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Toyota Sienna 2004+

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Comments

  • choidschoids Posts: 16
    Hey andrewtran71,

    I updated my profile for the public. Send me a photo if you can. I am interested. BTW, I drive SC 400. Take Care...
  • montobahnmontobahn Posts: 11
    Can you remove the VCR & DVD if you want to take out the seats? The nice thing about the factory unit is the DVD is built in with the screen and if you want to hook something else up, the RCA jacks are near the floor behind the 2nd row seat along with 110v.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,934
    We can't really say the CE ended up costing $27k and the LE $32k because rcf8000 didn't actually buy the van there. We could say that the dealer was asking $27k for a CE and $32k for a LE, and if someone were actually stupid enough to pay the $3500 in dealer-added charges, then we could say the CE cost $27k or the LE cost $32k. If more prospective buyers act as rcf8000 did, maybe this kind of dealer behavior will stop.
  • I totally agree with you. I wouldn't get any of those options either.
  • True, but if you want factory installed DVD you have to order the XLE or Limited because the CE and LE are dealer installed DVD/VCR units. The same with leather---if you want FACTORY installed, you have to order the XLE or Limited. Otherwise, if you want just the LE or CE and save money, you will get dealer installed, which is a rip-off so you might as well take it to a professional 3rd party yourself. I think we can all agree that any dealer installed option is a total rip-off. But you are right about the units under the seats. If you remove the seats, the units are bolted to the floors and you would have to unscrew a lot of stuff. So if you plan on removing your seats anytime in the future, I would go with the XLE and get dealer installed DVD RES, which is a lot nicer.
  • how can you tell if they are dealer or factory installed? I thought you can get the LE w/#8 was factory with the 110v outlets? At least that is the way I was able to configure it on Toyota.com w/ zip 20147 ( northern VA)
  • cjo87cjo87 Posts: 35
    Does anyone have information regarding how the AWD systems compare between the XLE Sienna AWD and the Pilot EX?
  • We just ordered the LE #8,with the factory installed DVD package,and we are in the same region.
  • You said you ordered one, but you have not seen it yet. I hope you are right and I hope it is a factory installed DVD instead of a 3rd party or PORT installed dvd. Some car sales persons will tell you anything to sell you the Sienna. Did you specifically ask him if the DVD is Factory installed and NOT PORT or DEALER installed? Even if you did ask him, he could easily say, "Well, that's what they told me!" Then what will you do? That's one scary thing about buying such a new product without actually seen it in person. I mean the PORT or DEALER installed unit will look just as good as the factory installed, but it won't say "Toyota" on it and it may or may not have those extra RCA inputs on the door panels or close to the floor areas.
  • leknlekn Posts: 78
    cjo87 wrote:
    > Does anyone have information regarding how the
    > AWD systems compare between the XLE Sienna AWD
    > and the Pilot EX?

    Sienna's system should be theoretically better. But keep in mind that real life implementation is often more important than the basic principle of the AWD system.

    Sienna uses open differentials + traction control. Normal drive is 50/50 split between front wheels and rear wheels. Pilot uses VTM-4, the same system as MDX. It basically is front biased; so it is practically a FWD drive car under normal driving condition. VTM-4 would transfer torque to rear wheel under slipping condition, and under certain pre-programmed condition such as when accelerating.

    So Sienna is a genuine "full time AWD"; whereas Pilot's system is closer to "part-time with automatic engaging AWD". And with Sienna's 50/50 split, the situations which demand torque transfer by the AWD system is less likely to happen.

    In real life, I think Pilot's system should work well. But the real difference is Sienna's VSC (Vehicle Stability Control). This system really works and would correct skidding/oversteer/understeer (while you cannot defy the law of physics if the speed is too high). AWD + VSC + Winter Tires is the best combination current technology could offer.

    The lack of VSC (or VSA for Honda) is a major omission in the Pilot.
  • I always look at the Monronney label on the passenger side. If is is factory shouldn't it list on the option side of this sticker, with the vin matching the vehicle? I can understand if the dealer installs and it is not listed, but if I see #8 on the van's sticker and it looks exactly like the one in the brochure. Should I still be suspicious?
    As posted on "what did you pay" I just put my deposit down on the Le-7 with #8 for a very good price. I was told 2-4 weeks, so we will see.
  • bakelly11bakelly11 Posts: 64
    "LE Package #1 -- rear-seat audio system, HomeLink®3 universal transceiver, overhead multi-information display and passenger-side power sliding door"

    Does anyone know if this comes with any headphones? How many? Dealers don't seem clear on this.

    Thanks,
    bev
  • beckyo2beckyo2 Posts: 24
    headphones are not included but are an $80 option, that is per pair. You can also buy them at any electronics store.

    Becky
  • bakelly11bakelly11 Posts: 64
    I just stopped into the dealer. You are right. Sounds like I can get them cheaper at an electronics store. I'll wait and see if I would actually use them first. Might go and pick them up later.
  • cjo87cjo87 Posts: 35
    Thanks, lekn, for info on the Sienna and Pilot systems.
    A follow-on: does the toyota system then reduce power to wheels that are slipping, or is the system just full-time 50/50 split? One of the appealing things about the pilot's system is that you can lock it in at low speeds to a 50/50 split, giving you something extra to get out of a bad situation. One could argue that the full-time 50/50 split might avoid that need, but it seems any vehicle can eventually need a little extra assistance (or less wheel spin) to get out of trouble.
  • leknlekn Posts: 78
    > does the toyota system then reduce power to wheels
    > that are slipping, or is the system just full-time
    > 50/50 split?

    Torque is transferred to the non-slipping wheels, so the split is variable. They have not mentioned specs on maximum torque transfer.

    > One of the appealing things about the pilot's
    > system is that you can lock it in at low speeds
    > to a 50/50 split

    I believe that the maximum torque Pilot's VTM-4 can transfer to the rear is 55%; that's more or less the same as Sienna under normal driving condition :-) . THe VTM-4 Lock or differential lock is more necessary in front biased system (e.g. Pilot; as you need wheel slipping before torque transfer takes place) or AWD systems without left/right limited slipping (in one or both axles).

    Sienna's system is capable of transferring most of the torque to a single non-slipping wheel. So you won't get stuck even if you have one wheel on gripping surface. But if you do get stuck in a Sienna, the chance is that availability of a lock won't help you either.
  • danjaecksdanjaecks Posts: 54
    I was told by the parts person at the local Toyota dealer that the run flats for the AWD Sienna cost $270 each to replace (ouch). Other tire dealers that I called do not stock this tire perhaps because it only fits the Sienna AWD.
    Also he said that his technician who went to the Toyota school on the 2004 Sienna said you cannot mount any other tires on the vehicle because of the sensors in the wheel or something that the parts guy didn't understand. For instance, you couldn't use a spare tire even if you paid extra (about $300) to get one.
    This sounds like a misunderstanding to me, maybe the tech meant you cannot mount any other tires on the run flat rims? So if you want to replace the run flats with regular tires or winter tires you need to replace the wheels also. Or maybe he meant that a small spare would trigger the tire pressure warning light, which you could just ignore till you got your regular tire fixed.
    I was interested in putting a spare tire in the trunk and switching from the run flats, because of their cost and limited availability and 100 mile life span when flat. And to get a better winter tire.
    Has anyone else researched this problem and what did you find out??
    Thanks
  • leknlekn Posts: 78
    Sienna's run flat uses standard rim and reinforced side wall run flat tires. So you can just replace the tires if you want.

    Actually, Toyota does have a space saving spare tire option for the AWD. It comes with a mounting bracket to seat the tire in the well behind 3rd row (the seat cannot be folded down when the tire is there). But nobody seems to have seen one, so I don't have any more information as to how it looks like or how it works. So using a spare tire has to be possible; just not sure if it is any different from other spare tires.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    Three open differentials result in 50/50 (25/25/25/25) torque split in ONLY one circumstance....

    When all wheels/tire have EQUAL traction, high or low. If equal traction all around then 25/25/25/25 will be the norm.

    Absent some additional device or capability with simply three open differentials the instant slippage occurs ALL of the engine torque is routed to the wheel or wheels with the LEAST traction.

    Most everyone I know that has purchased an AWD or 4WD passenger vehicle did so primarily for those times when all around traction is NOT likely to be equal. Three open diff'ls alone is USELESS.

    Something more is needed.

    The Highlander and the RX300 use a viscous coupling.

    But to avoid the additional expense of providing actual AWD capability in the RX300 and the Highlander T/L used a viscous coupling across the center differential that's always FLACCID, never stiffens up enough to raise the torque distribution ratio above about 75/25 F/R, and was measured to be about 90/10 F/R at the initial onset of slippage.

    See the viscous coupling AWD design in the Chrysler T&C for a more complex but "working" AWD design. And please do not take that statement as an overall endorsement of the Chrysler.

    I cannot confirm for the Sienna, but both the out-going RX300 and the new RX330 use differing front and rear final drive ratios to unbalance the engine torque distribution F/R. For the RX300 I was initially told 70/30 F/R torque distribution. I was recently informed by Lexus that the RX330 will also use differing F/R final drive ratios.

    The new RX330, like the Mercedes ML and Toyota Sequoia, and likely the Sienna, uses the ABS pump to provide brake fluid pressurization for a "virtual" AWD system. If a wheel, or wheels, begin to slip, then the brake for those wheels is applied in moderation to maintain roughly equal traction "virtually" all around.

    The "fly" in this particular ointment is the possibility of over-taxing and/or over-heating the electrically powered low capacity and low duty-cycle ABS pump.

    Other than ABS itself the pump on my 01 AWD RX300 is only used for VSC/Trac. Even so I have had it time out and become inoperative upon getting the RX slightly sideways on a muddy and wet dirt road.

    There is a post somewhere abouts indicating that the Sequoia's AWD capability only lasts for about 30 to 45 seconds before the ABS pump protection time-out disables the AWD functionality.

    I suspect the RX330 and the Sienna will have about the same AWD capability, 30 to 45 seconds of continuous "virtual" AWD capability before the duty-cycle of the ABS pump is exceeded.

    On my RX300 it took about 10 to 15 minutes for the time-out to be automatically reset and again have VSC/Trac capability.
  • leknlekn Posts: 78
    A few clarifications:
    > I was recently informed by Lexus that the RX330
    > will also use differing F/R final drive ratios.

    RX330 also has 50/50 split during normal driving.

    > possibility of over-taxing and/or over-heating
    > the electrically powered low capacity and low
    > duty-cycle ABS pump.

    There was some concern when this type of AWD system was first introduced into the market. But as demonstrated by BMW X5 and Mercedes ML, this has NOT been a problem even for OFF ROAD use. So for ON ROAD use, the chance of that is even lower.

    > Other than ABS itself the pump on my 01 AWD RX300
    > is only used for VSC/Trac. Even so I have had it
    > time out and become inoperative upon getting the
    > RX slightly sideways on a muddy and wet dirt
    > road.

    I can't see how that is possible other than some mechanical problem with your car. VSC uses both engine power reduction and ABS pump; but only for a very brief seconds (usually fraction of a second). I really can't see how you can have VSC active continuously for it to overheat.

    Mind you, the use of ABS brake by VSC or traction control is much less than if you are actually braking! So are you saying that the ABS would stop working after the use of brakes for less than a minute? I have not heard or seen any reports about this at all.

    > I suspect the RX330 and the Sienna will have
    > about the same AWD capability, 30 to 45 seconds
    > of continuous "virtual" AWD capability before the
    > duty-cycle of the ABS pump is exceeded.

    Please don't speculate unless you are sure of this. This does not sound right. This type of AWD system is used by BMW X5, 3 series AWD, Mercedes ML, and all the 4-matic systems including S class. There have been extensive testing of X5 and ML in off road course, where they have to negotiate difficult terrains for extensive period of time CONTINUOUSLY with no apparent difficulties. I do not expect Sienna to be any different.

    Not use why you use the term "virtual". It is a effective system, may not be the best, but definitely better than viscous coupling or some "part time" front biased system.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    The limited slip aspects of the Sienna (ML, X5, RX330, Sequoia, etc) AWD is implemented in software, therefore "virtual", intangible, etc.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    If the final drive ratio at one end is 2.92 and the other is 3.12 how can the torque distribution ratio possibly be 50/50? It was a Lexus factory representative that just recently told me the differing final drive ratios F/R were used to establish unbalanced torque distribution F/R in the RX300 and other makes of AWD vehicles.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    No one has said anything about any vehicle's ABS pump being subject to over-heating due to other uses except the Sequoia, RX300, and now possibly the RX330 and the Sienna.

    In the case of the RX300 that is exactly what I was told by the mechanic/technician at Bellevue Lexus.

    I have no reason to believe, no foundation, that the X5, ML, etc, do not have a robust enough ABS pump to keep up with the needs, continuously, of the VSC/Trac/AWD capability.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    I could readily imagine that the pressurized brake fluid flow rates for ABS itself would be fairly meager, overall, in comparison to the flow rates required of a virtual AWD system, or even a VSC/Trac system.

    When you apply the brakes, even with "maximum" ABS "activity" you will reasonably soon come to a stop. You will not need the ABS pump again until you accelerate. Duty-cycle requirements of the ABS pump, for ABS alone, are substantially limited.

    In some wintertime roadbed environments you might find you need virtually continuous virtual AWD activity. That's going to require a more robust ABS pump than one used simply for ABS.

    Or the AWD firmware needs to predict when the ABS pump motor has reached it maximum short term use and shut it down for a cooling off period.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    With respect to actual AWD capability I have always been torn between the Chrysler AWD T&C minivan and the AWD RX300. The Chrysler definitely wins the AWD contest.

    I have owned three AWD T&Cs, a 97, a 98 and a 2000, and unlike others, have had absolute success with their overall reliability. Had to have the rotors turned at 20k on the 2000 is about all.

    I had all but decided to buy a new RX330 once the market cools a bit, say late fall before the snow flies.

    Today I discovered the new MY2004 Toyota Sienna AWD minivan.

    WOW !!

    It has exactly the same engine, transmission, driveline, VSC/Trac, and "virtual" AWD system that the new MY2004 AWD RX330 has.

    It doesn't have air suspension. Maybe only a minor negative.

    But it does have room between the rear tires and the suspension for snowchain installation.

    I was about to pay approximately $43k for an RX330 with air suspension but I can get an AWD Sienna XLE Limited that seats 7 (or 8) for about $37k.

    Anyone see any downside that I don't?

    Oops, almost forgot another BIG advantage of the T&C and the new Sienna. Electrically open/close the rear quarter panel winglet windows from the driver's seat.

    Eliminates the really PAINFUL helicopter BOOMING problem of the RX and Highlander.
  • rcf8000rcf8000 Posts: 619
    I took delivery of an XLE FWD with package #14 today. I am very impressed with the smooth, quiet ride, the fine drivetrain, and the comfortable driver's seat, although it could use more thigh support. Wind noise at 70MPH or less is hardly noticeable. Handling is good. The only objection I would have at this point is the lack of comfort in the front passenger seat--too much lumbar support and not enough thigh support. Full power adjustability would be nice.
    I also wish the car had a memory driver's seat. All-in-all, it's an impressive vehicle. I also considered the Pacifica, but I wanted a vehicle that could accommodate 6 people and their luggage,and the Pacifica can't. There are other plusses and minuses to each. They cost about the same, although I suspect large discounts will be available on Pacificas in the near future. They're already piling up on dealers' lots around here, whereas the Siennas sure aren't. Incidentally, I had never considered buying a minivan before. If there's an image problem, it doesn't concern me. I test drove an RX330, and didn't think it drove much better than the Sienna. In fact, the engine seemed noisier. It holds less people and cargo, and is ugly, too. It would be nice if the Sienna had some of the RX330 amenities, though. (Where is the Lexus minivan?!)
  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    I thought about you a week or so ago while reading about the AWD Sienna, Willard. Then I forgot to invite you over this way. It does seem a good fit for you and those trips over to Montana and up to the ski areas.

    Steve, Host
  • leknlekn Posts: 78
    > The limited slip aspects of the Sienna (ML, X5,
    > RX330, Sequoia, etc) AWD is implemented in
    > software, therefore "virtual", intangible, etc.

    Apart from full mechanical system such as Torsen and viscous coupling, most other systems rely on sensor/computer/software to work, e.g. Honda's VTM-4, Haldex, Subaru Legacy/Outback Auto's electronic clutch etc. So by your definition, all of them are "virtual"? Limited slip at differential level, drive shaft level or brake level should make no difference.

    Sorry, your use of the term "virtual" just bugs me :-) It gives other people a wrong impression that it is not a real AWD system. In actual fact, it is a very REAL AWD system.

    > how can the torque distribution ratio possibly be 50/50?

    For RX330, it IS 50/50; you can check Lexus web page for confirmation.

    > No one has said anything about any vehicle's ABS
    > pump being subject to over-heating due to other
    > uses except the Sequoia, RX300, and now possibly
    > the RX330 and the Sienna.

    Sequoia, RX300 and RX330/Sienna all use totally different AWD system. Why would you generalize from one vehicle to another? I would not encourage such unsubstantiated speculation.

    > In the case of the RX300 that is exactly what I
    > was told by the mechanic/technician at Bellevue
    > Lexus.

    Sorry, I don't believe him. I would like to see references or technical service bulletins. I simply cannot see how you can overheat your RX300 ABS pump even in Winter driving; and remain disabled for 10 to 15 min! This is not normal and this sounds dangerous. As I said, it seems more like a mechanical problem to me.

    > I have no reason to believe, no foundation, that
    > the X5, ML, etc, do not have a robust enough ABS
    > pump to keep up with the needs, continuously, of
    > the VSC/Trac/AWD capability.

    Until proven otherwise, I have no reason to believe that Sienna/RX330 do not have a robust enough ABS pump to keep up with the needs of the VSC/Trac/AWD capability.

    I am not saying that it will never overheat. Just that under expected winter driving condition, this should not happen. In addition, engine power is moderated and can be reduced to reduce the chance of overheating/overtaxing the brake system.

    Regarding RX330 vs Sienna AWD, I agree with you. Sienna AWD is better value and better packaged. But for many buyers, their mindset is SUV and nothing else; so Sienna probably would never cross their minds.
  • jd_ottawajd_ottawa Posts: 20
    There were some issures with the RX300 system that have been resolved for the RX330 & Sienna.

    I read a really good review on the RX330 recently on it's new awd system comparing it to the RX300. The review discussed situations when the RX300 didn't perform very well but the new set up was excellent.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    I would be willing to bet good money that the very same ABS pump/motor assembly is used across the entire Toyota/Lexus product line.

    Lexus was perfectly happy to market an RX300 as AWD when it really wasn't as is Toyota with the Highlander. As has been said many times, how many of the 300,000 purchasers are going to actually need true AWD capability, and then with the new RX330 how many will discover it bails at 30-45 seconds, and then how many of those will even have a knowledge basis to complain?

    I guess you have to be in the computer business to equal software implementation of an "object" as being "virtual".

    Not a negative connotation at all just a way of stating the facts.

    And I am really glad to see that someone still believes, religiously, in marketing hype.

    But again, maybe you can explain to the rest of us, how can you have differing final drive ratios to the front versus the rear and still have equal torque delivery?
This discussion has been closed.