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2021 Toyota Sienna Hybrid Review


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All Aboard the Good Ship Sienna

Mark Fulmer
The Auto Channel


The newly updated 2021 Siennas are all hybrids (both gas and electric engines), with a choice of front or all-wheel drive. They excel at all things the 21st century family needs: power, safety, space, and technology.


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A 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine combines with two electric motors combine to produce 243 horsepower. The second electric engine drives the rear wheels with 54 hp and 89 lb-ft of torque, simplifying and and making more cost-effective the all-wheel process. The electronically controlled continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) helps bring in 35 mpg city/36 mpg highway/35 mpg combined. The new TNGA front suspension and steering and independent rear trailing arm suspension make this minivan a comfortable ride with good handling and minimal rocking in the curves. Sienna can tow up to 3,500 lbs and has four selectable drive modes (Normal, EV, Eco, and Sport). The Eco mode proved both true to its name and quite usable in today's traffic.


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The interior is exactly what families need: lots of space for folks and stuff. The front seats have useful big door pockets and there is under-console open storage area. And how about 15, yes 15, cupholders.


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The second row seats - which can be either twin captain’s chairs or a bench, has rails beneath allowing it to slide up to 25 inches for easy access to get into the third row. Our LTD model included a sizable 11 inch HD screen that unfolds from the roof and 2 wireless headsets (and a HDMI input). With its big windows and big screen, it should reduce or totally eliminate those dreaded whines of "Are we there yet?"


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The third row seats are 60/40-split for cargo placement diversity. By flattening 2nd and 3rd rows you could lay a full four-by-eight sheet of plywood inside and still close the tailback. The cargo measurements are 33.5 cubic feet behind the third row; 75.2 cubic feet behind the second row; and 101.0 cubic feet behind the first row. Most helpful are the powered sliding doors with foot-sliding activation for those hands-full moments.


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A nine-inch touchscreen is compatible with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and Amazon Alexa, and SiriusXM. There is also one USB media port and six USB charging ports throughout to keep all thos mobile devices well fed. You and your family will be protected by the Toyota Safety Sense suite of features which include: pre-collision system with pedestrian detection, dynamic radar cruise control (adaptive cruise), lane departure warning, automatic high beams, lane trace assist, road-sign assistance.


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Yes, the good ship Sienna is ready and waiting for your family's voyages and explorations.