In 1998, Toyota introduced the Sienna in North America. It fast became the "Camry of minivans" with budding lifelong fans. Sienna has one of the most loyal consumer bases with 67% of all Sienna purchases made to replace another Toyota. 45% of those purchases replaced an older model Sienna.
Meanwhile, Chrysler recently returned the Pacifica to the North American market in 2017. In this minivan head to head, we will compare the 2019 Toyota Sienna and the 2019 Chrysler Pacifica to find out which competitor comes out ahead in safety, performance, and interior features.
Published date: 04/07/2019
Every 2019 Toyota Sienna comes standard with Toyota Safety Sense® P (TSS-P) which features many great safety functions. Pacifica's comparable Advanced Safety Tec™ Group is available on Touring Plus and above trims only - and it costs an additional $995.
Standard Safety Features
Toyota Safety Sense® P's (TSS-P) key advanced active safety features are as follows: Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection (PCS w/PD), Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist (LDA w/SA), Automatic High Beams, and Full-Speed Range Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (DRCC).
ToyotaCare also comes standard on every Sienna. All leases and purchases of 2019 Toyota vehicles receive no charge 24-hour Roadside Assistance for 2 years/unlimited miles, plus a no-cost scheduled factory maintenance plan for 2 years or 25,000 miles. Chrysler offers a 5-year or 60,000-mile powertrain limited warranty which includes 24/7 roadside assistance. However, factory scheduled maintenance plans cost extra for the Pacifica.
Who says driving a minivan means you have to sacrifice performance and fun?
AWD vs. Front-Wheel Drive
The Toyota Sienna has the advantage of being the only minivan in its class with available All-Wheel Drive (AWD). This feature helps the driver maintain control in many difficult driving conditions.
The 2019 Chrysler Pacifica is available as front-wheel drive only. Front-wheel drive is great for city driving, but it is not as advantageous as a vehicle with All-Wheel Drive (AWD) for the potential varying road conditions that can come with road trips and family vacations.
With 296HP, the 2019 Sienna comes with a horsepower advantage over the 2019 Pacifica. Pacifica offers less horsepower at just 287HP across all grades and trims.
Despite the advantage in horsepower, the 2019 Sienna L V6 has the same EPA-estimated combined MPG as the 2019 Pacifica L at EPA-estimated 22 MPG combined.
Interior function and comfort are key for minivan drivers. When comparing the 2019 Toyota Sienna and the 2019 Chrysler Pacifica, the interior of the Sienna is the clear winner.
The Sienna has a lot more cargo capacity at 150 cu. ft. behind the front row and 39.1 cu. ft. behind the third row compared to Pacifica's 140.5 cu. ft. and 32.3 cu. ft. respectively. The Sienna has plenty of room for people, too, with standard seating for up to eight. To get the same eight-passenger option in the Pacifica, drivers will need to pay an additional $495.
With the option of having so many passengers comes the question: how do you keep them entertained? Sienna offers more for comfort and entertainment with a power moonroof that is standard on the XLE trim, and an available Dual-View Blu-ray Disc Entertainment Center with a 16.4-in. Display. Pacifica offers an available overhead DVD player on certain models only — but it comes at an additional cost of $995, and it is much smaller at only 10 inches.
Both the Sienna and the Pacifica come with six speakers and a 7-in. touch-screen display.
The Sienna comes backed by a long history, having debuted in North America in 1998. In comparison, Pacifica returned to the minivan game in 2017. In this head to head analysis of these two minivans, it's clear that the Toyota Sienna remains a step ahead of the competition.
While Pacifica starts at a lower base starting MSRP, the price rises when features are added to make it comparable to the base-grade Sienna L. This is especially true in terms of safety and warranty features such as Toyota Safety Sense® P (TSS-P) and ToyotaCare which come standard on every Sienna.
To get comparable seating and safety features to the Sienna L, Pacifica buyers would need to choose the Pacific Touring model, plus add on extra options. This would bring the cost of their comparable minivan to $35,630. Meanwhile, the Sienna L starts at $31,315. Plus, Sienna is the only minivan in its class that offers available All-Wheel Drive. The Pacifica is front-wheel drive only.
After closely examining all categories, we come out of this head to head comparison with one clear minivan winner: the 2019 Toyota Sienna.