2015 Dodge Grand Caravan

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Key Specs
Our Take
Road Test
Photos
Reviews
Safety & Recalls
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Key Specs

of the 2015 Dodge Grand Caravan. Base trim shown.

Our Take

From the Cars.com Vehicle Test Team

The Good

  • Seating flexibility
  • Value
  • Visibility
  • Feature-packed rear entertainment system
  • Soft ride

The Bad

  • Accelerator lag
  • Comfort of Stow 'n Go seats
  • Outdated dashboard multimedia system
  • Spotty crash tests
  • Reliability for current generation

Notable Features of the 2015 Dodge Grand Caravan

  • Fold-into-floor second and third rows
  • Available dual-screen Blu-ray entertainment system
  • Seats seven
  • Value-priced American Value Package
  • Related to Chrysler Town &amp
  • amp
  • Country

2015 Dodge Grand Caravan Road Test

Kelsey Mays

The 2015 Dodge Grand Caravan boasts workhorse utility and value, but drivability problems and poor crash tests might send you elsewhere.

We tested a 2015 Grand Caravan in Cars.com's Ultimate Minivan Challenge, which you can read here. A corporate twin to the Chrysler Town & Country (Dodge and Chrysler are both brands of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles), the Grand Caravan comes in an economy-priced American Value Package, as well as SE, SXT and R/T trim levels. Compare them here. Beyond some new packages, little has changed for 2015 (compare the 2015 and 2014 Grand Caravan here). We drove an SXT.

Exterior & Styling
FCA's styling mantra is simple: It's a minivan, stupid. Minivan-makers have been trying to rethink the box for decades. The Grand Caravan's embrace of the box, complete with straightforward lines and simple lighting, is either refreshing or boring, depending on your perspective.

AVP and SE models look the part of their bargain-bin price tags, with black side mirrors and 17-inch steel wheels with plastic covers. Higher trims have 17-inch alloys and body-colored mirrors.

How It Drives
Pronounced accelerator lag gives the Grand Caravan tentative, inconsistent power off the line, especially in stop-and-go traffic. It's noticeable even when you're already in motion. Toe the pedal for more power and nothing happens for a moment. We've observed accelerator lag across the auto industry for more than a decade, but the Grand Caravan and Town & Country are as laggy as th...

The 2015 Dodge Grand Caravan boasts workhorse utility and value, but drivability problems and poor crash tests might send you elsewhere.

We tested a 2015 Grand Caravan in Cars.com's Ultimate Minivan Challenge, which you can read here. A corporate twin to the Chrysler Town & Country (Dodge and Chrysler are both brands of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles), the Grand Caravan comes in an economy-priced American Value Package, as well as SE, SXT and R/T trim levels. Compare them here. Beyond some new packages, little has changed for 2015 (compare the 2015 and 2014 Grand Caravan here). We drove an SXT.

Exterior & Styling
FCA's styling mantra is simple: It's a minivan, stupid. Minivan-makers have been trying to rethink the box for decades. The Grand Caravan's embrace of the box, complete with straightforward lines and simple lighting, is either refreshing or boring, depending on your perspective.

AVP and SE models look the part of their bargain-bin price tags, with black side mirrors and 17-inch steel wheels with plastic covers. Higher trims have 17-inch alloys and body-colored mirrors.

How It Drives
Pronounced accelerator lag gives the Grand Caravan tentative, inconsistent power off the line, especially in stop-and-go traffic. It's noticeable even when you're already in motion. Toe the pedal for more power and nothing happens for a moment. We've observed accelerator lag across the auto industry for more than a decade, but the Grand Caravan and Town & Country are as laggy as they come.

Once power actually shows up, the Dodge Grand Caravan's 283-horsepower 3.6-liter V-6 delivers a respectable punch, helped along by adept shifts from the six-speed automatic transmission. Ride quality is soft, and from an isolation standpoint it keeps the cabin disruption-free — an attribute that rival Honda Odyssey, for one, can't claim. But the Dodge's suspension sorts through bumps with a lot of clumsy rumble. It's hardly a controlled experience, and other judges in Cars.com's minivan comparison also found it too noisy. The Grand Caravan R/T has a sportier performance suspension, but we haven't driven it recently.

Accelerator lag isn't the only problem. The SXT pitches into corners like most minivans, but steering feedback is all kinds of wonky. The wheel turns with a light, predictable touch initially, but grows suddenly heavier as you rotate through turns. Upon release, it whips back to center with unnatural speed. I never got used to it, even after days of driving.

The Dodge Caravan's disc brakes have strong, linear pedal feel, and our test car's observed 23.9 mpg beat out four other minivans in a 135-mile mileage loop. This was despite the EPA-estimated so-so gas mileage rating of 20 mpg combined, which is 1 or 2 mpg short of many rivals.

Interior
The cabin has its moments — namely, excellent visibility and quality materials where it counts — but a lot of misses. FCA's optional Uconnect touch-screen multimedia system is an outdated version and a mess (details in the next section). SXT and R/T models have a bulky, flow-through "super console" that protrudes from the dash between the front seats. It lends a more cockpit-like feel (because that's what minivans need?) but eliminates the knee clearance and easy floor storage found in the Grand Caravan's AVP and SE trims, as well as in several competitors. The console is not, in fact, super.

A three-seat third row seating is standard. Seating in the second row can be a two-passenger bench or collapsible Stow 'n Go captain's chairs. The vast majority of Dodge Grand Caravan trim levels have the latter setup, and either way total seating capacity is seven. (If you need an eighth seat, some minivans offer one.) We haven't evaluated the Grand Caravan's bench seat, but the Stow 'n Go chairs are thin on padding — likely a tradeoff for the fact that you can fold them into floor cavities. They also tumble forward for easy third-row access (see it scored here), and both the second and third rows have decent headroom and legroom.

Cargo & Storage
If you opt for the Stow 'n Go chairs, both your second and third rows will collapse into floor cavities, giving you one of the few minivans on the market that enables maximum cargo room without having to remove the second-row seats. With all seats stowed, the Grand Caravan can store 143.8 cubic feet of cargo. That's in the neighborhood of the Odyssey and Sienna (148.5 cubic feet and 150 cubic feet, respectively), albeit just short of both. Go here to see a cargo version of the Grand Caravan that's sold through FCA's Ram division, which we cover separately on Cars.com.

Ergonomics & Electronics
A CD stereo with steering-wheel audio controls is standard. Optional on the Dodge Grand Caravan SXT and standard on the R/T is FCA's Uconnect 6.5-inch touch-screen stereo, with optional navigation. R/T models get a subwoofer-equipped premium stereo. Still, Uconnect's smallish screen, outdated graphics and unintuitive controls are uncompetitive. FCA has gone well beyond this in its later-generation Uconnect systems in all regards, including one of the largest touch-screens around; it's past time the minivans caught up.

By contrast, the rear entertainment options are world-class. At the highest option level, there are two 9-inch overhead screens that can play separate content, from an HDMI input to Blu-ray discs. It's an advantage over the widescreen systems in the Odyssey and Sienna, which can play two sources only side-by-side on the same screen. That's distracting at best and could allow a cartoon-watching toddler to see a shoot-'em-up video game his teenage sibling has booted up.

For their own devices, rear passengers also get two USB charging ports and a 115-volt household outlet rated at 150 watts. That should be enough for a current game console, but it'd be best to check before investing in this expensive option.

Safety
In a family segment like minivans, the 
Dodge Grand Caravan's largest drawback is crash tests. It earned a rating of poor (from a possible good, acceptable, marginal or poor) in the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's small overlap front test, which simulates an impact from the front-left corner of the car. The Grand Caravan earned good IIHS scores otherwise, but the small overlap test is a big differentiator from the rest of the segment. Minivans from Honda, Toyota and Kia all scored acceptable or good in this test.

A backup camera, widely standard in this class, isn't available until the SXT trim, where it's optional, and the R/T, where it's standard. A blind spot warning system is optional on the R/T, but lane departure and forward collision warning systems — both widely offered in minivans and SUVs — are unavailable.

Click here for a full list of safety features or here to see our Car Seat Check.

Value in Its Class
The Grand Caravan hits value on the head; the AVP starts at an outrageously cheap $22,790, including a destination fee. That's more than $4,000 less than all major competitors. "American Value," however, translates to meagerly equipped. You can step up to an SE Plus for crowd-pleasing family conveniences (Bluetooth, power windows, captain's chairs and rear air conditioning) for a still-inexpensive $26,240. At the other end, a loaded R/T tops out around a modest $38,500.

The range signifies big savings overall, especially given the Dodge Grand Caravan's factory incentives regularly run into the thousands.

Does that make it a good choice? Sure, if savings are your only goal. But other qualities matter, and on the whole the Dodge Grand Caravan falls short in a lot of areas — including reliability, where the current generation has a spotty history. This minivan is long in the tooth, dating back to 2008 since its last full redesign, and FCA reportedly wants to consolidate its minivan twins into one model going forward. Whatever it becomes, it needs to compete in more ways than just price.

Send Kelsey an email  

 


2015 Grand Caravan Video

Watch MotorWeek on PBS. Check MotorWeek.org for times and channels.

Latest 2015 Grand Caravan Stories

Consumer Reviews

Exterior Styling
(4.5)
Performance
(4.5)
Interior Design
(4.5)
Comfort
(4.6)
Reliability
(4.6)
Value For The Money
(4.5)

What Drivers Are Saying

(5.0)

Was exactly what I was looking for

by Just some guy from Fairbury, Illinois on October 6, 2018

I had been looking for a new van for months and since I kept seeing dodge grand caravans with 150000mi+ for sale and still bringing good money I guess they must be pretty reliable! So I found one 3 ... Read full review

(5.0)

Great van!

by StebeB from Sherwood, AR on September 26, 2018

This was my 1st ramp van, and it never let me down. Everything worked well, but it had a bit of interior noise and road rather firmly. Interior space was also limited, with no Bluetooth connectivity ... Read full review

Safety & Recalls

Recalls

The 2015 Dodge Grand Caravan currently has 0 recalls

IIHS Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

Based on 2015 Dodge Grand Caravan AVP/SE

IIHS rates vehicles good, acceptable, marginal, or poor.

Front

Chest
good
Head/Neck
good
Hip/thigh
poor
Lower leg/foot
poor
Overall evaluation
poor
Retraints and dummy kinematics
marginal
Structure and safety cage
poor

Head Restraints and Seats

Dynamic Rating
good
Overall Rear
good
Seat Head/Restraint Geometry
good

Moderate overlap front

Chest
good
Head/Neck
good
Left Leg/Foot
good
Overall Front
good
Restraints
good
Right Leg/Foot
good
Structure/safety cage
good

Other

Roof Strength
good

Side

Driver Head Protection
good
Driver Head and Neck
good
Driver Pelvis/Leg
good
Driver Torso
good
Overall Side
good
Rear Passenger Head Protection
good
Rear Passenger Head and Neck
good
Rear Passenger Pelvis/Leg
good
Rear Passenger Torso
good
Structure/safety cage
good

Small Overlap Front - Driver Side

Chest
good
Head/Neck
good
Hip/Thigh
poor
Lower Leg/Foot
poor
Overall Evaluation
poor
Restraints and Dummy Kinematics
marginal
Structure and Safety Cage
poor
Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) is a nonprofit research and communications organization funded by auto insurers.

Manufacturer Warranties

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

    36 months / 36,000 miles

  • Powertrain

    60 months / 100,000 miles

  • Roadside Assistance

    60 months / 100,000 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 Grand Caravan received the following grades on a scale of A-F.*

Third-row access

A

Infant seat

A

Booster

(second row)

A

Booster

(third row)

B

Latch or Latch system

B

Forward-facing convertible

(third row)

B

Forward-facing convertible

(second row)

B

Rear-facing convertible

A
* This score may not apply to all trims, especially for vehicles with multiple body styles that affect the space and design of the seating.
For complete details,

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