Written by Marco Carvajal
2022 Toyota Sienna Hybrid Platinum
I am test driving the new 2022 Toyota Sienna Hybrid Platinum. The new fourth-generation Sienna is only offered as a hybrid version. Toyota just like many other car manufacturers is moving closer to all-electric and hybrid car versions only, moving away from traditional gasoline engines.
The Sienna was already a hybrid-only version for 2021, becoming one of the most fuel-efficient minivans on the market, assembled in the United States.
The new 2022 Sienna Hybrid continues with the trend of hybrid-only versions.
The new fourth-generation Toyota Sienna was designed by a merged effort of two American design studios, one in CALTY’s Newport Beach, California, and the other one in Ann Arbor, Michigan, producing a minivan that can be considered a work of art.
Reimagined Minivan better than SUV
Toyota created a new minivan, reimagining the fourth-generation Sienna, with practical more life stages and activities than the typical minivan.
The new Sienna is more luxurious, sporty, and modern, including several multimedia and outdoor features.
The new Sienna minivan can include a line of Yakima accessories, such as a rooftop carrier, cross bars, bike rack, and other features to enhance outdoor activities.
The new Sienna is different from what we usually know as a mini-van, it is built around an all-new minivan structure based on Toyota’s versatile TNGA-K Platform architecture.
The new modern design of the Sienna was influenced by the bold and strong appearance of an SUV while keeping the minivan line. The new design is very aerodynamic helping performance of this minivan with a very efficient 0.28 coefficient of drag that contributes to produce very high fuel efficiency and low wind noise.
Toyota is trying to produce a new minivan that will remove the old concept or perception we have of the traditional minivan. The new Sienna is modern, fun, with large capacity, fuel-efficient, and with better performance. The hybrid minivan can replace medium or small SUVs, giving you a surprise on all that you get out of the modern Sienna.
Smart solutions and first-class comfort throughout the interior make the fourth-generation Sienna more sophisticated.
More Cargo and Passenger Space than an SUV
The Sienna has a capacity for either 7 to 8 passengers depending on the trim level. It is a great car when you need large cargo space and 7 or 8 seats. Most large SUVs usually sacrifice cargo space in order to offer a third-row of seats, or you need to fold some of the seats in order to have decent cargo space, but the Sienna minivan offers both, large cargo space and also large seats with enough space for everybody onboard to enjoy Sienna’s spacious legroom, including 39.9-inch for the second row and 38.7 inches for the third row.
Cargo room is very generous compared to any SUV or Sedan with 101.0 cu. ft. behind the front seats; 75.2 cu. ft. behind the second row with the third row folded and 33.5 cu. ft. with all seats in place.
The Sienna LE and some XLE models come equipped in 8-seat configurations with a stowable middle seat. The Super Long Slide second-row captain’s chairs in some 7-seat models slide 25 inches, providing great legroom and flexibility to maximize comfort, especially when used with the available ottoman feature, standard in Limited and Platinum trims and available for other models.
Trim Levels for the 2022 Sienna Minivan
The 2022 model is offered in a few trim levels, including the LE, XLE, sporty XSE, Sienna Woodland Special Edition, Luxurious Limited, and the top-of-the-line Platinum trim level that I am test driving.
The new Sienna is nice to drive on any trim level, from the basic LE grade to the top-of-the-line Platinum.
There are many nice features and options grouped in the LE Plus, XLE Plus, and XSE Plus packages.
The new fourth-generation Sienna model takes you to a higher new level of features and premium options.
The ultra-sporty XSE Sienna model highlights the sporty design with dark 20-in. split-5-spoke wheels, bolder-looking front, and rear bumpers, and a sport-tuned suspension that is unique to the XSE trim model.
The sporty Sienna XSE and top Platinum models include standard 20-inch aluminum-clad wheels. The Limited FWD grade comes standard with 18-inch wheels. The Sienna All-Wheel Drive versions have 18-inch wheels.
The new 2022 Sienna offers many premium features for a more luxury experience, such as kick-open and closed sliding side doors and rear gate, four-zone climate control system, heated second-row Super-Long Slide captain’s chairs with ottomans, power tilt, and telescoping steering column with a heated steering wheel, a digital rear-view mirror, 10-inch color head-up display, and 12-speaker JBL Premium Audio system for great sound onboard the Sienna.
The top-of-the-line trim levels Limited and Platinum have no optional packages but do offer two factory options: Digital Rearview Mirror and a 1080p HD Entertainment Center with an 11.6-inches display, and HDMI input, remote control, and two wireless headphones, that are also optional on XLE and XSE trim models.
A practical 1,500-watt inverter with 120V AC outlet is also available for the XLE grade and above and could help power household items during a power outage, is like having a mobile generator inside your Sienna.
Toyota is enhancing the van’s outdoor activity capability with the new Sienna Woodland Special Edition that combines adventure-inspired rugged styling, a standard Electronic On-Demand All-Wheel Drive System, and increased ground clearance for better performance and sportiness similar to an SUV.
The new Sienna includes more updates, the XLE grade now gets the optional 18-inch wheel design; second-row ottomans are available for the Limited and Platinum grades with all-wheel drive; Windchill Pearl replaces Blizzard Pearl as the premium color offering; and the Woodland Edition is available in the Cement exterior color, exclusive to the Woodland Edition, as well as a very attractive Midnight Black Metallic color.
Sienna a Very Efficient Hybrid
The Sienna’s gas engine is powered by a high 14:1 compression ratio and Toyota D4-S fuel injection that delivers 41% thermal efficiency. This efficient gas engine employs Variable Valve Timing-Intelligent System by Electric motor (VVT-iE) on the intake camshaft, and VVT-i on the exhaust camshaft. A variable cooling system (electric water pump and electric thermostat) and a fully variable oil pump further improve engine efficiency.
The Toyota Sienna offers hybrid power supported by Toyota’s more than twenty years of global hybrid development, quality, durability, and reliability.
The Sienna feels like an SUV with features like sequential shifting feature to “downshift,” which increases the regenerative braking in steps.
The Toyota Hybrid System II in the Sienna delivers a nice 245 total system horsepower and has an EPA-estimated 36 combined MPG fuel economy on front-wheel drive,
Driving the Sienna you can feel the ultra-smooth acceleration and hear very little noise, it is very quiet.
Two electric motors work together with the high-efficiency 2.5-liter DOHC four-cylinder engine, producing great performance and efficiency.
The Sienna gives you a very large range of 600 miles. There is no need to ever recharge the hybrid battery pack. The Toyota Hybrid System II charges the hybrid battery automatically as the vehicle drives. The18-gallon fuel tank will last you ver long 600 miles of driving range, sounds like a dream!
The Sienna also offers performance-driving features like driving modes, EV, NORMAL, ECO, and SPORT to let the driver control this vehicle.
The NORMAL driving mode is ideal for everyday driving; SPORT mode improves acceleration response; ECO driving mode extracts maximum mileage from the fuel and battery; and the EV mode allows electric-only driving, which can be used only at low speeds and for short distances.
A 7-inch color Multi-information Display within Sienna’s instrument panel includes a Hybrid System Indicator to show system output and regeneration status and encourage eco-driving habits. The display suggests the optimal acceleration amount for eco-driving and provides a game-like scoring function for the driver.
All-Wheel Drive Electronic On-Demand
Sienna drivers can enjoy the all-wheel drive without having to sacrifice on fuel economy. The FWD and AWD have only an EPA-estimated 1-MPG difference, both powertrains have very similar fuel consumption due to Toyota’s innovative Electronic On-Demand All Wheel Drive system.
Instead of a heavy AWD transfer case and strong driveshaft to the rear wheels, this efficient AWD system uses a separate independent electric motor to power the rear wheels when additional traction is needed and at all vehicle speeds. The Electronic On-Demand AWD system works great!. The hybrid AWD pre-emptively sends a lot of torque to the rear wheels to help prevent front-wheel slip.
Both front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive powertrains on the new-generation Sienna deliver a great driving experience.
Efficient Use of Space
Toyota is trying to make the minivan more modern and appealing, staying away from the traditional minivan design. Toyota’s design team thought carefully about how to combine the practical attributes of a minivan with the emotional desire for a more personalized driving experience.
A super-modern instrument panel features bold, horizontal layers to express a wide and spacious interior, with a large center touch display and handy storage capability.
The Bridge Console an innovative change from common minivan interior layouts, is ergonomically positioned high between the driver and passenger for ease of use and elegantly connects the instrument panel to the center armrest. This unique feature contributes to a more comfortable driving experience.
The shifter and other vital controls are all within easy reach, along with cup holders, an available wireless charger, and ample storage bins for smaller items. There is a large open area for convenient storage of larger personal items such as a purse or bag.
Sienna Safety Features
The new Sienna is very safe with class-exclusive safety features like the collision protection provided by the TNGA-K Platform, designed with family safety features everywhere.
All 2022 Sienna models come standard with second-generation Toyota Safety Sense (TSS 2.0), an advanced active safety system that includes the following features:
- Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection
- Lane Departure Alert with Lane Trace Assist
- Full Speed Adaptive Cruise Control
- Automatic High Beams
- Cyclist Detection
- Road Sign Recognition
Pre-Collision System (PCS) with Pedestrian Detection is designed to provide automatic braking capability should the driver not react in time in certain emergency situations. The PCS system is not only designed to detect a vehicle ahead, but it can also detect a bicyclist and even a pedestrian in low light situations. Blind Spot Monitor (BSM) with Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA) is standard on all Sienna models, as well.
The 2022 Sienna is very safe, equipped with 10 airbags: driver and front passenger airbags, driver’s knee airbags, passenger seat cushion airbags, front-seat side airbags, rear outboard seat side airbags, plus curtain side airbags for all three rows. Toyota’s Star Safety System includes Enhanced Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) with Traction Control (TRAC), Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD), Brake Assist (BA), Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), and Smart Stop Technology (SST).
Advanced features like rear passenger seatbelt reminder, Electric Parking Brake (EPB), and Rear Seat Reminder.
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