It was a tough pill to swallow going from a luxury crossover SUV to a mini-van, but we felt the Town and Country was a better option than the other vans. We started looking at the Sienna because I wanted AWD. Unfortunately, it lived up to my previous experiences with Toyotas. When it comes to driving excitement, Toyota doesn't have a clue. We had to push the pedal half way to the floor to get it to move, and even then the acceleration was pathetic. The Honda was better, but for the money, I felt both Toyota and Honda interiors were just okay. When I saw that I could get a fully loaded Town and Country for the price of an entry level Toyota, I was shocked. I was also pretty impressed with the Napa leather quality in the Limited. Sure the fit and finish is typical domestic with plastic interior parts that have uneven seams, but it was hard to argue with the price. The acceleration is actually quite peppy for a mini-van as well. My wife quickly fell in love with it, and we made a great deal. My fears of quality came true one week after we bought it when the TV console developed a nasty rattle. We took it to the dealer and they said, "they are all made like that". Sad excuse, but they made a rubber gasket for it, and it seems to be better for now. We don't seem to be getting the advertised gas mileage at this point, but it is a mini-van, not a Prius. Our plan is to keep it for 3-4 years, and I think it will be more than adequate for that period of time as long as things don't fall apart. *Update: Over a year and a half into it now. Wife still loves it, and we haven't had any major issues. At a year old, opening and closing the sliding doors sounded like we were rolling marbles down the side of the van. After fighting with the dealer a bit, they lubed them, and for now that seems to have worked. The transmission shifts a little funky sometimes, but I plan to extend the warranty as long as we keep it.
This vehicle offers by far the best "bang for the buck" out there. Dodge/Chrysler has the van down to a science. We have had several of these, and each time we get a new one, Chrysler has added the one thing I said, "Gee this would be perfect if only it had..." Example: More USB ports. Everyone has their own phone and on long trips they always need charging. There are at least 2 in the back seat and 3 up front. Maybe even more I don't see. If you remove and/or tuck in the seats, there is no reason for a suburbanite to get a truck. It' amazing what fits in there. Only complaints: 1. The interior materials are very cheap looking, and just over all "blah." It seems so flimsy I almost think it will crack. 2. The Bluetooth. It's easier than the GM stuff, but still a pain in the neck to figure out. We have paired two phones about 10 times in 2 months and cannot figure out why they won't stay connected.
This is my seventh Town and Country. The six before this had over 100,000 mile on them with no engine or transmission problems. My 2002 went over 250,000 miles with no engine or transmissions problems. My present 2014 has 45,000 mile on it. It gets up to 31 mpg on the road and averages 26 mpg overall. I love the spacious interior and the way it holds the road. There are two things that are not to my satisfaction. The sliding doors do make noise when I drive through parking lots over the small bumps etc. The other is the chrome all over the dash that reflects the sun into my eyes. I painted over the chrome and now love the layout of the dash with the readout for the vehicle speed. I have the trailer tow package and have no problem pulling my 3200 lb boat. The engine is powerful enough for this as well as getting up to speed and entering the highway on ramps. You can't do much better in a minivan - great value for the price. Reliable and comfortable and great on gas. I get 27.1 combined gas mileage at this time. (6/16/16). I will be getting new tires in November before winter. I now have 56,000 miles on this van. In November I will have around 66,000 miles and the tires will be worn out. I still love this van and enjoy driving it. What a great van! The noise from the sliding doors has stopped. I love this van even more than I did before. I just got the opportunity to test my Michelin Defender tires in the snow. Good traction, even in 11" of snow. What a great minivan!
Looked at the new Pacificas and didn't like the price or the interior space for those. My van was at least 6K cheaper then the cheapest current year van and came with a DVD and leather, while the new 17 model Pacifica had no DVD and cloth seats and they were asking 43K. I was disappointed about no spare tire, just a blow up kit so I purchased the spare which I was told would cut down on my MPG. i went from from Colorado Springs to Denver's DIA and averaged 31.5 MPG. I love the van as i have a lot of leg room in front. Most cars I tried were cramped with my knee hitting the center console. My family lays it on about owning a van, but I have never been more comfortable driving. The acceleration on this thing is fantastic. 2 years and 16k miles later she is still running like new!
There are only two gears, forward and reverse. The options for the transmission are : Park, Neutral, Reverse, and Drive. There are no lower gears to assist in braking when driving downhill. On a recent trip, we were returning from a family trip to Pagosa Springs in southern Colorado. When driving over Wolf Creek pass on Hi-Way 160, I could not shift to a lower gear when descending from the pass so had to ride the brakes to keep the speed down. The brakes apparently overheated and each time applied a loud rumbling from the brakes occurred. This is not a necessarily steep decline and is a well used Hi-Way. I was very concerned and will try to avoid the Colorado mountain roads while driving this vehicle. CORRECTION: I HAVE NOW LEARNED HOW TO DOWNSHIFT. When the gear selector is in the 'Drive' position, tap the gear selector to the left to downshift and to the right to upshift back to drive. It is amazing that I did not know this feature even after researching the web and the drivers manual. It is an electronic shifting system. Now, I like the van but wish the NAV system was better much like the Jeep Nav and phone system.