We'd like to tell you that there's one clear standout in the minivan market, but we'd be lying. The minivans from Honda, Toyota, and Chrysler have been jockeying for the top spot for years, and all are formidable competitors. Even in that esteemed company, however, the Honda Odyssey stands out as an eight-time Automobile Magazine All-Stars award winner. The Odyssey's capable 3.5-liter V-6 uses Honda's cylinder-deactivation system, which cuts the power to some of the cylinders under light engine loads, enabling the Odyssey to claim best-in-class highway fuel economy. Like any good minivan, the Odyssey's most impressive features pertain to interior versatility. The minivan can be configured to hold either seven or eight passengers, and its second-row bench can hold three child seats -- just the thing if you're bringing your new set of triplets home from the hospital. If your kids don't want to watch the same movie, an extrawide rear-seat video monitor, which can screen two movies at once, is an option in the top Touring Elite model. A removable center console has room for a purse inside, and a cooler below the center stack can hold four bottles of water. For carrying cargo, the third row now folds into the floor with the tug of a single strap. The Odyssey is a vehicle that will appeal to everyone in the family.
Trim Levels: LX, EX, EX-L, Touring, Touring Elite
Body style: Minivan, 7- or 8-passenger
Engine: 3.5L V-6, 248 hp, 250 lb-ft
Transmissions: 5- or 6-speed automatic
Passenger volume: 170.1-172.6 cu ft
Capacities: Towing 3500 lb; cargo (behind third/middle/front seats) 38.4/93.1/148.5 cu ft
The Odyssey EX gets an eight-inch Multi-Information Display, or i-MID, which includes Bluetooth, hard drive storage for CDs, and a USB port. A new color, white diamond pearl, replaces last year's taffeta white for Touring and Touring Elite models.
Front, side, and side curtain air bags are standard, as are traction and stability control, antilock brakes, and a tire-pressure monitoring system.
EPA Fuel Economy
All: 18-19 mpg city/27-28 mpg highway
Split-screen video monitor
You Won't Like
Can be noisy under hard acceleration
Running for president of the minivan class.
If You Like This Vehicle
- Chrysler Town & Country