When it comes to transporting individuals and their cargo, minivans are superior than SUVs. This is a reality that we’d like to see more consumers accept. The 2020 Chrysler Pacifica is our current top pick and winner of the Editors’ Choice award. It is a Pacifica is a well-designed and comfortable family vehicle, and its dynamic driving characteristics are the cherry on top. There is a standard V-6 engine as well as an electric hybrid powertrain are available, and in our tests, both proved to be fairly fuel efficient. The third and the second rows fold flat, transforming into the Pacifica into a huge cargo van, which is ideal for transporting large items. The Pacifica’s entry-level models were rebranded to the Voyager for 2020, and we will review the discounted models in separate reviews.
What’s New for 2021?
Chrysler offers its family-friendly Pacifica minivan a facelift for 2021. It will begin with new exterior styling that gives an appearance that’s a little more SUV-like as compared to the previous model. The grille, the exterior lighting, rear liftgate as well as the wheel design have been altered. All-wheel drive is included in the options list, though some 2020 models will include this feature, and the hybrid powertrain is available in a variety of Pacifica’s trims. The Touring L Plus model has been discontinued, while the new Pinnacle trim leaps ahead of the Limited to become the Pacifica’s top model. Inside the interior, the Pacifica features a brand new 10.1-inch information display that features the most recent Uconnect 5 interface that provides Amazon Alexa integration, a customized home screen, a wireless connection to Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and an in-car camera system that helps keep an eye on children in the backseat and up to 12 USB ports to charge devices. Driver assistance features have been made standard, such as automated emergency braking that includes pedestrian detection, lane departure warning, blind-spot monitoring along with adaptive cruise controls among others.
Pricing and Which One to Buy
The mid-priced Touring L provides the most comprehensive combination of features and value since it comes with a variety of extra features over the basic Touring model. The basic features include heated steering wheels and perforated leather upholstery, heated front seats as well as 18-inch wheels. We’re content to front-wheel drive, but we’ll let you make the choice if you’d prefer all-wheel drive. We’d recommend sticking to the regular 3.5-liter V-6, however there were several issues with reliability with our longer-term Pacifica hybrid.
Engine, Transmission, and Performance
It’s not the most efficient minivan we’ve tested but the front-wheel drive Pacifica is far from slow (it is able to reach 60 miles per hour within 7.3 seconds, which is about mid-range with regard to performance) and it’s a breeze in the city. In its non-hybrid version it has the 287-hp 3.6-liter V-6 engine and a nine-speed auto transmission. The Pacifica hybrid produces less horsepower (only 250 pounds) due to its 3.6-liter V-6 as well as two electric motors, which are backed by a lithium-ion battery that is 16 kWh. We tested it and found that its time from zero to 60 mph was slower than the gasoline-powered version in the range of 0.5 second. We’ll be conducting tests with instruments on the all-wheel drive Pacifica shortly and will update this review with the findings.
Fuel Economy and Real-World MPG
Apart from being space-efficient Minivans should also be efficient in fuel usage. Its Pacifica Limited we tested delivered an impressive 31 mpg when we took the 200-mile highway route fuel-economy which is the highest for minivans. Based on the EPA the Pacifica hybrid is able to travel for up 33 miles using electricity and is estimated to be 84 MPGe when combined. In the city we were in line with the EPA’s 33 mile estimate. On the highway the Pacifica hybrid clocked 23.4 miles of driving solely electric until the engine that uses gasoline came into. We’ve yet to test the latest all-wheel-drive model, but we’re hoping to revise this review soon with results from tests.
Interior, Comfort, and Cargo
It’s spacious, comfortable and loaded with cupholders and cubbies as well as slides-out bins and connectivity The Pacifica has all the features that minivan buyers appreciate. Its fit, design and materials are levels higher than those of Dodge Grand Caravan, but there are a few cheap plastic parts can be found inside the cabin. Upscale Limited and Pinnacle models include a higher-than-average center console that integrates better to the instrument cluster, providing the trims a more car-like experience from behind the steering wheel. The opulent Pinnacle model has quilted leather upholstery and also comes with identical lumbar pillows to the captain’s chairs in the second row, a feature that was not available in a while since that the extravagant Mercedes-Maybach S class visited our office. The standard Stow and Go seats are less cushioned than its competitors since they must fold down in a way that they can be able to fit in storage bins on the floors. In exchange for letting go of the Stow ‘n ‘ Go second row on hybrid vehicles (the battery pack occupies all the storage space under the floor), Chrysler engineers added additional cushioning to the standard captain’s chair. If you’re looking to transport goods the Pacifica does not disappoint. We were able to fit 53 luggage inside, with all seats secured. The built-in vacuum cleaner can be purchased in the event of a need, but it takes up space that could be better used to store an additional mini-spare tire.
Infotainment and Connectivity
Chrysler’s Uconnect 5 infotainment and entertainment system is projected onto the glossy 10.1-inch touchscreen that is enclosed by the vents for climate control on the van’s dash. Uconnect 5 is brand new and features an adjustable home screen as well as Amazon Alexa integration. It comes with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration, which are wirelessly connected, as well as an internet hotspot. There are up twelve USB ports are available in the cabin of the Pacifica, with ones that are the brand new USB-C models that provide faster charging for smartphones.