2017+ Chrysler Pacifica Minivan Forums banner

1 - 20 of 90 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
79 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Pacificanians,

My wife and I have been going back and forth for just shy of 2 months, having a pretty standard disagreement between the normal Pacifica and the Plug-in; I am hoping folks can help me out with family-experience in the van that might tilt us one way or another:

  • She wants the Plug-in.
  • I can't stand giving up Stow-n-Go, tilt-forward 3rd row access, Vacuum or the HIDs.
The problem with this argument is that it is primarily emotional and not practical (she feels green, I want the utility).

Well, the reality is that we have two kids 1 of which is a newborn and in a rear-facing child seat. For the non-parents out there, rear-facing child seats are SO LARGE, in anything shy of a F150 King Cab, you usually need to move up the seat in front of it. For example, in our Pilot, the driver (me @ 5'11") lost 3-4 inches of legroom and had to straighten up the seat back.

The gist is that even in the largest car, rear-facing child seats (and some big front-facing... which we also have) will make you feel cramped.

Given this context, I wanted to ask the families with young children out there the following:
  • How are the car seats fitting for, especially rear-facing? Any pictures?
  • Do you find that "tilt forward" access to the 3rd row as handy as it seems?
  • Do you regularly use the Stow and Go bins for storage?
  • Do you actually stow the 2nd row seats from time to time or is this just a man-utility-fantasy?
Thank you all for the time and sharing your experience with us... feel like we've been talking about this forever and neither of us will budge so we keep driving our 11 year old Pilot...
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
2,884 Posts
How are the car seats fitting for, especially rear-facing? Any pictures?
  1. Do you find that "tilt forward" access to the 3rd row as handy as it seems?
  2. Do you regularly use the Stow and Go bins for storage?
  3. Do you actually stow the 2nd row seats from time to time or is this just a man-utility-fantasy?
We have a large Britax front facing carseat in the second row on the passenger side and it fits perfectly. We also have the 8 passenger, and the kids like the 8th seat to be installed all the time, so the "tilt forward" function is really the only way to access the 3rd row. It is VERY nice that any kids getting into the 3rd row can do so from either side even though the Britax is strapped in on the passenger side. I love that feature.


I have a spare tire in one of the Stow-n-Go bins for peace of mind. For that reason, I'm glad to have that space. I've got a couple other things in the bin on the other side as well. Since we have kids, we never stow the 2nd row seats.


Another consideration that may or may not matter to you is that the hybrid cannot be had with a memory driver's seat. This is the closest thing to a deal-breaker for me personally.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
79 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the family-insight!

Curious why the kids like that 8th seat installed? I've explicitly been shopping for the 7-seat config so we can get the pano sunroof... maybe I should rethink?

Also, what did you mean by a spare tire in the bin... like a spare donut for the car?! I didn't think those bins were big enough... last time I test drove, it looked like a space for a backpack, not a spare tire... but it's possible I'm overestimating how large tires are (sort of picturing a full size car tire in my head).

Also do you use the vacuum at all, or is that just fantasty?
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
2,884 Posts
Curious why the kids like that 8th seat installed? I've explicitly been shopping for the 7-seat config so we can get the pano sunroof... maybe I should rethink?
My kids are 14, 12, and 2. When we're just driving around town, they prefer to all sit in the second row. It's wide enough for them to sit comfortably and then nobody has to climb into the back. On longer trips, one of them will sit in the 3rd row, but they still want the 8th seat installed because it folds down into an armrest with cup holders. When we decided to get the 8 passenger, I figured the 8th seat would only get installed occasionally when the kids had friends with them. I didn't realize how much the kids would end up liking the flexibility with it installed.

Also, what did you mean by a spare tire in the bin... like a spare donut for the car?! I didn't think those bins were big enough... last time I test drove, it looked like a space for a backpack, not a spare tire... but it's possible I'm overestimating how large tires are (sort of picturing a full size car tire in my head).
The spare tire kit for the Pacifica is an inflatable type donut that's made to be small. The kit also comes with a jack, and they both fit perfectly in the bin.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01DY2V9O6/ref=oh_aui_search_detailpage?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Also do you use the vacuum at all, or is that just fantasty?
I use the vacuum all the time. My wife likes to give out snacks in the car, so there are always goldfish and cheeze-its on the floor. I do wish that the vacuum was on the passenger side instead of the driver's side. I've always had the youngest kid on the passenger side to see them better while driving, which I would guess is pretty common. But then you have to pull the vacuum hose from the other side of the van to suck up the goldfish. Other than that one gripe, the vacuum works well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,284 Posts
FYI for the spare tire, also pack a big trash bag for the flat tire incase you need to use the donut. You'll probably have to store it in the trunk and wheels are really dirty. Maybe some gloves as well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
185 Posts
Given this context, I wanted to ask the families with young children out there the following:
  • How are the car seats fitting for, especially rear-facing? Any pictures?
  • Do you find that "tilt forward" access to the 3rd row as handy as it seems?
  • Do you regularly use the Stow and Go bins for storage?
  • Do you actually stow the 2nd row seats from time to time or is this just a man-utility-fantasy?
Thank you all for the time and sharing your experience with us... feel like we've been talking about this forever and neither of us will budge so we keep driving our 11 year old Pilot...
1. We have our 19 month old front facing now. We initially had him rear facing but his legs were kind of cramped up with his feet on the seat. We are using a Britax Marathon Clicktight. He wasn't too bad getting in rear facing but it's obviously much easier front facing.

2. Yes, the tilt forward works very well.

3. We've only had ours for 3 weeks so I haven't stuck anything down in the floor bins yet. Definitely a lot of storage there though. I have folded one second row seat into the floor. Works great. Sure you can take the second row seat out in the Hybrid but say you drive 2 hours and randomly buy something that is big. It's not like you can just leave your 2nd row seat somewhere. You lose some flexibility with the Hybrid in this manner.

4. See above. If you don't have a truck, I'd much rather have stow-n-go. I have a truck but still prefer the stow-n-go. Half the reason we bought a van was for the additional storage space.

I really considered going the Hybrid route but the fuel savings would take a long time to offset the additional cost compared to the Touring-L Plus we ended up with. Plus their is some uncertainty surrounding the $7,500 tax rebate since Trump is in now. Our electric cooperative doesn't offer any incentives or lower overnight rates for using an electric vehicle so there are less savings to be had for us. I can't charge at work either.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
79 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
My kids are 14, 12, and 2. When we're just driving around town, they prefer to all sit in the second row. It's wide enough for them to sit comfortably and then nobody has to climb into the back. On longer trips, one of them will sit in the 3rd row, but they still want the 8th seat installed because it folds down into an armrest with cup holders. When we decided to get the 8 passenger, I figured the 8th seat would only get installed occasionally when the kids had friends with them. I didn't realize how much the kids would end up liking the flexibility with it installed.
Hmmmm, I may need to rethink this - while I only have two, there have been a few times that someone has sat between the two car seats on longer trips to keep them happy and I didn't even think that there wouldn't be cup holders if we did the captain chairs (the kids can't reach the pullout drawer in the base of the super console) - really appreciate the detailed scenario here, opened by eyes a bit!

The spare tire kit for the Pacifica is an inflatable type donut that's made to be small. The kit also comes with a jack, and they both fit perfectly in the bin.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01DY2V9O6/ref=oh_aui_search_detailpage?ie=UTF8&psc=1
I had no idea this existed - this is slick as **** and I don't have to do the Vacuum delete. Thanks!

I use the vacuum all the time.
<sigh> I knew it would be helpful, wife thinks its not necessary because we don't vacuum the pilot except when we find a nest of racoons in it (ok maybe not that bad). I'll share your post with her!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
79 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
FYI for the spare tire, also pack a big trash bag for the flat tire incase you need to use the donut. You'll probably have to store it in the trunk and wheels are really dirty. Maybe some gloves as well.
This is a great idea, never dawned on me; appreciate the tip!
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
2,884 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
150 Posts
Hey rkalla,
We have a limited, family of 4 (1 year old, almost 3 year old). For the first 2 months of the Pacifica we had a Britax rear facing on passenger side, and a Recaro convertible on driver side. We have now moved to the Recaro convertible to passenger side for 1 year old, and 3 year old is in an Evenflo booster.

  • Rear facing fit great. My wife is short so she never complained about leg space. In our Jeep, I could never sit in the front passenger seat because of the rear facing car seat, but now I can sit in the Pacifica (I’m 5’11”). Since we got rid of the rear facing, the biggest problem we face is kicking the back of the front seats.
  • Tilt forward: we never use it, we never have the 3rd row up so there is no need to get back there.
  • Stow and go: we never use it for storage since there is so much other room. However, I see a day when it will come in handy
  • We never stow the seats… I hate moving car seats so those things will never move unless we are having the van serviced or maybe this weekend on our 4 hour trip I will sit back there to play my Nintendo ;-)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
180 Posts
We didn't get the vacuum and the fact is, you don't have one now, so you're not going to miss it. If you had it, sure you would use it, but your chance of remorse is low if you don't get it.

We had an older Caravan before the Pacifica that didn't have the tilting seats, so we're used to going through the middle. The tilt seems like a cramped way to get back there when you have a toddler seat installed, and you can't use the tilt at all when you move up to a big girl car seat that uses the seatbelt to attach rather than LATCH... So even if you love it with an infant car seat base, the utility will go down hill fast as the kids grow. Probably more important if you get an 8 passenger. We have a 7...

And this is not universal, but we really only carry emergency type stuff in the stow and go area. It's awkward to get to, especially with all weather floor mats and toys laying around.

With all of that said, we were never shopping for a Limited and my wife absolutely had to have stow and go. We have a TL+ with safety tec and hands free doors.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
180 Posts
Also wanted to share that our 3 kid plan is infant in 2nd row passenger, 4 yo in 3rd driver, 5 yo in 3rd passenger and keep 2nd row driver stowed. Tons of room for third row entry and buckling and groceries, etc.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
758 Posts
We have a large Britax front facing carseat in the second row on the passenger side and it fits perfectly. We also have the 8 passenger, and the kids like the 8th seat to be installed all the time, so the "tilt forward" function is really the only way to access the 3rd row. It is VERY nice that any kids getting into the 3rd row can do so from either side even though the Britax is strapped in on the passenger side. I love that feature.


I have a spare tire in one of the Stow-n-Go bins for peace of mind. For that reason, I'm glad to have that space. I've got a couple other things in the bin on the other side as well. Since we have kids, we never stow the 2nd row seats.


Another consideration that may or may not matter to you is that the hybrid cannot be had with a memory driver's seat. This is the closest thing to a deal-breaker for me personally.
Thanks rkalla for the questions as they align perfectly with my own. :)

Generaltso, you mentioned having the Britax strapped into the 2nd row and using the tilt to enter feature.... when you say strapped are you referring to the seatbelt or latch options? I was under the impression that once a car seat is secured with a seatbelt and the seatbelt locked then the tilt action wouldn't work anymore since the belt is locked.

And with using the latch system it is highly recommended to not exceed 65lbs of weight (car seat and kid combined) before you must stop using latch and changed to use the seatbelt.

Thanks
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
185 Posts
Thanks rials for the questions as they align perfectly with my own. :)

Generaltso, you mentioned having the Britax strapped into the 2nd row and using the tilt to enter feature.... when you say strapped are you referring to the seatbelt or latch options? I was under the impression that once a car seat is secured with a seatbelt and the seatbelt locked then the tilt action wouldn't work anymore since the belt is locked.

And with using the latch system it is only generally recommended to not exceed 65lbs of weight (car seat and kid combined) before you must stop using latch and changed to use the seatbelt.

Thanks
You can't tilt if you use the seat belt for your Britax seat. If you use latch, yes you can tilt. I find the seat belt easier with the Clicktight than the latch but you lose the ability to tilt the 2nd row seat. I may switch it to latch though.

If you're rear facing, I doubt you will have room to tilt the seat much.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
79 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
2. Yes, the tilt forward works very well.
Ok very cool, I am perceiving this to be an important feature for families. Good to hear that confirmed.

3. Sure you can take the second row seat out in the Hybrid but say you drive 2 hours and randomly buy something that is big. It's not like you can just leave your 2nd row seat somewhere. You lose some flexibility with the Hybrid in this manner.
I'm going to have you call my wife and tell her this... :)

4. See above. If you don't have a truck, I'd much rather have stow-n-go. I have a truck but still prefer the stow-n-go. Half the reason we bought a van was for the additional storage space.
I don't, but frequently consider getting one because of 1-off trips to Ikea, Home Depot and the like where I get super frustrated that I need to rent something to get the item home... good pointer.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
79 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
Mo, I really appreciate the heads up for the family usage... also... we're in Phoenix too! Over on Cactus and Tatum (by PV Mall) - where are you guys??

Maybe I can buy you a coffee to trick you into showing us the Pacifica and how it's all setup withe car seats and how everything fits?

(We try and do this at the dealership and it's really high pressure/inconvenient and overall just not the environment we want to be in).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
79 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
Also wanted to share that our 3 kid plan is infant in 2nd row passenger, 4 yo in 3rd driver, 5 yo in 3rd passenger and keep 2nd row driver stowed. Tons of room for third row entry and buckling and groceries, etc.
  • Really great insight into the tilt features / ages / changing car seat restrictions... hadn't thought about this as both of ours are 3 and younger.
  • Also another good point about accessing the stow and go area; emergency type gear is definintely the thinking there.
Lastly, you called out my fantasy road-trip configuration when the girls are a bit older and more independent OR if we get a dog... the two kids behind each other in 2&3 and one of the 2nd ones stowed to create a bigger entry/exit/landing pad area.

Thanks for the reply!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
758 Posts
Mo, I really appreciate the heads up for the family usage... also... we're in Phoenix too! Over on Cactus and Tatum (by PV Mall) - where are you guys??

Maybe I can buy you a coffee to trick you into showing us the Pacifica and how it's all setup withe car seats and how everything fits?

(We try and do this at the dealership and it's really high pressure/inconvenient and overall just not the environment we want to be in).
One option is to hit up National Car Rental or Alamo and you can rent a Pacifica cheap and play play play. :) I now rent one every time I travel for work. No pressure from dealership and I can press and play with buttons to my hearts content. Of course it isn't the high end trims so no vacuum or sunroof or 8 seat or uconnect theater etc but good enough to play with car seats and moving stuff around and adjusting and kicking and pulling and whatever else you might want to do with the van during your 24 hour or more rental period. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
79 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
One option is to hit up National Car Rental or Alamo and you can rent a Pacifica cheap and play play play. :) I now rent one every time I travel for work. No pressure from dealership and I can press and play with buttons to my hearts content. Of course it isn't the high end trims so no vacuum or sunroof or 8 seat or uconnect theater etc but good enough to play with car seats and moving stuff around and adjusting and kicking and pulling and whatever else you might want to do with the van during your 24 hour or more rental period. :)
I had no idea anyone was renting them!

I just searched on their websites and don't see minivan options, but I am searching the smaller local airport... I'll try PHX.

Thanks for the tip!
 
1 - 20 of 90 Posts
Top