Here’s the thing… I AM NOT A MINI VAN PERSON! I really mean it, I think in my few years of doing car reviews, I’ve purposely stayed away from doing reviews on Mini Vans, because I hate them! The stigma that goes along with them, is totally not me, so I’ve avoided them at all costs. Until now!
This month I decided to give a mini van a try, and wound up with the 2013 Toyota Sienna for review. The first day driving it, I think the words, I hate this thing came out of my mouth more than once, I wasn’t impress, but I think it was my view on Mini Vans that was clouding my judgement, becuase as the week went on, I started to enjoy this vehicle more and more.
Yes, the Toyota Sienna is still a Mini Van, it’s still got the “soccer mom” image riding around, BUT the amount of interior space and comfort and convenience that it gave, far outweighed my personal hatred for the van, it was drawing me in! I think I may have been converted by the Toyota Sienna!
The interior is beautiful, the dashboard provides the driver with an easy angle to get to every button and screen. Everything is spread out in a way where either the driver or front seat passenger has easy access to just about everything. The seats are comfortable, even for short little me, I was able to see properly in every angle that I could.
What I love most is the room that the 2013 Toyota Sienna provides. It seats up to 8 people, but here’s the strange thing, in the trunk you’ll find a small removable seat that snaps between the second row captain chairs, it’s small, like seriously small, and I don’t think would be comfortable for an adult, maybe a child at that. Either way, it’s not something we used, or even if I owned the vehicle would be something I would use at all. The second row seats in the Sienna were kid tested and approved by comfort and room by my two daughters. I also loved that the 3rd row seating does provide enough room for adults as well as children. I’ve found in a few vehicles that third row seating can be almost pointless for a grown adult, but the Sienna provides the space!
The doors on both side of the van are automatic open and close via the key fob, or just a push of a button inside the van, no more pulling and tugging, let the Toyota Sienna do the work for you. The back seats in both rows have lots of storage and cup holders as well as A/C vents (which my girls love so they can control their temp back there).
When you’re not in need of the 3rd row seating, they fold down completely with just a single handle great if you need more trunk space.
The Toyota Sienna comes equip with six airbags – front and side for the front seats as well as curtain airbags. It also has electronic stability control. Also available in the 2013 Toyota Sienna is a pre-collision system, blind spot monitoring system, and a backup camera.
When it comes to technology the Toyota Sienna doesn’t disappoint. It has a touch-screen navigation system as well as a wide screen entertainment screen in the back, which I was a little worried about it obstructing my view, but there wasn’t an obstruction at all. The screen also can display two things at once, you can have a DVD playing on one side, and a Video game on another, less fighting for the kids!!! YAY! Always a plus!
I admit, this van seemed huge when I first got into it, and I wasn’t used to the way it handled, like I said I’ve avoided mini vans for a long long while. However, once I got driving around the ride was great, it was stable, and easy to maneuver, even when parking. Fuel economy is about 19 MPG city and 26 MPG highway.
Base-model Siennas start at $27,245, and come with everything a growing family needs: Rear air conditioning, cruise control, remote locking, and a height-adjustable driver’s seat. And like all Toyotas, the Sienna’s price includes all scheduled maintenance for the first two years or 25,000 miles. Next up is the $30,795 LE model, which adds power sliding doors, a nicer stereo, and improved trim. Other choices include the sporty SE ($34,385) and luxury-themed XLE ($34,205) and all-wheel-drive Limited ($42,135) models.
The Sienna offers so many options, some of the list includes: a dual-pane sunroof, power tailgate, navigation system, leather upholstery, automatic headlights and wipers, radar cruise control, and the aforementioned dual-view entertainment system. Opt for everything and you can spend well over $47,000 on your Sienna..
Overall, I really fell in love with the Toyota Sienna, yes this Mini Van hating Mama said it, I fell in love with a Mini Van. We travel A LOT and the amount of space the 2013 Toyota Sienna gave us as a family was just what I’ve been thinking and looking for in our next vehicle purchase. Toyota I think you’ve won me over!
November 2, 2013 – 11:05 AM - | Posted in #toyotatestdrive, Auto Reviews, Reviews | 3 Comments »