Tips, Tricks & Trends

The 2021 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid and Toyota Sienna Hybrid Share a Common Weakness

SUVs and trucks are dominating the car market, but minivans are still a great option for families that are just too big for an SUV. And nowadays, there’s a lot of options on the market for a brand-new minivan, and the Toyota Sienna has plenty of competition. Here’s a look at how the 2021 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid fares against the 2021 Toyota Sienna Hybrid. 

A look at the 2021 Toyota Sienna Hybrid 

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According to Motor Trend, Toyota is making a bold move for the 2021 model year, as the Sienna is now a hybrid-only minivan. The old V6 engine is now a 2.5-liter four-cylinder gas engine that works together with two electric motors to produce about 245-hp combined. While the Sienna is now significantly less powerful than before, it’s also significantly more fuel-efficient. 

The Sienna’s new hybrid powertrain now delivers an estimated 36 MPG combined, and that’s an improvement of between 10 to 17 MPG when compared to the old V6 engine. That being said, the Sienna’s biggest changes aren’t just under the hood. Like the review wrote, “Those traveling in the Sienna will feel as though they are sitting in a living room.” 

The Sienna’s interior is not only large, but it’s also decked out with a lot of practical features. However, Motor Trend did mention that while the Sienna’s interior is very useful, its smart features are a bit outdated. Regardless, the Sienna is still a very safe minivan and, at a price tag of about $34,460, it’s very competitive with other large cars.

A look at the 2021 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid

The Sienna’s only competitor, when it comes to minivans with hybrid engines, is the Pacifica. However, the Pacifica does have an advantage over the Sienna in this regard.

The Pacifica is a plug-in hybrid, while the Sienna is a more old-fashioned hybrid. This means that the Pacifica can go on battery-only mode, and the Pacifica has about 30 miles of range in that mode. 

The Pacifica’s engine is also slightly more powerful, as it’s a 3.6-liter V6 that works with electric motors to generate about 260-hp combined. In terms of its fuel economy, the Pacifica should get an estimated 82 MPGe when it’s driving in its gas and electric mode. 

In addition to that, the Pacifica’s interior is as spacious and practical as the Sienna’s interior, and both have similar features like an on-board vacuum.

However, Chrysler has updated the Pacifica’s infotainment systems, and Motor Trend enjoyed this far more than it enjoyed the Sienna’s infotainment systems. And of course, the Pacifica is also a very safe minivan, and its price tag is about the same as the Sienna’s. 

The one thing where both minivans fall flat on

While these minivans share a lot of positive traits, both also share a few negative traits. Minivans aren’t known for being high-performance cars, and that’s certainly the case with both the Sienna and the Pacifica. For example, both minivans were relatively slow, as both accelerated from 0 to 60 MPH in about 7.9 seconds.

Additionally, both hybrid powertrains didn’t feel very smooth, according to Motor Trend. One of the test drivers even said, “Good electric pickup, accompanied by a noisy, thrashy powertrain.” That being said this review found the Pacifica was clearly better than the Sienna was in this regard, if only slightly. 

Furthermore, the review said that the Pacifica’s ride quality was also smoother and more comfortable than the Sienna’s was. However, the Sienna did do better in one area of driving performance. The review said that, while both minivans had soft steering, the Sienna’s was ultimately a bit better than the Pacifica’s was.