We bought the sienna only because of the 8 seater and the local dealer offers a life time guarantee on the transmission. Everything seems to need to be replaced just as the warrenty runs out - brakes, tires, etc.. This spring (only 1 1/2 year old car) the left passenger door broke and recently at less than 2 years old the right side broke. The estimate is over $4000 to fix them. The reason I was told is that we drive too much. Dealer informed us that we should only be driving 13k miles per year.
As a Mercedes E63 owner I can not believe that my best vehicle I've ever owned is our Sienna AWD limited 2009. After 7 years of family fun - I have no complaints. we have decided to keep it for years to come and purchase a new Sienna as our long trip vehicle using the older one for day to day and teaching the now teenager to drive. I'm writing more to focus on the AWD version - we are a mini van family - but the Sienna was our first AWD - purchased for the occasional trips to mountains for sking - but to the contrary we use it almost every day!!! Turning a sharp right turn into a highway - no problem - no spinning front tire - wet pavement - wow amazing control.
Never had a car this big so it's easy to love the huge space. Captains chairs are great for the toddlers. Third row works for two large adults after configuring all seats. Really nice inside. Much smoother and quieter than the Odyssey I'm familiar with and tested. 13,000 miles, just regular maintenance. Occasionally when starting the van, the JBL stereo lights are off and the volume knob won't work. Using volume on the steering wheel seems to correct it. Engine is a little loud, seems like a loud exhaust note at times, but quiet when cruising. Tires wearing quickly. Only 17 mpg in city driving. People don't hear us well on Bluetooth, cheap no-name aftermarket is better.
Our van serves as daily people hauler and weekend plaything for a family with four kids. It's very roomy with plenty of interior storage and cleverly designed seats. The fit and finish is not as good as our Lexus, but is probably better than average. The powertrain is super smooth and it never lacks for power, even when fully loaded. We average 22mpg in mixed driving.
Went from a 1996 Chrysler Town & Country to a 2009 Toyota Sienna. It feels like every time I turn around some little thing is breaking. It just doesn't seem like the quality that I was expecting is there. Stupid little things bothered me at first. Things that were on my 1996 I had expected would be standard by 2009. Memory seats, light in the glove box, turn signal control lights. As I drive it more things started to break. Folding seat in the back wont fold. Power adapter in the rear of the vehicle clips broke and pushed inside the wall, sliding door seal started coming off. Sliding door sometimes decides not to work. Thankfully nothing engine wise yet, but I don't have much won't