Many knowledgeable drivers will tell you that minivans are among the most utilitarian vehicles sold today: No other vehicle uses space quite so well, not even an SUV. The reality is, many of those who buy minivans buy them fully loaded, and that’s why we opted to test the “ultimate” minivans, with a price cap of $50,000, so we could evaluate the latest in technology, features and drivetrains.
- 2015 Chrysler Town & Country
- 2015 Dodge Grand Caravan
- 2015 Honda Odyssey (refreshed since our last test)
- 2015 Kia Sedona (all new)
- 2015 Toyota Sienna (refreshed since our last test)
We asked Nissan for a Quest to test, and it declined to participate.
We put the minivans through a week’s worth of testing:
- We drove them on a 135-mile real-world mileage course in and around Milwaukee.
- We had our judges drive them back-to-back-to-back on the same pavement to evaluate ride, handling, comfort, acceleration and more.
- We brought in an in-market shopper to test the vans for usefulness, ride and more.
From all of that, we found our winner. Our judges were:
- Jennifer Geiger, assistant managing editor for Cars.com
- Kelsey Mays, senior editor for Cars.com
- Jennifer Newman, assistant managing editor for Cars.com
- Brian Robinson, producer for PBS’ “MotorWeek”
- Andrea and Andrew Thueme, our in-market shoppers, and their two children. Andrew, 36, serves in the U.S. military; Andrea, 35, recently left the service. They live in Manhattan, Kan.
The scoring broke down this way:
- 65 percent from the judges’ scoring
- 15 percent from our family shoppers
- 10 percent from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety crash-test scores (100 bonus points for Top Safety Pick Plus, 50 bonus points for Top Safety Pick and zero points for vans that failed the small overlap test)
- 10 percent from the mileage drive
Here’s how they finished:
2015 Kia Sedona
2015 Toyota Sienna
2015 Honda Odyssey
2015 Dodge Grand Caravan
2015 Chrysler Town & Country