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Interesting issue and thread. My Limited was running in the garage after starting it and I got out to bring in the recycling receptacle. As I was outside the van I noticed the engine stumble but it kept running. It's only done this once. Other than that the only other issue I've had was the drivers window refusing to go up after putting it down a few times. It would start to go up an it would get about a third of the way up and go back down. I have an early model and I love it so far. I hate the rotary shifter though. Don't know what they were thinking with that.
What year Pacifica? [As many point out, putting at least model year, gas/hybrid and trim in your signature line helps focus if you are talking about your own van.]

I don't know what happens when the monitor cited in the recall doesn't sense properly -- if it totally initiates shutdown then your stumble may not be related, but only someone much more technically attuned to the issue could help here. On the other hand, almost every vehicle I've owned since they started really piling on the pollution controls in 30+ years ago, has had hesitation out of the blue at idle every once in a while - never quite stalling.

WRT the rotary shifter, I am not a fan either. Posters have complained about confusing it with the radio knobs. But I am guessing an important motivation was to reclaim dashboard real estate for the bigger screen. And wasn't it Chrysler that pioneered pushbutton automatic transmission controls in the 60's? A good rant about shifter design in many new cars is at
The Worst Shifter Designs of 2017 | BestRide

He has a very good point about shifter design in general:
Selecting gears is a critical part of driving an automobile. It’s something that you’re often doing in the dark, dozens of times a day. It needs to be completely intuitive for the newest drivers, but also needs to take generations of muscle memory into account.

Imagine being in an emergency situation and having to shift from reverse to drive in any of these cars, and you understand how important intuitive design is. When re-imagining gear selectors, designers and engineers need to be placed in an environment that simulates having to get the car moving while a stalker is walking up to the driver’s door, or a runaway cement mixer is seconds away from crushing the car to a powder. That test would eliminate these three poor designs immediately.
(The three designs were FICAs Monostable shifter, GMC's Electronic Precision Shift and Mercedes new column mount.)

Later in the article, he specifically calls out the Pacifica, but not as strongly:
We’re enthusiastic about the Chrysler Pacifica. It seemed like there wasn’t much more you could possibly do to the minivan, but Chrysler reinvented a tired minivan lineup with a vehicle that not only meets the needs of families but provides a true luxury experience at the same time. The one sour note is the rotary shifter.

In previous years, we called out the Chrysler 200 for the same issue. It’s not as pronounced in the Pacifica for a couple of reasons, but the main issue is still that it’s a pretty puny little knob that’s relatively close to other knobs of similar size. Rotary shifters in general — like the one in all of Jaguar’s cars now — are a good space-saving solution, and Chrysler really made the most of it in the Pacifica.

Most manufacturers use a rotary shifter and still leave it in a gigantic console, but Chrysler has moved it up out of the way, which is a good thing. We just wish it was the size of the Jaguar’s knob, to avoid confusing it with the radio and heat knobs when driving in the dark.
 

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The mistaking the shifter for the volume knob is silly, perpetuated by testers that spend at most a few hours testing the car. In real ownership use, its a non issue. These testers are a reason manufacturers have been deleting physical buttons on cars. Because they found them hard to push during their brief testing. So now we have touchscreens with no tactile feedback and many times you must dig deep in the menu layers. Just because the managed to brainwash the public into believing buttons are bad. (A good example of this is Honda’s removal of the volume knob and tuning knob in place of a sliding touch bar, lol)
 

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The mistaking the shifter for the volume knob is silly, perpetuated by testers that spend at most a few hours testing the car. In real ownership use, its a non issue.
I certainly agree. The jury is still out for me on this shifter, however. I don't hate it by any means, but I don't yet find it intuitive. Saying that is a little unfair, because I have been driving for quite some time and I am used to what already existed. In my previous car with a floor shifter, for example, my hand naturally found the shifter without looking, and shifting in to drive consisted of depressing the lock release and sliding the shifter as far as it would go as I released the lock button. I could slide it easily into neutral and back into drive with a simple push. Going into L or R was just one detent away after releasing the lock. All of which I could do without looking.

Having said all that, that floor shifter consumed an unnecessary amount of space and a redesign could certainly reclaim most of that. I'm all in favor of such a redesign. I still find that I need to look at the Pac's shifter to accomplish what I want and I have to exercise some care (i.e. turn with precision) when I want to make a change. Maybe after I've owned it longer than the 2 months I have currently been driving it I will find it more natural.
 

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The mistaking the shifter for the volume knob is silly, perpetuated by testers that spend at most a few hours testing the car. In real ownership use, its a non issue. These testers are a reason manufacturers have been deleting physical buttons on cars. Because they found them hard to push during their brief testing. So now we have touchscreens with no tactile feedback and many times you must dig deep in the menu layers. Just because the managed to brainwash the public into believing buttons are bad. (A good example of this is Honda’s removal of the volume knob and tuning knob in place of a sliding touch bar, lol)
When creating an interface, the designer must juggle many things, but a critical one for a car should be how will both a novice and an experienced driver deal with the new layout, especially if it is not their only vehicle. For many, the Pacifica is one of two or more family cars, and they may have a work vehicle as well. And "muscle memory" is a real thing (and can cause errors in an emergency.) I've had the van for 15 months, and because I rarely have to play with it, the redesigned wiper stalk (from the T & C) still gets me at times.

And it is a sad fact that with most things automotive, function is forced to follow fit.

I haven't made a mistake yet, but I find it annoying that I do have to check that I've put the van in the correct gear. Talk about lack of tactile feedback! Never had that issue with the dash mounted shifter. But I appreciate the big screen.
 

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I was a little skeptical of the knob at first, but now I love it. My Ford also has a similar knob. I don't know why you say it doesn't have tactile feedback. It has stops and detents, just like a console shifter. To go from park to reverse, one click. To go from park to drive or reverse to drive, just turn it clockwise to the stop. To put it in park, just turn it counter-clockwise to the stop. To go from drive to reverse, two clicks. The learning curve was no harder than going from a gated to a non-gated console shifter or vice-versa. I've never mistaken it for a volume knob, but then again I'm used using steering wheel controls to change the volume.
 

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I disagree about the knob shifter.

There have been several occasions where I'm in a rush to go from drive to reverse (like a 3 point turn) and instead it goes to park and then I have to look at the shifter to move it to the correct position.

This never happened with a stick or even steering wheel stalk shifter because of the stop patterns for park, reverse, drive.

A knob is not intuitive for the function of multiple modes that is required without visual confirmation. If they wanted to make room on the dash, I would have welcomed a steering wheel stalk like my old truck.
 

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The complaint about the shifter from journalists was that it was easy to confuse it with the volume knob. One is a larger solid metal knob with sturdy detents, while the other is black plastic that’s smaller in diameter that’s easy to turn. How you confuse those two is what we are debating.
 

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The complaint about the shifter from journalists was that it was easy to confuse it with the volume knob. One is a larger solid metal knob with sturdy detents, while the other is black plastic that’s smaller in diameter that’s easy to turn. How you confuse those two is what we are debating.
I've done this too.

When you're not looking, size and material feel isn't as evident. You just reach for a circular knob in that vicinity. You obviously realize it either as soon as you touch it or if it doesn't do what you expect, but the confusion does exist.

The funny thing is one rare time when I drove my wife's car, I reached for the volume knob to shift into drive (her shifter is between the seats so I am muscle memoried to reach for the dash now).

It's bad design regardless.
 

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This is a dashboard from my old Sienna. It had a proper shifter- which didn't take much more room than the Pac's knob, heated seats controls, all climate controls and still managed to find space for a dedicated climate display, extra cupholder and a lockable bin. And the ACC was controlled by two easy to reach levers instead of the mess of 8 buttons in Pac. As far as ergonomics, that Toyota beats the Pac in many positions, which is quite a compliment for a car with 13 year older design.



I wrote about few other things here: http://www.pacificaforums.com/forum/305-chrysler-pacifica-minivan-versus-competition/27202-features-sienna-i-miss-pacifica.html
 

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Yes, the detents and stops are there. They try to keep you from going straight into "L" (although somehow I once managed it,) and coming the other way makes you pause at Reverse instead of straight into Park. Just does not feel intuitive to me even after a year for whatever reason. I had no trouble going from column to dash mounted with the T & C in 2009.

And there is so much crap on the steering wheel column now, I am not sure I would be happier with a column shifter.

But we are drifting off-topic again..... (standard internet blogging problem.)
 

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This is a dashboard from my old Sienna. It had a proper shifter- which didn't take much more room than the Pac's knob, heated seats controls, all climate controls and still managed to find space for a dedicated climate display, extra cupholder and a lockable bin. And the ACC was controlled by two easy to reach levers instead of the mess of 8 buttons in Pac. As far as ergonomics, that Toyota beats the Pac in many positions, which is quite a compliment for a car with 13 year older design.



I wrote about few other things here: http://www.pacificaforums.com/forum/305-chrysler-pacifica-minivan-versus-competition/27202-features-sienna-i-miss-pacifica.html
On the flip side, I've accidentally pushed our previous Ody's shifter into neutral when reaching for something on the dash. So I guess there are pros and cons with both systems. lol.

 

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This discussion is partly about change, and how difficult it is for us humans to adapt. The shifter lever we have all grown up with is now obsolete from a function view. It used to be necessary via connecting rods to actually move gears and valves in the transmission. This is now accomplished by electronic servos and a mere switch suffices to cause activation. Any recent car with a lever is just faking it, as that lever is just a switch disguised as our old friend, the big handful shifter we loved to grab, secure in the knowledge that it would make the car do what we wanted. We resist, but it is futile.

The industry does have to get together on this for safety. A similar system is needed on all cars so we all can know how to drive any car should the occasion arise. I don't think Chrysler's rotary switch is the best solution.
 

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The industry does have to get together on this for safety. A similar system is needed on all cars so we all can know how to drive any car should the occasion arise
I disagree. Let the innovators innovate. Let the good ones win and the bad ones lose...
 

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So I tested this today. I think moving from R to P should have the same push detent as moving from D to L. While there is a “click”, it’s not very noticeable especially if you are trying to do this quickly and will end up in P from D or L (which I use sometimes for the regen).

That’s the thing about the Sienna shifter that I liked, each position was unique and can be shifted solely by feel.
 

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This discussion is partly about change, and how difficult it is for us humans to adapt. The shifter lever we have all grown up with is now obsolete from a function view. It used to be necessary via connecting rods to actually move gears and valves in the transmission. This is now accomplished by electronic servos and a mere switch suffices to cause activation. Any recent car with a lever is just faking it, as that lever is just a switch disguised as our old friend, the big handful shifter we loved to grab, secure in the knowledge that it would make the car do what we wanted. We resist, but it is futile.

The industry does have to get together on this for safety. A similar system is needed on all cars so we all can know how to drive any car should the occasion arise. I don't think Chrysler's rotary switch is the best solution.
I disagree. Let the innovators innovate. Let the good ones win and the bad ones lose...
@Waldo, many moons ago (50's, 60's?) the government standardized automatic transmission shifters to go, in order, PRNDL, to do just that. Car designers work constantly to push the envelope (hence the MB shifter I cited a few posts ago apparently makes the "park" feature a push button on the end of the shifter stalk.) Until the majority of people buy cars for utility instead of shiny features that will continue.

@seo68, in an individual item marketplace, your philosophy works, although we all to often see the shiny flimsy ones outselling the sturdy dull ones. But cars are packages with many moving parts and tradeoffs. People giving up hands-free sliding doors for running boards. Stow & Go 2nd row for hybrid batteries. Sunroofs for the 8th seat. And those are things that can be traded off. We are not given the option of stick shift versus rotary dial. The old T & C great console for the space starved "super console" in the Pacifica. And so on.

The only things that will modify that particular design is (and hopefully not) a flurry of mishaps with the shifter knob being blamed, or the designers' need for that real estate, forcing the engineers to find a new spot/device, or maybe the marketing people want to make the shifter look "sporty."
 

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Chrysler isn't the only one using a rotary dial.
 

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Shifter knobs or rotary dials are problematic. The stalk-style shifter, whether mounted on the steering wheel, the center stack, or the console between the seats is unique to the cabin. There is no other object or control in the cabin like it. When you reach for it and take hold of it, you are 100% sure you are interacting with the shifter. And know exactly what to do.

A shifter knob or rotary dial on the other hand (or push buttons), when you reach for it and take hold of it, you cannot be 100% sure you actually grabbed the shifter as there are other knobs or rotary dials in the cabin.

In the Pacifica’s case, yes, I get it. The shifter knob is larger and closest to you. And when you are paying attention to and discussing the difference in size and location of the shifter knob/dial versus the volume knob/dial it’s somewhat hard to fathom someone would mistake the smaller, farther away Volume knob/dial as the shifter, or vice-versa. But the reality is, we are human, and while driving we are paying attention to other things, and both the shifter and volume control are knobs/dials. Mistaking one knob for another knob while driving…. happens.

Case and point, I drive an Equinox. The center stack has 4 knobs/dials. Top/left is radio volume, top/right is radio tuning and/or Info screen selection, middle/left is Fan Speed, middle/right is temperature control. I have been driving the Equinox for years. I know where all the knobs are and what they do. When I want to change a particular setting, I can reach for and interact with the correct dial without taking my eyes off the road. Having said this, there have been times where I grabbed the wrong knob; and didn’t know that I grabbed the wrong knob until after turning the knob. In other words, I grabbed and turned the knob and didn’t get the desired outcome.

Again, this doesn’t happen often, but it does happen. Thus, the shifter needs to be a unique control that you cannot mistake for something else. Shifter knobs or buttons are a bad idea when there are other knobs and buttons in the cabin. And I doubt there is any driver here that can say they have never grabbed and turned the wrong knob, or pushed the wrong button, for a desired action.
 

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I haven't had any problem finding R from D without looking. There's no hard stop there, just a detent, so I can understand why some people might accidentally turn it all the way to P while they're getting used to it. However, you're just as likely to do the same thing with a console shifter when you're getting used to a new car; because there's no hard stop with a console shifter either. To me, the learning curve and development of muscle memory is the same, it's just a rotation versus a linear motion.

The fact that the shifter is in the shape of a knob doesn't worry me at all. It doesn't have the same size & feel as other knobs and it's not in the same location, so I have a hard time understanding what would cause me to mistake it for something else. And even if I did, the shifter has an interlock, so if I happened to grab it while rolling down the highway, thinking it was a volume control, it's not going to do anything.

The shifter designs that drive me crazy are the console sticks that you click up or down to shift, but they always return to a centered position no matter what gear you have selected. BMW came out with one of those about a decade ago and it was a usability nightmare, I think they still use it in their DCT models. More recently, Audi and Jeep have recently adopted the ZF "monostable". There's no hope of applying muscle memory with that design.

Another kind I don't like are pushbutton shifters where all the buttons feel the same. I don't mind the new Honda and GM pushbutton shifters, because the buttons are unique and you can tell which button you're about to press by feel. But the Lincoln design is a disaster, all the buttons feel identical and they are arranged in a vertical row right next to the infotainment touch screen.
 

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I just don't think the government is smarter than the marketplace. Any dictate is stifling. If they insist on a particular design, it freezes innovation in its place and perhaps a fabulous new design will never be discovered. I understand the desire for standardization in the name of safety, but every rule has consequences, and oftentimes many of them are unintended and undesirable.

I know that sometimes manufacturers are also in favor of such standardization, because it lets them off the hook.They can throw up their hands and say "it's not our fault," and we all suffer in the process. I freely admit their are valid arguments on both sides of this issue, but I look forward to innovation that makes things better, knowing that there will be occasional missteps along the way.
 

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I have four vehicles at home, all shift in completely distinct ways. I don't have a problem with it as long as the basic design is sound. Pacifica is the least favorite. It is impossible to shift in R without looking, especially on the Hybrid, which is often driven in L. Why couldn't they make a detent between P and R?
 
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