The Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid: What’s Not to Love?
Are you in the market for a new family vehicle and wondering what the best option is? Not sure if you need an SUV, crossover, or minivan?
As more three-row SUVs hit the market, many people are choosing them as their family-hauler. The idea is that having extra seats and space is what’s needed to transport kids between schools and activities.
The truth is, though, that the minivan is still king. They offer more than just the seating and space of an SUV, but also greater convenience and flexibility. Better yet, in the case of the Pacifica Hybrid, a cutting-edge drivetrain that combines power and fuel economy.
Keep reading to learn more about the Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid and all it can offer you.
Minivans: Where’s the Love?
Easily the most practical option for families, the unfairly maligned minivan is enjoying a resurgence. Once commonplace, the rise of SUVs in the late 90’s partly depended on casting minivans as the uncool cousins of the sporty ‘utes.
Fair or not, that image stuck. As SUVs, and eventually, crossovers, cashed in on the perception that they were more rugged and tough. However, as buyers’ needs demanded more seating, SUVs have been stretched to the breaking point.
While three-row SUVs are becoming more common, the extra seating isn’t a natural fit. Their design makes it a struggle to access the backseats. This often requires passengers to climb over the middle-row to get in or out.
Minivans are once again being recognized for their convenience. The simple brilliance of their sliding doors solves this issue. Not only do they make ingress and egress much easier, but they also make a better fit in tight parking lots.
Where the Pacifica Hybrid really stands out is with its incredible fuel economy. As a plug-in, it offers the ability to travel 33 miles on electric power alone. After that, the rock-solid 3.6-liter V6 kicks in, offering around 260 horsepower.
The power output of this engine is lower than the standard Pacifica’s 286 horsepower. However, the Hybrid doesn’t feel any heavier or less-powerful than its gas-only sibling. This is thanks to the immediate torque offered by the electric engine.
Combined, you can get an EPA-estimated range of 520 miles. Run through a continuously variable transmission, the Pacifica Hybrid gets a combined 32mpg. And that’s off a gas tank that holds just 16.5 gallons.
This is especially impressive when you consider that the standard Pacifica has a 19-gallon tank and does up to 100 fewer miles.
Charge time for the battery takes 12 hours on 120-volt, and two hours with a Level 2 240-volt charger.
Comfort for Miles
Great performance only matters if the vehicle offers an enjoyable ride. The Pacifica Hybrid has that covered, too.
One of the difficulties most seven-seaters face, as mentioned above, is access to the back row. Along with the sliding door, the Pacifica offers a superior seating layout.
Instead of a three-seat middle-row, you get two captain’s chairs, with a three-seat rear bench. This works well as any rides don’t require full occupancy. That means passengers get the space and comfort of the larger, comfier chairs. And, if extra riders climb aboard, they can easily get into the rear seats.
Many hybrids sacrifice space to accommodate the battery pack. The Pacifica Hybrid works around this by packing their battery under the middle of the floor. Not only does this free up the full amount of cargo space, but it helps keep the vehicle’s center of gravity low.
Loaded with Features
A comfortable ride helps make long rides more enjoyable. But just in case you have some active imaginations to occupy, there’s more than just a smooth drive.
Chrysler’s UConnect is an excellent infotainment system, included in all models. It incorporates both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay and is easy to connect to. Also included is a 20 inch Harmon Kardon speaker system, active noise canceling, and a 4G LTE Wifi hotspot.
Control comes through an 8.4″ touchscreen in the dash. An additional 7″ screen manages the gauges and driving information.
Buyers can also select the UConnect Theater, which adds 10″ screens to the back of the front seats. Both are connected to a BlueRay player and include HDMI ports for additional connectivity.
Apps and games for kids come with this package, as does the ability to send audio through the included wireless headphones. This lets the passengers indulge themselves in the back without disturbing the driver.
Standard on all trim levels comes blind-spot monitoring, rear parking sensors, automatic braking, and rear-traffic-cross-alert. That last feature comes in handy when backing out of driveways and parking spots, as it alerts the driver to oncoming traffic.
The Advanced SafetyTec Group package adds a 360° surround camera, forward collision warning, and automatic braking. Stop-and-go capable adaptive cruise control, automatic high-beams are also included. So too is a park-assist feature.
Style of its Own
One of the criticisms of minivans has always been their style. Designers often forgo form for function, resulting in boxy, clumsy silhouettes.
The Pacifica Hybrid buries this stereotype with its aggressive shape. The side windows are sloped back, giving the impression of motion. This is echoed by the angle of the rear pillars, furthering the sense of speed.
Trunk space remains spacious, thanks to the rounded rear-windshield. However, the aforementioned D-pillars give the impression of a shorter, sportier body.
The familiar Chrysler face includes angled headlights and split-grill. The array of cameras and sensors are well-hidden as to not distract from the design.
The interior uses soft-touch materials and has copious storage hidden throughout. Cloth seats are standards but Nappa leather is an available option.
Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid: Final Thoughts
Combining the practicality of a minivan with an unheard-of fuel economy for the segment, the Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid offers great style and comfortable travel. It features all the modern conveniences one would hope so with state-of-the-art engineering.
If you’re interested in test driving a Pacifica Hybrid, or any other Chrysler product, call to book an appointment.