Can't Find a Chrysler Pacifica? Consider These Minivans and SUV Instead
The popular Chrysler Pacifica has serious competition in these minivans and this SUV.
Don't let anyone tell you otherwise: Minivans are darn-cool.
Take the Chrysler Pacifica, for example. This seven- or eight-seater's huge interior can be packed with seemingly endless amenities, including a vacuum cleaner, individual screens loaded with games for second-row passengers, and even a 19-speaker audio system.
No wonder the Pacifica is so popular that it's nearly impossible to find at a dealership.
If you've got some flexibility, however, you might want to consider these two minivans and this crossover SUV, all of which are generally easier to find and may not saddle you with the dealer markups that are common on the Pacifica. None offers quite the breadth of trim levels or powertrain options found in the Pacifica, but some shoppers might find these competitors' narrower ranges perfectly appealing.
Thanks in part to its relative age (the current Odyssey debuted for 2018, while the Pacifica was revamped for 2022) and a smaller model lineup, the Honda Odyssey can be a bit easier to find than the Pacifica, even though it’s outfitted similarly and offers an impressive array of amenities.
At around $38,640 to start, the entry-level Odyssey EX undercuts the about $38,700 Pacifica Touring by less than the cost of a full tank of gas. Step up to the EX-L at about $41,700, however, and Honda loads up its van with more features than the around $44,500 Pacifica Touring L. For that money, the Odyssey matches the Pacifica’s leather trim and power tailgate, but ups the ante with its sunroof and memory for the driver’s seat.
The Odyssey's biggest downside may be its lack of a frugal hybrid variant or winter-friendly all-wheel drive versions.
Ford Transit Connect
The Transit Connect seems to fly under the radar, but it can be a great minivan for drivers looking to save money.
Starting at about $33,700, the passenger version of the Transit Connect seats up to seven, but with its vinyl upholstery and hubcaps, it's not exactly plush. The around $35,700 XLT trim level adds blind-spot monitors, adaptive cruise control, and a few other niceties, while the leather-clad, about $37,900 Transit Connect offers tremendous value for less than even the cheapest Pacifica.
Adding to its long-term value, the Transit Connect boasts 26 mpg combined, versus just 22 mpg combined for the front-wheel drive Pacifica. And if you've got a tight garage or live where cramped parallel parking is the norm, you might appreciate that the Transit Connect's 190-inch overall length shaves upward of 14 inches off of the Pacifica.
It may not be as flexible as a minivan, but the Volkswagen Atlas is among the most spacious three-row SUV models on the market. It offers up to 154 cu.-ft. of passenger volume, which isn’t too far behind the Pacifica's 165 cu.-ft.
Busting any myth that SUVs cost more than similarly sized minivans, the Atlas starts at about $36,500 in base SE trim. At that price you're getting a 235 hp, 2.0L, turbocharged four-cylinder, which trails the 287 hp V6 in the Pacifica, but a 276 hp V6 version of the Atlas is available*.
The Atlas' 5,000-lb. tow rating—with its optional 3.6L V6 and factory-installed trailer hitch—bests the Pacifica's 3,600-lb. maximum trailer rating.
*Availability is subject to specific trim level selections