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Reviews

2017 Chrysler Pacifica Walk Around



With its sculpted body panels, wider stance, laid back windshield, upper grille morticing into wraparound headlights, and available 20-inch alloy wheels (a segment first), the Pacifica is as close to sexy as any minivan has ever come. Chrysler’s trick of hiding the sliding door tracks just below the rear windows does a better job of disguising their presence than competing vans, and the rear window has a wraparound appearance.

An available three-panel sunroof, the rearmost pane is fixed, the other two open, runs from front to rear, amplifying a bright interior that feels airy even in base trim.

Another nifty new feature: Waving your foot beneath the rear bumper will activate the power rear liftgate. That’s been with us for awhile, thanks to Ford. But Ford doesn’t have a minivan, so it was left to Chrysler to develop the idea for sliding side doors. The side doors will also operate simply by touching the handles.

Pacifica’s gestation included a lot of wind tunnel time, which paid off in terms of reduced interior noise and at the gas pump.

Interior

The new Pacifica comes with the latest version of Chrysler’s Stow ‘n Go fold-flat second- and third-row seats, re-engineered to make folding them into the floor even easier, leaving a truly flat surface and a vast cargo hold. This is the best design of its kind in the business, and it optimizes the fundamental trait in which minivans excel: versatility. These seats are not available on the hybrid version, however, due to the space taken up by the battery packs.

Another nifty feature is the Stow ‘n Vac on-board vacuum cleaner. Yes, the Honda Odyssey was first with this idea, but Chrysler improves on it. The system stows in the left side of the body, just behind the second-row door, the readily accessible bag is in the left side wall of the cargo compartment, and the vac includes a 14-foot hose, with an additional 14 feet offered as an accessory.

Like all contemporary minivans, the Pacifica offers a rear seat entertainment system, this one equipped with a pair of 10-inch touchscreens integrated into the upper front seatbacks. In addition to movies, games, and other visual and audible diversions, Chrysler furnishes apps, including Are We There Yet, allowing rear seat occupants to track the progress of their journey.

Up front, Chrysler has adapted its dial-a-gear transmission control, pioneered in the Ram pickup truck (the Rotary E-shift), into the attractive and intuitive center dash array, which also includes a big (8.4-inch) color screen and a sensible array of switches and knobs. The test of any system is whether it can be operated without resorting to the owner’s manual, and here’s one vehicle whose primary and auxiliary controls present no mysteries.

Chrysler boasts more than 100 safety features for the Pacifica. Among them: adaptive cruise control, forward collision alert, auto emergency braking, 360-degree surround view, and rear view camera.

* The advertised price does not include sales tax, vehicle registration fees, other fees required by law, finance charges and any documentation charges.

* Images, prices, and options shown, including vehicle color, trim, options, pricing and other specifications are subject to availability, incentive offerings, current pricing and credit worthiness.

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