Evaluation of 2004 Sienna


dan1945
07-05-2005, 11:50 AM
I purchased my 2004 Toyota Sienna around the end of February last year. It now has just over 18,000 miles, mostly road trips. I find it very comfortable for driving or riding, especially on long trips. It floats almost like a cloud. For added arm confort, I carry two foam pillows enclosed in zippered baby pillow cases I bought at Walmart. I rearrange these under my elbows as I travel so that it keeps my arms and shoulders relaxed which minimizes neck tension. Sometimes, I recline the seat slightly and place a small pillow behind my neck just for a change up. I have 3 lower neck fusions and these various techniques seem to keep me relaxed during a long day on the road.

My complaints:

1. WIND NOICE-It sounds like it comes from around the sides of the windshield or from the top on the front doors. It is particularly bad on the road if the wind is blowing, even slightly, and especially a head wind. I ordered the extra noice absorbing option so I guess it could be worse.

2. LACK OF PEP from a stop.
3. DOWN SHIFTING on hills.
4. GAS MILEAGE less than advertised on 2004 sticker.

I think items 2, 3, and 4 are related to the 3.3L engine size and torque. This is a big van, larger than my 1998 Ford Windstar, which had a 3.8L engine. It runs great on flat roads BUT hills, accelerating from a stop or onto a freeway seem to load the engine. I find that I often have to "wind the rpm's" up to safely enter a freeway and it oftens down shifts on hilly stretches of road. I think a larger engine would give much better performance and might even improve overall gas mileage. My Windstar with over 190,000 miles gets about the same mileage around town or maybe a little better and gets maybe 2-3 mpg less on road trips than the Sienna. In 2005, Toyota lowered the EPA window sticker ratings compared to the 2004 ratings.

For a large van, the Sienna probably does as well as any but I was disappointed that their EPA estimates were so misleading and even more so in their "b.s." when I questioned the Toyota Corp. warrantee people. This is an engineering problem, not a dealer problem and they know it but refuse to acknowledge it. I wonder how the Honda oddessy compares in gas mileage and performance?

Overall, I think the Sienna is overpriced considering everything. One expects to pay more for a Toyota, but they usually get more and in the case of the 4 Camry's I owned, I always felt I got more than my money's worth. I have never felt that way about the Sienna. This time, I feel that Toyota is resting on its laurels and needs to lower the prices considerably or get thier quality up to the usual Toyota standards.

typesix
07-21-2005, 04:06 PM
Consumer Reports got 30 mpg for 2004 Sienna and 28 mpg for Odyssey at highway speeds. They test at legal speed limits. CR did not complain about lack of power.What rpms do you have at what speed?

Chiquae07
08-30-2005, 10:05 PM
maybe he doesnt have the awd one. my parents own one and ive driven it a lot. it picks up really nicely from a stop, no problem here from switchin from 40mph to 75mph in under 3 sec. check if your's is the awd. if it isn't then dont complain about power. afterall, its a v6 and a big load of van to move with it.

dan1945
08-30-2005, 10:44 PM
Consumer Reports got 30 mpg for 2004 Sienna and 28 mpg for Odyssey at highway speeds. They test at legal speed limits. CR did not complain about lack of power.What rpms do you have at what speed?

Just curious, how are you qualified to analyze rpm/speed data that I may send you. I will have to make these measurements.

On my very first full tank, I traveled well over 500 miles, and got over 29 mpg, traveling at about 70 mph on both level and hilly terrain. I traveled from Dallas, TX, area to Lubbock, TX, then to Plainview, TX and home. There were a few "city" miles involved, mostly road. I was very careful to fill the tank completely.

The window sticker EPA agrees with your CR figures. The mechanics and service manager at my local dealership give me the run around as do the people at the Toyota complaint 800 number. If I had not gotten 29+ on the first tank, I would be more understanding of this. But normally, the best mileage comes after 7-10,000 miles.

dan1945
08-30-2005, 11:06 PM
maybe he doesnt have the awd one. my parents own one and ive driven it a lot. it picks up really nicely from a stop, no problem here from switchin from 40mph to 75mph in under 3 sec. check if your's is the awd. if it isn't then dont complain about power. afterall, its a v6 and a big load of van to move with it.

My window sticker says I have FWD. The EPA sticker says 16-22 mpg city, 22-32 mpg highway. I wouldn't want an AWD with run flat tires that cost over $1000 for a set and no spare.

I would love to see any Sienna accelerate from 40 to 75 in under 3 seconds. If you read my comments about the Ford van I own, then you will understand my reference point in making power comparisons.

This was an evaluation of the 2004 Sienna that I own, based on my on personal experiences and was intended for those considering a Sienna and comparing it to similar mini-vans. I would imagine that the gas mileage for an AWD would be less than my FWD.

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