Despite all the warnings not to buy one of these, especially with all- wheel-drive, I can now say, with 152K miles of mostly around town driving on the clock, that this van owes me nothing. Yes, the serpentine belt went out at 70K miles and the speed sensor went out early on, but both are minor. The transmission is just now starting to slip a bit between 1st and 2nd, but otherwise this has been an incredibly reliable and well thought out vehicle. I'd be hard pressed to improve on my van (office, pickup, camper, taxi). I am most impressed with the ergonomics and space. Unfortunately, for me, there is no longer any vehicle on the market that can meet all my needs as this van has.
This van does everything we need it to do. Haul kids, groceries, vacation, camping gear, plus dozens of other things. When we bought it my wife and I said we would probably never be without one again. I still stand by that statement. The comfort and utility of this vehicle is unmatched by even the most expensive autos on the market. And it's MADE IN AMERICA! Isn't that a refreshing idea!
I bought mine used with already 150,00 miles on it for $750, the interior was not in excellent condition but drives good and the sound of the motor was great with good acceleration. Took it home and later it wouldn't crank, my husband jumped it and put a new battery, that was almost 6 years ago, in that we had water pump replace around $200, radiator $300 cuz I run a board on a high way at night no way to avoid it and it slapped my radiator, radiator fan went out med summer day on our trip to South Georgia back to South MO thank the Lord it didn't bust out radiator, I have a good honest new Mechanic replace the fan relay really cheap, the heat/ac fan went out, it would have cost me $300+ if I had took it to my old croaked Mechanic but I order the fan including the motor for $47 from rock auto and installed it myself, that was four years ago. If I have to get another van it would be another dodge minivan preferably between 1999 to 2005, im still driving this van with 265,000 miles, I would never suggest to buy a used Honda van. It makes me puke to think my bad experience with honda.
The good, it's roomy, works great as a truck with both bench seats removed, can haul 4x8 sheet rock, good on long trips. Now the bad, it's American made, which means, it's poorly made. It's garage parked, yet there is rust, even under the hood where the struts mount. After 3 years and 30,000 miles, needed a new transmission(expensive, and a notorious problem with Dodge) Replaced starter, heater core, window regulator/motor twice, also very expensive. Replaced power steering pump because IT RUSTED OUT! Basically it's a hit or miss with these Caravans, more misses than hits, so be very cautious when buying used even with low miles, Dodge dealers will not cover you.
Where do I begin? This van has been a nightmare to own. It should have been deemed to be lemon status and Dodge should have given us our money back or corrected many, many flaws with this model. The serpentine belt has come off at least 10 times, with the tension idler replaced half of those times. Also, the ignition locked up twice with over $700.00 in repairs each time. Having this van towed was an eye opener when the towing guys were aware of our problems based on the number of these that they tow. Adding insult to injury was the way Dodge treated me over the phone - never acknowledging the problems although the internet is full of these problems... look it up and learn from my mistake.