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What Is the Difference Between a Toyota Sienna LE & XLE?

by Shari Caudill

The five 2011 Toyota Sienna models--the only minivans with available all-wheel drive--are top safety picks by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) for 2010. Models include the Sienna, LE, SE, XLE and Limited. According to the IIHS, crash-test dummies had a low risk of significant injuries after frontal crash testing. The Sienna had a good performance in side, front, rollover and rear collision tests.

Differences

The XLE is more luxurious than the LE. According to Toyota's website, both models feature CFC-free air conditioning, but the XLE adds automatic climate control. The LE has four speakers, compared to the XLE's six. The LE offers an eight-passenger, two-wheel drive, 2.7L four cylinder engine that is unavailable in the XLE.

LE interior features include six or eight cup holders depending on the model and rear quarter windows that open manually. It is compatible with XM® Radio but requires additional hardware.

According to the Toyota website, features on the XLE include roof rails; front wide-angle fog lamps; powered rear door, rear quarter windows and tilt/slide moon roof; and roof-mounted XM® Radio antenna. The XLE has remote-powered sliding side and rear door controls.

Interior differences include a textured leather-trimmed steering wheel and an USB port with iPod® connectivity. The XLE has a fixed center console that has a wood-grain-style and an illuminated storage area. A complimentary 90-day XM® Radio subscription is available with the XLE.

For added comfort, the driver's leather-trimmed captain's chair has powered lumbar support, eight-way adjustments and, along with the front passenger seat, is heated with adjustable temperature controls. There are manual sunshades for the second and third rows and 10 or 12 cup holders depending on the model.

Safety and Features

According to the Toyota website, both models have an engine immobilizer but the XLE adds an anti-theft system.

The XLE has a 3.5-inch TFT with a backup camera and customizable settings, such as outside temperature, clock and cruise control. Additional hands-free controls include Bluetooth® wireless technology; the steering wheel has voice commands, audio and telephone controls; auto-dimming electrochromic rearview mirror; and HomeLink® transceiver on the rearview mirror.

According to the Toyota website, optional safety equipment for the XLE includes rear parking sonar and Safety Connect™, a subscription service.

Options

According to the Toyota website, package options for the LE include the addition of voice command, telephone and audio controls to the steering wheel, driver's seat lumbar support, an overhead console with map lights, conversation mirror and microphone, Bluetooth®, USB port with iPod®connectivity, auto-dimming electrochromic rearview mirror and HomeLink® transceiver. Door lights have custom settings and the sliding doors can be powered. Upgrades to the remote permit keyless entry and has a panic function. Outside upgrades include roof rails and roof-mounted XM® Radio antenna.

The towing prep option on the XLE includes a 3,500-pound towing capacity, heavy-duty fan and radiator and an engine oil cooler. According to the Toyota website, XLE packages include a panorama camera, including an integrated backup camera with two views (regular and wide-angle), a JBL® AM/FM/MP3 4-disc CD changer with ten speakers, auto sound leveling, XM® Radio with XM NavTraffic® (with 90-day subscription) and a dual-view entertainment center with two 120V AC outlets. The website reports a powered tilt and slide moon roof with sunshade is available. Packages include an in-glass AM/FM antenna, smart key system with push-button start, and a fin-type, roof-mounted XM® Radio and Safety Connect™ antenna.

About the Author

Shari Caudill began writing professionally in 1985 with the "Portsmouth Daily Times." Her work has also been published in the "Community Common" and "Cleveland Plain Dealer." Caudill has a writing certificate from the Institute of Children's Literature and a photography certificate from the New York Institute of Photography.

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