The Dodge Caravan was sold primarily in the United States and Canada, in Europe and other international markets it was sold mainly under the Chrysler brand – either as the Chrysler Voyager or the Chrysler Caravan.
The founders and pioneers of MPV cars were Hal Sperlich and Lee Iacocca, who also created the legendary Ford Mustang. Their joint idea was a car that was officially called the Mini-Maxi. This name expressed everything needed – small dimensions of the car and a large interior space.
It was introduced in November 1983, i.e. a year earlier than the Renault Espace, which Europeans refer to as the pioneer of the MPV category. It immediately became a sales hit, appreciated mainly by families looking for space and comfort.
Chrysler minivans (now Stellantis), including the Dodge Caravan model, were produced in the American St. Louis and Canadian Windsor. The Dodge Caravan was produced by Chrysler from 1983–2020, with the long-wheelbase Dodge Grand Caravan introduced in 1987. A total of five generations of the Dodge Caravan were produced. Production ended in August 2020.
Since its introduction in late 1983, more than 14.6 million Chrysler minivans have been sold worldwide; the Pacifica is still sold in the US today.
The MPV’s popularity continued to grow long into the new millennium, but it gradually began to die out. The reason is fashionable SUVs, which do not provide such variability and roominess of the interior, but have a higher sitting position and are more pleasant. Such legends as the mentioned Espace, which is an SUV, also paid for it, as well as the Picasso range from Citroën or the Ford SUV.
The Renault Espace is back as a seven-seat SUV