Expert review written by the Kelley Blue Book vehicle review editorial team.
Over the years, Toyota’s Sienna minivan has grown in size, power and price, but when it comes to hauling kids and all their stuff, the Sienna is superior to any SUV or wagon. In addition to its stellar reliability and resale numbers, the 8-passenger 2018 Toyota Sienna is also the only minivan to offer the option of all-wheel drive.
You'll Like The 2018 Toyota Sienna If...
If you’re looking for a roomy minivan that specializes in reliability, longevity and ease of operation, the 2018 Toyota Sienna checks all the right boxes. Standard driver assists maximize safety, while options such as mobility-needs systems and all-wheel drive widen the Sienna’s already broad appeal.
You May Not Like The 2018 Toyota Sienna If...
The Sienna is not the least expensive minivan you can buy; that honor goes to the Dodge Grand Caravan and Kia Sedona, neither of which can match the Sienna’s resale value. The Chrysler Pacifica offers better styling, more features and a hybrid option, but can’t match the Sienna’s cargo volume.
The 2018 Toyota Sienna receives the Toyota Safety Sense (TSS-P) suite of driver assists as standard equipment. This includes a pre-collision system with pedestrian detection, adaptive cruise control, lane-departure warning and assist plus automatic high beams. A newly styled front end, upgraded Entune multimedia system, additional USB ports and a Bird’s-Eye View monitor for the Limited trim round out the changes.
The 2018 Sienna minivan has three rows of seats and can accommodate seven or eight passengers. Seven-passenger models have a pair of 2nd-row captain’s chairs, while 8-passenger models have a bench that seats three. You can opt for a 7- or 8-passenger arrangement in every Sienna except the SE, which is 8-passenger-only. If you choose 2nd-row captain’s seats in the XLE or Limited, your passengers get lounge seats with adjustable ottomans and armrests. Toyota’s minivan features four LATCH points for child-safety seats, plenty of nooks and crannies up front for electronics and bags, and ample storage in back behind the third row.
Compared to the Honda Odyssey with its "lightning-bolt" side-window treatment or the Kia Sedona and new Chrysler Pacifica with their progressive stances, the Toyota Sienna appears more conservative to our eyes, although this year’s revised front end does add a bit more flair. Like all matters of taste, this isn’t a bad thing, and whether the Sienna looks the best among its peers or is lost in the crowd will be subject to your eyes. Sienna SE models strive to put the "swagger" in this Toyota’s wagon with big 19-inch alloy wheels, front and rear underbody spoilers and smoked headlights.
With its powerful 296-horsepower V6 engine, the Toyota Sienna has always delivered impressive acceleration that borders on sporty, although we don’t envision many Sienna drivers challenging other cars to a drag race. The Sienna’s power is better used for passing and merging, and tackling steep grades with a full complement onboard. On the highway, the Sienna is a serene machine, cruising effortlessly at 75 mph with barely a hint of road or wind noise infiltrating the cabin. Those looking for a bit more feedback from their minivan’s driving experience should look to the SE trim. It features 19-inch wheels and a sport-tuned suspension for improved cornering. The trade-off for the SE’s better drivability, however, is a firmer ride and a bit more tire noise. Those living in snowy climes will definitely want the optional all-wheel drive, although models so equipped do surrender a few mpg vs. the front-drive vans.
The 2018 Toyota Sienna L has a Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) starting at $30,745 for a base L model, including destination charges. On the other end of the Sienna spectrum, a loaded all-wheel-drive Limited Premium model tops $48,000. You can find a lot of value in between, starting with an LE model. At these prices, the Sienna nearly mirrors those of its Honda Odyssey competition, is slightly above the new Chrysler Pacifica, and is a few thousand more than the starting prices of the Nissan Quest, Kia Sedona and Dodge Grand Caravan. Before buying, be sure to check the KBB.com Fair Purchase Price to see what others in your area are paying for their new Sienna. Another feather in this Toyota’s cap is resale value: The Sienna has routinely been a KBB Best Resale Value Award winner, including most recently in 2016.Bonus Content: See what the Toyota Sienna is like compared to its competitionToyota Sienna vs Honda Odyssey
Toyota’s Sienna minivan for 2018 spans five trims: L, LE, SE, XLE and Limited. A base L model comes with the Toyota Safety Sense system, tri-zone climate control, fabric seats, rearview camera, automatic headlights and the Entune Audio system with 6.1-inch touch screen, AM/FM/CD player with USB, and iPod and Bluetooth connectivity with Siri Eyes Free for Apple devices. That model is only available with seating for seven; all others can accommodate seven or eight. The LE gets easy-clean fabric, power-operated sliding doors, upgraded infotainment system and power-adjustable driver’s seat. All 2018 Siennas come with Toyota Care, which covers two years/25,000 miles of complimentary maintenance.
Keep climbing trims and you’ll get extra conveniences such as a power liftgate (optional on LE models), Leatherette or genuine leather seats, push-button start, moonroof, navigation system and Driver Easy Speak, which broadcasts the driver’s voice to the rear speakers — no more needing to turn around and yell at the kids! Active safety features include blind-spot monitoring, while the Limited models get a JBL audio system with a 10-inch subwoofer. A rear-seat entertainment system with Blu-ray DVD player and ultra-wide 16.4-inch screen with HDMI inputs, Android streaming capabilities and twin power outlets is available to further keep the kiddos occupied.
ALL-WHEEL DRIVEWhy other minivans don’t offer the option of all-wheel drive is a mystery, but one that works in the Sienna’s favor. Although not inexpensive, for anyone living in the northern portion of the country, this option is worth its weight in gold. MOBILITY SOLUTIONSPassengers in need of mobility assistance will find the 2018 Sienna’s available equipment to be a lifesaver. Among the more notable features are an aftermarket wheelchair ramp and the Auto Access Seat, a factory-installed power-operated chair providing easier access to the second row.
Under the Hood
The 2018 Toyota Sienna is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 with power ratings of 296 horsepower and 263 lb-ft of torque while running on regular unleaded gasoline. Power is routed through an 8-speed automatic transmission. This combo helps push fuel-economy figures close to best-in-class, although both the Honda Odyssey and Chrysler Pacific Hybrid do better. As with its competitors, the Sienna comes standard with front-wheel drive (FWD), while unlike the rest it’s available with all-wheel drive (AWD) across every trim except the base L and sportier SE, a boon for drivers living in cold-weather states. With either layout, the Toyota Sienna is rated to tow up to 3,500 pounds. 3.5-liter V6296 horsepower @ 6,600 rpm263 lb-ft of torque @ 4,700 rpmEPA city/highway fuel economy: 19/27 mpg (FWD), 18/24 mpg (AWD)
With a limited number of minivans available in the marketplace, the 2018 Toyota Sienna qualifies as one of the better choices. Over the years, Toyota’s family van has grown in size, power and price, meaning when it comes to hauling the kids and all their stuff, the Sienna is still far superior to any SUV or wagon. With seating for up to eight passengers, the Sienna offers a versatile interior as attractive as it is functional. Options galore spread over five trims cater to just about every budget and personal taste, and while the Sienna’s styling remains more conservative than the Chrysler Pacifica and Honda Odyssey, it has one trick up its sleeve more important than looks: the option of all-wheel drive.