$18,122 - $21,569

2017 Dodge Grand Caravan Interior Review

Note: This interior review was created when the 2017 Dodge Grand Caravan was new.

Scorecard

Interior: 7.3

The 2017 Dodge Grand Caravan hasn't been fully redesigned in nearly a decade, and its age is showing compared to rivals that have been redesigned more recently. Competitors like the Honda Odyssey and Chrysler Pacifica have luxurious feeling cabins with top-notch materials. The Grand Caravan, on the other hand, feels designed more to survive wear and tear than deliver upscale comfort. Taller drivers may find that the pedals are mounted too close to the seat, and passengers in the rear might not have enough padding to be comfortable for long drives. Tech features are few in number, and they aren't as state-of-the-art as those in many competitors. It's easy to haul cargo thanks to the Stow 'n Go seats, which are optional in the second row and standard in the third row.

  • Cabin plastics and other materials, including the cloth seat upholstery, are satisfactory, but the other vans' interiors manage to look and feel a little more upscale." -- Edmunds
  • "The dashboard sports a much simpler and more elegant layout, while strategically placed soft-touch materials create an upscale feel." -- Left Lane News (2016)
  • "The overall cabin design is contemporary, with materials that err on the side of durability versus luxury." -- Consumer Guide (2013)

Seating

The 2017 Grand Caravan has three rows of seats to accommodate seven people. Cloth upholstery and a second-row bench and third-row Stow n' Go seats are standard, while leather upholstery, power-adjustable front seats, heated front seats, a heated steering wheel, heated second-row seats, second-row Stow n' Go bucket seats, second- and third-row sunshades, and dual power-sliding side doors are optional.

To get popular features like leather upholstery and heated front seats, you'll have to step up from the base trim to the SXT trim, which costs around $30,000. That's actually a pretty good deal since you'd have to spend several thousand dollars more to get the same features in a rival like the Kia Sedona. If second-row comfort is important to you, the Sedona has optional lounge seats that recline and have leg rests.

The driver and front passenger have a high seating position, giving them a commanding view of the road ahead. Tall drivers, however, may find it difficult to get into a comfortable position because the pedals are mounted close to the seat. The rear seats are spacious, with enough room for adults even in the third row. The seats aren't well-padded, though, so they may get uncomfortable during lengthy drives.

Since minivans have so many seats, they're popular among drivers who have large families with lots of kids. For the especially small children, the Grand Caravan has three full sets of LATCH connectors on both second-row seats and the middle third-row seat. Unfortunately, you'll likely have to hunt for the upper tethers, and the lower anchors are mounted deep within the seat.

  • You'll find good outward vision from an upright front-seat position, but some drivers, particularly taller ones, are likely to find the seat placement awkward, mostly because the pedals seem too close to the driver." -- Edmunds
  • The 2nd-row seats are roomy and supportive, if mounted a bit low, so adults ride in a slight knees-up position. The 3rd-row bench can accommodate 2 passengers comfortably. With the Stow 'n Go system, 2nd-row seat padding is not as robust as it is on rival vans, but it's not much of a comfort penalty." -- Consumer Guide (2013)
  • "And the slant and padding of the second-row seats made them uncomfortable. Kids didn't seem to mind, though." -- USA Today (2011)

Interior Features

The Grand Caravan comes standard with tri-zone manual climate control, a 6.5-inch touch-screen infotainment system, a six-speaker audio system, and a rearview camera. Optional features include tri-zone automatic climate control, navigation, a nine-speaker audio system, satellite radio, a voice recognition system, a rear-seat entertainment system, remote start, rear parking sensors, blind spot monitoring, and rear cross traffic alert.

Auto manufacturers know that if you're in the market for a minivan, you probably have a family with lots of needs, so most minivans have long lists of standard or optional features to keep everyone comfortable, entertained, and safe. In some cases, optional features even help clean the vehicle. The Grand Caravan comes standard with useful features like tri-zone manual climate control, which should end fights over the temperature. There's also a rearview camera to help you back out without running over the bike left in the driveway.

A 6.5-inch touch-screen infotainment system comes in all trims. Unfortunately, it's not as high-tech or easy to use as the systems in some newer vans like the Chrysler Pacifica. The Grand Caravan's infotainment system has outdated graphics and it responds slowly to inputs. The touch screen makes simple tasks like adjusting audio settings a cumbersome process.

You can get a rear-seat entertainment system to play movies or videogames to keep the kids happy, and there's also satellite radio to give you a wide range of music options. But when compared to other minivans, there's not much to be had in the Grand Caravan. The Pacifica, for example, can be equipped with two rear-seat touch screens that can each play separate DVDs, Blu-ray discs, or video games, so you won't have to listen to your kids argue over what to watch. You can even get a built-in vacuum to clean up any messes in the Pacifica or the Honda Odyssey.

The Pacifica and Odyssey have more driver assistance features than the Grand Caravan, too, like lane departure warning and forward collision warning, neither of which are available in the Grand Caravan.

See 2017 Dodge Grand Caravan specs »

  • While interior materials are generally fine by today's standards, the overall design looks dated. This is no more apparent than with the inclusion of Dodge's ancient touchscreen interface. Its low-quality graphics and slow response times are outclassed by competitors' systems, especially the Uconnect interface found in the Chrysler Pacifica." -- Edmunds
  • "The 2016 Dodge Grand Caravan's ace in the hole is its remarkably low starting price. Even in its most basic form, the Grand Caravan still comes nicely equipped, giving families on a budget a break where it counts most." -- Kelley Blue Book (2016)
  • Grand Caravan's dashboard features large, easy-to-read gauges. Most controls are logically arranged. When equipped with Chrysler's Uconnect multimedia suite, a few audio functions become a bit more complicated than they should be." -- Consumer Guide (2013)

Cargo

While every minivan in the class will give you ample room for your stuff, the Grand Caravan falls a bit short of rivals when it comes to overall cargo space. There's 31.1 cubic feet of cargo room behind the third row, 78.9 cubic feet with the third row folded, and 140.3 cubic feet with both rear rows folded. The Honda Odyssey and Toyota Sienna each offer around 10 more cubic feet of cargo room than the Grand Caravan. You'll get more room behind the third row in both the Sienna and Odyssey too.

Where the Grand Caravan does shine is with its Stow 'n Go seats. The third row comes standard as Stow 'n Go, and the second row is optional. The Stow 'n Go seats fold flat into the floor so it's easy to use all of the available cargo room. To have access to the full cargo area in the Sienna and Odyssey, you have to manually remove the second-row seats. Plus, when the Stow 'n Go seats aren't folded, you get extra storage space in under-floor cargo bins.

A power liftgate is also available. Inside the cabin, you'll find lots of small-item storage compartments to hold everyone's personal effects.

  • "It's hard not to love Dodge's ultra-useful Stow 'n Go second-row seats that disappear into the floor with the flick of a lever." -- Edmunds
  • "One of its aces is cargo flexibility, primarily due to the Stow 'n Go 2nd-row seats, which quickly fold into the floor to maximize cargo space without removing the heavy seats." -- Kelley Blue Book (2016)
  • "Numerous pockets, bins, and cubbies mean you can store small items to your heart's content." -- Consumer Guide (2013)

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