It's been a long time coming, but the time has arrived. Fiat Chrysler is now phasing out production of the Dodge Grand Caravan. According to a statement by the local FCA union, they are discontinuing production of the model by May of this year at their Windsor, Canada assembly plant.

The announcement was made by a union representing the workers at the Windsor facility. They estimate that around 1500 workers will be affected by this change.

The Grand Caravan wasn't exactly an impressive vehicle. It retained the same basic design since it's conception in 2007. But it was important for its time. It helped in the rise and popularization of the minivan as a family vehicle in the 2000s. What other vans offered in terms of performance or luxury, the Grand Caravan offered in convenience. The hard surfaces and simple shape made cleaning up after messy children easier. The durable build allowed it to withstand all sorts of recklessness or abuse.

The Grand Caravan is also the life-long believer in the Stow 'n Go seat system. Having arrived in the end of the last generation, this method allowed drivers to store the second-row seats into the floor compartment for maximized space in the back. Everyone else had to remove the seats entirely.

It's sad to hear that this vehicle is coming to an end, especially since Dodge doesn't plan on having a spiritual successor. Folks looking for an affordable minivan are going to have to either settle for one out of production or look to other automakers from here on.