Toyota Sienna
(Photo/Toyota)

Celebrating 25 Years of the Toyota Sienna, From Mom-mobile to Hybrid Trendsetter

Those born a quarter of a century ago who rode in their mother’s minivan may now be driving their own Toyota Sienna.

Sound the alarms and send in the celebrations — the Toyota Sienna celebrates 25 years! It’s now purportedly primed for outdoor adventures, transforming from a family-friendly minivan into a stylish and technologically advanced vehicle. But let’s be clear: It still maintains its status as a van.

“It’s always been the designers’ job to expand that van imagery and make it more exciting and inspiring, something you want to drive, not something you have to drive,” said Kevin Hunter, president of CALTY Design Research (CALTY), a Toyota Design Studio.

“As a result, the new Sienna looks more exciting and dynamic but still has all the functionality and spaciousness of the van.”

Sienna’s Timeline

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Since the Sienna’s debut in 1997, it has evolved from a comfortable carryall built with families in mind to an adventure-inspired vehicle with plenty of upgrades.

“As customers’ tastes and needs have changed over the years, the Sienna has evolved along with them. CALTY’s goal has always been to create a more inspiring, fun van,” said Hunter. “Younger families are active and seek out more outdoor recreation with their family and friends, and we wanted to reflect that more youthful exuberance.”

Toyota Sienna

What’s New?

Numerous interior and exterior upgrades come standard to appeal to a broader range of drivers. But, not just for the soccer moms or dads, the new Sienna is tooled to be more of an adventurous model than previous iterations.

The most significant way it tracks as more “adventure-ready” is that all-wheel drive is now available in all models or van grades. This feature gives drivers the confidence to travel almost anywhere and in inclement weather.

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SUV-Inspired Styling

Toyota reports the hybrid-only Sienna to be the most fuel-efficient seven- to eight-passenger van on the market. This report claims an estimated fuel economy of 35 mpg while driving in all-wheel-drive mode.

“The all-hybrid powertrain is great for everyone who is looking to get the most from a fuel efficiency standpoint, especially for those who are going on long hauls,” says Leah Curry, president of Toyota Indiana.

“The rear-seat entertainment, available second-row captain’s chairs, and seven USB ports offer great functionality for everyone to enjoy the ride.”

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Sienna’s Utility

You can load up the kids, toys, or camp gear, or use the all-new Sienna as a grocery-getter.

“The utility of a van is significant, but the Sienna offers that and much more,” says Curry. “Having one of the best-in-class miles per gallon with the standard hybrid system has been a huge advantage. That and the other premium features, the enhanced styling, and the available all-wheel drive have totally set the Sienna apart.”

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