Type to search

New vs Used: Toyota Sienna Minivan

Is the new 2022 Toyota Sienna so much better than its used 2020 counterpart that it’s worth the extra cash? We looked at both to find a winner.

A New or Old Minivan?

Toyota Sienna - pressroom.toyota.com
Toyota Sienna - pressroom.toyota.com

Just a year ago Toyota introduced the 2021 Sienna, the first in its fourth generation, to widespread appeal. Its styling is bold and daring, it offers outstanding fuel economy, and it’s one smooth ride too. For 2022, there are some new features to add to those great base traits as well. At the same time, the base Sienna will cost $36,000 before any options. With that in mind, we’re wondering if buyers wouldn’t be better off looking at a lightly used Toyota Sienna from the end of its third generation in 2020. Today, we compare the two down to the smallest details including cost, features, and economy to determine a clear winner.

New vs Used Toyota Sienna Specs

2020 Toyota Sienna
2020 Toyota Sienna - carsforsale.com

The used 2020 Toyota Sienna comes with a 296 horsepower V6 and an eight-speed automatic transmission. Considering its rivals’ scores at the time, the Sienna does a nice job of keeping up when it comes to fuel economy as it gets 19 mpg in the city and 27 mpg on the highway. All-wheel drive is an optional extra on all but the base trim level and seat configurations are available for seven to eight passengers. Each 2020 Toytoa Sienna also came with Toyota Safety Sense that includes lane-keep assist, adaptive cruise control, and forward collision mitigation. Pricing for a used 2020 Sienna offers buyers the chance to pick up the top-of-the-range Limited trim level for under $40,000 in most markets.

2022 Toyota Sienna 2.5L I4 - carsforsale.com
2022 Toyota Sienna 2.5L I4 - carsforsale.com

The new 2022 Toyota Sienna comes with a 244 horsepower four-cylinder hybrid engine that routes power to the front wheels via a continuously variable transmission. That’s a big drop in the performance category. It even trails the only other hybrid minivan on the market, the Chrysler Pacifica which has 260 horsepower. Still, it provides a big boost in fuel economy where it scores 36 mpg in the city and on the highway. Not everyone will love that choice by Toyota to focus on economy so heavily, but we for one, appreciate the commitment to making this minivan more economical. Sporty minivans don’t make much sense anyway. Toyota Safety Sense is standard here as well, but adds automatic high-beams and blind-spot monitoring to the package from 2020. New Toyota Sienna’s will run anywhere from $36,000 up to around $55,000 depending on equipment.

Driving Impressions

Considering these two minivans are separated by just two years and a single generation, it’s shocking how differently they drive. The used Toyota Sienna option is punchy from a stoplight. Nearly 300 horsepower is enough that few drivers will ever want for more in it. The SE trim level also offers upgraded suspension that limits body roll a bit and a revised steering profile for more direct handling. We also really like the smooth, linear pedal feel in the 2020 Toyota Sienna. Braking is especially easy to modulate. Still, this is a minivan at the end of the day and hard cornering or braking will produce noticeable body roll regardless of trim level or features.

The newer 2022 Toyota Sienna is far less focused on driving dynamics. It’s notably slower than its older sibling and less engaging too. The same body roll is evident as well. No SE edition for 2022 means that drivers who want a more aggressive suspension won’t be able to get it from Toyota themselves. In addition, the brake pedal seems to be oddly calibrated. It’s less linear than the older car and that makes for rougher interactions with it that passengers might notice. Nevertheless, we can’t end without saying that the new hybrid powertrain is very smooth, quiet, and pleasant in everyday driving situations.

Interior Comfort

2020 Toyota Sienna
2020 Toyota Sienna - pressroom.toyota.com

Toyota offered a great many features for the 2020 Sienna, but at the end of the day, the need for a new generation becomes obvious. That shouldn’t be entirely shocking considering the platform the used Toyota Sienna option rides on dates back to 2011. For example, the layout inside isn’t all that easy to use. Some buttons are oddly placed, the infotainment system is slow to respond, and the roofline makes headroom in the second and third rows lower than in rival minivans. In addition, we found that, while the ride in general is comfortable, the cabin isn’t insulated enough to keep road and wind noise out.

2020 Honda Odyssey Review
2022 Toyota Sienna - toyota.com
2022 Toyota Sienna - toyota.com

The new 2022 Toyota Sienna addresses almost all of these concerns with more headroom, more sound insulation, and a better layout overall. In addition, it adds available quad-zone climate control. We also love the huge adjustability of the front two rows of seats. It provides enough adjustment that front occupants will never need to feel cramped or uncomfortable. In addition, second-row passengers can slide their row so far back that it feels a bit like a limo in the Sienna. The center infotainment system is better too and that includes the rear entertainment system.

Trims & Features

For 2020, the Sienna came in five different trim levels. The base model was the L which came with a 7-inch infotainment system that includes Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as well as tri-zone automatic climate control, 17-inch wheels, and keyless entry. The LE then went on to add a power-adjustable driver’s seat, power-sliding rear doors, and roof rails.

2020 Toyota Sienna
2020 Toyota Sienna LE - carsforsale.com

Step up to the quasi-sporty LE edition and you’d get 19-inch wheels, a sports suspension, and a new steering calibration as well as a larger driver information display. Buyers could opt for the Nightshade package which blacked out much of the trim and badging on the SE. An available premium package added a rear-seat infotainment system, a JBL audio system, and blind-spot monitoring.

The XLE was the first seriously luxurious Sienna in the lineup with its imitation-wood trim, illuminated cup holders, a power-adjustable front-passenger seat, and power rear-quarter windows. A premium package was also available on the XLE and added a 16.4-inch rear-seat infotainment system, a powered sunroof, and an in-cabin PA system.

The Sienna Limited came with 18-inch wheels, a dual-power sunroof, a power-folding third row seat, and a heated steering wheel. The XLE Premium package adds the rear seat infotainment system, HID headlights, rain-sensing wipers, and an overhead-view camera.

2022 Toyota Sienna XSE - pressroom.toyota.com
2022 Toyota Sienna XSE - pressroom.toyota.com

For 2022, Toyota offers six trims for the Sienna. L and SE are no longer available, but they’re replaced in the lineup by the XSE, the Woodland Edition, and the Sienna Platinum. Starting with the Sienna LE, the base model comes with LED headlights, tri-zone automatic climate control, and a 9-inch infotainment system featuring both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. The XLE slots just above the LE and adds keyless entry, an eight-speaker audio system, quad-zone automatic climate control, heated front seats, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel.

Sienna XSE buyers will get just a few additions in the form of a wireless charging pad, a premium JBL 12-speaker audio system, and black roof rails. The new Toyota Sienna Woodland Edition gets a 0.6-inch lift (yes you read that right), a 3,500-pound capacity towing package, a household-style power outlet, and all-wheel drive standard.

At the Sienna Limited trim level, buyers will find leather upholstery, power-folding mirrors, third-row sunshades, and the same sound system and wireless charging pad from the XSE. It also gets extendable second-row footrests. Finally, the top-of-the-range Sienna Platinum gets unique LED headlights, premium leather upholstery, heated second-row seats, rain-sensing wipers, a top-down 360-degree camera, and a heated steering wheel.

Is a Used Toyota Sienna the Way to Go?

2022 Toyota Sienna XLE - pressroom.toyota.com
2022 Toyota Sienna XLE - pressroom.toyota.com

The used car market has never been hotter than it is right now, so unless you can find an outstanding deal on a used Toyota Sienna, we think the new Toyota minivan is tough to beat. It does cost more up front, but in the long run we feel that its combination of exceptional fuel economy combined with far better technology and interior comfort put it far ahead of the older Sienna.

Related Review Articles

New vs Used: Hyundai Kona

2022 Toyota 4Runner Review

RAM 1500 Through the Years

Stephen Rivers

Stephen Rivers is a car enthusiast who loves all things built with passion, extending to nearly all car cultures. After obtaining an occupational studies degree in sports medicine, Stephen turned his attention to sports cars. He was employed as an auto shop manager, spent time in auto sales, and worked as a software developer for a racing company, but Stephen began writing about cars over 10 years ago. When he's not in front of a computer screen, he's racing his own Bugeye Subaru WRX in as many autocross and rallycross competitions as he can.

  • 1

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *