The Toyota Sienna is rated higher for 8-seaters than for Highlanders. Best family car?

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I try to write articles that will help you as a reader to make the best decision and stay informed. For me, this is important because I like to see happy owners rather than sad owners or owners who have doubts. I know a lot of people who bought a car on intuition and are now stuck with a car they don’t like.

Luckily, there are news channels like us and Motor Biscuit that ran an article a few days ago about whether or not it’s better to go for the Sienna or the Highlander. Now before you say they’re not the same vehicles and I’m comparing apples to oranges, remember they’re both 8 seaters, they’re both hybrids and they have about the same MSRP. Granted, if you’re shopping for looks, you’d have a different bias, but that’s only for better measure.

According to Motor Biscuit, “When you want to haul stuff, you might be surprised to learn that the Sienna can pack up to 101 cubic inches of stuff with the seats folded down. The Highlander only packs 84.3 cubic feet. Chances are that if you have a family of 5 and want to go on vacation, you may need to pack a few more racks than you need.For this reason, the Sienna offers much more space in the rear than the Highlander.

In my opinion, I feel like the Highlander has gotten a bit smaller compared to previous generations. They were big and beefy with v6 engines. Now everything is a hybrid i4. However, that shouldn’t stop you from looking away from the Sienna.

Motor Biscuit also states, “The Sienna and Highlander both get five stars from NHTSA. They both also earned Top Safety Pick Plus designations from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, or IIHAs. The Sienna has 10 sounding airbags in the cabin, while the Highlander has eight. Safety is important for a vehicle with many passengers. Especially most of the time it will be children.

While the Highlander is more powerful than the Sienna, I can tell you firsthand that a hybrid minivan feels no less powerful. We tested it on the highway and with ease it cranked up the throttle count and was pretty snappy.

I think Motor Biscuits’ comparison was great and I think if I had to choose between the two having 3 kids, I would probably choose the Sienna for its price, reliability, comfort, specs and efficiency.

What do you think? Let us know in the comments below.

Harutiun Hareyan reports Toyota news to Torque News. His automotive interests and extensive experience testing new cars give his stories a sense of authenticity and unique perspectives. Follow Harutiun on Twitter at @HareyanHarutiun and on YouTube at Time Toyota for Toyota Daily News.

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