Chrysler is trying a different strategy with the minivan lineup for the 2020 model year, with the re-introduction of the Chrysler Voyager nameplate. Chrysler is taking its entry-level Pacifica models, updating the content and pricing structure for the new model year, and giving them a nameplate that harkens the history of the minivan. Some people may be asking why, but there is a great reason for this marketing strategy.
First off the Chrysler Pacifica, despite being a huge success with automotive journalists and magazines has not been a huge sales success for the Chrysler brand. Instead, the aging but value-based Dodge Grand Caravan has continued to eat into the targeted market of the Pacifica, so much so, that Chrysler is being forced to do something. Originally, when the Chrysler Pacifica was launched in late-2016, Chrysler told the media that the name change away from the Town & Country nameplate was to make the minivan appeal to younger buyers. Instead, it created its own legacy stepping away from the trusted nameplate the brand once carried for 26 years.
Another issue which has been troubling the Pacifica is value. With loads more technology and refinement than the aging Grand Caravan, Pacifica was priced above the Dodge alternative. With young families looking for an affordable driving option, the Grand Caravan seemed to be the better deal on paper. The entry-level Pacifica vans became more of rental fleet vehicle than the value-based option that Chrysler had hoped. This pushed the Pacifica nameplate, more towards the premium end of the minivan spectrum, in-lieu of Dodge’s option.
Enter the Chrysler Voyager. This is Chrysler’s redemption into the entry-level market. Take the entry-level content minivans from the brand, rename them, and offer more standard features at a better price point. This allows buyers to rethink their options while allowing the Pacifica nameplate to hold its premium value market share.
So what is so different about the Chrysler Voyager? The Voyager lineup consists of three trim levels, L, LX, and LXi (fleet-only). Let’s take a look at the difference between the three 2020 Voyager trims, compared to their 2019 Pacifica counterparts…
The 2020 Chrysler Voyager L removes the standard SafetyTec package from 2019 Chrysler Pacifica L making the package optional. This lowers the starting MSRP of the Voyager L to $28,480 USD including destination. That new starting price undercuts the starting MSRP of the Dodge Grand Caravan which is $28,535. The Voyager also adds the feature of standard Electronic Start/Stop (ESS) for the 2020 model year.
For the Chrysler Voyager LX trim, there are several changes to the package compared to its 2019 Chrysler Pacifica LX counterpart. Chrysler has ditched the 2nd row Stow ‘N Go seats, in favor of 2nd row quad seats. Again the SafetyTec package has been removed as standard equipment and made optional. The Pacifica LX’s optional tire and wheel group, along with the 8-passenger seating option has also been removed. The Voyager LX does add Satellite Radio as standard equipment with a roof rack and Cold Weather Group now being optional equipment. The Voyager LX will have a starting MSRP of $31,290.
Available for fleet customers only, the Voyager LXi trim is all-new. The new trim-level offers new, durable, UltraTec leatherette seats for fleet rental customers, as well as second-row Stow ‘N Go, remote start, security alarm, black Stow ‘N Place roof rack, universal garage door opener, second-row retractable sunshades, and auto-dim rearview mirror. The Voyager LXi will set fleet customers back $34,490.
Its a daring move for the Chrysler brand. The brand has had success before with the Voyager and Town & Country nameplates selling side by side in showrooms. But ultimately, we believe that the Voyager will take over for the Grand Caravan after the 2020 model year.