Arriving at dealerships right now is the all-new all-hybrid 2021 Toyota Sienna minivan. Redesigned and engineered from the ground up and offered only as a hybrid model now, it has also received this month the Family Green Car of the Year award by Green Car Journal judges.
Designed, engineered and built in the United States, the all-new 2021 Toyota Sienna comes on the brand’s latest generation TNGA-K chassis architecture and features sharper styling that falls in line with many of their most recent new vehicles lines.
Looking taller, skinnier and more athletic than the last generation is actually an optical illusion as this Sienna is larger than the old in every dimension. It is sleeker however with artistic lines and forms better executed and more convincing it’s not a dowdy brick than before I think.
Features like LED lighting front and rear abound along with wheel sizes up to the black 20-inchers such as those found on the sporty new XSE trim grade. Here you get a more aggressive front and rear fascia to amp up the traditionally stale minivan theme. Cheer up, it doesn’t have to be the end of a vibrant life after all.
Inside, Toyota takes the Sienna to the next level. Design gets bolder and more like that of a luxury SUV. The dash design is futuristic and modern with a sweeping horizontal theme. The flying bridge center console really adds a new dimension to the mini-van experience too with high beltline. Underneath however it still offers the kind of storage and practicality expected here.
Available second row captain’s chairs feature a long slide function and ottoman feature that allows for maximum comfort or versatility for long family road trips. Depending on the trim grade selected from LE, XLE, Limited and Platinum you can choose both seven and eight seating configurations.
Offering too many technological entertainment, convenience and safety features than to list, suffice it I say it’s more than ever before. The big news I’d say for this interior is its new level of quiet afforded by increased sound insulation, body sealants and a stronger body structure.
The biggest news however might be what powers the new 2021 Toyota Sienna which will be a sole hybrid powertrain. Made up of the familiar hardware of a 2.5-liter Atkinson Cycle four-cylinder engine and electric motors is virtually the same as found in the Toyota Highlander Hybrid.
Here with standard fwd or optional all-wheel-drive it offers up to 243 system horsepower and an EPA estimated 33 mpg combined fuel economy, not bad for a minivan. The system is well proven and offers a variety of drive modes including EV, NORMAL, ECO and SPORT.
My only question will be how will performance compare to the previous generation Sienna which was up to 100 pounds lighter than the 4,725-pound 2021 Sienna and offered up significantly more power from its 296 horsepower 3.5-liter V6.
It’s likely most minivan customers won’t mind the difference, but only a test drive will tell.