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Chrysler Town & Country and Dodge Grand Caravan 2005+

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Comments

  • artsarts Posts: 5
    I can't say if there is any difference because the rear sway bar came on the car new - I have not driven one without the rear sway bar. Actually, my question is: How did I get the rear sway bar if I don't have the Touring Suspension?
  • We're deciding between a 2005 GC SXT and the 2005 Odyssey LX. Took a test drive with the GC SXT today, and as we were on the autobahn (I'm US military stationed in Germany) a drumming in our ears started at about 65-70 mph. It was much like the drumming in your ears you get in the driver/front passenger seat when someone opens only a back window in a sedan, just more subdued. I checked that all windows were closed, but that wasn't the problem. Is this possibly a problem with the roof rack cross-bar, or the exhaust? It doesn't seem to be possible that it was the engine. Has anyone else experienced this?

    We drive a 96 Merc Villager, which was great for 9 years, but has recently had an expensive transmission repair and other annoying problems (air conditioning that can’t hold a charge, etc.), and we also would like something a bit bigger. My wife’s overall impression was that the 2005 GC SXT was cheaply built in comparison to our Villager, the GC engine was rougher and felt weak, and the Villager drove like a car while the GC SXT drove like a boat. We liked the Stow-n-Go, but the show-stopper for us was the resonance/ear drumming at our normal autobahn cruising speed from 70-80 mph. Does the SXT we drove have a quirk, or is this normal?
  • I have read other posts about noises in the vehicles equipped with stow n go. They mostly talked about exhaust noises, as the routing of piping and muffler placement have changed to accomendate the new floor pan design.
  • hansiennahansienna Posts: 2,312
    NOT heard in the 2005 GC SXT that I drove mid February this year.

          Does your Villager (Nissan Quest) have a luggage rack and cross bars? Most owners of DC minivans are impressed with the lack of wind noise common to most other minivans.
  • We have the luggage rack with crossbars on the Villager. We do hear wind noise, especially over 70mph, but it does not include the ear drumming. IMO, the Villager motor/transmission was as quiet as the Dodge GC SXT, but the Dodge was quieter in general with wind noise...with the exception of the resonating ear pressure. The only thing I can think of is that a door seal wasn't working right, or a mid-window wasn't sealed, or maybe even something with the way the interior vents work when back is on and front isn't. This didn't seem to be anything motor or even exhaust related. It was something to with the aerodynamics of this particular vehicle. This one was probably a fluke.

    Anyone else experience anything like this with a DGC SXT?
  • samnoesamnoe Posts: 731
    No, I don't experianced anything of these with my 2005 Dodge Grand Caravan SXT. I do have some minor rattles which I hope the dealer will take care of at the first oil change. Otherwise it is very quiet.

     

    Today was the second snow here in upstate NY, and my wipers wiped the ice all over the windshield - CRAP! I need the windshield wiper de-icer back SO BAD! Chrysler! DO YOU HEAR ME? I'M SCREAMING! Please give it back - I will pay you for that even an additional 200 bucks!
  • But were you driving 70-80 MPH?
  • samnoesamnoe Posts: 731
    Yes, I have driven 70-75 mph. Would you try to test drive another van? Just to make sure the one you tested was not defective.
  • samnoesamnoe Posts: 731
    Chrysler Town & Country's Stow 'n Go™ seating and storage system was named Popular Science's "Best of What's New" in the Auto Tech Category for innovative technology. Stow 'n Go™ allows both the second- and third-row seats to be easily folded into the floor, converting the Town & Country from 7-passenger seating to 161 cubic feet of cargo space. Stow 'n Go™ seating and storage system is the latest of more than 50 minivan and industry firsts that Chrysler Group has developed for its market leading minivans.

     

    (Source: Chrysler's web site).
  • hansiennahansienna Posts: 2,312
    YES, I was driving 75 MPH and no wind drumming and no wind noise. Just whisper quiet inside.

         However, I think there would have been road noise if I had been driving on the rough cement roads of Oklahoma. Oklahoma has the worst roads for causing noise of any of the 33 states I have driven in.
  • dennisctcdennisctc Posts: 1,168
    I just purchased a 2005 GC SXT with Stow N Go....my first DCX vehicle ever!! So far I love it!

     

    Does anyone know of a good site for accessories for GC?

     

    I like the tubs for the Stow N Go pockets but not at $600!!!

     

    Thanks!!
  • jglackinjglackin Posts: 164
    $600????? Where'd you see that? Go to www.mopar.com and follow the links through

    dodge accessories

    2005 caravan

    shop for other dodge accessories

    interior accessories

    storage

    cargo bins, second row ($99)

    cargo bins, third row ($195 lid w/o table, $249 lid w/table

    and

    coolers (they'll fit in the third row cargo bin)

     

    you can order them right there...good luck
  • uga91uga91 Metro AtlantaPosts: 1,065
    Looking today at a 2005 Grand Caravan SXT, black, with power liftgate and center front console as the only options. Sticker is $27,780, quoted $22,800 after $3500 in rebates. TMV is more like $22,474, so we'll see what happens. I have had 3 Dodge or Chrysler mini vans before, including a 2003 Chrysler Voyager LX that I have now (not trading it, VERY happy with it), so I'm looking forward to the upgrades for 2005.
  • hansiennahansienna Posts: 2,312
    If you like your 2003 Voyager LX, have you seriously considered a 2005 Caravan SXT for the $14,900 you mentioned in another forum?

         The $7,900 difference makes the regular length Caravan SXT very attractive unless you need the additional interior space of the Grand Caravan SXT with "Stow-N-Go", power sliding doors and liftgate, larger 3.8L V6, etc. Each is a most attractive vehicle.

         The few extra inches between each row of seats make the Grand Caravan considerably more comfortable if adults sit in either the 2nd or 3rd row.
  • steverstever YooperlandPosts: 40,451

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  • uga91uga91 Metro AtlantaPosts: 1,065
    I did, but I want the extra space and the power doors and liftgate.
  • samnoesamnoe Posts: 731
    Be sure to test-drive the '05 SXT before buying. I bought one ('05 GC SXT) and it drives different than the 2003 Town & Country I drive at work. It's more floaty and soft, and I think it has some more body lean (even though I have the upgraded touring suspension which should help handling).

     

    Also I have a few rattles in all 4 front/sliding doors (!). Hope to go service it soon (after Holidays).

     

    Happy shopping and good luck. Be sure to report back.
  • hansiennahansienna Posts: 2,312
    Maybe the 02-03 T&C are more solidly built than the new 2005 GC and T&C. My 02 T&C LX has no rattles in it at 3 years of age.

         Altho I would like the 3rd row of "Stow-N-Go", there is better toe room under 2nd row for 3rd row passengers in my 2002 and the 2nd row seats are slightly more comfortable.

         My 2002 T&C LX also has the heating coils at the base of the windshield and the Trip Computer has the "Instant Economy" that has been deleted.

         I had seriously planned to buy a new 2005 Odyssey and sell my 02 T&C but the reports of a "whistling noise" by my nephew in his new 2005 Odyssey EX has put my plans on indefinite "hold".

         I would be sick if I sold my very nice, quiet 02 T&C LX and got a new Odyssey that was not as quiet and lacked some features I have on my low end Chrysler T&C LX.
  • samnoesamnoe Posts: 731
    And you are still sure that the '05 Ody gives you great mileage (better than your low-end Town & Country), while so far most people in the Odyssey board are still complaining about that bad mileage. If you want to buy the new Ody because of the fuel economy, be certain to check it with at least 2 owners for a longer term. Don't believe Honda, and car magazines - even not CR. Real world drivers only know real facts.

     

    By the way, about the instant fuel economy feature that Chrysler eliminated from the overhead console, I think you can have this feature by pressing "average fuel economy" and then press "RESET", that will give you current mileage.

     

    Too bad I did not test drive the new Caravan before buying. Not that I'm upset, don't get me wrong, it's an excellent van, but having driven the '03 Town & Country for many months, I've expected the '05 to be pretty much the same - if not better. The '03 I drive almost daily have a smoother ride, and handles better bumps and potholes than my new '05 Grand Caravan. But that may be due to my touring suspension. Now I know that Chrysler made big changes underneath for the Stow N' Go, so therefor it's definitely a different drive.

     

    However, there are a few minor improvements in the '05 over the '03. The column shifter has a better feel when shifting, and does not block the audio controls as in the '04 models. The signal lever also has a better click feel. But the clock has smaller typefaces than the '03. And I still hate the gauges and most other controls from the DC vans. I think that even the Freestar lights up much nicer at night. However the Town & Country Limited (or Touring w/the luxury package) do have nice cream faced gauges with a light green/blue background.
  • marine2marine2 Posts: 1,155
    I just bought a new 2005 Dodge Grand Caravan and was told when not using roof rack, to pull front crossbar back as it does cause wind noise when traveling at higher speeds.
  • uga91uga91 Metro AtlantaPosts: 1,065
    I went to my local Dodge store today to test the 2005 Grand Caravan SXT. They sold the black one they quoted me a couple of days ago, but they had a dark blue one just like it, so I drove that one instead. The ride was not as nice as the ride of my 2003 Chrysler Voyager LX. I was expecting more due to the longer wheel base, and I was let down. The rear seats are wonderful to look at and fold around; but, they are just as advertised--smaller and stiffer than the previous seats. I was not impressed enough to pull the trigger, so I left. I learned a long time ago to leave if I have any hesitation during the test drive.

     

    From there, I went to the Honda store as they are advertising $2000 off MSRP on 2005 Odysseys. I drove a red LX model. It was much nicer to drive than the Grand Caravan, but again, I had no overwhelming desire to own it. It may because the salesman was a jerk and I didn't like working with him. I may go back and find a new salesman.
  • 97xpresso97xpresso Posts: 249
    I never plan to stick anything on the roof, so I pulled both crossbars off the roof racks. It improves gas mileage, easier to clean or remove snow from roof, looks better than a totally nude roof, and can easily be re installed if the need ever arose. That being said, I never had noises from the roof racks. Also there are two arrows on each rack denoting where the cross bars should be placed if not carrying anything, for quietest operation if you choose to leave them on.
  • tomtomtomtomtomtom Posts: 491
    why most (not all) Honda sales person are jerks? I have been in different Honda dealers at least 5 times and haven't found one who didn't have attitude problem.
  • uga91uga91 Metro AtlantaPosts: 1,065
    I don't know--that's a good question. I guess the cars sell themselves and the masses are willing to put up with them.
  • Dealer's had my limited for a week now and there's a national back order on the fuel pump (no idea when they'll get it in). I'm wondering if anyone else out there has heard of issues and if maybe I'm amidst the first wave of what will end up being a recall.
  • jona57jona57 Posts: 190
    In my new 05 TC Ltd the deleted stuff vs my older DCX minivan also included:

     

    1.No height adjustnment in the passenger's power seat (4way vs 8 way power)- BAD for ladies under 5'2" or so.

    2. No instant MPG function on the trip computer

    3. No windshield de-icer

     

    I like Stow-n-Go, but for $38K the above deletions are CHEAP!!!!!
  • hansiennahansienna Posts: 2,312
    Agree. My 2002 T&C LX door locks do not recess like the door locks formerly did in the 1999 Plymouth Grand Voyager SE; there is no carpet on the front doors between the armrest and the window; no carpet at the bottom of the front doors; the ignition switch no longer has the luminous ring around it in 2002 vs 1999.

        These deletions are not smart if DC wants to keep their current customers loyal and repeat buyers.

        I compare my 2002 T&C LX to the 1999 Plymouth Grand Voyager SE as the T&C LX pre-2001 was a much nicer minivan than the Plymouth Grand Voyager SE or Dodge Grand Caravan SE.

        The current Grand Caravan SE is just the former "base" Grand Caravan while the Grand Caravan SXT is the former Grand Caravan ES.

        The former GC Sport and GC LE have been killed off. Not a very intelligent marketing move by DC.
  • janb2janb2 Posts: 2
    We walked out of negotiations today on an SXT that had almost everything..No leather, no navigation system, however it did have the sideair bags which is what I want but that van is located at a different dealer. It also had the DVD and CD 6 disc. The MSRP is $30880. They offered us $28880. We said no and left. The salesman actually came out into the parking lot and opened my door and said "wait 2 minutes, we're making a phone call"...They came back with $25995 + $250 = $26245. We said no. I was insulted that they wanted to charge $250 to "go get the van." Do you agree this $26245 is too high? I was thinking around $23K is what I would pay. The current rebate they told us about is $2000 (which brought it to the $28880) and its a 0% 60 month finance.

     

    Even though the lot had many 'loaded' SXTs, not one of them had the side air bags. They could only find one SXT in the area that had that option. I would think it would be a popular option! Is there something about them I should know? My husband was eyeing the loaded SXT with leather & nav system but I said no, I want one with the side airbags, who wouldn't? He thinks I'm being difficult now :)
  • samnoesamnoe Posts: 731
    Which year DC minivan did you have before?

     

    I too have the '05 Dodge Grand Caravan SXT, and noticed many deleted stuff. I'm repeating my words many times here. and I hope Chrysler will finally get the message for the 2007 redesign.

     

    Before we go to features, I would like to ask you if the ride is as good as your previous DC van? Because I feel that the '05 models is down in handling, noise (muffler?), and smoothness over bumps & potholes. Also It bothers me that I don't have the tire pressure monitor in a $29K+ van. I have all options except for the leather seats and GPS navigation system and side air bags.

     

    BTW, if you take side airbags, you will loose the overhead assist handle for the rear passengers. Chrysler says they interfere with the airbag system. Somehow, Honda engineers do not have such problems and manage to get both.

     

    OK, let me mention some deleted stuff, as far I remember (Chrysler, now listen good!):

     

    - Windshield wiper de-icer (biggest problem for me).

    - No fabric inserts on the doors (what Hans refers to "carpet").

    - No carpet mates for the 3rd row seats.

    - No illuminated controls for power door locks, windows & mirrors.

    - No illuminated ignition key ring.

    - No (security) lamps on the front doors.

    - No info center on top of gauges (I like the change, though).

    - No light in the glove box.

    - Only one liftgate light (instead of 2).

    - Only one light at the sun visor mirror (instead of 2).

    - No more variable illumination for the above light.

    - No visor extender (but you can move the entire visor - nice!).

     

    The biggest dissapointment for me is the lack of the windshield heat stripes which I loved in the previous models. I have not owned one, but have driven many. Especially that 2 minivans already copied that feature, the Kia Sedona and Toyota Sienna.

     

    The information center used to be on an oval bar above the meters, which showed the signal indicators, high beams and some more stuff. IMO this center was usually blocked by the steering wheel, so I'm happy that they "deleted" that feature, and replaced everything into the regular gauges, like most other cars.

     

    I don't know exactly what "instant MPG" function does, but I think if you use the "average MPG" function and you press "RESET" you can have the same result as instant mileage. Again, I'm not sure. Try it and let me know.

     

    I personal HATE automatic temperature control. I can't see any reason people should use it. And for several reasons:

     

    1) When I set it for a certain temperature, he does what "HE" wants, not me. He goes from the defroster mode to other modes, blows air like crazy (highest fan settings) and some other odd things. I like to set it the way I want.

     

    2) When the system (read: your van) is off, you can't change any setting, or know what your settings are. In regular climate control you see if the control is at the blue or at the red, you see where the dial is pointing to on the fan blower control, and see which mode is used (upper, lower, defrost, etc.) None of them is available to see with ATC.

     

    3) Sometimes I want a quick change. Example, I need heat, but the windshield gets foggy, so I turn it to defroster, and put cold air instead of the hot air. In regular temp. control (like my '03 T&C I drive at work) I just move the slider from the red to the blue and you're done. Not so with the ATC, which i have to push and hold the down arrow button to move the temperature from 85 to 50. this takes quite a few seconds and is not safe.

     

    Anyway, I can write more, but it's enough for now. I like some other climate systems which works similar to regular manual controlled systems, and just add an "AUTO" button in case you want to "set it and forget it". Not to make an over-complicated system.

     

    I would also ask Chrysler to make the interior door handles a little bigger.

     

    I recommend everybody to do what I did: e-mail Chrysler (link below) and if everybody tell them, they will hopefully get the message:

     

    http://www.chrysler.com/wccsapp/universal/C/index.jsp?appStr=wccs- - &titleStr=Contact+Chrysler&familyStr=brand&franchise=- - C&actionURL=%2Fwccs%2Fbrand_forms%2Fus%2Fwebform.jsp&prom- - otion=null&category=U
  • hansiennahansienna Posts: 2,312
    Excellent listing. Many of your items are contained on my "bottom of the line" 2002 T&C LX.

        Thanks for the correction: it was cloth on the front doors above the arm rests and if I recall correctly, the Caravan SE also had the cloth on the front doors above the arm rests as far back as 1986.
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