The 2012 Chrysler Town & Country minivan will arrive in dealerships shortly, and when it does, it will incorporate several revisions designed to boost its upscale appeal. The changes recently announced by Chrysler include more standard features, enhanced trim levels and several new color choices.

Two important new standard features lead off the list of updates to the 2012 Town & Country: all trim levels now include a rear-seat DVD player and leather upholstery. Both features are important to parents with young children, the Town & Country's target demographic. The upscale amenities will also help distinguish the Town & Country from the mechanically identical Dodge Grand Caravan.

While other updates to the 2012 Town & Country are minor, they also signal the minivan's move upmarket. Top-of-the line Town & Country Limited models get a wood- and leather-wrapped steering wheel. The automaker is also adding three new color choices: True Blue, Crystal Blue and Cashmere Pearl.

"The 2012 Chrysler Town & Country is the ultimate realization of the American dream," said Saad Chehab, chief executive of the Chrysler brand. "By combining a world-class interior, best-in-class horsepower, spirited driving dynamics and class-exclusive one-touch Stow 'n Go seating, Town & Country embodies the 'Imported from Detroit' ethos, offering style, comfort and performance for up to seven passengers."

The most recent version of Chrysler's popular Town & Country minivan debuted in 2008. Substantial updates for 2011 included a series of exterior revisions, several changes to its trim levels and equipment, and a new engine: Chrysler's heavily-praised 3.6-liter "Pentastar" V6, which produces 283 horsepower. Chrysler has sold just over 61,000 Town & Country models so far this year, putting it just behind the Dodge Grand Caravan, Toyota Sienna and Honda Odyssey in the running for America's most popular minivan.

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Jeffrey Archer is fortunate to have turned a passion for cars into a career. His wide-ranging automotive experience includes work for automakers and dealers in addition to covering the news. When not writing, he spends his time searching for unique cars on AutoTrader.com.

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