, a removable floor-mounted center console, second-row Stow 'n' Go bucket seats, a conversation mirror and a six-speaker audio system. The Mainstreet trim adds 16-inch alloy wheels and power second-row and rear windows, and is eligible for more optional features as well.

Stepping up to the Crew trim level gets you 17-inch wheels, foglights, a roof rack, power sliding doors, tri-zone automatic climate control, added interior storage in the center console, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, a power driver seat, power-adjustable pedals, a trip computer, a universal garage door opener, a touchscreen display and an upgraded audio system with satellite radio and digital music storage.

The sporty R/T lies at the top of the DGC lineup with performance-tuned suspension, first- and second-row leather seats, a power-adjustable front passenger seat and a premium Infiniti sound system.

Available options on select models include a power liftgate, automatic headlights, automatic wipers, running boards, a trailer tow package, rear parking and cross-traffic sensors, blind-spot monitoring, second- and third-row sunshades, a rearview camera, a navigation system with real-time traffic, Bluetooth phone and streaming audio, a nine-speaker sound system, iPod integration, a rear-seat entertainment system, heated second-row seats, a heated steering wheel and an auto-dimming rearview mirror.

Powertrains and Performance

All 2011 Dodge Grand Caravan models are powered by a new 3.6-liter V6 that produces 283 hp and 260 pound-feet of torque. Power is sent to the front wheels via a six-speed automatic transmission. In Edmunds testing, the 2011 Grand Caravan accelerates from zero to 60 mph in 8.3 seconds -- about a half-second slower than the Honda Odyssey and Toyota Sienna.

Safety

Standard safety features for the 2011 Dodge Grand Caravan include active front head restraints, driver knee airbags, full-length side curtain airbags, front-seat side airbags, antilock disc brakes, stability control and traction control. Optional features include a blind-spot monitoring system, rear parking and cross-traffic sensors and a rearview camera.

In Edmunds brake testing, the Grand Caravan came to a stop from 60 mph in 130 feet -- an average distance for a minivan.

Interior Design and Special Features

The 2011 Dodge Grand Caravan's interior represents a significant improvement over its predecessors. The new one-piece dash and center stack look less like they come from a delivery truck, and the overall workmanship also achieves a higher standard of quality.

The bottom cushions of the second-row seats are slightly low to the floor, but they are tilted back slightly to make the seating position comfortable for passengers with long legs. The third-row seats are also comfortable, but generally only for smaller adults, as headroom is limited. The rear quarters afford easy access thanks to a wide opening behind the middle row. Several Edmunds editors of different heights have noticed a lack of legroom for the driver, however.

Unlike other minivans that require the removal of the middle row of seats to achieve maximum cargo capacity, the Grand Caravan benefits from its Stow 'n Go second-row seats that fold flat into the floor. Operating these seats is fairly simple, and only a quick tug of a strap and a few gentle yanks are required to make them disappear into the floor. The third-row seats fold into a deep cargo well, but require several more steps to transform. Luggage space behind the rear seats is a generous 33 cubic feet. Stowing all seats opens up 143.8 cubes, comparable to other minivans.

Driving Impressions

The multiple mechanical changes make the 2011 Dodge Grand Caravan a contender. But segment leaders like the Honda Odyssey and Toyota Sienna are still steps ahead through their enhancements for 2011. By comparison, the Grand Caravan lacks some of the refinement found in the Honda and Toyota. The engine, while powerful, sounds and feels rougher, with an odd whistling noise under deceleration. The six-speed automatic transmission does an admirable job of keeping power on tap, but gearchanges can be jarring. Steering is slightly heavier and the suspension is a bit less compliant as well. On the highway, we also detected creaks and squeaks, although nothing compared to the outgoing model.

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