Looking at the 2017 Toyota Sienna minivan, you would have a hard time telling it apart from the 2016 model. Drive the 2017 Toyota Sienna minivan, even for a moment, and you will notice a difference. Oddly, Toyota opted to play coy with the updated drivetrain. There are no major announcements or much (if any) advertisements. Despite now having one of the best power-plants in this bracket, it’s hardly acknowledged by Toyota. Odd.
A new, beefy V6 comes directly out of the 2017 Toyota Highlander. This 3.5L V6 DOHC 24-Valve with Dual VVT-i makes 296 horsepower at 6,600 rpm and it produces 263 lb-ft of torque at 4700 rpm. That’s a 30 horsepower increase and it can be felt the moment you hit the gas.
The Sienna also has an upgraded transmission, now having an eight-speed automatic, which improves fuel economy. Toyota expects the big minivan to get a rating of 19 mpg city and 27 mpg on the highway, up from 18 and 25 for the current model.
The automatic transmission is pretty smooth, but it has no problem banging through the shifts when you slam your right foot down. While the power is good through the mid-range, you can truly feel it off the line – the 2017 Toyota Sienna is downright quick. There is a tiny increase in cabin noise under full acceleration, but I only noticed it because I drove a 2016 model recently.
Despite the new power, the rest of the 2017 Toyota Sienna remains the same. There are no new trims, interiors or even revised badging. Nope, the only thing that will tell you that this van is new is when it trounces other minivans at the stoplight. We need to get one of these back to our TFLcar test tract for another crack at the Chrysler Pacifica.
The 2017 Toyota Sienna is available at Toyota dealerships right now and prices start at $29,750.
Check out the full TFL video above to see driving impressions of the 2017 Toyota Sienna.