Made in Canada: 2010 Chrysler Town & Country car test drives made in canada auto articles car comparisons chrysler
Made in Canada: 2010 Chrysler Town & Country car test drives made in canada auto articles car comparisons chrysler
2010 Chrysler Town & Country Limited. Click image to enlarge

When all the rear seats are stored, the cargo area inside the Town & Country is huge. We used our tester to move our daughter into her new apartment. The amount and size of stuff that will fit inside is simply amazing. We placed a double size mattress flat on the floor! The only caution is to take care not to overload the vehicle with heavy cargo. Depending on cargo weight, the Town & Country could clearly hold more than it is designed for.

With an optional towing package the Town & Country can tow up to 1,633 kg (3,600 lbs), perfect for towing a small boat or trailer. For heavy loads, an available load-levelling and height control rear suspension raises the vehicle back close to its original unloaded height to maximize loaded ride comfort and handling performance.

Powered by a 4.0-litre V6 engine that produces 251 horsepower and 259 lb.-ft. of torque, the Town & Country has plenty of power for towing or just going. No one will smirk at your minivan when you pull away from a stoplight or quickly get up to speed to merge into freeway traffic. Passing power is just fine. You won’t have to wait for the slowpoke in front to pull off the highway.

Fuel consumption is better than you might expect. Transport Canada rates the Chrysler Town & Country at 7.9 litres per 100 kilometres on the highway and 12.2 L/100 km in the city. As usual, we couldn’t match these Energuide figures, but our recorded fuel consumption of 8.9 L/100 km on the highway and 13.5 in the city are good for a vehicle of this size.

Made in Canada: 2010 Chrysler Town & Country car test drives made in canada auto articles car comparisons chrysler
Made in Canada: 2010 Chrysler Town & Country car test drives made in canada auto articles car comparisons chrysler
Made in Canada: 2010 Chrysler Town & Country car test drives made in canada auto articles car comparisons chrysler
2010 Chrysler Town & Country Limited. Click image to enlarge

Handling is good for a minivan, which is to say you won’t be carving up corners with this vehicle, but that is not what a minivan is intended for despite what some manufacturers say. The suspension in the Town & Country is designed to be a bit soft, to provide a comfortable ride for its passengers and in daily driving a soft suspension can be appreciated.

Should you get into a tight situation, the Town & Country has a number of active safety features designed to keep you out of trouble including anti-lock brakes, traction control and electronic stability control which is not shy to intervene when needed.

The Town & Country is a large vehicle and drivers will appreciate the optional blind spot monitoring system and cross path detection system. This latter feature detects and alerts the driver to vehicles crossing the path of the van when reversing out of a parking spot. The Town and Country is also equipped with ParkSense rear parking assist which detects objects behind the vehicle and uses visual and audible warnings to alert the driver to the proximity of objects behind the vehicle. A rear backup camera is also included with either of the screen-based audio systems.

Safety is a primary concern for minivan buyers and builders and the Chrysler Town & Country is one of the safest vehicles built. The US-based National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) gives the Town & Country a top five-star rating for both frontal and side impacts. Side curtain airbags to protect front and rear seat passengers are, of course, standard.

With its emphasis on safety, comfort, convenience and on-road entertainment, the Canadian made Chrysler Town & Country (or Dodge Grand Caravan and Volkswagen Routan) should be on the list of any minivan buyer who would like their money to support Canadian jobs. But price has to be a factor in any buying decision. With the current (at date of publication) $8,000 discount off the list price AND 0 per cent financing for 36 months, as well as any additional incentives you might receive from a Chrysler dealer, the Town & Country could be a very good deal.