Chrysler Pacifica: Hybrid vs Gasoline-Only

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The latest generation Chrysler Pacifica is arguably the hottest minivan you can buy today. Unlike the Toyota Sienna or the Honda Odyssey, the Pacifica is rated highly for having the best looks in the minivan category and it is also generous with interior space.

If you are to walk into a dealership for a brand new Pacifica, you will have to decide between to powertrain options – gasoline-only or plug-in hybrid. The former has a standard 3.6L Pentastar V6 whereas the latter comes with the same mill but with the addition of a 16kWh battery.

Based on this alone, the advantage of getting the Pacifica Hybrid is fuel economy. EPA has rated the minivan to return 32mpg (84mpg-e) combined which translates to 10mpg worth of savings over the standard model.

On the downside of things, Chrysler is not an established figure in hybrid technology and this means that the reliability of their hybrid setup is questionable. The Pacifica Hybrid has been recalled before and it is due to a diode issue. The good news here is that the problem has been fixed by Chrysler.

The other setback with the Pacifica Hybrid is that you will lose out on the Stow’n’Go feature that can grant you greater versatility and practicality with the minivan. Only the standard model is equipped with this feature.

Last but not least is with the tax code changes. The current tax legislation bouncing around Washington removes the plug-in tax credits hence obtaining the Pacifica Hybrid today may not grant you $7,500 in savings. Based on the current fuel price, it may take you about 7 years to get your $7,500 worth of fuel savings.

With that being said, is the Pacifica Hybrid truly the better choice over the non-hybrid?