A mother and kids are shown playing next to a parked black 2023 Chrysler Pacifica

Chrysler Pacifica: The Most Technologically Advanced Minivan

Something that minivans always have had the benefit of is some of the most modern amenities of their time. The best minivans aren’t the cheapest, but if you deeply care about your and your family’s safety and also want a vehicle with decent performance, efficiency, and technology, it’s worth spending more money to get a minivan. They are still plentiful in the market, and Chrysler is one of the most consistent manufacturers of minivans, having invented them in the 1980s. It’s not hard to find an excellent deal on a Chrysler Pacifica for sale if you know where to look. But with that said, how technologically advanced has the Pacifica become?

When I was growing up, I thought it was revolutionary that a vehicle could have a built-in screen in the back seat. This was made more exciting when my friend slid a DVD into the back seat media center in his parents’ car, and we watched comedy movies for the duration of our trip. At this moment, I realized – aside from how much more affluent my friend’s family was than mine – that vehicles are cool, and not just ways to get from point A to point B.

As somewhat of a technology enthusiast, I was interested in what the Pacifica has to offer. Does the Pacifica give me that same feeling I felt all those years back when I realized that vehicles were far more than a powertrain, four wheels, and a seat? Let’s find out.

The three interior camera views of the FamCAM system, which you can find in a 2023 Chrysler Pacifica for sale, are shown

Minivans: The Next Generation

Those who have been keeping up with the automotive industry, particularly the changes that each year brings to some of the most popular automobiles, know about the Uconnect infotainment center. Something that is more clear now than ever is that not all Uconnect infotainment centers are made equal. The Uconnect 3 infotainment center was replaced with the superior Uconnect 4, and nowadays the Uconnect 5 takes center stage. The first thing that people should know about upgraded infotainment centers is that they are typically easier to operate than their predecessors.

Smoother performance occurs thanks to upgraded components, as the media centers in modern-day vehicles are powerful computers through and through. The Uconnect 5 system has better processing power and more available memory than ever before. While a computer from ten years ago is still usable, it’s not ideal when better systems exist for not a whole lot of money. Many of us upgrade our phones every year or two, or even more frequently than that. If your older vehicle has an infotainment system, there’s a pretty good chance it’s not as robust or fast as the Uconnect 5 system found in the 2023 Pacifica.

There are a few things that the Uconnect 5 system can do that you may not be used to seeing in older infotainment centers. One of these features is distinct user profiles that you can save, each one dedicated to a separate driver. What’s the point of this? As an example, if a driver and their spouse share the Pacifica, the driver can set the infotainment center software to their liking with the app arrangement, Bluetooth connections for media devices, and much more. Once their spouse takes the vehicle out for a ride, they can switch to their profile which is better suited to their liking. It will connect to their phone instead of yours, show their favorite apps on the screen, and even display their favorite color scheme. You pick choose which profile to use when you start the vehicle, much like when you sign into a computer.

Some other features that make their way over to Uconnect 5 that you have likely seen elsewhere are wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. These systems aren’t new anymore, and the excitement surrounding them stems from updates. We expect to see quite a significant one for Apple’s beloved software suite this year. Some of you have likely already had a vehicle with an older variant of Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, but there’s still a large subset of drivers who have yet to experience these features firsthand.

I know many drivers haven’t experienced these features before. My mother, who enjoys keeping up with technology and owns the newest flagship iPhone, also owns a lovely 2014 Cadillac CTS. Her Cadillac is a fantastic vehicle all around, aside from technical glitches like a constantly freezing infotainment center. It doesn’t have Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, as those features were not available in 2014.

Fast forward to about ten years later. Not only are these features in more vehicles than ever, but cars like the 2023 Pacifica give drivers the added benefit of connecting their smartphones to these advanced software suites without even having to use a USB cable. What about charging your phone, you may be wondering? Fortunately, your Chrysler Pacifica can also come equipped with two wireless charging pads for your phone and a passenger’s, or your personal phone and work phone.

The Uconnect Theatre System is shown in the 2023 Chrysler Pacifica

That Wow Factor Still Exists

As I alluded to earlier, I found older vehicles with integrated DVD players to be the neatest thing I had ever seen. I also heard stories of people playing video games in the back seat of their parent’s car–not a GameBoy, but a home console. I never got to experience that, and if I were to own a Pacifica, I wouldn’t be enjoying it either unless I were to take a seat in the back row of my car and bring some snacks, right? Not quite, but I’ll explain later.

The Pacifica’s take on this feature is an implementation known as the Uconnect Theatre System, which adds not one, but two touchscreens to the back row, one on the back of each front-row seat. The Uconnect Theatre System supports many streaming apps, so you don’t need to bring along any DVDs. One of the new inclusions with the 2023 model is a built-in Amazon Fire TV. This is fantastic for anyone who has a bustling digital Amazon library or subscribed to Prime.

What did I mean when I said that it wasn’t entirely accurate that I, as the driver, can’t enjoy any of the benefits of the Uconnect Theatre system? If the vehicle is parked, the driver can utilize their 10.2-inch infotainment center screen to watch content too, even alongside the passengers in the back seat. The family can pull over for a break during a road trip and enjoy an episode of their favorite show. This is something dreams are made of, according to my younger self, and even in this current day of large yet portable tablets and phones, where you can enjoy mobile media content anywhere.

An Important Side of the Industry

The next generation of vehicles isn’t just about being faster, more efficient, stronger, or more technologically sound, but a combination of these. Vehicles are some of the most innovative products that continue to improve. Manufacturers like Chrysler are doing phenomenal work at pushing the envelope in many ways, and technology is undoubtedly one of them. As someone who enjoys their fair share of tech, I can’t help but gawk at vehicles like Chrysler’s. In a world of proprietary software in vehicles like Tesla, it’s refreshing to see some other premium yet cost-effective manufacturers get it done so right.