Reliable Toyota Van Disappointment

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【Summary】The Toyota Picnic, a reliable and compact MPV, was an impressive people carrier in Europe from the mid-90s. Despite its plebian body style, it offered three-row seating for six passengers and competed with popular models like the Volkswagen Sharan. The second-generation Picnic, manufactured from 2001 to 2010, had a stretched wheelbase and a seven-seat interior. It was a desirable everyday family car that unfortunately got discontinued.

FutureCar Staff    Nov 12, 2023 10:16 PM PT
Reliable Toyota Van Disappointment

The Reliable Toyota Van We Wish Hadn't Been Discontinued

When it comes to Toyota vans, the Previa, Sienna, and the vintage-cool Van with a standard ice maker are usually the first models that come to mind. However, there was another impressive Toyota people carrier available in Europe during the mid-90s called the Picnic (also known as the "Ipsum" or "Avensis Verso" in other markets). Unlike the other vans with twin sliding rear doors, the Picnic was more of a Multi-Purpose Vehicle (MPV) than a traditional people carrier. Nevertheless, this doesn't make the Picnic any less desirable as an everyday family car.

The Toyota Picnic may not have any truly remarkable features. It spanned two generations until the 2010s and was first introduced in Europe and Japan in 1995. The Picnic is a compact MPV with three-row seating for six passengers. Toyota marketed it as an FFV, or "Fun Family Vehicle," to compete with models like the Volkswagen Sharan or Opel Zafira.

The Picnic is built on a front-wheel drive architecture that is derived from the Avensis sedan. It has a rather ordinary body style that clearly screams "family car." Even the second-generation Toyota Picnic, produced from 2001 to 2010, was no different, despite having a stretched wheelbase and a seven-seat interior.

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