Ask Nathan: Is This the Next Chrysler Pacifica Minivan, Nissan Hate and Happy New Year: DON’T Buy This?

Chrysler Portal Concept (Images: Chrysler)

In this week’s post

  • What’s going on with the next Chrysler Pacifica minivan?
  • Why does everyone hate Nissan?
  • Which car should we avoid in 2024?

The first question comes from a fan who wants more information about the next Chrysler Pacifica minivan.

Q: (Via: RE: What’s going on with the next Chrysler Pacifica?

Hi guys,

Any idea what is on deck for the heavily facelifted Pacifica?

Will the plug in hybrid get its second row stow and go seats back? A bigger UConnect screen?


– Ken

Chrysler Portal Concept

A: Hi Ken!

There are two things we’re hearing about the the next Chrysler Pacifica minivan. We know that they are working on a facelift, but there’s also a major facelift, and it may come after the 2025/26 model years. In addition, rumors are beginning to circulate about a possible EV minivan produced by Stellantis. It would (most likely) be a Chrysler or Dodge.

Chrysler Portal Concept

The heavily refreshed (pretty much all-new) Chrysler Pacifica:

Chrysler CEO Chris Feuell recently told AutoNews Canada that, “‘We’ll be doing a refresh on the Pacifica and it will be more than just a moderate refresh.” Other details were left out; however, we know that the Pacifica has to hold all of Chrysler up until they introduce their new batch of vehicles.

Regarding the Pacifica update, TFLcar Editor Bossman Zach Butler recently speculated, “On its face, it sounds like the overhauled Pacifica minivan will still use some version of Stellantis’ “Compact Wide” platform, which underpins the current model and the now-defunct Chrysler 200 and Jeep Cherokee, among a few others. According to a white paper outlining the now-finalized deal between the UAW and Stellantis, the automaker plans to keep its exceptionally long-lived 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 through 2028 or so.”

Chrysler Portal Concept

An all-electric Minivan:

The minivan pictured here is the Chrysler Portal concept, and it’s based on an all-electric platform. It’s also a concept that existed before the Stalantis merger. That is to say, its an old concept from the previous brain trust. That doesn’t mean it will not be built; or, at the very least, some of its ideas may be preserved.

Chrysler Portal Concept

One of the interesting solutions for having a huge battery taking up under-seat storage is compressing passenger seats. You still lose Stow-‘n-Go seating, but you can slide the seats away. Sort of. The STLA medium or large BEV platform may underpin the minivan, but we still don’t know what type of battery chemistry Stellantis will use.

As for the upcoming facelift: yea, I hear that the nose and tail will get a hint of the upcoming Ram 1500 treatment. That is to say, it may have a cleaner, slightly squinty design. Interior update may entail upgraded seating surfaces, and an updated infotainment system, Uconnect5 with new features – perhaps.

Finally: the ability for Stow-‘n-go seating to fully work on the Pacifica plug-in hybrid. While we’re hearing about a bunch of technical updates to the battery and drive system, seating hasn’t been mentioned. I think it will be a hard ask to find space under the floor of the PHEV. That 16 kWh battery isn’t something that can be moved that easily. I mean, where else can it go?

Also, for those of you who asked about the Pacifica PHEV getting an all-wheel drive (AWD) option, I think Chrysler would excitingly say, “but we DO have an AWD option!” The Pacifica has a mechanical AWD for the V6, and that’s it. I think packaging may be an issue for making the PHEV an AWD, even if they use something similar to Toyota’s electric AWD system.

There is a popular theory that Chrysler may adopt the turbocharged 2.0-liter I4 for future use in the Pacifica. That could help with some of its efficiency and power woes, but only time will tell.


– N

The next question comes from a viewer who still maintains that everyone (all journalists) hate Nissan.

Q: (Twitter@NathanAdlen) Nathan and the FL crew. How come you still diss Nissan?

I know that Nathan likes the Frontier and the Titan. But none of you seem to like the other Nissans. Also you seem to never buy any Nissan for longer testing like you do with Chevy Ram and Ford.

– JaydotCom

A: Hi Jay.

I answered you before, and it’s still the same thing: we call them as we see them. Recently, you were upset about the “lack” of Nissan Frontier reviews we posted. Other than dedicated Nissan video channels, we produced more content about the Frontier than anyone. In addition, our coverage of the Nissan Z, and Nissan Pathfinder scored high viewership as well.

I get it: you love the band and hate to see so little representation. Under other names, you slammed Toyota Tacoma and Supra fans. In addition, you compared the Honda Accord to the (now dead) Nissan Maxima – which was a mistake. As I said, we call them as we see them.

… the Nissan Maxima is a completely different animal compared to the new Honda Accord, and comparing them is like comparing a Dodge Charger to a Prius.

I will promise you this: we will continue featuring Nissan products as they hit. We will continue to be honest in our assessments, and we will not pull any punches. I hope you’ll stay tuned.

– N

The last question comes from a fan who wished us a Happy New Year, and wants to know which car(s) he should avoid in 2024.

Q: Happy New Year TFL Crew!!!!

Tell me. Which cars should I avoid in 2024? I am curious if it matches the cars I am wherry of.

– Nicholas from New Jersey

A: Thank you Nicholas!

That’s a great question. This year, there are two that come to mind right away, and they’re both EVs. The Toyota BZ4x/Subaru Solterra, and the Chevrolet Blazer EV should be avoided for now. The Toyota/Subaru cousins are simply too pricy for being mediocre. There are better cars, equipped with better powertrains – for less money.

As for the Chevrolet Blazer EV… it’s having a poor debut. Along with smaller glitches, GM had to post a stop sale on the current model for software related issues. Until these problems are sorted, I would avoid the Blazer EV. It’s a shame, because it’s a fantastic drive.

Thank you for your continued support, and I hope everyone has a fantastic New Year!

  • N