What do you like about the 2015 Toyota Sienna?
That pretty much sums my review up in one word.
I received that same response when I asked each of my family members including my 14 year-old son, Miles. For anyone who has a teen, or was a teen, you understand how difficult they are to please. While he’s not driving yet, everything else about a “ride” matters to him. The entertainment system, the space, and of course, the look. Yup, it’s stylish. It wasn’t dubbed the ‘original swagger wagon,” for no reason. The updated grill, headlamps and taillights on the 2015 edition only add to its already swagadocious curb appeal.
I knew the 2015 Toyota Sienna was going to be a huge hit with my family as soon as the dual power sliding side doors slowly peeled back revealing the abundance of space and luxury that awaited us. My family of four has had the opportunity to test drive several vehicles on the same route – a road trip from Atlanta to Walt Disney World Resort in Florida; and the Sienna unanimously holds the coveted first place spot. It took out some impressive heavy hitters that also received glowing reviews from my critical crew including the king of SUVs – the Cadillac Escalade. That’s right. My teenage, basketball-playin’, I’m-too-cool-to-be-seen-with-my-mom son picked a minivan over a SUV.
There are no bad seats in this baby
One of the top reasons I’m loving the Sienna is it put an end to the ongoing front seat war that takes place every time we drive somewhere. Since my kids are no longer mandated to the backseat, it’s a constant competition between Miles and his tween sister, Milan, about who will ride up front with me. Not once during our five day excursion did my kids yell, “shotgun!” to claim rights to the front seat. Not. One. Time. In fact, that’s the only thing they can’t tell you about this vehicle because they never sat in it. I did.
Once my husband, Napoleon, climbed behind the wheel and he was parked there for most of the trip. I made sure to drive it several times so I could experience it firsthand, but I was also quite content riding in the front passenger seat. Truthfully, my son and I fought over the third row seat. Really. I was very tempted to sit right in the middle of the back seat, legs stretched out for the entire 437 mile trip, but decided to do the motherly thing and sacrifice my pleasure for his.
Meanwhile, my daughter didn’t make a peep as she was perfectly content sitting in one of the removable LongSlide 2nd-row lounge seats. The seat has a footrest that extends like a recliner chair you might have in your living room. Seriously. The model we drove (LTD Premium) seats seven people – comfortably. Not seats seven people with their knees in their chests or seven people who are all under five feet tall, but seven people comfortably. My family is long. Napoleon is an even 6 feet while I’m right under him at 5′ 11″; Miles is catching up quickly at 5’9″, and Milan and her long legs stand at almost 5.5 ft. Seating and legroom is a priority for us.
Give me space, please
In addition to the seating, the minivan boasts a whole lot of space. I felt like we could camp out in this car – literally. When we take off on a road trip we tend to bring lots of stuff. Suitcases, electronics, coolers with food and drinks – you name it, we probably brought it with us. There was plenty of extra space for all of our baggage without feeling overwhelmed. The cargo space in the back of the minivan was deep and handled all of suitcases while the third row was in full effect. I also like the sliding center console in the front of the van in between the driver and front row passenger. It had ample space to store stuff making it easy to reach. And, it slides. That’s just cool.
Lap-on the luxury
If the stylish look and the lounge seats aren’t enough, some of the Sienna’s features secure its spot on the luxurious list like the dual moonroof, the dual-view Blu-ray disc and entertainment system; and the Driver Speak Easy system that makes it easier for the folks in the back of the van to hear what’s being said in the front of the van. You know, important things like, “please put your sneakers back on or open the moonroof because I can smell them all the way up here.”
Am I in a minivan, Mama?
I’m definitely guilty of saying I could never see myself driving a minivan; and I’ve definitely changed my mind. Both Napoleon and I loved the way it drove, the feel of it and how it handled on the highway and riding around our neighborhood. I went on and on about the luxury features of the Sienna but it also scores high with us on safety driving features, too. We currently drive a 7-passenger SUV and will be looking to replace it soon. The Sienna is the front-runner for my next vehicle as it will make carpooling, shuffling the kids around, and shopping for all of them easier – and keeping them out of the front seat.
What We Loved
- The comfortable seating – especially the removable LongSlide 2nd row lounge seats
- Second Row climate controls
- Dual moonroof
- Smart Key System with push button start
- Entertainment system including the dual-view Blu-ray rear seat system
- Multiple power sources for electronic charging
What You Need to Know
- Base price: $28,600. I drove the Limited Premium 2015 Edition: $47,103
- 7 passenger (some models offer 8 passenger options)
- Gets 18 mpg in the city, 25 on the highway
- Backup camera is standard on all models