Even with the dominance of SUVs and crossovers as the family haulers of choice, there remains a dedicated fanbase of the minivan and its unmatched practiaclty for hauling people and other things.
So this week when Toyota debuted its new 2021 Sienna minivan, the followers of van life had a lot to be excited about. A full redesign of the Sienna has been a long time coming, with the current model first appearing for the 2011 model year, and it looks to be worth the wait.
Not surprisingly, the new Sienna rides on a version of the same Toyota TNGA platform that underpins all of the brand’s recent models including the Camry, RAV4 and Highlander And despite being aimed at families, there’s been a lot of work put into the new Sienna to make it sleeker and more attractive than any minivan has the right to be.
Toyota says the styling of the new Sienna was inspired by the the Shinkansen bullet trains of Japan, but we also see a lot of influence from other Toyota models including the Supra. This is particularly evident in the flowing rear quarter panels and taillamps.
Under the hood there’s a big departure from the outgoing Sienna, which uses a 3.5 liter V6 as its only engine. For 2021 all Siennas will be hybrids, powered by 2.5 liter electric-assisted setup making 243 hp. Toyota says it will get 33 miles to the gallon in combined driving, putting it ahead of the minivan pack by far.
Additionally, for those looking for all-weather capability and improved handling the 2021 will also be available with AWD in the form of a rear-mounted electric motor, just like what’s currently used on the RAV4 and Highlander Hybrids.
The interior of the Sienna also gets some major changes, including a new center console that gives it a much sleeker and more like car-like appearance than the old model.
Don’t fear though, it will still be available with all the stuff that makes minivans so practical, including multiple seating arrangements, a an array of onboard comfort and entertainment features and even an available built-in vacuum cleaner.
Designed and built here in the US, the 2021 Sienna will be looking to steal some attention from the SUV crowd when it arrives in dealerships. Our biggest question is that now that Toyota sells hopped-up TRD versions of the Camry and Avalon, can we expect a TRD Sienna in the near future too? Please make it happen!