Some car shoppers avoid minivans like the plague because of the soccer mom stigma. Families will sacrifice the convenience of a minivan because these wheeled breadboxes just don't seem cool. Although midsize SUVs can provide an alternative, some drivers have discovered that the humble minivan provides the ideal solution for their active families and will never look back.
But minivans look and drive better than ever before, and they can even tow. There are a handful of minivans on the market that offer space, reliability and powerful engines that will tow up to 3,600 lbs. So when it's time to embark on the family weekend getaway, towing the boat or trailer full of off-road toys will be a no brainer.
1. 2019 Dodge Grand Caravan
The 2019 Dodge Grand Caravan is the antithesis of the "soft minivan". Thanks to its powerful engine, the Dodge Grand Caravan can haul the entire clan and tow some serious weight. The bad news is that Dodge is canceling the Grand Caravan after this year because its cousin, the Chrysler Pacifica (below), is outperforming it in sales. The good news is you can still get your hands on a new Grand Caravan through 2019.
The Grand Caravan has smart and flexible stow-and-go seating to fit the belongings of the whole crew in the floor bins to add 12 cubic feet of storage. When it comes to safety, the all-speed traction control helps keep the most precious cargo safe by monitoring wheel slip and maintaining traction. The standard engine is the 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 which is good for up to 283 horsepower and can tow up to 3,600 lbs.
2. 2019 Chrysler Pacifica
The cousin to the outgoing Dodge Grand Caravan is the 2019 Chrysler Pacifica and it has a lot to offer in its own right for families of up to 7 who need some towing power. In addition to the available space and sliding door convenience exclusive to the minivan segment, the Pacifica excels in capability. The 2019 Chrysler Pacifica shares the 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 engine with the Grand Caravan for 287 horsepower and matches the best-in-class towing capacity of 3,600 lbs.
Regardless of how rambunctious your kids get in the back rows, you'll maintain peace of mind thanks to the upscale interior featuring premium materials, great gas mileage (up to 19 city/28 highway mpg) and standard safety features including a rearview camera, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, and rear parking sensors.
Maximum Towing Capacity: 3,600 lbs
3. 2019 Toyota Sienna
If you're looking for a minivan with all-wheel drive, one of the most powerful engines in its class and great towing capacity numbers, the 2019 Toyota Sienna should top the list. The Sienna is the only minivan with an AWD option which is a plus for families who live in areas that get rough weather conditions. The engine is a 296-horsepower 3.5-liter V6 which can tow up to 3,500 lbs. Although this number is just shy of the two aforementioned minivans, it will cover the towing needs of most active families.
On top of the capability, Toyota gets some of the highest reliability rankings in the industry and U.S. News and World Report gives it a 4.5/5 score which is rated "among the best". This should give you peace of mind when your greatest nightmare is a broken down van with sugar-high kids in the back.
Maximum Towing Capacity: 3,500 lbs
4. 2019 Kia Sedona
The 2019 Kia Sedona fits between 7-8 passengers and provides solid value for the money. The Sedona may not have as much cargo or passenger space as some competitors, but it makes up for it in great tech, safety scores, and a V6 engine with enough power to tow up to 3,500 lbs. The standard infotainment system is a user-friendly 7-inch touch screen which can be upgraded to an 8-inch system with navigation.
Under the hood, the 2019 Sedona offers a 276-horsepower 3.3-liter V6 which is powerful enough to move around soccer teams and trailers alike. The 2019 Sedona can tow up to 3,500 pounds. In addition to transporting families and gear, the Sedona will be a safe choice thanks to the IIHS rating of "Good" in 5 out of the 6 categories tested.
Maximum Towing Capacity: 3,500 lbs
5. 2019 Honda Odyssey
Another solid minivan for towing is the 2019 Honda Odyssey. Although it lags behind the rest of our list in towing capacity numbers, the 3,000 lbs maximum will be sufficient for the small boats or ATVs that need to come along on the family adventures. It also offers top safety ratings, space, and technology for a family that likes to explore.
U.S. News and World ranked the Odyssey #1 in the minivan segment thanks to a spacious and comfortable cabin and smart features like a built-in vacuum for the crumbs that will inevitably be left behind by the backseat passengers. Many families comparison shop between the Toyota Sienna and the Honda Odyssey. While the Odyssey is not available with AWD and falls short in towing capacity, its dynamics and handling surpass the Sienna's. A powerful 3.5-liter V6 gives you 280 horsepower for ample grunt to move kids or go-karts.
Maximum Towing Capacity: 3,000 lbs