2018 chrysler pacifica best cars back to school miami lakes automall

Reduce Your Carbon Footprint On The Way To School

It’s that time of year again – school is back in session! As some parents scurry to prepare their little ones for the new school year, others may be more concerned about providing their young teenager with a fresh and reliable new car. It’s not always easy to get parents and teens to agree, but with our list of the top best back-to-school vehicles, it could serve as common ground.

2018 Chrysler Pacifica + Pacifica Hybrid

Starting off our list for back to school cars is the 2018 Chrysler Pacifica, and some may wonder if this is an ideal car for a young teen driver. Well, yes. Although this vehicle is aimed more towards carpooling parents and soccer moms, the safety ratings for the Chrysler Pacifica speak for themselves. These include the “2018 Best Buy Awards” by Consumer Guide, 2018 Top Safety Pick by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), and a 5-star safety rating by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Keeping new teen drivers safe.

2018 Chrysler Pacifica


2018 chrysler pacifica best cars back to school miami lakes automall

Photo Credit/Copyright: caranddriver.com

Offered in six trim levels – L, LX, Touring Plus, Touring L, Touring L Plus, and Limited, the Chrysler Pacifica has something for everyone. The base L model is powered by a 3.6-Liter V6 24-Valve engine with Variable Valve Timing (VVT), that, by optimizing combustion, improves performance, fuel, and emissions. The remaining models come standard with a 3.6-Liter V6 24-Valve engine with VVT and Electric Start-Stop (ESS) to reduce the amount of time the engine spends idling and expending gas when idle. A nine-speed automatic transmission is standard on all trim levels.

The infotainment system included in the Chrysler Pacifica is one-of-a-kind and no matter which trim is chosen, passengers won’t be disappointed. The L, LX, Touring Plus, and Touring L come standard with Uconnect 4 on a 7.0-inch touchscreen display and 6-speakers, while the Touring L Plus and Limited models feature Uconnect 4C NAV on an 8.4-inch touchscreen display with a 13-Alpine speaker system or the option of a 20 Harman Kardon speaker system. Entertainment features included on all trim levels consist of integrated voice command with Bluetooth and Apple CarPlay and Google Android Auto capabilities. Furthermore, consumers have the option of including dual 10-inch touchscreens mounted on the rear of the front seat backs for additional entertainment those teenage passengers would appreciate. Lastly, the Pacifica can seat up to eight passengers.  

Starting MSRP of $26,995 (plus destination fee).

2018 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid


2018 chrysler pacifica hybrid back to school miami lakes automall

Photo Credit/Copyright: thenewswheel.com

Awarded 2018 Best New Car by Car and Driver, the 2018 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid offers a rest-easy mindset for parents and teen drivers, especially by requiring less gas station visits and saving money in fuel costs. The Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid is available in three trim levels –  Touring Plus, Pacifica Hybrid Touring L, and Pacifica Hybrid Limited. All hybrid trims share a 3.6-liter V6 eHybrid engine that is paired to two dual electric motors powered by a 16 kWh, lithium-ion battery. Additionally, the Pacifica Hybrid can be powered in three ways: battery, engine, or a combination of both.

It’s important to keep in mind that plug-in hybrids have two measures of fuel economy – miles-per-gallon (MPG) and miles-per-gallon equivalent (MPGe)- basically, a more comprehensive understanding of the measurement that converts the power used by an electric vehicle into mpg. The Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid has a total driving range of 566 miles and a combined fuel economy of 84 MPGe. Powered only by the 16 kWh battery, the Pacifica Hybrid has a driving range of 33 miles, emissions free. Furthermore, the Pacifica Hybrid has a combined fuel economy of 32 mpg. There are two charging levels available for the Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid – level 1 and level 2. The standard level one charger is 140 volts and can fully charge the Pacifica Hybrid in about four hours. Meanwhile, the more powerful level 2 charger is 240 volts and can recharge the Hybrid’s battery up to 80% in just two hours.

The Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid was designed to be convenient and versatile, so it’s no surprise that the interior cabin maintains a quiet atmosphere. All trim levels share a third-row fold-in-floor 60/40 split-bench seat and the optional easy entry slide second-row bench seat. Standard features on the Touring Plus includes cloth seating, while the Touring L and Limited trims are standard with leather-trimmed (perforated or premium) seats. Contrary to the Chrysler Pacifica, the Pacifica Hybrid does not offer Stow ‘n Go storage in the second row, due to the vehicle’s battery pack, where it is stored. Fortunately, the third-row seats are still equipped with Stow ‘n Go storage.

The 2018 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid is not only a fan favorite for eco-friendly parents, but it’s also a big hit for kids and teens. An 8.4-inch touchscreen display includes Apple CarPlay/Google Android Auto, integrated voice command with Bluetooth, and a complimentary one-year subscription to SiriusXM radio come standard on all trim levels. The Pacifica Hybrid Touring Plus and Touring L models include Uconnect 4, while the Hybrid Limited model is standard with Uconnect 4 NAV. Additionally, the Pacifica Hybrid Touring Plus and Touring L come standard with a six-speaker audio system, while the Hybrid Limited offers the optional 20-speaker Harman Kardon sound group for a state-of-the-art surround sound experience.

Starting MSRP of $39,995 (plus destination fee).

2018 Kia Niro Hybrid + Kia Niro Plug-in Hybrid

For the 2018 model year, the Kia Niro Hybrid and Plug-in Hybrid area breath of fresh air into the brand-new Kia Hybrid and Plug-in Hybrid segment. Between the practical wagon-shape exterior style to the functional interior cabin, parents and teens would never know it was a hybrid. Also, the Kia Niro Hybrid was a 2018 Top Safety Pick+ by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) and was awarded the 2018 Residual Value Award For Alt-Fuel Vehicles by ALG.   

2018 Kia Niro Hybrid


2018 kia niro hybrid miami lakes automall

Photo Credit/Copyright: kia.com

The 2018 Kia Niro Hybrid is a fresh and fuel-efficient hybrid crossover. The Niro is available in four trim levels – FE, LX, EX, and Touring. All four trims shared the same hybrid powertrain and front-wheel-drive (FWD). The Niro hybrid is equipped with a 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine that’s matched to an electric motor. The electric motor, an AC synchronous permanent magnet motor, is powered by a 240-volt, 1.56 kWh lithium-ion polymer battery. Utilizing the six-speed automatic transmission, the engine and electric motor transmit their power to the vehicle’s wheels. The 1.6-liter engine puts out 104 horsepower and 109 lb-ft of torque, and once the engine and electric motor are working together, the vehicle produces a total of 139 horsepower and 195 lb-ft of torque.

The Kia Niro hybrid’s fuel economy is definitely beneficial to teens and the wallets of their parents. When the Kia Niro is equipped with 16-inch wheels, it has a combined fuel economy of 50 mpg, while the bigger 18-inch wheels average a combined fuel economy of 43 mpg. According to fueleconomy.gov, the annual fuel cost of the 2018 Kia Niro (with 16-inch wheels) is $850, and fueleconomy.gov estimates that after five years, drivers will save $3,250 driving the Kia Niro in comparison to the average vehicle. You’re welcome, parents.

As previously mentioned, the interior cabin of the Kia Niro Hybrid is functional. It has two rows and comfortably seats five adults. The front seat passengers have plenty of legroom, 41.7 inches to be exact, and the rear seat passengers have 37.4 inches of legroom. The 60/40 split-folding seats make it really easy for drivers to fold down the seats, especially for additional cargo. Additionally, when the second-row seat is folded down flat, there is a cargo volume of 54.5 cubic feet of space. Since the 2018 Kia Niro is a very recent model, it’s loaded with awesome tech features like a standard rearview camera and Bluetooth wireless handsfree connectivity. The 2018 Kia Niro FE, LX, and EX are equipped with a 7-inch color touchscreen, UVO eco, SiriusXM, and a six-speaker audio system. Meanwhile, the Niro Touring features an 8-inch touchscreen display, UVO eco, SiriusXM Traffic, HD Radio, voice-command navigation system, and an 8-speaker Harman Kardon premium surround sound audio system.

Starting MSRP of $23,340 (plus destination fee).

2018 Kia Niro Plug-in Hybrid


2018 kia niro plug in hybrid miami lakes automall

Photo Credit/Copyright: caranddriver.com

The 2018 Kia Niro Plug-in Hybrid, or plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV), consists of three trim levels – LX, EX, and EX Premium. All three models share the same Full Parallel Hybrid System that is powered by a 1.6-liter DOHC 4-cylinder engine with gasoline direct injection and dual variable valve timing (VVT) and an electric motor. The gasoline direct injection and dual VVT, through optimizing combustion, maximizes engine performance to deliver 104 horsepower and 109 lb-ft of torque. The electric motor, an AC synchronous permanent magnet motor, is powered by a 360-volt, 8.6 kWh lithium-ion polymer battery. The electric motor produces 60 horsepower and 125 lb-ft of torque, bringing the total output of the hybrid system to 165 horsepower and 234 lb-ft of torque.

The Kia Niro’s fuel economy is 48 mpg in the city and 44 mpg on the highway when the internal combustion engine is the main power source. When the Kia Niro is powered by a combination of its internal combustion engine and battery, it has a fuel economy of 110 MPGe in the city, 99 MPGe on the highway, and a combined city/highway fuel economy of 105 MPGe. Lastly, the Kia Niro has an electric driving range of up to 26 miles, and the vehicle’s total driving range (a full tank of gas and a fully charged battery) of up to 560 miles.

Standard interior features across the lineup area drive mode selector, smart key with push-button start and engine immobilizer, dual-zone automatic temperature control, an auto windshield defogger, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, and mood lighting. The Niro Plug-In Hybrid EX and EX Premium models come with a cargo covering (optional on LX) and rear a/c vents. Leather upholstery can only be found on the Niro Plug-In Hybrid EX Premium, while a leather-wrapped steering wheel and gear shift knob comes standard on all trims. Heated front seats are available on the Niro Plug-In Hybrid EX and EX Premium trims, but only the Niro Plug-In Hybrid EX Premium comes with ventilated front seats, driver’s seat integrated memory and a heated steering wheel. Added features include a 60/40 split-folding rear seat, and when folded down, the total cargo volume opens up to 54.5 cubic feet; 19.4 cubic feet with the rear seats up.

Lastly, the Kia Niro Plug-in offers the UVO eco infotainment system on all trims. Included on all trim levels are Apple CarPlay/Google Android Auto capabilities, Bluetooth wireless hands-free connectivity, and steering wheel-mounted audio controls. The Niro Plug-in Hybrid LX and EX models include a 7-inch touchscreen and six-speaker audio system. An 8-inch touchscreen with voice-command navigation and a Harman/Kardon Premium Surround Sound 8-speaker system are standard on the Niro Plug-in Hybrid EX premium trim.

Starting MSRP of $27,900 (plus destination fee).

From a minivan to a cool crossover, one of the most important factors to take into consideration when purchasing a new car for a young teen driver is safety. Today, a generous amount of new models are now equipped with safe teen driver features to give parents additional peace of mind. Come test drive any of the listed models today at the Miami Lakes Automall. Located in Miami Lakes, FL, we offer a huge selection of new and used cars for new teen drivers. For more information, visit our website or follow us on social media.

2017 chrysler pacifica hybrid miami lakes automall

The History of The Chrysler Pacifica

Initially designed in 1999 as a concept vehicle called the Citadel9, the Chrysler Pacifica has definitely gone through a series of changes throughout the years, including a transition from concept to crossover SUV and then to a minivan. Created by DaimlerChrysler under the Chrysler marque in 1999 as a “merger of equals”, it took only 30 months to develop for less than $1 billion. The 1999 Pacifica concept was built not only to commemorate the 15th anniversary of the Chrysler Minivan, but it was also intended to be a more upscale version of the Town & Country. It wasn’t until 2002, that the first production model of the Chrysler Pacifica was unveiled at the New York International Auto Show.

Chrysler Citadel Concept (1999)

chrysler citadel concept miami lakes automall

Photo Credit/Copyright: Old Concept Cars blog

Before hybrids became a “thing,” Chrysler released the 1999 Chrysler Citadel Concept vehicle. The Chrysler Citadel Concept vehicle was pretty incredible. It featured a front fascia and a raised roof that included a skylight and overhead storage bins. Additionally, it could seat up to six passengers, with four front and rear captain’s chairs and a foldout jump seat on each of the rear seats. The 2nd-row seat featured power footrests and a golf bag rack in the trunk space that could hold up to four golf bags. A 3.5-liter V6 gasoline engine powered the concept vehicle’s rear wheels. Along with the gasoline engine, the Citadel Concept vehicle also had an electric motor that powered the front wheels. The Chrysler Citadel generated 253 horsepower, but once the electric motor was put in place, it added about 70 units of horsepower – this was the similar performance of a V8 vehicle. Lastly, the interior cabin was spacious and featured a dual-power sliding rear door and a back power gate.        

Chrysler Pacifica Crossover SUV (2004 – 2008)

chrysler pacifica crossover miami lakes automall

Photo Credit/Copyright: Consumer Guide Auto

The Chrysler Pacifica crossover was originally built with just one trim level in 2004. At first, the Pacifica’s standard engine was a 3.5-liter V6 that put out 250 horsepower and 250 lb-ft of torque. However, it received quite a number of negative reviews, mainly due to the lack of engine power in comparison to the weight of the crossover SUV. In 2005, the Pacifica expanded into four trim levels – Base, Touring, Limited, a special-edition Signature Series; in 2008, a fifth trim, the LX, was introduced. The 3.5-liter engine was standard on all trim levels excluding the base trim, that was powered by a 3.8-liter V6 engine. However, the 3.8-liter engine was eliminated for the 2006 model year. In 2007, the 3.8-liter engine made a comeback as the standard engine in the base front-wheel-drive model and was also accompanied by the all-new 4.0-liter SOHC V6 engine added to the lineup. The 4.0-liter engine served as a replacement for the 3.5-liter V6 in all other models and could output 255 horsepower and 265 lb-ft of torque. Additionally, the 4.0-liter engine was paired with a new six-speed automatic transmission and the base engine continued with its four-speed automatic transmission.

The interior cabin was equipped with luxurious standard features, some of which were unnecessary and expensive, like a navigation system, DVD entertainment system, and a suspension load-leveling kit. Luckily for consumers, the additional trim levels were added to bring the cost down on the base model. After its 2004 release, the Chrysler Pacifica included standard third-row seating, eight-way power driver seat and four-way power passenger seats on all models. All Pacifica models came with AM/FM radio, a CD player, a seven-speaker, 200-watt infinity audio system, dual-zone manual temperature control, power windows and door locks, remote keyless entry, and numerous safety features. The more expensive trim levels came with a complimentary subscription to SiriusXM radio, a 6-disc DVD player with MP3, DVD audio, DVD video, and DVD-RW disc capabilities. An available eight-speaker 385-watt infinity “intermezzo” audio system with subwoofer was also included.

Unfortunately, on November 1st, 2007, Chrysler announced the discontinuation of the Pacifica crossover, likely due to poor mechanical reliability, lack of fuel efficiency, and low sales numbers. It also didn’t help that Chrysler was rather slow in correcting these issues. The last Pacifica rolled off the assembly line on November 23rd, 2007.

Chrysler Pacifica + Pacifica Hybrid (2016 – Present)

2017 chrysler pacifica hybrid miami lakes automall

Photo Credit/Copyright: freep.com

In June 2013, it was rumored that Chrysler was preparing to develop a new generation of their Town & Country minivan and the only hint given by an industry analyst was that this new version would potentially be a crossover utility vehicle within the realm of the Pacifica crossover SUV. On January 11th, 2016 at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, the minivan was finally unveiled. But it wasn’t named Town & Country like most people assumed – it was named the “Chrysler Pacifica”. It was also when FCA announced their plans to discontinue the Town & Country and revive the Pacifica name. The name change was a gamble due to the Town & Country name helping Chrysler retain its position as the king of minivans for nearly a quarter century.

“Sure, it is absolutely risky to change the name, but that’s how confident we are,” said Tim Kuniskis, head of Chrysler, Dodge, and Fiat. “We wanted to change the name so that you think, ‘this is new, this is fresh, I need to check this out and forget the perception that I had about the previous minivan.”

In 2015, according to the Detroit Free Press, the late Fiat Chrysler Automobiles the late CEO, Sergio Marchionne, announced that he would invest $2 billion in developing a new minivan while overhauling the Windsor Assembly Plant to facilitate its production. This process was kept very much under wraps, so much so that after the FCA filed to renew its trademark registration on the Pacifica brand, FCA’s Head of Passenger Car Brands, Timothy Kuniskis, denied that this was related to any new products, and that it was standard industry practice to continue renewing its trademarks because “…you don’t want to lose names. Establishing new names is expensive.” Nevertheless, at the 2016 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, the 2017 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid was also debuted alongside its sibling, the 2017 Chrysler Pacifica.

The Chrysler Pacifica and Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid have completely reinvented how the public views minivans and has possibly reinvented the Chrysler brand. The Chrysler Pacifica is equipped with an enhanced 3.6-liter V6 Pentastar engine that produces 287 horsepower and 262 pound-feet of torque. The Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid uses a 16-kWh lithium-ion battery with an all-electric range of 33 miles, and the battery can fully charge in just two hours using a 240-volt plug-in system. Once the battery’s energy begins to deplete, the Pacifica Hybrid turns into a part-time electric vehicle. The EPA can reach up to 84 MPGe when running in electric-only mode and 27 mpg once in regular hybrid mode. Additionally, the Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid has a total driving range of 566 miles – perfect for those long road trips.  

From the Chrysler Pacifica crossover SUV to the all-new Chrysler Pacifica and Pacifica Hybrid minivan, Chrysler definitely has a great way of reinventing their brand. Prior to the sudden death of former FCA CEO, Sergio Marchionne, a five-year plan was put in place to completely electrify the FCA lineup by 2022. We can only hope that even in death, his electrified plan will come to life. Stop by the Miami Lakes Auto Mall today, located in Miami Lakes, FL, to test drive the new 2019 Chrysler Pacifica or the 2018 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid. For more information on our entire new car inventory selection, visit our website or follow us on social media!

mike manley ceo fca miami lakes automall

New Fiat Chrysler CEO, Mike Manley’s Top Five Priorities

mike manley ceo fca miami lakes automall

Photo Credit/Copyright: freep.com

Newly appointed Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO, Mike Manley has some big shoes to fill. Following the sudden death of his predecessor, Sergio Marchionne, Manley inherits a much cleaner “house” but it’s far from spotless. Marchionne, who sadly passed away on July 25th due to complications during an invasive shoulder operation, left behind a legacy and that will forever impact the automobile industry. He single-handedly saved not one, but two failing companies from near bankruptcy by combining them and creating the seventh-largest automaker in the world, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA).

Due to his impressive track record at Jeep®, where he oversaw a successful turnaround of fortunes, Mike Manley was a natural choice as Marchionne’s successor. While also handling key assignments for Marchionne, Manley was also the Jeep brand’s head since 2009, and led a global expansion to establish manufacturing operations in China from 2011-2017. Although his future as CEO looks promising, as he will likely adopt similar leadership style and organisational structure to Marchionne – today he must take into consideration some immediate priorities.

Working With The Family

For starters, one of his biggest and likely toughest priorities for Manley will be to develop the organization, while preserving traditions. In order to successfully do this, he will have to work incredibly hard in incorporating business with the family. As Marchionne once said, “Don’t do anything specifically for the family and don’t do anything without them.” Due to the amount of support Marchionne received from the Agnelli family, this allowed for him to lay a foundation for stability and openness of the company’s shareholder structure.


Marchionne was a big believer that only a certain amount of automotive companies would succeed in the industry of electric and autonomous vehicles. In order for this to happen, it depended largely on the merge, and potential buyout, between FCA and bigger automobile companies. The most recent and rumored suitor was the Hyundai Motor Company. This came after there was supposed interest from Chinese automakers. Manley must accelerate the push for FCA to begin electric vehicle development – however, the real question is, will Manley consider this a priority without Marchionne? Only time will tell…

Jeep and Ram  

As previously mentioned, Manley was the Jeep brand head since 2009. One of his biggest tasks will be to improve the quality among Jeep and Ram vehicles. It will be up to Manley to implement a company-wide electrification program within those two brands, along with Alfa Romeo, Maserati, and Dodge. In order to do this, Manley will also need to choose a successor to lead Jeep and Ram as Marchionne entrusted him to do for the last three years. Top lieutenant of Jeep and rumored successor of Manley, Jim Morrison, will assist in running Ram’s North American operations.

Wall Street

A former accountant, Marchionne was very much respected among wall street analysts. During his time at FCA, the company’s shares more than doubled since its debut in 2014 at $9 a share – it reached its high in January at $25 a share and closed at $19.32 respectively. In order to maintain stability and ensure wall street that FCA is in good hands, Manley will likely enlist the help of CFO Richard Palmer. FCA executives considered Marchionne the glue that held the company together, especially in a complex group of executives.

United Automobile Workers Negotiations

It was no secret that Marchionne was known to be a shrewd negotiator who also maintained a respectful relationship with the union and its leaders – specifically UAW President Dennis Williams. The future of Williams and Manley’s relationship is uncertain. Additionally, It will be up to Manley to decide how much involvement he will partake in and if that will include the 2019 negotiations with the UAW, which is set to welcome a slate of new leaders that same year.

The FCA Group will be going through several transitions within the next few months, especially since this succession wasn’t expected to take place until 2019. Nonetheless, consumers can still enjoy the lineup that’s already available. Visit the Miami Lakes Automall located in Miami Lakes, FL and test drive one of our available 2018 Chrysler vehicles. Visit our website for more information on our entire new car inventory selection.