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2008 Dodge Grand Caravan Passenger

Overview
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2008 Dodge Grand Caravan Passenger Review

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Although it's been overshadowed by the SUV as the symbol for family transport in third-millennium America, almost a million families opted for the arguably more functional minivan as recently as 2006. Chrysler is widely credited with inventing the modern minivan and will soon be the only domestic manufacturer left in the game, as GM and Ford effectively replace their slow-selling minivans with three-row crossover SUVs. For the 2008 model year, the all-new Dodge Grand Caravan and its slightly ritzier Chrysler Town & Country sibling arrive with attractive seating and entertainment options to compete with the remaining minivans from Honda, Nissan, Toyota, Hyundai and Kia.

You'll Like This Car If...

With features like an available Swivel 'n Go setup that configures into a table for four people and dual, independent video monitors that can display DVD movies, video games or satellite-based SIRIUS Backseat TV, Chrysler's fifth-generation minivan is the obvious choice for satisfying rear-seat riders.

You May Not Like This Car If...

While the Grand Caravan's ride and handling are well-balanced, you may prefer the softer Toyota Sienna or the more eager Honda Odyssey. Also, while the Grand Caravan's interior has been greatly improved versus its predecessor, we expected the category's newest entry to feel somewhat richer.

What's New for 2008

Beneath the surface of its boxier, more masculine styling, the fifth-generation Grand Caravan offers improved powertrains, more contemporary interior styling and class-exclusive options like satellite TV (offering three family channels) and clever second-row seating options. The shorter-wheelbase Caravan model is no longer.

Driving the Grand Caravan Passenger

Driving Impressions If you've found the ride and handling of other minivans too soft or too firm, you might appreciate the Grand Caravan's balance between highway comfort and around-town responsiveness. We also...

appreciated the new model's much-improved steering and braking response. Equipped with the 3.8-liter V6, our test vehicle had no problem transporting the medium-size loads to which we subjected it, but for an additional $630 and no sacrifice in EPA fuel economy figures we'd probably spring for the 4.0-liter V6 option. We'd likely look elsewhere in the segment before settling for the 175-horsepower base V6. The Grand Caravan isn't as nimble in parking lots as the exceptionally tight-turning Honda Odyssey and Toyota Sienna. Overall, we found the fifth-generation Grand Caravan much more satisfying from behind the wheel than its predecessor and commendable for a people-mover of its stature.

Audio/Video Options
In addition to the comprehensive MyGIG infotainment system up front, Chrysler's newest minivan offers dual, independent rear video screens that allow second- and third-row passengers to watch two different DVD movies, play video games or even watch the Disney Channel, Nickelodeon or Cartoon Network Mobile via SIRIUS Backseat TV.

Swivel 'n Go Seats
Although not without legroom challenges, the Swivel 'n Go seating option, that comprises rear-swiveling second-row captain's chairs and a hideaway, removable table, takes the concept of the rolling family room to a new level. The fold-flat Stow 'n Go seating system introduced on the previous generation is also available.

2008 Dodge Grand Caravan Passenger Details
2008 Dodge Grand Caravan Passenger photo Interior

Sharing sheetmetal, powertrains and all but a few features, the Dodge Grand Caravan and Chrysler Town & Country are most differentiated by unique interior styling. Whereas the Town & Country combines wood-like and bright trim in conveying a more sophisticated persona, the Grand Caravan's sportier gauge cluster and heavier use of black suggest a more athletic nature. Available conveniences include Stow 'n Go and Swivel 'n Go second-row seating, integrated child booster seats and a class-exclusive power-folding third-row seat. Loading and unloading is predictably easy and the accommodations are comfortable.

Exterior
2008 Dodge Grand Caravan Passenger photo

After more ovoid third- and fourth-generation models, the all-new Grand Caravan returns to the boxier roots of the first couple of iterations. The new sheetmetal and more available chrome give the new model a look that's bolder and more sophisticated at once, and counters the stereotypical minivan look. Black trim on the SE gives way to body-color and bright trim on the SXT.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

A base-equipped 2008 Dodge Grand Caravan SE includes air conditioning, power windows and locks, a four-speaker AM/FM/CD/MP3 sound system, standard cloth seating, a second-row bench seat and a 60/40-split fold-flat third-row seat. Standard safety equipment includes electronic stability and traction controls plus front and three-row side-curtain airbags.

Optional Equipment

The Grand Caravan's most sophisticated option is a hard-drive-based MyGIG system that offers navigation with real-time traffic information and features MP3/WMA music and JPEG image uploading, auxiliary audio input, voice-recognition, Bluetooth hands-free cell phone connectivity and more. Other notable options include backup sensors and a rearview camera, a power liftgate, power sliding doors and power-folding third-row seat. Second-row seating options include fold-flat Stow 'n Go or rearward-pivoting Swivel 'n Go seats, integrated child booster seats, power windows and manual sunshades. A comprehensive entertainment system offers two independent video displays.

Under the Hood

The all-new Chrysler minivans lose the previously-available four-cylinder engine and gain the category's first six-speed transmission. We wouldn't want to regularly haul around full loads with the base powertrain, comprised of a 3.3-liter V6 and four-speed automatic transmission, especially for very little gain in the way of improved fuel economy.

3.3-liter V6
175 horsepower @ 5000 rpm
205 lb.-ft of torque @ 4000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 17/24

3.8-liter V6
197 horsepower @ 5000 rpm
230 lb.-ft of torque @ 4000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 16/23

4.0-liter V6
251 horsepower @ 6000 rpm
259 lb.-ft of torque @ 4200 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 16/23

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2008 Dodge Grand Caravan Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
6.9
Out of 10

Based on 279 Ratings for the 2008 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    7.5/10
    Quality
    7.0/10
  • Reliability
    7.5/10
    Performance
    7.4/10
  • Comfort
    7.9/10
    Styling
    7.8/10

These vans EAT BRAKES! Comfortable enough

By on Wednesday, April 15, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 55,000

10 7.0
overall rating 7 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
7/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
6/10
Quality
7/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Comfortable ride, nice interior amenities"

Cons: "Premature brake wear, suspension noises"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 5

"Over the past couple years we have purchased 7 Grand Caravans (2011-2014 models) for our elder transportation business. We also have bought a few Toyota Siennas. The Grand Caravans are adequate; they're comfortable, smooth driving for the most part, and user friendly. CON: We have been VERY DISAPPOINTED in the brake quality on these vans. I used to work for a Dodge dealer as a tech in the 90s, and we had consistent problems with Caravan brakes. Well, it seems nothing has changed in that department; in fact, I think they're worse now! We're seeing stuck calipers (leading to brake pad and rotor destruction) at 20K- 25K miles intervals on several of the vans. And, we're talking front AND rear brakes! And no, they don't salt the roads in our community and we don't drive them hard. Our local shop says they're seeing this all the time on late model GCs. I wrote to Chrysler and got the usual "We're sorry for your inconvenience but brakes are a wear item, blah, blah, blah. We won't be offering any assistance. End of story." Meanwhile, our Siennas go at least 50K miles (often 70K) before they need brakes. So, long story short, if you can do your own brake jobs (not a hard job for most home mechanics) or you can live with paying a shop $300 - $400 every 25K miles to do the job, then the Grand Caravan is not a bad ride."

2 people out of 2 found this review helpful

best vehicle we have ever owned. Won't by anything

By on Friday, April 03, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 69,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "easiest vehicle ever to drive,"

Cons: "gas mileage is soso"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"We have owned the Dodge Grand Caravan since 2005. Not only is it roomy to travel in with 2 big dogs and a cat, the ride is very comfortable. My husband falls asleep all the time because it is that comfortable. The Grand Caravan is the easiest vehicle I have ever driven. I would recommend the Dodge Grand Caravan in a heart beat."

5 people out of 9 found this review helpful

Servers.....

By on Monday, March 30, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 49,300

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Great Value, Very Comfortable"

Cons: "Spare tire hard to get to."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"Servers the purpose it was designed for very, very well. I've had this vehicle for 5 years and have had zero work done on it other than the routine maintenance. Tires and Battery has been replaced and tires of course. Visibility it excellent and very comfortable on the highway and in the city. With the seats down, you can haul just about anything you can haul in a pickup. Also have pulled a very small trailer without any extra effort. While this is an old design, it continues to fulfill expectations."

front seats more comfortable than Odyssey/Sienna

By on Tuesday, March 10, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 57,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Cons: "car starts making lots of noises around 75,000"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"I've been driving Caravans since 1984, starting with 4-speed manual trans on floor (that's right). I take them into deep snow with 4 snow tires to top of VT, great cars; stow'n go seats are very good, drop the middle seats and kids sleep on the floor, plenty of leg room. Have had good luck with my vehicles despite complaints by others. Could be because I take good care of them and don't beat them. Front seats are designed to cup your body like a baseball glove vs. arched lower-back seats in Odyssey and Sienna. For long drives this makes a huge difference. No, I don't work for Dodge or Fiat, just a loyal customer going back to 1970's slant six engines in Dodge vans and Darts"

14 people out of 18 found this review helpful

Drives nice

By on Saturday, March 07, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 118,621

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
8/10
Quality
7/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "inside only has 1 small (tiny) hole in drver's sea"

Cons: "CV joints clicking barely, right rotor not the bes"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"Needs CV Joints they're clicking real quietly right now. Back passenger tail-light still works at least, but the light cover is glued, but at least still works. Small (tiny) dent on the right of the rear light.....I mean tiny."

2 people out of 2 found this review helpful

Comfortable, reliable vehicle.

By on Friday, February 20, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 66,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "about 18 to 19 mpg in everyday driving"

Cons: "no heat vent to warm up feet area"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"Only bought it to carry my handicapped dad around, but do really like it. Comfortable, drives good and has been very dependable with no mechanical problems."

7 people out of 8 found this review helpful

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

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