— Leslie Gordon
The minivan sure came in handy moving stoves, dishwashers, kitchen cabinets, and other items for a friend renovating her home. Generally, I do not care for minivans, yet the decidedly unsexy “mom mobile” slowly but surely won me over. Even my 6-ft tall, 220-lb helper agreed.
Topping both our lists of favorite features is the van’s great visibility — we both thought sitting in it is like being in a giant fishbowl. Another plus, the slidingdoor windows roll up and down, unlike those in some other vans. And a nice if somewhat frivolous touch is the sunglasses holder above the dr iver ’s door. And for some inscrutable reason, there are two glove boxes, one on top of the other.
On the downside, my helpmate could not stretch out his long legs. The center console blocked him on one side and the footrest blocked him on the other. Amazingly, in this health-consciousness time, Sedona offers a cigarette lighter and ashtray.
Numerous handgrips on the ceiling and walls make it easy to get in and out. Manually adjustable, bucketlike seats position passengers comfortably. Levers let riders adjust lumbar support and recline. We tried the latter on a passenger seat, but it got stuck.
Removing the seats for more cargo room is straightforward. However, the seats are somewhat heavy and awkward. I prefer seats that stow inside a floor compartment.
Both of us got a kick out of how the minivan handled. For one thing, it ran so quietly we couldn’t even hear the engine. And acceleration is pleasingly quick, no doubt due to the 3.8-liter, 24-valve DOHC V6 engine. Electronic stability control and a firm but comfortable suspension keep the van tight to the ground, while brake assist makes for assured stopping. Automatic, adjustable pedals are just the ticket for us shorter folks.
My friend looked under the hood to check the van’s vitals. The Sedona offers easy access to check the oil, engine coolant, brake fluid, and tranny fluid. The plug for diagnostics is also easy to reach. Another plus is the serpentine-drive belt, which eliminates separate V-belts.
Suggested retail price on our tester was $20,495. Adding extras such as roof rails and carpeted floor mats brought it to $21,645. Interestingly, according to the paperwork, 4% of the car was made in the U.S. and Canada and 89% in Korea. There was no mention where the rest was made.