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Am I the only one that thinks this is ridiculous? This would kill an entire market segment. People WANT to camp in their vans, and they also want to carry cargo. They announced a stellar tow rating for the hybrid, which is great. But how could they be so short sighted by not allowing the middle row to be removed?

One of the amazing things about the Prius hybrid was the ability to sleep in the cabin with climate control. (#hotelprius) Seems like Toyota didn't pay attention to this.

Goodbye dog owners, car campers, or anyone who wants to carry anything in their van.

???!!!
 

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They will be removable. But how much work to get it done? Maybe just few bolts and unplug a wiring harness? We'll see...
 

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Yes, a minivan must have 2nd row seats that can be removed or folded out of the way if the extra space is needed. To not have this ability would be a first (and not a good one) for any minivan that I've seen.

What are the designers thinking? Have they ever truly used a minivan?
Otherwise, I don't see how they could have come up with such a terrible design decision.
 

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Yes, a minivan must have 2nd row seats that can be removed or folded out of the way if the extra space is needed. To not have this ability would be a first (and not a good one) for any minivan that I've seen.

What are the designers thinking? Have they ever truly used a minivan?
Otherwise, I don't see how they could have come up with such a terrible design decision.
it’s not the first to have a non removable second row. The Sedona also does not have removable second row.
 

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I have almost 300,000 miles on my 2004, been waiting for the 2021 to finally upgrade. Non-removable seats is a deal breaker for me. Guess I need to start shopping for something else. Very disappointing.
 

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Ouch on the non removable 2nd row, but I was on Toyota’s sight watching the videos and noticed that the Limited no longer has a 2nd sunroof, that was the selling point for me, and now it’s gone, plus I’m not a fan of the oversized grille.
 

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I feel like this must be an oversight. No way Toyota is going to ostracize people like that.


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+1 to the comments regarding the lack of removable 2nd row seats. I am very impressed with the specs of the van in general, and would be ready to put down my deposit today, but the inability to remove the 2nd row seats renders the van useless for our needs. We like the idea of adding new safety measures, but to win our business, Toyota has to find a way to do it without compromising the van's usefulness. We regularly sleep in the rear on camping trips in our '04 with the 2nd row seats removed, and as I write, it is loaded to the gunwhales with furniture that only fit because I removed the 2nd row seats. Perhaps if enough customers tell Toyota the same thing, they will fix it in a refresh.
 

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it’s not the first to have a non removable second row. The Sedona also does not have removable second row.
Thanks for the correction. I didn't know that, as I've only owned Odysseys and Siennas. Have never owned a Kia minivan or ever considered one as an option.
 

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Thanks for the correction. I didn't know that, as I've only owned Odysseys and Siennas. Have never owned a Kia minivan or ever considered one as an option.
I looked at the Kia, it looks good on the outside, but it has way more road and wind noise than a Sienna or an Odyssey, I test drove all 3 before I purchased my Sienna.
 

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Was at the Toyota Dealer today and now the stying of the new van makes sense, it shares body lines with the Highlander just with a taller body. so it should look pretty good in person, well to me anyway. I still don’t like the mega grille, but I love the interior or at least the area for the front 2 seats.
 

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The reasoning behind the non-removable seats is that the second row seats now include Thorax Side Impact Air Bags built into the seat. Toyota doesn't want people removing seats with airbags in them. I'm guessing this is to future proof side impact scores. Still a bummer not being able to remove. I'm betting if doing a Van Conversion you could still remove them by undoing bolts and wiring harness like someone else mentioned. I believe I read the Hybrid battery is under the first row so I don't see why you couldn't remove the seats permanently.
 

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The reasoning behind the non-removable seats is that the second row seats now include Thorax Side Impact Air Bags built into the seat. Toyota doesn't want people removing seats with airbags in them. I'm guessing this is to future proof side impact scores. Still a bummer not being able to remove. I'm betting if doing a Van Conversion you could still remove them by undoing bolts and wiring harness like someone else mentioned. I believe I read the Hybrid battery is under the first row so I don't see why you couldn't remove the seats permanently.
Yes I remember reading that on the Toyota web page, Safety over function I guess, you can’t be mad at them for that, but it will limit the size of usable floor space.
 

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I can't believe they couldn't at least make them fold down! Put a sensor/switch in the seat so it doesn't fire the seat airbags when folded. This ain't rocket science!

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Check out the Redline review, right at the 8:36 mark. It looks like the second row is moving pretty far forward (almost even to where the center console is.

 

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I watched Redline's video. It shows the 3rd row seats being folded, it does not show the second row seats moving in tandem, plus it is a distant view so tells the viewer nothing about the seats location relative to the console. Kind of makes sense on why Toyota's reveal screams loud about bike racks on the roof, the new tech , safety and hybrid features but silent about the ease of ingress/egress from the second row to the 3rd row or about the cargo capacity (2 row seats stowed) or about being able to load up a 4 X 8 plywood. Being able to haul cargo (including 4 X 8 plywood or mother-in-law's Queen size mattress or dresser) is one of the hallmarks of a minivan. Yes, I am good for fuel efficiency and safety but at the expense hauling cargo?
 

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I believe I read the center seat in the second row folds into the floor on the LE and XLE though, not completely sure though about this.
 

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I can't believe they couldn't at least make them fold down! Put a sensor/switch in the seat so it doesn't fire the seat airbags when folded. This ain't rocket science!

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You know that sounds like a great Idea, but I bet the batteries would be in the way, being that all the new Siennas for 2021 are Hybrid
 
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