Originally Posted by azdamay
You make an impassioned case for the Chrysler Corp., but I've excerpted the bottom line. I want to like Chrysler products, they have in fact innovated any number of things. But every product from that company that I've ever owned, driven, or had in the family has been a let down from a quality standpoint.
Also, it's only very recently that Chrysler finally gave the Caravan a much-needed power boost. For a long time they lagged way behind in both engine and transmission offerings. I know. I drove a 2006 Grand Caravan C/V for 4.5 years. Even with all the seats, sound insulation, and other goodies removed to create a 'cargo' van, it was still a dog with that tired old 3.3 liter V6.
Everything has it's pros and cons. Buyers without strong bias will realize that. To your points:
Quality ratings for Chrysler over the last 5 yrs are virtually identical to BMW, Mercedes, Jaguar and VW and far better than Land Rover. This issue has not stopped so-called discriminating buyers from paying $80+K for hardware with similar quality ratings.
You say a base 3.3L 6 cyl motor with wide ratio 4 spd auto was slow? No kidding. That's because you drove a strippo fleet option caravan bought thru low bid that sold for $14K, duh!! That market has been filled with Ford Transit and other asian mini's. This price point is less than what a base USPS fleet Ford Aerostar cost a decade earlier. The base 3.3L was popular and demanded by destitute pedestrian buyers and businesses who pinch pennies. That's why it was sold and it's why you weren't driving a Toyota. An optional, torquey 3.8L motor was released for Dodge Caravan a whopping 11 years ago and it came with a crisply shifting 6 speed automatic. This isn't so recent. An even more powerful 4.0 liter option was released almost 5 yrs ago to compete head-to-head with Toyotas and Hondas costing near $40K. The moral of the story....don't drive a 6 cyl Mustang or 525i and then complain it won't accelerate like a 550i or Mustang GT....duh. Next you're gonna tell us that Camaro's are slow because you drove a 6 cyl.
The Caravan's 3.8 L and 4.0L options are not new by any stretch. To the dismay of Dodge Engineers, the now-discontinued super torquey 4.0L stood toe-to-toe with the latest 280HP engine in more than one magazine drag test. The big news for the new 32v motor is it comes standard without
any price increase. Now strippo fleet drivers can burn rubber in vans costing under $20K lol. No other minivan mfr offers such power at a similar price point.