There are those that would have you believe that the minivan is dead, uncool, or otherwise made irrelevant amidst the sea of SUVs flooding today's marketplace. With Ford and GM out of the game, it's the originator of the minivan species that's been left as its sole North American-based manufacturer.
|Loaded with options, it arguably amounts to the ultimate minivan available today.|
The Chrysler Town & Country
is an upscale, high-class version of the Grand Caravan
on which it's built. It delivers enhanced luxury and comfort over the standard model, in addition to gobs of space and flexibility. Think of the Town & Country like a Chrysler 300
with room for seven and their things.
Minivan aficionados dreaming of such high-tech goodies as touch-screens, voice recognition, motorized doors and on-board computers will delight in the technology available inside. A navigation system
, voice-commanded Bluetooth
phone, motorized rear seat bench, liftgate and sliding doors, and even LED mood-lighting are all on board. Everything that could be automatic or motorized is, and designers have created an inviting selection of colors and textures throughout. The visual execution of Town & Country's cabin knocks the current offerings from Korean and Japanese competitors clean out of the water.
Seats flip, fold and even swivel as needed, and rear-seat passengers can gather for cards, coloring or chatting over a removable table top. It's an interesting feature, but one best left for the kids as legroom suffers when the second and third row of seats face one another.
Storage is everywhere--including under the floor. Add a pair of optional flip-down DVD player screens, and you'll find that for a road trip, it doesn't get much better than this. My only major complaint inside was with regards to the materials used to trim the dashboard and doors. It's all well assembled, but the use of low-budget plastics in some areas let the look down a little.
Power came from a standard four-liter V6 engine with 251 horses handled by a six-speed automatic transmission with manual mode. With more-than-adequate power, smooth operation and gutsy sound effects, this engine proves a great match for its application. Watch the throttle though--as Town & Country will light the tires through an intersection with ease if prodded.
|Note that for 2009, engineers have made optimizations to the engine and gearbox for increased fuel efficiency.|