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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been here for quite some time and everyone's seen plenty of my vans, but:
Given some recent findings on my old Voyager


Automotive parking light Wheel Tire Automotive side marker light Cloud





Automotive side marker light Sky Tire Wheel Car




She is going to be replaced in a few weeks.

I already have a 2018 GC, so I know I enjoy driving it and I know how to take care of them, so just snagging another GC in GT form was my first thought.

But something about the Pacifica with the S-appearance package has caught my interest

Tire Wheel Car Vehicle Window




So let's discuss.
Pacifica with the S appearance package or Grand Caravan GT and why?
 

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Been renting alot of minivans this year for work going back and forth to our different facilities. They seems to cycle between the Grand Caravans and the Pacificas. Both S packages and Limiteds on the Pacificas and basic Grand Caravans. Each time i rent them i drive them for about 900 miles. Overall I certainly enjoy the Pacifica's more and would pay extra to have the Pacifica in my driveway. The 9 speed works so much better than the 6 speed. The comfort of the seats also are better. Quieter on the road too. I see you live in Wisconsin which is where i do and if you know anything about the southwest side of the state, the rolling hills are hard on holding the cruise control. That is where the Pacifica shines, holds the speed where you place it instead of speed cycling 3 to 5 mph difference with the Grand Caravan. Technology if that matters is also updated, esecially in the 2021's. Just some of my observations. Ill be honest though none of the newer vans have seats like the 90s Minivans. Sure enjoyed my 98 and miss the seats. Good Luck with you purchase.
 

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I have owned three Grand Caravans over the last 12 years. 2010, 2015, 2019. I drove them all over the country. (US). I also towed with them all over the country. (Enclosed 6 x12) I loved the the chrysler "RT" platform the vans are built on. I now have a 2021 Pacifica Touring L AWD, for the last 18 months. The ride, quietness, and handling of the "RU" platform Pacifica are on whole other level higher than the Grand Caravan. I can't imagine going back to a GC. Absolute joy to drive. Fantastic people and/or cargo hauler.

But, the one negative,

Is the loss of ERS (manual control) of the transmission. On the GC I spent many multi day drives locked in 5th (or 4th, depending on load). Pacifica only offers drive and L on the rotary shifter. L keeps trans in 1st through 5th with shifts occuring around 4200 regardless of throttle position. But for trailer towing, man do I miss the ERS. 65mph needs 5th gear at 2900 rpm, but D results in trans hunting between 4th, 5th and 6th on cruise, on slight road undulations. Using foot control can reduce some of that. But, that can be tiring. L results 4000 rpms which grates on my nerves.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Reliability is my biggest concern with the Pacifica. I tend to keep my vehicles 2-300k miles, so I expect trouble free ownership in that period.
I already know the GCs can do that with ease, but it worries me substantially with the Pacifica.
 

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The dash and steering wheel layout, for a 2020 Pacifica, is very busy compared to the simplicity of the 2020 Dodge Grand Caravan IMO. I can't say that I like it at all at first glance, it would take some getting use to.

A rotary button for shifting? Looks like something Ford would do. :) You know, "a better idea".
Ford mounted shift buttons in the center of the steering wheel for its ill-fated Edsel sedan.

I guess they are all doing it, can't say that I like it though.
Again, it would take some getting use to. I have never driven such a vehicle.

Car Motor vehicle White Light Steering part
Speedometer Gear shift Vehicle Wheel Trip computer
Car Vehicle Plant Wheel Motor vehicle
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
@Jeepman I can see myself reaching over to turn up the radio and turning the shifter instead.....

That part of it I think I can get used to though. I like the backlighting on the Pacifica far better than the GC's white face gauges, especially for night driving. The GC's cluster is downright obnoxious at night, even with it turned down.

As I said, my biggest concern with the Pacifica is reliability. How capable are they of making 2-300k miles without major failures?
 

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CHRYSLER PACIFICA - MODEL YEAR COMPARISON

 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
CHRYSLER PACIFICA - MODEL YEAR COMPARISON

I really wish reports and complaints like this would take ownership and maintenance into account.
Much like I don't put much stake in "reliability reports" because they leave out ownership and maintenance.
 

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You won't be "torn" when it comes to replacing the transmission filter. :)
 
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
You won't be "torn" when it comes to replacing the transmission filter. :)
I've found a couple people on the van pages who have actually serviced the transmissions by simply having them "flushed" every 40k miles. Oddly enough the few I've found that have been doing that are also the few that have well over 200k miles on their transmissions and have had no issues......

Sounds kinda familiar to the 62TE....
 

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I've found a couple people on the van pages who have actually serviced the transmissions by simply having them "flushed" every 40k miles. Oddly enough the few I've found that have been doing that are also the few that have well over 200k miles on their transmissions and have had no issues......

Sounds kinda familiar to the 62TE....
Only if one ignores the filter. Flushing through a dirty filter? All depends on the method for flushing, I'm thinkin. Are flushing chemicals used?

The transmission has a drain plug and filler tube so a fluid change (no filter change) should be easy enough at whatever mileage.
 
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Only if one ignores the filter. Flushing through a dirty filter? All depends on the method for flushing, I'm thinkin. Are flushing chemicals used?

The transmission has a drain plug and filler tube so a fluid change (no filter change) should be easy enough at whatever mileage.
Unfortunately, it seems no one does it, so there's no data points as to how well they hold up when maintained.
 

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I have owned three Grand Caravans over the last 12 years. 2010, 2015, 2019. I drove them all over the country. (US). I also towed with them all over the country. (Enclosed 6 x12) I loved the the chrysler "RT" platform the vans are built on. I now have a 2021 Pacifica Touring L AWD, for the last 18 months. The ride, quietness, and handling of the "RU" platform Pacifica are on whole other level higher than the Grand Caravan. I can't imagine going back to a GC. Absolute joy to drive. Fantastic people and/or cargo hauler.

But, the one negative,

Is the loss of ERS (manual control) of the transmission. On the GC I spent many multi day drives locked in 5th (or 4th, depending on load). Pacifica only offers drive and L on the rotary shifter. L keeps trans in 1st through 5th with shifts occuring around 4200 regardless of throttle position. But for trailer towing, man do I miss the ERS. 65mph needs 5th gear at 2900 rpm, but D results in trans hunting between 4th, 5th and 6th on cruise, on slight road undulations. Using foot control can reduce some of that. But, that can be tiring. L results 4000 rpms which grates on my nerves.

Seeing how good Chrysler is at reusing parts, and given that the 200 S was basically the same powertrain as the Pacifica but it had paddle shifters, and the same rotary dial, I bet that there is a way to install a steering wheel from a 200 with the paddles and then add wiring if its not already there, and then enable shifting. I am going to be looking into this as my next one will be a Pacifica, and I too cant do without the manual control. I had a 200S for a solid year so I am well familiar with its trans and shift points etc.
 

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200 and Pacifica are much more different than you think. Gen1/2 3.6 vs Gen3 w/ VVL. 62TE vs 948TE. It shares an engine block assembly, and that's about all they have in common.
 
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