1 2 3 4
Stefan
Stefan MegaDork
1/22/20 2:22 p.m.
californiamilleghia said:

20 plus years ago , the Chrysler / Dodge minivans had very bad problems with the automatic trans , 

When did they fix that problem ?

 

20 years ago.  It was a running series of changes and nearly everyone had trouble with their electronic automatics around then.  May of the issues were fixed with proper rebuilds using the various updated parts and most importantly, the proper fluid type and amount.  Honda still did until recently and lost a class action lawsuit over it.

Andy Neuman
Andy Neuman SuperDork
1/22/20 2:26 p.m.

2014 Sienna

2016 Sedona

2013 Odyssey

2018 Caravan

Here are some local options. Was trying to find a dealer that had them all so I drive them all back to back. Surprisingly Minivans aren't the hot commodity they once were. The color options are quite disappointing in vans black, white, or 4 shades of gray. 

Ian F
Ian F MegaDork
1/22/20 2:38 p.m.
1988RedT2 said:

Sienna. 

If you're a gambling man, there are those that speak highly of the Chrysler product.

I know too many people who have problems with Honda and Toyota vehicles to place much trust in that old trope.  

John Welsh
John Welsh Mod Squad
1/22/20 2:39 p.m.

In reply to Andy Neuman :

To see them all in one day, CarMax might be a good place to start shopping.  

The CarMax in White Mash, MD seems to have a good sample of most brands.  

Hertz Philly has a lot also from $15k-$25k all w/ 45k-ish miles

1988RedT2
1988RedT2 MegaDork
1/22/20 2:44 p.m.
Ian F said:
1988RedT2 said:

Sienna. 

If you're a gambling man, there are those that speak highly of the Chrysler product.

I know too many people who have problems with Honda and Toyota vehicles to place much trust in that old trope.  

Fair enough.  My experience with the Sienna is pretty much as a rental for vacation.  I'd recommend the Mazda MPV, but they quit making it in 2005.  Mine is still going strong with 176000 miles on it.

AngryCorvair
AngryCorvair MegaDork
1/22/20 3:17 p.m.
Recon1342 said:
AngryCorvair said:

this thread reminded me that while our 2010 Ody has been pretty stellar outside of recall fixes, the wind noise is berkeleying horrible for a modern vehicle. 

Strange. Our new to us 2013 is remarkably quiet...  

2013 is one generation newer than our 2010.  different windshield angle, mirror shape, etc.  i haven't spent time in any other Ody's of my generation, so IDK if mine is typical or not.

 

AngryCorvair
AngryCorvair MegaDork
1/22/20 3:19 p.m.
Recon1342 said:

In reply to AngryCorvair :

Nope. Clean title, one owner. Pretty sure that finding this one was the universe paying me back for a past good deed or something...

private owner sale?  we couldn't find any private owner within a couple hours of Detroit so ended up buying from local Honda dealer's used lot.

Tyler H
Tyler H UberDork
1/22/20 3:36 p.m.

Another vote for the Sienna here, although the Dodges are hard to ignore.  My parents have had 2-3 of them and they have never had any issues.

It was bad enough I made us get a van when #3 arrived, SWMBO drew the line at my suggestion we get a Dodge.  And she isn't usually brand-aware and isn't a car enthusiast.

 

The Sienna is on an old platform, but it's the only one with available AWD and it's the fastest van out there.  The Odyssey has better handling dynamics, but you can really feel the power difference after driving the Sienna.  And Honda needs to fire whoever came up with that ridiculous beltline on the Odyssey.  

2017+ gets you the current engine and transmission in the Sienna.  

californiamilleghia
californiamilleghia Dork
1/22/20 5:52 p.m.
Stefan said:
californiamilleghia said:

20 plus years ago , the Chrysler / Dodge minivans had very bad problems with the automatic trans , 

When did they fix that problem ?

 

20 years ago.  It was a running series of changes and nearly everyone had trouble with their electronic automatics around then.  May of the issues were fixed with proper rebuilds using the various updated parts and most importantly, the proper fluid type and amount.  Honda still did until recently and lost a class action lawsuit over it.

But when  did they get better , or what models to stay away from ?  Thanks

Duke
Duke MegaDork
1/22/20 7:18 p.m.
californiamilleghia said:
Stefan said:
californiamilleghia said:

20 plus years ago , the Chrysler / Dodge minivans had very bad problems with the automatic trans , 

When did they fix that problem ?

 

20 years ago. 

But when  did they get better , or what models to stay away from ?  Thanks

Duke said:
californiamilleghia said:

20 plus years ago , the Chrysler / Dodge minivans had very bad problems with the automatic trans , 

When did they fix that problem ?

In about 1998.

dj06482
dj06482 UltraDork
1/22/20 7:51 p.m.
AngryCorvair said:
Recon1342 said:
AngryCorvair said:

this thread reminded me that while our 2010 Ody has been pretty stellar outside of recall fixes, the wind noise is berkeleying horrible for a modern vehicle. 

Strange. Our new to us 2013 is remarkably quiet...  

2013 is one generation newer than our 2010.  different windshield angle, mirror shape, etc.  i haven't spent time in any other Ody's of my generation, so IDK if mine is typical or not.

 

It's not just you, our '05 Odyssey was really loud on the highway. The windshield on ours was replaced several times and always had a loud whistle, and when driving on the highway it was very loud overall for the driver and passenger. Thankfully most of our driving was in-town.

We liked our '05 Odyssey, but our transmission experience (went at 163k despite a 3X drain and fill every 30k with Honda's $$$ ATF) definitely left a bad taste in my mouth. I spent a decent amount of time fixing the power sliding doors, but they got a ton of use.

Would consider a newer Odyssey, but the next generation had some pretty serious piston ring issues. At least they fixed the transmission, though!

i would probably go with the Sienna, as I think they had fewer issues. We had good experiences renting the Grand Caravans and Pacificas, but I remember the safety ratings on the GCs wasn't as good as the Odyssey. EDIT: the Pacifica seems excellent from a safety perspective.

Patrick
Patrick MegaDork
1/22/20 9:46 p.m.

In reply to Andy Neuman :

Minivans suck don't give in.  Get a charger r/t or another fun sedan, kids fit in the back.  

CarKid1989
CarKid1989 SuperDork
1/23/20 4:12 a.m.
Patrick said:

In reply to Andy Neuman :

Minivans suck don't give in.  Get a charger r/t or another fun sedan, kids fit in the back.  

 

As I watch my siblings families grow with kids, I have to say: It seems that up to 2 kids, a big sedan works quite well. However, as soon as the 3 (or 4,5 th ) child is announced, buy the minivan (or full size van). Last thing anyone wanted to deal with right after the birth of child #3 was buying a van and dealing with a dealership.

Pat, youre onto something

Recon1342
Recon1342 HalfDork
1/23/20 6:16 a.m.
AngryCorvair said:
Recon1342 said:

In reply to AngryCorvair :

Nope. Clean title, one owner. Pretty sure that finding this one was the universe paying me back for a past good deed or something...

private owner sale?  we couldn't find any private owner within a couple hours of Detroit so ended up buying from local Honda dealer's used lot.

Actually found it at a Subaru dealership. 

ebonyandivory
ebonyandivory PowerDork
1/23/20 6:28 a.m.
1988RedT2 said:

Sienna. 

If you're a gambling man, there are those that speak highly of the Chrysler product.

We must have lady-luck on our side for the last 20 or so years!

 

 

Patrick
Patrick MegaDork
1/23/20 7:22 a.m.

In reply to CarKid1989 :

Charger is plenty for us to go away for a week with even when we were taking the behemoth stroller.  Minivans defining parenthood is just a reason to take the whole berkeleying house with you so you can throw E36 M3 at your kids to keep them occupied instead of conversing with them.

Duke
Duke MegaDork
1/23/20 7:42 a.m.
Patrick said:


Minivans defining parenthood is just a reason to take the whole berkeleying house with you so you can throw E36 M3 at your kids to keep them occupied instead of conversing with them.

Wrong.  Or at least a trope.

We bought our first minivan when DW was 6 months pregnant with DD#1.  As long as you don't need to tow heavy trailers or carry bulk commodities like dirt, a minivan is the single most massively useful vehicle you can own.

We never had one with video screens until 2015 and those have only been used once or twice for novelty value.  Personal devices like you're talking about didn't even exist in 1992 when DD#1 was born, or even when DD#2 was born in 1995.  We never carried much more than a diaper bag and stroller in it when the kids were little.

But it worked better than any damned sedan for hauling furniture home from IKEA.

And it had a lot more convenient flat space in the back to lay a baby out and change diapers when necessary.

And it had a lot more room and privacy in back for DW to breastfeed the babies in, since nursing spaces weren't a thing in the mid-'90s.

And we could take the kids and a set of grandparents someplace in one car rather than two.

And the grandparents could easily get in and out of the third row seats, unlike in an SUV.

And the kids never crashed the doors into the next parked car because you can't do that with a sliding door.

And it had built-in kid seats that converted to boosters or folded away completely for adult use.

And you could stow the back seat and leave the hatch open to create a shady / dry place for little kids to play or nap while adults worked or picnicked nearby.

DDs #1 and #2 are now 27 and 24 years old.  I still have a minivan.  I expect to have one when I die.

 

dculberson
dculberson MegaDork
1/23/20 7:45 a.m.

In reply to Patrick :

You must have a different behemoth stroller than me. The smaller of our two behemoth strollers completely (as in 100%) filled the trunk of my Lexus GS even with the tires taken off and stashed separately. I switched to a wagon but when that aged out the minivan was a totally awesome upgrade.

Also, if a Charger is perfect for all family hauling duties then a Focus hatch must be perfect for all cargo duties. Sell your silly oversized truck and get a Focus otherwise you're just compensating for something! Obviously I don't actually think that, just saying your anti-minivan position is pretty farcical for someone with a full size truck.

ebonyandivory
ebonyandivory PowerDork
1/23/20 8:07 a.m.
Patrick said:

In reply to CarKid1989 :

Charger is plenty for us to go away for a week with even when we were taking the behemoth stroller.  Minivans defining parenthood is just a reason to take the whole berkeleying house with you so you can throw E36 M3 at your kids to keep them occupied instead of conversing with them.

I must admit, I never thought I'd see the purchase of a minivan linked to bad parenting. That's a first for me!

We must be amazing according to you. We had two adults, a 17, 13 and 9 year old and 5 sets of winter gear, 10 pairs of winter boots, 10 pairs of indoor footwear, winter clothes for 5 people for 5 days in 5 giant suitcases, ice skates, food, drinks, sleeping bags, you get it...

The van carried all of it in comfort. And I'm sure it'll surprise you but we actually talked with each other. We were all outside in below zero temps at the Ice Castles in Woodstock, ice skating in Jackson, took a  horse-drawn sleigh ride through the woods, used the heated outdoor pool in 10 degrees with a -2 windchill, took a walk in North Conway and rode in a huge tracked van up Mt Washington and got out at 4,000 feet. I guess we ignored your stereotypes.

 

John Welsh
John Welsh Mod Squad
1/23/20 8:12 a.m.

In reply to Andy Neuman :

If moving forward with Mopar vans, here is some info to share...

The Grand Caravan was offered as a stripper model called something like The American Value Package.  These are most easily spotted by the fact that this package does not have tinted glass for the rear seating area.  However, this package also did not offer additional rear heat/AC.  What this leaves you with is an interior that will heat up faster from the sun but an interior that will be cooled down slower from the single AC.  Additionally, in this package, the sliding door glass does not roll down so no ventilation that way either.  My caution is to avoid these if your intention is not rear cargo but rather rear passengers. 

Look to be sure it has rear hvac. 

mtn
mtn MegaDork
1/23/20 8:51 a.m.

Patrick, I have moved ridiculous amounts in a Miata. Even had a tow hitch on the Miata when I needed to move large items (not on vacation). 

The minivan is the most useful and best compromise overall for any vehicle there has ever been. Everything is easier in it. We've only had 2 people under 18 in ours (both were my cousins who are over 6') in ours and have owned it for 1.5 years. My wife (who admittedly CANNOT pack light) would never give it up. If you have dogs, it is a godsend. If you have large items that you need to take with you at any point (stroller, wheelchair, fishing poles, golf clubs, engines) while hauling any people, it is a godsend. 

Would I rather drive a Crown Vic (bt,dt) or the GS (I own dculbersons old GS)? Yes. But they're not nearly the people/thing mover that the minivan is. It just makes life easier. If it was the only vehicle I'd probably have a different opinion, but it isn't. And my wife doesn't care about anything except how well the hands free calling works and how quickly the seats heat up.

pinchvalve
pinchvalve MegaDork
1/23/20 9:10 a.m.

I recently decided that I needed more space/seats, so I went for a minivan. I didn't do much research, I had a blue Kia Rondo that served me very well for many years, so I traded it in on a blue Kia Sedona. I bought a 2006 model with only 70,000 miles on it for about $3500. Here's what I can tell you after 5000 miles:

  1. I love having a minivan and will always have a minivan from here on out. It was definitely the right choice. 
  2. Mine is basic and plain and rough, which I wanted because it serves as a truck, tow vehicle, garbage scowl, etc. HOWEVER, my next one will have power-sliding doors, a WIFi hotspot, and some more power accessories and niceties. It seems like you get the most bang-for-your-buck with Chrysler/Dodge, and the least with a Mercedes Metris.
  3. This thing is big, like bigger than Dad's first full-sized van from the 70's. Mine has 8-lug wheels, massive brakes, and a Class II hitch. It's more heavy-duty than I thought.
  4. I needed transmission work on mine right away, it needs new cats, and the Airbag light is on. Forget low miles, buy the best condition with the best maintenance record you can find. I see Sedonas with 300,000 miles so I am not too worried but had I bought one with 100,000 miles someone else would have already paid for the cats and solenoids that fail at 70k.
  5. It's too big for my wife to park. She has already destroyed a headlight, a fender, and the front bumper.
  6. You can buy tires at WalMart for $31 each. You shouldn't, but you can.
  7. Junkyards are a great source for interior trim and parts your wife smashes, but no one seems to be crashing vans in my color. Darn.

The off-lease car lot near me has Chrysler vans all the time, and occasionally a Kia, never a Toyota. I think people just keep them forever. But I will eventually replace the Kia with a swagger wagon. Still love these things.

ebonyandivory
ebonyandivory PowerDork
1/23/20 9:37 a.m.

In reply to pinchvalve :

And as you know, they can actually look pretty cool.




Vigo
Vigo MegaDork
1/23/20 9:39 a.m.

As far as the reliability of Chrysler vans, there are high points and low points. Unfortunately the last ~10 years i put them stubbornly stuck in the middle: 'just ok'. Most of the actual high points were years that are now so old that finding one in good shape is getting tough. The lowest points I would say are 08-11 and pre-95, so I really just encourage people to avoid 08-11 or so, because the only people shopping pre-95 vans are 'enthusiasts' who more or less shouldn't cry about things they have to fix in the process of hot rodding a quarter century old minivan. 

 

Like my buddy here in town, he has a 95. Some of the trim clips that hold on exterior trim are really hard to replace, and the driver's door  a-pillar needs reinforcement because the hinges will fatigue the metal until it cracks and the door sags. These are the downsides.... of a van that has both engine and transmission swapped and runs 15-18psi on the street. He's also starting to feel that a single glasspack is not enough of an exhaust because the nasty crackles and pops it makes on decel that all the current hot hatch owners are still making payments on are too disruptive in his grown up neighborhood. cheeky

Duke
Duke MegaDork
1/23/20 9:42 a.m.
Vigo said:

As far as the reliability of Chrysler vans... I really just encourage people to avoid 08-11 or so.

yesyes

 

1 2 3 4
Our Preferred Partners
XLCXKLwDnb58V94FFEr1EmmLGTC3PoFiqtgvjjXLfRioCi4egp065O4WDPzjfAaZ