Whether you're driving the van in the city or on the interstate, Chrysler has made sure to keep the tech inside the van up to date. The Uconnect infotainment system is easy to navigate without too many submenus while also supporting Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. Plus you can drag and drop your favorite features to the bottom of the screen for quick access. The 8.4-inch touchscreen is also one of the brightest I've seen in a car in some time; it cut through any glare that may have washed out the display.
Sadly, the seats need an upgrade. They're harder than you would expect from a vehicle that's built for road trips and long days running errands. For the folks in the back, there is at least a diversion to the seats. All told, the second-row rear passengers have access to two touchscreen displays that offer up the option to watch videos via a Blu-Ray player or HDMI input. Plus, there are games like Sudoku and Solitaire on the screens in case you get sick of watching Frozen for 2,348th time because someone keeps forgetting to bring different movie on road trips.
As mentioned earlier, the car comes with third-row seating. Thanks to the sliding doors and lower floor level than a large SUV, it's easier to get in and out of all the back seats. If you need more storage than seating, with the pull of a cord and some quick folding, that third row disappears into the floor of the Pacifica. Sadly, because of the hybrid battery, the second-row seats don't stow and go into the floor. Instead you have to pull them out of the van. It's not difficult, but it's not exactly easy either. It took me a few minutes and some cursing to figure out the best way to pull out the chairs.
But even with the second row still in the minivan, there's an incredible amount of room in the back. And thanks to the split between the two middle seats, I was able to shove one of my surfboards into the car with room for, well, everything else I own that's "outdoorsy." Trips to locations where you want to haul people and stuff like Costco, Home Depot, soccer practice, the beach and even Burning Man should be no problem with this van.
Another win for the minivan is that since it's lower to the ground than a typical large SUV, it's easier to load all of your stuff. Frankly, most people never use the ground clearance found on SUVs since a majority of those vehicles never make it off road. Why deal with the hassle of lifting things higher when there's a van on the market that will carry even more of your stuff and won't strain your lower back?
The Chrysler Pacifica hybrid has a lot going for it: great gas mileage, impressive EV-only range, tons of room, an excellent tech suite and a ride that's better than expected. But it has one giant mark against it: It's a minivan, and it looks the part. But maybe if you're in the market for an SUV you'll take a few moments to consider the Pacifica Hybrid. It won't look as cool sitting in your driveway, but it's definitely not the surrender of your youth (that happened a long time ago). Instead choosing the Pacific is a case of logic over peer pressure. It's kind of like you're a rebel. A rebel with a van.