2012 Toyota Sienna vs. 2012 Dodge Grand Caravan: Which One Should I Buy? | YourMechanic Advice

2012 Toyota Sienna vs. 2012 Dodge Grand Caravan: Which One Should I Buy?

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The battle of the minivans: Toyota Sienna versus the Dodge Grand Caravan. Both of these comfy people-movers provide options galore, and the minivan is meant to get everyone where they need to go safely and quickly, at a reasonable cost and without a fuss.

The Toyota Sienna may not have the flexibility of many minivans, but it is safe, reliable, and large and still offers the options for 4-cylinder power and all-wheel drive if you want them. The Grand Caravan doesn’t offer much in the way of style, but it does have a responsive and refined V-6 engine with excellent second- and third-row seating options. While it’s considered a box on wheels, at least it is a high-functioning one.

dodge grand caravan 2012
2012 Dodge Grand Caravan

Fuel Economy

Neither van offers anything to write home about in the way of fuel economy, but they are very comparable; with only slight nods to the Sienna for 2 points in city fuel economy with 17mpg versus the 19 mpg with the Grand Caravan. Both vehicles have a sizeable 20.0 gallon fuel tank, meaning you may be able to go a full week between fill ups depending on your driving habits.

Interior

While the exterior design of the Sienna is far better, most people are interested more in the interior options when it comes to a van. The two options are very comparable, trading off with one vehicle having slightly more third row shoulder room, while the other will have just a tad more hip room on the second row; truly making them comparable with each other. There is a fair bit more cargo volume in the Sienna 39.1 cubic feet versus the 33.0 cubic feet in the Grand Caravan.

Safety Rating

Safety is another big concern when you look at vans. The side pole rating for the driver front seat for the Sienna suffers, and the rollover rating for both vans is only 4 stars out of a possible 5. The Sienna takes a hard hit with only 3/5 stars for the frontal barrier crash test rating for the passenger; while passing the same test for the driver with flying colors. The Grand Caravan misses a star from all of the frontal barrier crash ratings. While both are still relatively safe vehicles, there is definitely room for improvement in both. Overall ratings for the two vehicles were 4/5 stars.

When you want to move people around, you will be hard-pressed to find two more affordable or comparable vehicles than these.


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Jason

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Jason
14 years of experience
Chrysler 300 - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - New York, New York
Very calm, understanding told me the true price flog the vehicle and also helped me negotiate saving me $$$ great mechanic and did the pre purchase inspection good
Honda CR-V - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Flushing, New York
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Chris

21 years of experience
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Chris
21 years of experience
Mercedes-Benz SLK280 - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Laguna Hills, California
I hired Chris to inspect a car I wanted to purchase. He arrived on time and gave me a very detailed report, took the time to call me after to review details, and share his impression of the car. He was great and very knowledgeable, I would highly recommend him!
Lexus IS250 - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Irvine, California
Smooth experience, was able to communicate succinctly and arrived early to the appointment. Thoroughly completed the 50-point check and gave me his professional opinion. His report on the vehicle reflected knowledge on the vehicle, along with giving me his own estimate on the pricing. Definitely helped me with my purchase.

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Peter
24 years of experience
BMW X5 - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Burbank, California
Peter saved me from buying a lemon. He was extremely knowledgeable, professional and easy to work with. He is extremely through more than the standard and so he would be your go to guy for any picky buyer like I am. THANK YOU PETER!

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25 years of experience
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Jimmi
25 years of experience
BMW 750Li - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Sanford, Florida
Jimmi is thorough! As I am buying the car unseen, he gave me a very good idea of the overall state of the vehicle. I am very impressed!!! He called me and discussed everything with me. Gold star!

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