Comfort and Quality » 8
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QUALITY | 8 out of 10
“a masterpiece of accommodating design”
Car and Driver
“convenient LED reading lamps dot the cabin”
possibly the quietest minivans
improved over the previous Dodge Caravan in ergonomic design
Although its interior materials aren’t the best, the 2009 Dodge Grand Caravan has a wide range of seating options, and most give riders plenty of room. Interior design is another strong point; however, the Grand Caravan fails to wow up close.
Motor Trend likes the “convenient LED reading lamps [that] dot the cabin, and there's an available overhead 'halo' light that bathes the interior in soft blue.” Motor Trend and other sources also note the newly optional "Swivel 'n Go second-row chairs [that] flip around 180 degrees." MotherProof says the new feature is “fun,” but has difficulty removing the optional table that fits between the second- and third-row seats. Autoblog remarks that the third-row seat “flips backwards for tailgate seating that's more comfortable than any bare-metal pickup truck bed.” Cars.com likes the Stow 'n Go second-row seats, “which fold into the floor,” and Car and Driver calls them “a masterpiece of accommodating design.”
“The standard second-row bench seat and a manual 60/40-split folding third row (with the bench, the same bins in the floor that would accept folded Stow 'n Go seats, were they installed, provide covered storage); Stow 'n Go second-row captain's chairs with the manual folding third row; or Swivel 'n Go rearward-facing second-row seats with the manual third row,” says Cars.com about the layout of the interior and different seating options.
Most reviewers come down hard on the materials used on the dash and door panels of the Dodge; the interior “has a cheap-motel look about it, too, with plastic gestures everywhere—obvious plastic, blatant plastic,” says Car and Driver, adding that the big center console is “rickety.” Despite these drawbacks, Washington Post gives a positively glowing review, advising car buyers to go for the top-of-the-line Caravan SXT, calling it "luxurious ... like being in your living room or a family room." ConsumerGuide agrees, acknowledging the Grand Caravan as "possibly the quietest minivans."
The comfort and utility of the 2009 Dodge Grand Caravan match the minivan's reputation as an all-around family car; if you're looking for top-class materials, this isn't the place, though.