Spacious, comfortable, relatively powerful and great for families, the 2016 Toyota Sienna Limited Premium is easily the nicest minivan I have ever driven. While it is still a minivan, it makes you question your preconceived notions about the soccer mom vehicles. If they are as good as this one, why don’t we buy them in droves?
Probably the most interesting thing about the 2016 Toyota Sienna is really how good it is inside and on the road. Sure, the exterior is still pretty boring – what can they really do to make it better though? – inside it is anything but. If Lexus built a minivan, it would be the Limited Premium model.
Plenty of room and comfort for all.This model includes swathes of premium materials and finishes. The list of features includes power seats and more. Like the 2nd-row captain’s chairs which are both removable and feature a long slide (Shaquille O’Neal would be comfortable here). Heck, even the one-motion stowable third row features enough room to make long road trips feel shorter. Fold down these seats, remove the second row and you literally have a truck with a cover since full sheets of 4×8 drywall can fit inside of it. Not that you would. The Limited Premium trim is way too nice for that job.
My test model had all the second-row kid-friendly features like the wide-screen Blu-Ray DVD player, separate climate controls and, for the parents, driver speak to yell at the kids easier (helps project your voice). Plus, there is ample room for their “stuff.”
Behind the wheel, the 3.5L V6 mated to a 6-speed transmission is plenty powerful. Unlike its competitors, I have no concerns about loading this minivan down with cargo and people then driving up into the mountains. Plus, the Sienna is the only AWD minivan on the market and this gives me a lot more confidence.
The cabin has space for days.With the V6 and AWD, the fuel economy does suffer. As tested, the Sienna AWD is rated at 16/23/19 city/highway/combined. I drove it to Denver and back and got around 23. Not great really, but considering its size and the aforementioned powertrain, it isn’t terrible.
Wide enough for a set of golf clubs, the 3rd row also folds down and is stowable inside the vehicle.With an exceptional cabin, easy drive and all the cargo space you could really want, the Sienna really is a great vehicle. Sure, it isn’t a truck nor is it a sports car, but there is simply something about them.
When they came to pick it up, I talked with the porter about it.
“How did you like it,” he asked.
“Honestly, I liked it a lot, ” I replied. “I mean, it <em>is</em> a minivan, but still, they are just so comfortable to drive, get in and out and great for the kids. Plus, this is like the Lexus of minivans. What’s not to like?”
He smiled, nodded in agreement and drove off i the spacious, comfortable and easy to drive minivan.
Darn it! Why do they make minivans so good? Makes me question not owning one with a family.
Model: 2016 Toyota Sienna Limited Premium AWD
Engine: 3.5L V6
Transmission: 6-Speed Automatic
Fuel Economy: 16/23/19 city/highway/combined
Price as tested: $49,446 with $900 destination fee