Chrysler Pacifica alternative?

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Mar 15, 2003
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My dad was looking to buy a minivan but my brother in law and I convinced him to downsize a bit since he's getting older and a smaller car will be easier to get around in and get into (my mom has arthritis). He'd like something that's mid-size that can squeeze 4 adults + a car seat in a pinch, so a 3rd row would be nice (our carseat is big and takes up a seat and a half in your typical mid-sized sedan's read seat). My bil suggested the Chrysler Pacific but I'd like some more durable alternatives. His budget is up to $20,000 used though I'm sure he'd be happier spending closer to $15,000. I'm the local one so I'm driving my dad around dealerships and compiling a list, suggestions?
 

Dr. Detroit

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Sep 25, 2004
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Dodge Journey - New 4cyl base models with 3rd row seating should be around $18K new after discounts.

2011+ got an all new interior and the 3.6L Pentastar V6

Other options include:
Ford Flex
Toyota Highlander
Hyundai VeraCruz
 

CraigRT

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Jun 16, 2000
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Pacifica really is big.. Also since it's a Merc it should be reasonably durable (powertrain at least) but I second the Journey option. Not only does the new Journey look fantastic, it actually is fantastic too. That pentastar engine is awesome, and the rest of the vehicle is a perfect for utility without actually being a van. I think the new Journey is one of the best offerings from Chrysler right now.
 

Meghan54

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Oct 18, 2009
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As everyone mentioned, the Pacifica is rather large. It's larger than our Murano, which itself isn't a small vehicle.



As for your mother's arthritis, going small may not be the answer. My father-in-law, who at 82 years old and with arthritis and after suffering a horribly massive heart attack, was having big trouble getting in and out of his Camry.


Getting into our Murano, on the other hand, is a breeze for him compared to the Camry. Has to do with the seats being higher off the ground....he doesn't have to "fall" into the seat getting in or struggle to "lift" himself getting out.


I'd suggest having your mother try the finalists out before you buy....you may be surprised what is easier getting in/out of for her.
 
Mar 15, 2003
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As everyone mentioned, the Pacifica is rather large. It's larger than our Murano, which itself isn't a small vehicle.



As for your mother's arthritis, going small may not be the answer. My father-in-law, who at 82 years old and with arthritis and after suffering a horribly massive heart attack, was having big trouble getting in and out of his Camry.


Getting into our Murano, on the other hand, is a breeze for him compared to the Camry. Has to do with the seats being higher off the ground....he doesn't have to "fall" into the seat getting in or struggle to "lift" himself getting out.


I'd suggest having your mother try the finalists out before you buy....you may be surprised what is easier getting in/out of for her.

Excellent point - step in height is the biggest issue for her. We road tripped over the weekend (no, I don't live with them just a good son :) ) and rented a dodge grand caravan - my dad, with milder arthritis hated the back seats because he couldn't stretch and his legs cramped up immediately (though he would drive and get the roomy seat, of course), my mom simply couldn't get in or out - I had to lift her up. I'm going to measure step in heights for them and also take your advice and take her around for final decision day.

Dodge journey seems like a great option - we'll be checking it out soon. 2009/10 model used seems to be where their budget is at, should those be avoided at all costs or did the 2011 remodel just make a good car better? We're going to look at the kia borrego and hyundai veracruz as well because the price is right, any reasons to stay away?

Thanks so much!
 

Meghan54

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Oct 18, 2009
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About the Borrego, realize it was a one model year vehicle, so while may be attractively priced, it never got its full due of refinement. And it's a Kia, not as reliable as say the Hyundai. Just sayin'......and we looked at that when we bought our Murano. We bought the Murano.
 
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