Mini-vans have changed over the years. They have been upgraded, new technology added and equipped with additional conveniences to help families move through life a little easier. Today I’m sharing all the ways the Toyota Sienna helps Moms be great! Read my review on the 2017 Toyota Sienna XLE AWD, and see if this mini-van is right for you and your family!
All The Ways, The Toyota Sienna, Helps Moms Be Great!
Many of you know I am not a mini-van Mom. I’ve owned two minivans in the past but was grateful to trade them in for the SUV life. I used to think mini-vans were not cool, that they were too “mommish,” and were just not functional or practical for my lifestyle. Or so I figured?
Or so I thought.
Over the past few years, I’ve noticed mini-vans making a comeback. They looked cooler and crossed over to a more modern look, dare I say stylish? Today’s mini-vans are stocked with a ton of features for any lifestyle. In fact, I know several people who purchased a mini-van, and they have no kids. Who does that? Because of these reasons, I am forced to take a closer look at the modern mini-van. And I have found that maybe I wrong about the new mini-van because the van down below rocks the bells!
This past week I had a fun time driving a 2017 Toyota Sienna XLE AWD. The Toyota brand made a name for itself many years ago for making quality family vehicles. The upgraded Sienna continues to carry out that same goal and tradition. The Sienna is available in five grades- L, LE, SE, XLE, and Limited. It is also equipped with four LATCH locations for securing child seats, blind spot monitor, a backup camera, eight standard airbags, and the Star Safety System. And that’s just the short list, hold on there’s so much more!
Driving the XLE model around for almost two weeks, gave me the opportunity to see what it could do. From traveling ton the road o running errands around town, I was impressed with all the ways the Toyota Sienna made my life great.
So let me tell you about it…
When we go on road trips, we need a TON of space. The boys are getting older, and they have long legs. I have long legs as well, so leg room is crucial for our family. When I think about it, this mini-van is a true “space machine” in that it brings along all of the space you need for comfort, storage, and complete driving comfort. It just may be the “tiny house” of mini-vans! Who knew?!
We recently took a road trip to Santa Claus, Indiana. We had a great time! Not only did the boys have a lot of room to stretch out, everyone was able to enjoy having their space throughout the van. Headroom, legroom, and enough comfort to enjoy our long road trip.
The backseat was the coveted area. The boys took turns enjoying having their own seat. Even Derrick used the back to take a nap. This would not have happened so easily in a smaller SUV or a car. Yes, a mini-van makes my life great for road trips.
Baby got back… I mean trunk space
Seriously, alllllll the space in the trunk of a Sienna is bae. Totally lit! On our road trip, we were able to load up the back with our suitcases, camping gear, road trip food, blankets and more!
Usually, when we pile all of our gear into our SUV, it spills into the seating area, giving the boy sitting in the third-row seat less room. Not in this mini-van. Toyota made sure their consumers have all the space they need then some. And with the capability to lay the seats down, you have even more room for the bigger items. So if you’re going camping, going on a long road trip, hauling bikes or kayaks, etc., you have room for days. I also like a deep trunk when going to the grocery store. You can easily place your groceries in this type of trunk and not worry about bags rolling around. #momwin #nobrainer #easydoesit
Just push the button!
Another feature that makes my life easier with the Toyota Sienna is the dual power sliding doors and a power liftgate. When the kids were little, having dual power sliding doors was everything. I remember lugging the twins’ car seats in and out of our mini-van WITHOUT this feature. It was such a pain. When we upgraded our mini-van, I made sure the dual power sliding doors was top on the list.
The boys can easily get in and out, so this feature is no longer at the top of my list but it still has a cool factor. However, there’s the power liftgate. I’m the type of person who will carry all of the groceries in the house at once. Usually, my hands are full, and I’m struggling to close the trunk, or I have to make another trip. With the Toyota Sienna, I can just hit the power button on the trunk door or tap the key fob, and the door closes on its own. Now, that is a bit of technological magic that never gets old. Cool points.
Safety features + technology.
A few other features that I loved about the Toyota Sienna and helped make my life great over the past few weeks were the display features over the dashboard. Instead of having to take my eyes off the road to change the XM station or look at the navigation system on the 4.2″ color display, I was able to use the 3.5 multi-informational display above the dashboard. And it has all the controls you need on the steering wheel. Your hands never have to leave the steering wheel, and you can focus on the road.
Other safety features I love:
- Blind spot monitor
- Parking assist sonars
- Backup Camera
Creating memories as a family.
Over the past ten days of driving the Toyota Sienna, we were able to have fun as a family without worrying about safety issues or space. The Sienna gave us comfort and convenience. It allowed us to go places as a family, and create new memories together.
From riding roller coasters together at Holiday World to a fun road trip there and back to Santa Claus, Indiana, to spending time together running errands around town. My average gas mileage was about 20 mpg, which is not bad for a mini-van (considering I used to only get about 14-16 on previous vehicles).
I haven’t decided if the mini-van life is for me on a 24/7 basis, but considering all the ways it made my life great, it’s a top option on my list.
Feedback from the family.
The biggest issue we all had with the Toyota Sienna, was a lack of gadget charger outlets. Living in the 21st century, electronics are part of our everyday life. We noticed that the Sienna only had two charger outlets, one in the back and one in the front. We could have definitely used a few more outlets in the mid-seating area.
We all enjoyed the room the Sienna had to offer. The safety features gave us a peace of mind while traveling on the highway and in and around town.
Overall, we enjoyed testing out the 2017 Toyota Sienna XLE. I enjoyed all of the conveniences this mini-van had to offer. It made my life a lot easier, from traveling on the road to loading the trunk with a ton of groceries. These conveniences are what Moms consider when buying a vehicle for their family. Life is already busy enough; your vehicle shouldn’t add to the problem. Toyota, let’s go places!
Disclosure: Thank you Toyota for loaning me this vehicle. All photos and opinions are my own!