2018 Chrysler Pacifica Pros vs Cons. Should You Buy?
What’s New for 2018?
The Pacifica was all-new in 2017, so the 2018 model sees only slight adjustments to the successful formula. All models now feature the well-rated UConnect infotainment system, and there is a new base L model that significantly lowers the car’s base price, though it is missing some key features. The mid-range Touring trim has also been slightly adjusted. Otherwise, the 2018 Pacifica is very similar to the 2017 model.
Top 10 Reasons to Buy a 2018 Chrysler Pacifica – The Pros
1. A Stylish Design
The new Pacifica challenges the conventional wisdom that minivans have to look like boring boxes on wheels. It features a very attractive exterior design that borrows heavily from sporty sedans and graceful crossovers. The end result is a car that is very pleasant to look at both when parked and in motion.
2. Bargain Pacifica L Trim
New this year, the Pacifica L is the new entry-level trim line for the model that makes it very affordable. It puts the base price of the car well below the starting price of most of its competitors while still being very nicely equipped, making it a great value option. This model does not come with the convenient Stow ‘n Go seats, however, which is the sole blemish on this great entry-level model.
3. Surprising Performance
From the driver’s seat, the 2018 Pacifica manages to feel surprisingly unlike a minivan. It has a powerful and responsive V-6 engine, very sharp handling and a fairly stiff suspension. Overall, it drives similarly to how a compact crossover or a wagon would drive, making it both much more maneuverable and just plain fun to drive than the competition.
4. Good Economy
The regular 2018 Chrysler Pacifica is fairly efficient, making it a good economy and environmental choice. It is rated at 18 miles per gallon city, 28 mpg highway and 22 mpg combined. That ties it for the best combined economy in the segment, while still delivering excellent performance. The hybrid is even more efficient.
5. Plug-in Hybrid
The 2018 Chrysler Pacifica is the sole minivan available right now with a hybrid engine option, which alone can be enough reason for many buyers to get one. This hybrid is also very efficient, at 32 combined miles per gallon on gasoline power only and up to 84 miles per gallon equivalents when using combined gasoline and electric power, giving another point in its favor.
6. Flexible Seating
The Chrysler Pacifica has very little in common with its Town & Country predecessor, but it has held on to its most popular feature - the Stow ‘n Go seating. Stow ‘n Go allows the middle row of seats to fold under the floor of the car, creating a flat load floor for using the Pacifica as a cargo hauler. This gives the model incredible flexibility, and adds to its everyday utility, as the seats are easy to fold up or down and it can be done on the fly.
7. Rich Options Sheet
Chrysler did not skimp on available options for the 2018 Chrysler Pacifica, with lots of options available to customize the Pacifica to one’s heart’s content. There are a lot of comfort and convenience features, like a panoramic sunroof or hands-free side doors, entertainment options like rear-seat touchscreen game and DVD consoles or Bose premium audio, and just plain useful things like a built-in vacuum or a first aid kit.
8. Advanced Infotainment
Chrysler’s Uconnect infotainment system is among the best on the market right now, with good usability and fast touch response. It comes equipped on all models, and is available with either a 7-inch or an 8-inch screen on the 2018 Pacifica. Bluetooth, Apple Car Play and Android Auto are all included, and a wireless internet connection is available as an option as well.
9. Excellent Visibility
With blind spot monitors and rearview cameras becoming more widespread, visibility has dropped down the list of design priorities for automakers, so the Pacificas clean sightlines are a very welcome change of pace. The low beltline and the subtle hinges of the side doors make seeing things around the sides of the car particularly easy, adding to the car’s safety.
10. Superior Safety
The 2018 Chrysler Pacifica has a practically perfect safety record. It is a five-star car from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and a Top Safety Pick Plus with the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. When equipped with optional active safety features, it achieves ‘Superior’ crash mitigation rating.
Reasons Not to Buy a 2018 Chrysler Pacifica – The Cons
1. No All-wheel Drive
Most other minivans also do not have an all-wheel drive option, but the Toyota Sienna, which is a strong competitor to the Pacifica, does. The lack of an all-wheel drive system can be a dealbreaker for buyers in areas with lots of inclement weather or poor road conditions.
2. Hybrid Comes with Compromises
The 2018 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid certainly offers a big boost in efficiency, as well as being the only hybrid minivan available, but it is inferior to the base model in several important ways. It has a weaker engine, making it more sluggish than the regular model, and it can’t be equipped with Stow ‘n Go seating, hurting its versatility. It is also significantly more expensive.
3. Price Goes Up Quickly
While the entry level models of the Pacifica are very competitively priced for the class, trim levels become progressively more expensive as more features are added. A fully loaded Pacifica is one of the most expensive vehicles in its class.
How It Stacks up to the Competition
The minivan segment is a small one, and the 2018 Chrysler Pacifica is one of, if not the best car within it. Other very popular minivans include the Kia Sedona and the Toyota Sienna. The Toyota Sienna has the advantage of offering an all-wheel drive powertrain, but is uninspiring to drive and is more expensive compared to a similarly-equipped Pacifica. The Kia Sedona is a price leader in the segment, while still offering a fairly nice cabin, but it is outclassed by the Pacifica in every other way.
The 2018 Chrysler Pacifica is not only a good all-around minivan, with great utility and comfort being backed up by sharp styling and driving dynamics, but it also offers great options for different buyers, such as the price-conscious Pacifica L or the highly efficient Pacifica Hybrid. While some competitors can provide a more specialized experience, most buyers can confidently put the Pacifica at the top of their minivan shopping list.
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