The 2015 Dodge Grand Caravan is priced right and chock full of handy features
All manner of vehicles, particularly the ever-growing "crossover" class, purport to be family-oriented, but if you have either a lot of family or a lot of cargo to consistently move from place to place, it's still almost impossible to beat a minivan. And in many respects it's hard to beat the originator of the genre, Dodge's all-things-to-all-people Grand Caravan.
Chrysler long had a rather confusing array of minivan models from both its Dodge and Chrysler brands, but buying one is much simpler now that each brand's lineup has been pared to a single model. For Dodge, the 2015 Grand Caravan essentially is the culmination of everything most minivan buyers over the years proved was most important in a family hauler: plenty of engine power combined with reasonable fuel economy and Chrysler's still-brilliant Stow 'n Go instantly disappearing second-row seating.
trim levels & features
The 2015 Dodge Grand Caravan is a seven-passenger minivan offered in six trim levels: American Value Package (AVP), SE, SE Plus, SXT, SXT Plus and R/T.
The bargain priced AVP trim has a reasonably solid standard equipment list: 17-inch steel wheels; heated mirrors; power locks, mirrors and front windows; dual-zone air-conditioning; a second-row reclining/folding/removable bench seat; an overhead console; a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel; a conversation mirror and a four-speaker audio system with a CD player and an auxiliary audio jack.
The SE adds rear privacy glass, tri-zone climate control (with rear air-conditioning), second-row captain's chairs with the Stow 'n Go fold-into-the-floor feature, a front floor console and a six-speaker audio system.
Standard safety features for the 2015 Dodge Grand Caravan include stability control, antilock disc brakes, active front head restraints, a driver knee airbag, front seat side airbags and full-length side curtain airbags. Optional features in the Safety Sphere Group -- available only for the Grand Caravan R/T -- include a blind-spot monitoring system, rear parking and cross-traffic sensors and a rearview camera.
In Edmunds brake testing, a Grand Caravan came to a stop from 60 mph in 130 feet, a bit longer than average for a minivan. An R/T with its grippier tires and sport suspension did better, racking up a 119-foot stop.
In government crash testing, the Grand Caravan was given an overall score of four out of five stars, with four stars for frontal impacts and five stars for side impacts. In Insurance Institute for Highway Safety testing, the Dodge Grand Caravan was awarded the top rating of "Good" in the moderate-overlap frontal-offset impact test as well as the side-impact, roof-strength and head restraint (whiplash protection) tests.