This Chrysler Pacifica review will share with you why we selected it over other comparable vehicles, why it’s been so helpful when driving around young children, and specifics about the features that we feel are made with families in mind. Enjoy!
I swore that I would never get a minivan, but then we found out that our sweet surprise family caboose was on her way. All of a sudden we were in the market for a vehicle that could comfortably fit three car seats since my SUV could not.
I immediately started researching all kinds of SUVs with a third row but was floored by the hefty price tags. Years ago we set out to start saving enough money to only buy cars in cash from here on out, but we had no idea that we’d be replacing my SUV just six years after buying it brand new. Affording a large SUV was out of the question, so we turned our attention to minivans.
Never say never, because here I am doing a Chrysler Pacifica review. 🙂
Because Honda and Toyota are brands that we like and trust, we quickly decided that the Odyssey and Sienna were the two options we’d consider.
But after sharing on Instagram and Facebook (and this blog) that we were in the market for a minivan, many followers shared their adoration for a van we’d really heard of or considered, the Chrysler Pacifica.
We soon realized that we didn’t know much about it because it was fairly new to the market, rolling out as Chrysler’s Town and Country minivan replacement in 2017. So we started doing our research and test-driving.
Most readers know that Jamie and I (especially me!) are very intentional with big decisions and will nearly over-think everything in order to make the best decision long-term, so picking apart the subtle differences between the three minivans was difficult.
Truth be told, we would have surely been happy with all three. There were just a few things about the Pacifica that set it apart from the other two that really won us over.
Chrysler Pacifica Review
The biggest difference (in our opinion) between the three vans is what you can do with the middle row. With some vans, you have the option to push the two captain seats together to make a short bench. With some vans, you have the option to add a third seat in the middle of the two captain seats, making it an eight-passenger van instead of seven.
With the Pacifica, you don’t have either of these options. The middle row has two standard captain seats. However, what you can do with these seats is fold them straight into the floor in a hidden compartment to store instead of taking them out altogether.
I absolutely love this option because not only do these very large “secret” floorboard areas offer tremendous extra storage, but I really appreciate that the seats can be folded straight down into the floor instead of having to be taken out of the van altogether. I imagined this would be very handy if I was out and spontaneously wanted to buy something large that I needed to get home. As long as the girls weren’t with me, I’d be able to remove the car seats, fold down the seats, and haul something large home.
Visually, we also really like the look of the Pacifica. Yes, a minivan is a minivan, but for our taste, we liked the sleek new look of the Chrysler Pacifica.
A common question I’m asked is how we have the car seats arranged.
Hadley is fairly petite in height and weight, so she is still in a five-point harness car seat. Hers is in the back row on the passenger side. She climbs in and buckles herself. She actually still needs help unbuckling though because her car seat has a difficult magnetic chest clip, so I simply open the passenger-side sliding door, reaching over the captain seat, and unbuckle her. It’s much easier than it may sound.
Jillian’s infant car seat is seated in the captain chair behind the front passenger seat (in front of Hadley.)
Sadie’s car seat is behind the driver’s seat.
My routine for getting the kids out of the car is this: I get out of the car and open Sadie’s door (seated behind the driver’s seat). I unbuckle her but tell her to wait in the van and do not get out. I walk around to the other side, lean over to unhook Hadley, and then grab Jillian’s infant seat.
With the infant seat in one arm, I push the button to close the sliding door, walk around to the other door, and grab Sadie and Hadley. I hold one of their hands, while they hold hands with each other (a requirement in parking lots).
I share all of this because I know one of the trickiest things about having another baby can be “How do I safely get everyone out of the car?”
Jamie was sold on this minivan before I was. In fact, our dear friend Cody, who knew we were looking for a minivan, offered to let us test drive one from their lot for the weekend. Jamie went to pick it up, and by the time he got home, he was sold. He said that it was an extremely smooth ride with a fantastic dashboard set-up and many great digital options.
We rode around in it all weekend, and our daughters thought it was the coolest thing. The fact that I could say “Girls, go get in the van” was something I had never been able to do before. Since they were still so little (5 and 2 years old at the time), they were never able to open the doors of my Jeep on their own.
Now, all they had to do was press a button on the exterior sliding-door handle and the door would open. They could climb in and start getting buckled, which was a massive help with getting out the door.
We also really love how much space we all have to move around. I can’t count how many fast-food picnics the girls have had on the floor with tons of extra space to spare. This has become a great dinner option when we are in-between running from one place to the next at mealtime.
I also love how easy it is to change a diaper. WOW! It’s so much easier to lay her flat on the floor of the van and quickly change her. 10x easier than my SUV ever was with Hadley and Sadie.
Finally, I love being able to walk around the van when necessary. On car trips, I’m able to hop out of the passenger seat, climb in the back, and chill my baby out if needed.
The controls are all really easy to use, and even after having the van for 10 months, we’re still accidentally learning new functions all the time!
And did I mention cup holders GALORE? So many!
I just checked my gas mileage, and on my current tank I’ve average 20.8 MPG. On road trips I’m able to squeak out a bit more!
Ah! I just keep thinking of all of these things I love about the van. Something else: THE TRUNK! Woweeee! It fits so much more than our SUV could. It’s because it’s SO DEEP. We have taken a handful of long road trips in the van, and we have been able to fit our large BOB stroller, five suitcases, baby gear, etc. It’s completely unbeatable.
Specifically, we have the 2018 Chrysler Pacifica with a white exterior and black leather interior.
Some of its features include:
- Adaptive cruise control
- Forward collision warning with mitigation
- Sun-blocking screens on the side middle and rear windows
- LaneSense with lane keep assist (THE BEST!)
- ParkSense Front and Rear Park Assist (also the best!)
- Rear back-up camera
- Surround video camera system
- Memory Seats
- Stow ‘n Go seating (aforementioned)
- Hands-free sliding doors
- Hands-free liftgate (I love this so much)
- Electric Park Brake
- Engine Stop/Start system (this took getting used to, but now I think it’s neat)
- Uconnect activitation
- Multiple USB connection points
When I asked Hadley (age 6) and Sadie (almost 4) what they like the most about the van, here is what they had to say.
Sadie: “Riding in it!” “I like to push the buttons!”
Hadley: “I like all of the seats it has!” “Sliding doors!”
In conclusion, I have no shame in driving a minivan that was LITERALLY MADE FOR ME. 😉 It’s equipped for families and designed with all of our everyday needs in mind.
Between the sliding doors, room to change diapers, super deep trunk, and more, it quite simply just makes my life easier. It even has a little mirror near the driver’s side that I can push down that allows me to glance and see my kids behind me without having to turn my head over my shoulder. You cannot deny that this function was made for parents with little ones.
We have been more than pleased with our selection to purchase the 2018 Chrysler Pacifica to tote our family of five around safely for many years to come. We feel confident putting our full stamp of approval on this vehicle and truly hope this Chrysler Pacifica review is helpful for you in selecting your family’s minivan.
Did you once say you’d never have a minivan, but then you got one?
What do you love about your minivan?
If you also own this vehicle, what is your personal Chrysler Pacifica review? Positive or no?
Hi! I’m Erica, and I absolutely adore sharing my life on this website with you! I come here almost daily to blab about all of the things related to being a regular wife and mother in today’s ever-evolving society. I share about our new home, what’s on our kitchen table, what we’re hanging in our closets, where we’re traveling to next, my crazy 5 a.m. work outs, how I make time for girlfriends, our faith, and much more. We always have a lot of balls in the air and somewhat thrive on the chaos. I believe in the power of story-telling as a form of inspiration and entertainment, so I’m here to do both! I was born and raised in north Alabama and recently re-planted roots here again after my husband transitioned out of the Army (he is now in the Reserve and it’s going so well!) I’m a super proud mom to three little girls (ages 7, 4, and 1) who seem to be the stars of the show around here (for good reason – they’re pretty great!) I’m so glad you found me and are here reading! I hope we can get to know each other here on the blog as well as Facebook and/or Instagram. xoxo