2017 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid

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$30,051 — $49,165 NEW and USED Shop local deals
(4.9) 8 reviews
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Key Specs

of the 2017 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid. Base trim shown.

Our Take

From the Cars.com Vehicle Test Team

The Good

  • EV range of 33 miles
  • Quiet ride
  • City fuel economy
  • Great styling, inside and out
  • Cavernous cargo capacity
  • Backseat Uconnect Theater for kids

The Bad

  • Stow n' Go not available on hybrid
  • Highway fuel economy same as non-hybrid
  • Second-row seats difficult to remove
  • No eight-seat hybrid model available
  • No EV-only mode
  • Stow 'n Vac not available on hybrid

Notable Features of the 2017 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid

  • Seats seven (non-hybrid can seat eight)
  • Plug-in hybrid electric
  • Front-wheel drive
  • Stow 'n Go seating not available
  • Optional three-pane moonroof
  • Optional dual touchscreen rear entertainment

2017 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid Road Test

Aaron Bragman
The Verdict:

The Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid keeps most of the good parts of our favorite minivan, while adding exceptional efficiency.

Versus The Competition:

What competition? This is the world’s first and only full-size hybrid minivan, plug-in or otherwise.

It's a little surprising that Toyota, the undisputed hybrid king, didn't beat Chrysler to market on this one with a hybrid minivan version of its Sienna. Instead it was the original minivan king, Chrysler, that did it.

This is the 2017 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid, and it's not just a hybrid, it's a plug-in hybrid. That means it uses an electric motor and substantial battery pack to supplement its gasoline V-6.

It's a bit more capable than a regular gas-electric hybrid, however, as that battery is big enough to power the van by itself for an EPA-estimated 33 miles on a full charge. We drove one for a week to see if it could live up to those claims — and if the tradeoffs that come with the hybrid prevent it from being as useful as its conventional sibling.

Same Great Look

Little differentiates the hybrid from the standard Chrysler Pacifica. There are new wheels and tires, the grille gets a different design, and there are a couple of unique paint colors. The most obvious change is the addition of a charging port door on the front left fender.


Same Great Taste

Like most electric-assisted cars, starting it up takes just a push of a button, followed by ... nothing. Beyond the beeping of warning chimes, if your minivan has a full charge and it's not freezing cold outside, nothing will happen other than the gauges sweeping and the radio coming on. If it is cold out, the 3.6-liter V-6 engine will turn on to get things heated up.

Unlike the Chevrolet Volt and BMW i3 with R...

It's a little surprising that Toyota, the undisputed hybrid king, didn't beat Chrysler to market on this one with a hybrid minivan version of its Sienna. Instead it was the original minivan king, Chrysler, that did it.

This is the 2017 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid, and it's not just a hybrid, it's a plug-in hybrid. That means it uses an electric motor and substantial battery pack to supplement its gasoline V-6.

It's a bit more capable than a regular gas-electric hybrid, however, as that battery is big enough to power the van by itself for an EPA-estimated 33 miles on a full charge. We drove one for a week to see if it could live up to those claims — and if the tradeoffs that come with the hybrid prevent it from being as useful as its conventional sibling.

Same Great Look

Little differentiates the hybrid from the standard Chrysler Pacifica. There are new wheels and tires, the grille gets a different design, and there are a couple of unique paint colors. The most obvious change is the addition of a charging port door on the front left fender.


Same Great Taste

Like most electric-assisted cars, starting it up takes just a push of a button, followed by ... nothing. Beyond the beeping of warning chimes, if your minivan has a full charge and it's not freezing cold outside, nothing will happen other than the gauges sweeping and the radio coming on. If it is cold out, the 3.6-liter V-6 engine will turn on to get things heated up.

Unlike the Chevrolet Volt and BMW i3 with Range Extender, which are primarily electric cars with range-extending gasoline engines, the Pacifica Hybrid runs its engine whenever it feels it needs to — when it's cold out, when you're looking for hard acceleration or when it's run out of battery power. Driving with a light right foot can help keep it in EV mode, but there's nothing to stop that engine from firing up. This is how most plug-in hybrids operate.

The powertrain uses a 3.6-liter V-6 "hybrid engine," which is different from the one used in the normal Pacifica. It runs a super-efficient Atkinson cycle and has other modifications to make it more efficient. Combined with the electric motor, the van produces an estimated 248 horsepower, according to Chrysler, which declines to quote a horsepower number for the engine alone.

The engine channels its power through a dual-electric-motor-assisted continuously variable automatic transmission, then out through the front wheels. It all operates seamlessly, transitioning from electric to gas power with just the thrum of the engine and some changes to the dials.

Accelerate from a stop and the Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid demonstrates everything we love about electric cars. Massive torque right off the line can actually chirp the tires under hard acceleration thanks to the characteristics of electric motors. If you plant your foot to the floor, you'll kick the V-6 engine on, as well. But if you're more judicious with the accelerator, you'll be rewarded with smooth, quiet, effortless power that makes the Pacifica Hybrid feel sprightly and quick around town. Merging onto the highway is no sweat, either, with plenty of acceleration to be had at any speed.


Braking performance isn't the greatest. When it comes time to bleed off some speed, the regenerative braking system is employed first, working to recapture some momentum and turn it into power for the batteries. That results in a typical hybrid-style brake feel — disconnected and vague. The steering has no such issue, with a lightness and directness that's surprisingly communicative. It goes, stops and changes direction as well as the standard Pacifica — maybe just a little bit better when it comes to acceleration.

But Now Less Filling

Efficiency is the reason you buy a hybrid, and the Pacifica Hybrid's results here are a bit mixed. The EPA estimates 33 miles of EV range before the engine kicks in, after which it gets 32 mpg combined — an impressive 10 mpg better than the gas-only Pacifica, Sienna or Honda Odyssey. The total range is listed at 570 miles on a full battery and gas tank.

In my week with the van, which included a lot of highway driving and a run from Ann Arbor, Mich., to Chicago, I was easily able to achieve the 33 miles of EV range on a full charge — more than that, actually, as by the end of the week, the van was indicating it could go over 38 miles before the battery was depleted. Around town, charging up every night, you'll get some pretty spectacular efficiency numbers, especially given most people commute less than 40 miles a day.

I was able to get nearly 45 mpg over 150 miles of around-town driving with regular charging — a pretty astonishing number for a seven-seat minivan.



Out on the highway, however, the hybrid's efficiency advantage disappears. I was regularly averaging about 27.6 mpg on the highway, which is about the same as the standard gas (non-hybrid) Chrysler Pacifica (18/28/22 mpg). Chrysler says the van can stay in EV mode up to around 75 mph, so go slower than that and you'll minimize your gas engine use and extend your use of EV mode.

Trading Utility for Efficiency

The Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid is no different inside from the van that won our Best of 2017 award: spacious, very comfortable, well-laid out, full of top-notch materials and thoughtful designs, ready to take the whole family across the country without feeling cramped or on top of each other. There are some slightly different color options, and the gauge cluster is changed to reflect the car's hybrid systems, but it has the same good qualities as the standard gasoline-powered van.




There are several downsides to getting the Hybrid, however: You can't get Stow 'n Go seating or the built-in Stow 'n Vac rear vacuum, among other things. Chrysler's novel foldaway second-row seats are a godsend for families, but the wells in the floor into which the seats would normally stow house the Hybrid's lithium-ion battery packs.

The third row folds as normal, but the second-row captain's chairs (a bench is not available) must either stay in place or be removed manually, which is one hell of a job to do solo due to their bulk. It's tricky even with two people. This limits the Hybrid's utility as a cargo-hauler but allows for excellent comfort in all three rows.

With the second row removed and the third row folded, the van can hold 140.5 cubic feet of stuff. That's a truly cavernous space, but it's still 9.5 cubic feet less than a Sienna and 8 cubic feet less than an Odyssey (compare the Pacifica with those two vans here). There's no vacuum in the back as this is where the charging equipment is stored.

I found the fixed seats to be an inconvenience but not one that overwhelmed the experience. An enormous 65-inch LCD TV from Costco, still boxed, slid right in between the seats with no problem. Still, it will be an inconvenience for anyone who makes frequent use of the "Stow" part of Stow 'n Go.

State-of-the-Art Safety

The Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid has not been crash-tested by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration or the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, but the conventional one has, earning a five-star overall rating from NHTSA and the highest possible ratings from IIHS. IIHS says that the ratings for the standard Pacifica also apply to the Hybrid despite it being significantly heavier.

My test vehicle came loaded with all the latest safety options: a 360-degree camera system, parallel and perpendicular park assist, adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning and assist, blind spot monitoring, rear parking sensors with automatic stop and more.

The Price of Efficiency

How much will you pay for this unparalleled level of efficiency in a full-size family minivan? The base Pacifica Hybrid Premium starts at $43,090 — a hefty $13,000 premium over a base Pacifica LX and about $7,000 more than the comparably equipped Pacifica Touring L. That doesn't, however, include a $7,500 income tax credit from the federal government for which you may qualify, nor any state or local incentives that may apply for purchasing a plug-in hybrid car.

My test vehicle was a Hybrid Platinum trim, which starts at $46,090. With options (such as the tri-pane panoramic roof), it rang up at $47,885.

Even without a whiz-bang fancy powertrain, this is not an unusual price for a loaded family minivan these days. Honda's top Odyssey Touring Elite runs $46,265, while Toyota's all-wheel-drive Sienna Limited Premium is $48,270. That you can now get most of the luxury amenities of the top vans with the addition of fantastic around-town efficiency and without a big cost penalty makes the Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid's case that much better.


Latest 2017 Pacifica Hybrid Stories

Consumer Reviews

Exterior Styling
(4.8)
Performance
(4.8)
Interior Design
(4.6)
Comfort
(4.9)
Reliability
(4.9)
Value For The Money
(4.8)

What Drivers Are Saying

(5.0)

Big Fan

by Minivan mom from Waynesboro, Ms on May 4, 2018

Love love love every aspect of this car!!! Only thing it doesn?t have is built in vacuum and the store n go. But I don?t notice the lack because of all of the other bonuses! Read full review

(5.0)

The best money saver and people hauler out there

by Igor from Chicago, IL on March 21, 2018

The idea of electric powered minivan is just brilliant. The fact that I can plug it into electrical outlet at my garage and have it charged back up for 35miles trip in two hours is awesome. I drive by ... Read full review

Safety & Recalls

Recalls

The 2017 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid currently has 0 recalls

Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

The 2017 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid has not been tested.

Manufacturer Warranties

Backed by Chrysler
New Car Program Benefits
  • Bumper-to-Bumper

    36 months / 36,000 miles

  • Roadside Assistance

    60 months / 60,000 miles

Certified Pre-Owned Program Benefits
  • Maximum Age/Mileage

    5 model years or newer/less than 75,000 miles.

  • Basic Warranty Terms

    3 months/3,000 miles

  • Powertrain warranty

    7 years/100,000 miles

  • Dealer Certification Required

    125-point inspection

  • Roadside Assistance

    Yes

  • View All Program Details

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Cars.com Car Seat Check

Certified child passenger safety technicians conduct hands-on tests of a car’s Latch system and check the vehicle’s ability to accommodate different types of car seats. The Pacifica Hybrid received the following grades on a scale of A-F.*
* This score may not apply to all trims, especially for vehicles with multiple body styles that affect the space and design of the seating.

Warranty FAQs

What is a Bumper-to-Bumper warranty?

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

What is a Powertrain warranty?

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

What is included in Roadside Assistance?

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

What other services could be included in a warranty?

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

What does CPO mean?

A certified pre-owned or CPO car has been inspected to meet minimum quality standards and typically includes some type of warranty. While dealers and third parties certify cars, the gold standard is an automaker-certified vehicle that provides a factory-backed warranty, often extending the original coverage. Vehicles must be in excellent condition and have low miles and wear to be certified, which is why off-lease vehicles feed many CPO programs.

See also the latest CPO incentives by automaker