Sienna was our first choice to and were disappointed by engine and noise as well. Another thing that no one talks about is the design of the tailgate that is flush to the bumper. So much tech goes into that tailgate that what would be a small dent in the bumper can become a potentially very expensive fix of the hatch. Tesla went with a similar design with one of their cars and their forums are filled with unlucky/unhappy customers. Toyota probably went with that design to get more storage space in the already much smaller storage space they had compared to other minivan, because of the hybrid batteries.Both has pros and cons. Sienna was my first choice because of Toyota's reliability and mpg, but due low supply, I was unable to get a good deal on one locally. Also, I'd have to wait an average of 3 months for it to arrive.
However, Sienna is not perfect. Spare tire is not standard. The engine is loud during heavy acceleration. It may feel slower once the van is loaded with passengers and luggage. The rims on all trims are plastic. The third row doesn't fold down flush. Second row seat cannot be detached.
The Carnival has everything I'd want in a van. However, it was my second choice because Kia's reliability and quality is still in question. Only time will tell if they finally overcome their stigma. I'm glad Kia was on top of the fuel leak recall. I just hope that was the only thing that could cause fire to the engine and that there are no more flaws.
Fortunately, I was able to get a good deal on one at a local dealership. I'll be picking it up soon.
Very similar for us, I’m convinced governments will dramatically ramp up fuel taxes to combat climate change so the Sienna initially looked like the obvious choice.The 2021 Sienna vs 2022 Carnival has been my family's debate this year. For a while the Sienna had me sold no questions asked with the gas mileage here in Florida(and road tripping anywhere for that matter). But, as time has passed we're leaning more heavily toward the Carnival, either the EX or SX. not 100% sure yet.