Can 2nd row captain's chairs of 2011 Sienna be pushed together still?

canadiangie

New member
Just wondering if Toyota has maintained this feature on their new 2011 Sienna. I need to know if the captains chairs in the 2nd row can be slid together allowing easier access to the 3rd row.

Anyone know for sure??

TIA.
 
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Jeanum

Admin - CPS Technician Emeritus
Staff member
Not sure on that and I'm also hoping it's retained as a feature on the redesigned 2011 model. Toyota has to retain some of the good stuff of the earlier version or else it's going to bomb in light of competing models with that feature and other carseat friendly perks IMHO. The full specs and features info. isn't up on Toyota's website just yet. So far there's a 7-page press release at http://www.toyota.com/upcoming-vehicles/pdfs/pressrelease.pdf that doesn't mention it as a feature. The press release has lots of of info. touting the increased ability to move second row seats forward and back for accessibility but no mention of being able to move the passenger side captain's chair toward the center. The only open 2011 prototype that I could climb into at the auto show last weekend was a version equipped with an optional second row passenger side motorized lift chair and the product specialist was busily touting the lift chair and giving people rides in it while I was climbing into the cargo area to check out the third row (which has full LATCH in the center only, no more LATCH or tether anchor on the third row passenger side :(). But you probably knew all of this already and I'm not much help with your actual question, sorry. :eek: Another member has posted that she works at a Toyota dealership and hopefully she will be able to fill in more details for us soon as the redesigned vans arrive at dealerships in Feb.
 

canadiangie

New member
Thanks, Jean.

I've been told by someone wanting to buy an '11 Sienna that the 2nd row captains chairs no longer move side to side. I just couldn't believe this (it's such a wonderful feature) and so had to post and ask about it.

If you do get confirmation one way or the other will you pm me? (if you think about it, have the time, etc).

For now I'm staying hopeful, though honestly with all the mention about the 2nd row seats moving back and forth and no mention of side to side you have to wonder if something isn't up. Makes accessing the 3rd row with two rf'ers in your 2nd row pretty tough. (the person who told me all of this has a 3y/o and twins on the way).
 

Jeanum

Admin - CPS Technician Emeritus
Staff member
Sure, and I'll also try to remember to post to this thread if I find out for certain. I will likely take DH's car in for service at the local Toyota dealership in a month or so and hope to check out the Sienna in more detail once they have the 2011 models on hand. Fingers crossed it will be a retained feature but I have doubts, too. The way the 2011's 8-passenger second row center seat has been downsized to a narrower, stowable seat without LATCH also has me less than thrilled with the redesign.
 

Guest

New member
No, you can't. They're on tracks that run front to back of the vehicle. With 8 seat ones, if you pop out that 8th seat, there's a plastic tray with a couple of couple holders that is under that 8th seat. Non-removable unless I totally missed something.

If you're just doing it for access, I wouldn't worry about it. You either walk in between the two outboard seats, or you just slide one forward and go behind it. They slide REALLY easily now. So much better than the options you have in the current Sienna.
 

Jeanum

Admin - CPS Technician Emeritus
Staff member
Bummer, that's what I was afraid of and hoping not to be confirmed because I'd prefer the option of moving the outboard passenger side seat with full LATCH to the center. :eek:
 

Guest

New member
Yeah, I kinda like the option of doing that, but the new captain chairs are kind of buckety. I guess it would make a very lumpy bench.
 

gecikuh

Senior Community Member
If you're just doing it for access, I wouldn't worry about it. You either walk in between the two outboard seats, or you just slide one forward and go behind it. They slide REALLY easily now. So much better than the options you have in the current Sienna.

if you have rfing seats in the captains chairs it seems like it'd be really helpful though..
 

spokaneCPST

CPST Instructor
Yes, that is a bad feature to take away! I had 2 RF in my middle row for a long time, with the seats slid together. It would not have worked to have them on the outboard positions - the big kids could not have gotten to the 3rd row.
 

Momtobeof3

New member
Oh you don't even know the worst of it. Yes the new 8 psg 2011 Sienna has a mini "jump" seat that is not child restraint compliant and when you remove it you do have the cup holder which would mean my 2.5 year old would be walking on it every time to get to the back. There are only 4 of the front to back tracks (two per seat), so no option to move the seats together. Plus the cup holder is actually what is on the track so you can't remove it. Lastly there is only one LATCH/Upper Tether position in the center of the 3rd row. So in a nutshell the 2009/2010 had 5 child restraint eligible positions and now the 2011 only has 3!!!! :eek:

Similarly for the 7 seat option - you cannot move the seats together and you still only have the three positions for child restraints.

I have seen the vehicle first hand and also downloaded the owner's manual from Toyota just to be sure I didn't miss something. I have a pdf copy if anyone wants to see it to double check my research....it was too big to attach.

I've written to Toyota to ask them what design engineer lost their mind, but of course have not heard back. :mad:

I mentioned that if you use a 5 point harness booster which would use the upper tether you would need that to about 8 yrs/80 lbs, so how many families would carry more than three kids under 8 years old?!?!?! Very short sighted for a "family" mini-van! :thumbsdown:

So now I am waiting to see what Honda does with the 2011 Odyssey in the fall even though I need a van in May-June timeframe. I also have a 2.5 year old with twins coming in April, so my options are limited.

We are going to take our seats to the dealership and do the car seat shuffle and try all the configurations....baby bucket, RF Marathon, FF Marathon all in the 2nd row to see if we would be able to still get to to the 3rd row. Obviously with twins, we will most likely have two RF full size convertibles in the 2nd row for about a year or so, so we really need to know how much we can move the seat forward to get into the 3rd row for the oldest.
 

Jeanum

Admin - CPS Technician Emeritus
Staff member
Believe me, we know and we're not thrilled about it. There's a second larger 2011 Sienna thread at http://www.car-seat.org/showthread.php?t=108226 where we're discussing the other changes to the second row center seat and the reduction of LATCH-equipped positions, etc. This one is just a spinoff of sorts from the main 2011 Sienna thread.
 

Melanie

New member
I'm sure I"m not the only one wondering what was Toyota thinking? People buy minivans for their convenience. I don't think any of us are driving them for the cool factor.

I can see where captains chairs can be more useful and where a bench can be more useful. It just makes sense to be able to push the captains chair together so you can have the option of either.

My current van has a bench 2nd row seat. I love having that space to get to the third row, do diaper changes, etc etc. If I had captains chairs they'd be pushed together.

It seems to me that Toyota will be losing out to Honda more now.
 

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