The Sienna resplendent in an elementary school parking lot.
Enlarge
/ The Sienna resplendent in a grade school car park.

.

In the early 2000 s, I remained in the marketplace for a huge automobile. We required something that might transport our child and things around, bring drywall and other home-improvement things, and feel comfy on cross-country journeys to visit my household. Neither our Ford Taurus nor Saturn SL1 fit the costs, and we weren’t feeling the SUV love. As we began checking out minivans, it ended up being clear that there were 3 designs to take a look at seriously: the Honda Odyssey, Chrysler Town & Nation, and Toyota Sienna.

Almost 20 years later on, very little has actually altered. Honda, Chrysler, and Toyota still rule the minivan market in regards to sales. We drove the Town & Nation’s follower, the.
Pacifica, in 2015 and left really satisfied. So when I learnt there was a 2019 Toyota Sienna on the regional press fleet, examining it was a no-brainer.

The Sienna got a brand-new powertrain in 2017, and in 2015’s design saw some security and trip quality enhancements. Toyota Security Sense, its suite of driver-assist innovation, ended up being basic on the Sienna. Toyota likewise took on trip quality by making the cabin quieter. For 2019, assistance for CarPlay and Amazon Alexa has actually been included, and the all-wheel-drive powertrain is now readily available on the SE trim.

Household cruiser

Under the hood, the Sienna rocks a 3.5 L, six-cylinder, 24- valve aluminum alloy engine. It creates 296 hp (2177 kW) at 6,600 rpm and 263 lb-ft (3566 Nm) of torque at 4,700 rpm. Both the FWD and AWD designs include an eight-speed automated transmission. The automobile itself procedures 200.6- inches long (5,095 mm) and 78- inches large (1,98374 mm), so it’s a number of inches much shorter and narrower than the Pacifica we examined in 2015.

MSRP for the Sienna begins at $31,115 for the Sienna L, however if you wish to invest more, Toyota enjoys to assist. The automobile we drove was the Sienna SE Premium, which includes 19- inch alloy wheels (rather of 17 inches), fog lights, optional eight-passenger seating, leather-trimmed front seats, a huge screen in the back paired with a Blu-ray gamer, voice commands, premium audio, and a couple of other niceties. Those functions brought the price tag to $44,885 prior to shipment charges. If you desire a Sienna with all of the bells and whistles, you’ll be at $47,530– about a thousand dollars more affordable than an equivalent Chrysler Pacifica.

Inside, the Sienna is a variety. The seats are really comfy and helpful, and the sightlines are exceptional. Access to the 2nd and 3rd rows is a breeze; the remarkably light second-row seats can be raised out of the automobile without much difficulty, and the 3rd row folds down right behind the liftgate. All informed, there’s 150 cubic feet (4,247 L) of freight area with the 2nd row took out, and 117.8 cubic feet with the 2nd row went up as far as possible. The only disadvantage compared to the Pacifica is that the seats do not fold down into the flooring, so eliminating the 2nd row isn’t a spur-of-the-moment thing.

The center console and infotainment system is type of a mess. Toyota utilizes a 7-inch touchscreen screen for its Entune infotainment system, with 4 buttons on either side. It’s cumbersome to utilize and is quickly the least-impressive infotainment system presently provided by a mainstream car manufacturer. A minimum of CarPlay is readily available– no Android Vehicle– so you can prevent the infotainment system entirely if you ‘d like, as long as you’re inside the Apple environment.

Beneath the screen is a huge equipment lever and an environment control system. You can manage environment settings for the whole automobile, or you can permit the second-row travelers to modify things to their preference if you choose. Listed below that is a pop-out cupholder, seat heating controls, a 12 V power outlet, and the Blu-ray gamer. I valued the additional cupholders en route to church, so my partner and I had locations for both our coffee and Soylent. [Why do so many of my colleagues reject real food?—Ed.]

Rear seat travelers get their own environment controls, a set of 2.1 A USB ports for charging, and a huge widescreen screen efficient in playing a various video on each half of the screen. If you opt for the rear seat screen choice, you’ll likewise get a push-button control and a set of earphones. There’s likewise an HDMI port so you can stream from smart device or tablet with the proper adapter. The second-row seats are comfy and can relapse and forth depending upon legroom requirements.

Relocating to the cockpit, the cockpit console has a 4.2-inch TFT screen sandwiched in between an analog speedometer that can be set up to reveal speed, radio station, and navigation– the normal things. Unless you alter the setting, each time you move equipments, the screen will reveal a graph of the equipment lever position, which is a bit much. On the guiding wheel, media and phone controls are on the left side, and driver-assist and cockpit console controls are on the right.

Out on the roadway

You’ll likewise take the excellent with the not so excellent once you’re out on the highway. On the plus side of the journal is the peaceful cabin. It’s practically tranquil therein, and a number of travelers talked about how little roadway sound leaked within. It was certainly much better than the Pacifica because regard. Steering is responsive, and handling is as gotten out of a minivan– no grievances there. The only niggle is that, once I got the Sienna up over 70 miles per hour, I would hear a little bit of wind sound near the B pillar.

One good piece of parent-friendly tech is available in the type of Easy Speak. If you’re having a loud trip due to the fact that there’s a gaggle of kids in the automobile with you, Speak will transfer your voice through the rear speakers so you can inform your offspring to stop torturing one another without needing to raise your voice. (The system seems a production variation of something we saw at CES in 2016)

Congratulations to Toyota for making driver-assist innovation requirement throughout the line. It’s something that all OEMs would carry out in a perfect world. That stated, there are some constraints in the Sienna. Initially, the adaptive cruise control will not work under 25 miles per hour. In my case, it shut down without alerting when the automobile in front of me decreased, requiring me to brake by hand to prevent a crash. Likewise, the TFT screen in the cockpit console would alter to reveal that the adaptive cruise control was active and obtained a vehicle in front of me each time I altered lanes, which is unneeded visual mess. Lane-keep help is delicate and provided a number of incorrect alarms when roadway markings vanished suddenly. Caution volume can be changed, however it’s constantly a beep rather of a guiding wheel vibration.

The AWD Sienna SE is ranked at 20 mpg, 18 mpg in the city, and 24 mpg on the highway. I saw 19.8 mpg in a week of combined driving throughout a warmer-than-normal Chicago January.

There’s a factor the Sienna has actually been among the 3 or 4 very popular minivans for the previous a number of years. Toyota makes strong cars and trucks with a track record for reliability. The Sienna provides a peaceful and comfy trip with adequate individual area to keep everyone pleased. On the other side, the basic driver-assistance tech feels rough around the edges compared to other mainstream car manufacturers like Subaru, Volkswagen, and Chrysler. Entune, Toyota’s infotainment system, remains in desperate requirement of an extreme overhaul. If you have an iPhone, you can utilize CarPlay rather, however Android smart device owners are stuck to Entune and Toyota’s suite of apps. Toyota might likewise take a page from Chrysler’s book when it concerns functions. While not must-haves, it would be terrific to have the 2nd row fold into the flooring and have the ability to vacuum up tinker the Pacifica’s integrated vacuum. And considered that Toyota has such deep know-how with the innovation, why not a hybrid?