Chrysler invented the minivan and has now reinvented it with the all-new 2017 Pacific, a vehicle packed with technology, boasting at least 100 safety features, chock-a-block with family-friendly enhancements, available in two versions, including the segment’s first plug-in hybrid.
Reinvention entails a new platform, sheetmetal that can reasonably called sleek, and a new name. The name is a little curious. Previously, Pacifica was the name assigned to a mid-size crossover that lacked only sliding rear doors to be called a minivan. Its lifespan was brief, 2004-2008, and it is not one of Chrysler’s treasured memories.
Be that as it may, Chrysler wanted to replace the Town & Country name, as a symbol of the new vehicle’s break with the past. No one is trying to pretend it’s not a minivan; those sliding doors are impossible to disguise. On the other hand, the marketing troops think the multitude of features, increased versatility and slick new skin will dilute the irrational prejudice against the minivan.
Basics: Chrysler Pacifica is offered in seven- and eight-passenger configurations, with middle-row seats that recline and also adjust fore and aft.
The standard engine is Chrysler’s 3.6-liter Pentastar V6, mildly tweaked to deliver 287 horsepower and 282 pound-feet of torque. The V6 sends power to the front wheels (no all-wheel drive option) via a 9-speed automatic transmission. It’s EPA-rated for 18/22 mpg City/Highway on Regular gasoline.
The V6 is augmented by an electric motor in the Pacifica Hybrid, along with a continuously variable transmission. Chrysler anticipates an MPGe rating (miles per gallon equivalency) of 80. Chrysler predicts an electric-only range of 30 miles.