The Dodge Caravan revolutionized the minivan segment back in the 1980s, and it remains today. Unlike its first run, the 2019 Dodge Grand Caravan is anything but revolutionary as the entire segment has blown by it with new designs, updated features, and even plug-in hybrid powertrains with up to 32 miles of all-electric range. So, why does the Grand Caravan still exist despite being so far behind the times? Continue reading to find out.

Best Value

The evolving minivan segment has left the 2019 Dodge Grand Caravan in its wake, but it still serves a purpose: cheap family transportation. This is why we suggest sticking with the SE Plus trim, which is just one step above the base SE. The Grand Caravan SE Plus rolls in with standard three-zone manual climate control, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, 17-inch wheels with hubcaps, power heated mirrors, automatic headlights, fog lights, premium cloth seats, Stow ‘n Go third-row seats, a 6.5-inch touchscreen, Bluetooth connectivity with streaming audio, and more. Sure, it's not as well equipped as its competitors, but it's about as cheap a minivan with these features can get.

  • Model: 2019 Dodge Grand Caravan SE Plus
  • Engine: 3.6-liter V6
  • Output: 283 hp / 260 lb-ft
  • Transmission:Six-speed automatic
  • Drivetrain: Front-wheel drive
  • MPG:17 City / 25 Hwy
  • Options: None
  • Base Price:$30,410 (including a $1,395 destination fee)
  • Best Value Price:$30,410

Performance

Dodge Grand Caravan

Despite its age, the Grand Caravan’s 3.6-liter V6 engine is powerful for its class at 283 horsepower. This gets the Grand Caravan’s big body up and moving quicker than most minivans.

Sadly, straight-line acceleration is where the good parts of the Grand Caravan’s powertrain stop. Its suspension is very dated, giving it a rough ride and allowing way too much body lean. There's also a lot of feedback that makes its way through the chassis and into the cabin.

Fuel economy is also subpar at just 17 miles per gallon city, 25 mpg highway, and 20 combined, according to the EPA. And things will only get worse as its competitors take a page from the Grand Caravan’s cross-showroom rival, the Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid, and electrify their minivans.

Style

The Grand Caravan’s Stow ‘n Go seating unveils a massive cargo area that can swallow up to 143.8 cubic feet of cargo. It also features a simple layout with a flat learning curve, making it perfect for buyers who just want to drive without studying the owner’s manual.

The Dodge Grand Caravan hasn’t gone through a meaningful refresh since 2011, and even then the redesign wasn’t anything to write home about. This basic looks continue inside where there are copious amounts of plastic and minimal soft-touch materials.

The Best and Worst Things

In its lower trims, the Dodge Grand Caravan is a great value for those who just want a minivan to haul cargo or kiddos.

Sure, its looks are unappealing, but where the 2019 Grand Caravan really disappoints is safety. It sits at the bottom of the IIHS’ list of minivans due to its “Poor” small-front-overlap crash and headlight tests. Plus, its only available advanced safety features are blind-spot monitoring and rear parking sensors.

Right For? Wrong For?

Dodge Grand Caravan

The Grand Caravan is perfect for a buyer looking for a no-frills minivan they can just start and drive. It’s also great for companies looking for a work-ready minivan with a massive cargo hold.

Younger families looking for the latest in minivan tech will be better suited with one of the Grand Caravan’s many competitors.

The Bottom Line

It’s easy to forget it still exists because the automaker has done so little to it in the last nine model years, but the 2019 Dodge Grand Caravan gives budget buyers and those looking for simple family transportation an option.