My kids love minivans. I don’t know if it’s the novelty of riding in something new, that we don’t have, or if they just love the space and ease of entry and exit. There is no lack of space in our old Suburban but the kids swear the minivan is more comfortable.
The first experience they can remember was a couple of summers ago when Toyota Rentals of Stamford sponsored me with a Sienna minivan for a 2 week roadtrip. We (me too!) loved that minivan.
Fast forward to a few weeks ago, when I was invited to check out FloTV at an event in NYC. Outside the event was a tricked out Chrysler Town & Country, equipped with everything including a table. I had the opportunity to test drive that van for a week shortly after.
Of course the kids loved it, I mean what kid wouldn’t be into the 2 TV screens with DVD or television options (TV was the constant request), swivel table, automatic seats and doors and loads of space? The kids actually did homework at that table a couple of times. It is a beautiful car. We took it on a mini-cation for 2 nights in New Jersey and all those amenities did keep the kids occupied and quiet.
The Town & Country is big. Minivan is a misnomer for this car. Although not as truck-y as my Burb, it is still a large vehicle to maneuver, especially when backing-up. The beauty of a minivan is the abundance of space, without the hassle of a huge vehicle to operate. However, we enjoyed terrific gas mileage (25 city), which was a welcome change from our Burb and a feature I noticed and really liked was the The Town & Country’s driver seat is elevated, like my Burb; minivans ride much lower. All the controls were conveniently located near or on my steering wheel. The computerized radio/GPS/TV was not difficult to figure out and I have a very low threshold for giving up on electronic instructions. Only one or two questions we had about operating 2 TV screens simultaneously were not intuitive so my 13 y/o figured it out with the car manual.
Bottom line: It’s a fabulous entertainment center on wheels. I felt safe driving and riding in the car. It’s a bit long to be called a relief from driving a big car like the Suburban but its gas mileage could make it worthwhile. Warning: Don’t get white or tan interior (I found myself stressing on Day one about dirt on the seats and carpet) and the swivel table promotes dining in the car.
Kids: Five stars
Parents: Four stars