Posts from ‘Minivans’
There are only three vehicles that wear the winged Chrysler badge, and while two carry over with few changes for 2017, one is all new – and though it was introduced some months ago, it gains a significant new version this fall.
2016 Ram ProMaster City
Miles Driven: 369
Fuel Used: 14.7
Miles Driven: 895
Fuel Used: 44.6 gallons
It was the summer of 1974. Having spent the day at the amusement park then known as Six Flags over Middle America, my family and I hit the swimming pool at the Safari Camp Ground at which we were staying for the week.
It was during a rather spirited session of Marco Polo involving several families that someone’s mother—not mine—interrupted the aquatic merriment. She had brought a radio poolside, and yelled for everyone to shut up and listen.
Fun minivan-history fact: The 1984 Toyota Van actually reached the U.S. market a few months before the first Dodge Caravan and Plymouth Voyager did. That would be the only way in which the quirky mid-engine Japanese van would trump Chrysler’s family-friendly duo, as the media and public vastly preferred the latter.
Two Toyota minivans. A 3500-mile whirlwind racing tour across 12 states that includes road-course racing, autocrossing, drag racing, and skidpad competition. Hard to imagine that these, uh, twain should ever meet, but this year they did. Toyota recently fielded a pair of Sienna minivans—a mostly stock “SE+ Concept” and a more seriously race-modified “R-Tuned” van—in the 2016 One Lap of America competition.
Just a few short months ago, Chrysler took the wraps off its long-anticipated all-new minivan at the 2016 North American International Auto Show… and revived a dormant name from its recent past in the process. Gone is the Town & Country moniker; Chrysler is calling its redesigned minivan Pacifica, a name last used on Chrysler’s not-very-popular midsize crossover SUV that was sold from 2004 to 2008.
Strangely, Chrysler is abandoning the long-running Town & Country name for its minivan’s redesigned replacement due in late spring as a 2017 model. Instead, the company is going with “Pacifica” … odd, because the last vehicle to bear that badge – a sport-luxury 3-row crossover sold from 2004 to 2008 – was not exactly a resounding success.
Dates tested: 9/14/2015 – 9/21/2015
Miles Driven: 119
Fuel Used: 6.8 gallons
Steve Martin once famously said, “Comedy is not pretty.” Nevertheless, Martin’s album bearing that title would go on to be a smash commercial success—proof that ugliness is a relative thing. And so it goes in the world of taxicabs—well, at least one cab in particular.