The 2017 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid Platinum Edition Minivan Review: There are a lot of reasons I think the Chrysler Pacifica is the best minivan on the market right now. It offers more amenities than the aging Toyota Sienna and a quieter, smoother ride than even the newly redesigned Honda Odyssey. This year, though, the Pacifica is pole-vaulting straight over the Japanese competition by rolling out something new and innovative: a plug-in electric hybrid power train. As I see it, the fact that a vehicle like this even exists at all is a modern miracle.
It can drive on electric power for up to 33 miles before the gasoline engine turns on. Considering minivans are used so often for daily school and grocery runs, it means many families can do most of their driving on battery power instead of burning gas. And if you install a 240-volt charging system in your garage, the battery can completely recharge in as little as two hours, Chrysler claims.
It also retains the same smooth, silent road manners and family-friendly cabin amenities that make the regular Pacifica so appealing for highway trips. But what I find most interesting about this vehicle isn’t the gee-whiz engineering and the strength of the product itself. It’s the statement Chrysler is making by creating this machine.
For years, the Chrysler Town & Country seemed stagnant as the Honda and Toyota vans crept steadily higher, both in market share and in quality. By the end of its life, it was hard to argue that the Town & Country was superior, despite some incredibly nifty features like Stow ’N Go seats that magically disappear into a well in the floor.
With the introduction of the Pacifica van, which replaced the Town & Country in 2016, Chrysler improved the drive quality and feature set so dramatically that the Japanese products were suddenly on defense for the first time in a decade, if not longer.
Now this plug-in electric version, the first ever in a minivan, pushes it even further ahead. Chrysler is throwing down the gauntlet with this product. Here are some of my notes about driving the 2017 Pacific Hybrid Minvan:
The ride is phenomenal. It’s the smoothest, quietest van I’ve ever driven, and the transition from electric to gasoline mode is almost imperceptible.
My real-world electric range was less than 30 miles. It’s not quite up to Chrysler’s 33-mile estimate, but also not bad given my lead-foot habits.
The acceleration is amazing and feels almost too good to be true. I loved out-accelerating other drivers at stoplights because it was hilarious to pull away and think, “You just got beat by a hybrid and a minivan!”
There is one tradeoff for people who buy the hybrid version compared to the gasoline Pacifica. Because the battery is located under the floor, those wonderful Stow ’N Go seats are not available as an option.
Also, the Pacifica’s long-term resale value remains a question mark. The Odyssey and Sienna both command shockingly high prices on used-car lots thanks to their reputation for durability. The Pacifica, being new on the market, hasn’t had time to earn its reputation yet, for better or worse.
For peace of mind, Chrysler offers a five-year or 60,000-mile warranty on the power train and a 10-year or 100,000-mile warranty on the hybrid system, including its high-voltage battery.
What was tested? The 2017 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid Platinum with a base price of $44,995. Options on the test van: The Customer preferred package for $1,795. The total MSRP price as tested including the $1,095 destination charge came to: $47,885.
By Derek Price © AutoWire.Net - San Francisco
Wheelbase: 121.6 in.
Length: 203.8 in.
Width: 79.6 in.
Height: 69.9 in.
Engine: 3.6-liter V6 and two electric motors
Transmission: eFlite EVT
Fuel economy: 84 MPG equivalent
The 2017 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid Platinum Edition Minivan Bottom Line Review provided by: Tony Leopardo © AutoWire.Net
The Bottom Line: The 2017 Chrysler’s impressive Pacifica minivan adds a plug-in Hybrid model this year with an estimated electric range of 33 miles and a recharging time of just 2 hours. Plus the V6 gasoline engine extends the range, just like a normal van, once the battery power runs low.
The digital toys in this van are impressive as the Pacifica’s cabin is built for family entertainment. With HDMI inputs on the LCD screens in back, along with lots of built-in games and entertainment choices, ample USB power plugs and brilliantly designed digital toys can keep kids and adults happy on long road trips. It’s the most innovative and refined minivan on the market today.
A quiet highway ride, enthralling in-cabin features and an available plug-in hybrid drive train make it stand out. And maybe, just for those reasons alone, you should “Drive one, Buy one, Today ©”.
This Bottom Line Review is provided by: Tony Leopardo © AutoWire.Net
“Tony the Car Guy” is an automotive writer, editor and publisher in the San Francisco Bay Area. If you have a question or comment for Tony send it to TonyLeo@pacbell.net or visit AutoWire.Net at www.autowire.net - And remember: “You Are What You Drive ©”
Column Name: Plug-In Hybrid Minivan Helps Drivers Ditch Gasoline
Topic: The 2017 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid Platinum Edition Minivan
Word Count: 915
Photo Caption: The 2017 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid Platinum Edition Minivan
Photo Credits: Chrysler Internet Media
Series #: 2017 - 32
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2017 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid Platinum
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2017 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid Platinum