The Land of Cool Minivans
In America, driving a minivan is almost a death sentence. It says to everyone, “I’ve given up on my hopes and dreams and am becoming a soccer mom/dad.” In short, driving a minivan is the opposite of cool in America.
Meanwhile, on the other side of the world, in Hong Kong, minivans seem to be the coolest way to get around town.
Minivans Are Everywhere
Vans like the Toyota Alphard/Velfire/Hiace and Nissan Elgrand rule the streets. Aside from taxis, minivans are the most common cars in Hong Kong. If theres anything I learned in my time there, it’s that they love their minivans.
Minivans can be spotted doing duty as cargo vans, shuttling around wealthy families with a chauffeur—
and are often lowered and turbocharged.
Better in Asia
It doesn’t take much to make them look cool. Unlike their bland counterparts sold in America, stock minivans in Asia are stylish, sporty and luxurious.
And theres plenty of parts offered by OEM tuning houses TRD and Nismo.
Why is it that minivans in Asia are so cool, but in America they’re the last car you want to get stuck with? Not too many people in America are putting TE37s on minivans.
A Different Perception
It's all about perception. In Hong Kong, minivans don't have the dreaded stigma that they do in America. They're seen as cars that bosses and wealthy families are driven in.
The minivans sold in Asia have luxurious interiors and plush second row captain’s chairs with power leg rests, similar to sitting in a first class flight.
With interiors like these, they're definitely something we would want to be driven in.
Hence, for some people, minivans can be perceived as aspirational vehicles. So just as people modify Cadillacs and Mercedes Benzes, tuners in Hong Kong do the same with minivans.
With CUVs becoming the vehicle of choice for soccer moms, do minivans have a chance to be cool in America?