Large families usually buy SUVs, but sometimes it is just better to go with the minivan, as it can provide everything you need. One of those minivans is the 2018 Honda Odyssey, which competes against the Toyota Sienna and the excellent Chrysler Pacifica for the best minivan in the world. Let’s see what makes this model so special.
The Honda Odyssey has been the best when it comes to handling and its popularity in the States, but it has struggled to solve the wind and other noise problems as well as the issues regarding the dual-screen display. The new Honda’s minivan is designed and engineered in Ohio, while there is also another factory in Lincoln, Alabama, where this model is produced.
Driving this family vehicle is actually enjoyable, and the moment you sit behind the steering wheel you realize why this one is best in the minivan segment. The steering is well-weighted, direct and something you wouldn’t expect from a car of this type. Just try out the Pacifica which is an amazing rival but comes with the awful steering. What makes the Odyssey great are its impressive third-row seats and crumb-sucking Honda Vac which the other competitors imitated.
There are “Magic Slide” second-row seats which allow easy access to the rear bench. Once the center seat is removed, you can move the outboard seat along floor tracks single-handedly and thus enable people to easily go behind. These outboard chairs can slide to one of five positions – they can be squeezed together allowing you to reach them from the front row or separated if the kids are fighting. Moreover, they can also tilt forward and slide fore-and-aft. These seats are reinforced with extra steel, while the floor mounts are super-strong and the seatbelts and refractor had to be relocated to the seat itself.
Noise and Wind
Honda’s biggest problem was stopping wind and noise from entering the cabin, but they managed to improve in this segment by adding sound-deadening foam and new Advanced Compatibility Engineering structure which is 44 percent more resistant to bending and 75 pounds lighter. The EX-L trims get a laminated acoustic windshield, while the Elite comes with an acoustic side glass and an active noise cancellation.
As we have said, the 2018 Honda Odyssey is a family minivan, and there are some features which may seem silly but are extremely useful, especially for larger families. There is so-called CabinTalk which can help you talk to your kids without turning around. Furthermore, the new CabinWatch consists of a camera in the headliner which allows you to see everything that is going on at the back. If you have a baby, you can zoom into a single seat which is great because you can enjoy the drive without having a need to check out what is happening behind every single minute. Also, there are numerous safety features and Honda Sensing suite. Finally, that old dual-screen unit is replaced with an Android-based Display Audio system which is not perfect, but it is much better than the one provided before.
The 2018 Odyssey is the first of Honda vehicles that offer over-the-air, Wi-Fi software upgrades for audio, apps, navigation and streaming video. Furthermore, every new vehicle from this carmaker will have a volume knob, says Chad Harrison, the chief engineer at Honda R&D since this was one of the complaints that the company could hear from the owners of the previous model. You can use Display Audio to manage the rear entertainment center while you can play the content using Wi-Fi, smartphones, HDMI, DVD or even Blue-Ray player. There is the clever “Social playlist” which allows passengers to fill a virtual jukebox with their favorite music and the Odyssey has one 10.2-inch high-resolution video screen which is attached to the ceiling, unlike the Pacifica which offers two screens on the headrests.
Honda Odyssey Engine
Minivans are not famous for its powerful engines or performance, but the Odyssey is a pretty decent in this category as well. It is equipped with a new 3.5-liter i-VTEC V6 unit with direct injection, and it produces 280 hp which is 28 hp more than the previous model. This V6 can save fuel for you by shutting down three of its cylinders, and when it comes to the efficiency, the 2018 Honda Odyssey is rated at 19/28 mpg city/highway.
2018 Honda Odyssey Price
The 2018 Honda Odyssey is available in LX, EX, EX-L, EX-L Navi/Res, Touring and Elite trims. The starting price for the base LX model is $30,930 whereas the top two Touring and Elite trims cost $45,450 and $47,610 respectively.