You don’t need to have a brood to own a minivan. Some folks love the stretch-out volume and cargo space they offer. Over the years, these quintessential people haulers have been labeled as soccer mom-mobiles, and the stigma has been hard to shake even though they’ve stepped up their game style-wise. Well, the 2019 Honda Odyssey is a top-flight minivan, so there should be no shame, in your game, if you own one or are considering a buy.
The top-ranked Odyssey has got the looks department on lock. There are no real changes in the current design. The up to eight-passenger ride has an overall contemporary design with clean profile lines and tasteful chrome touches. The vehicle’s grille is angular and flows into the sleek LED headlights (on higher trims). The Odyssey’s rear looks a little more traditional with a chrome bar that spans between the LED taillights, but the roofline spoiler with brake light adds a smidge of street cred. The sliding door track is out of sight and neatly tucked right into the black trim area under the rear side windows. The Odyssey looks good coming and going, so you’ll peep it, even if minivans aren’t your thing.
The Odyssey’s innards offer stretching room all around. Typically, in other vehicles, the third row is usually reserved for the elementary school set. The Odyssey’s third row, however, can nicely accommodate full-sized adults. The seating is lumbar supportive enough for long road trips. Thanks to the Magic Slide seating in the second row, the chairs can slide laterally or remain separate to allow for easy access to the third-row seating which is a 60/40 split. The center console is cavernous enough for a medium-sized handbag and cup holders are a-plenty. There is more than enough space in the Odyssey for those who love to haul stuff with 144.9 cubic feet of space, it beats all of the haters in its segment. When all of the seats are up, you still get a generous 32.8 cubic feet of space.
Besides the room and overall comfort factor of its seating, the Odyssey comes equipped with a wealth of available extra creature comforts: push button start, tilt/telescopic steering wheel (comes in handy for talls), in-van vacuum, wireless device charging, rear storage well, front bag hook, programmable power door locks, lockable glove compartment, driver and front passenger illuminated vanity mirrors, passenger grips, rear storage well, ambient lighting, capless fuel filler and illuminated steering wheel-mounted controls.
The cabin’s design is premium, tidy, and well put together with soft touches everywhere. The 8.0 (5.0 in the base LX trim is non-touch) touchscreen’s overall graphics and multi-angle rearview camera are clear, and its operation does not frustrate. You’ll love and appreciate CabinWatch and CabinTalk that help the driver both see and communicate with passengers. CabinWatch uses an infrared camera to capture what’s going on in the rear then brings it to a monitor in the instrument panel. So if the grandkids are giving you drama, you can catch them in the act of showing out! CabinTalk pauses any streaming audio or video that is being played through headphones, thereby allowing the driver’s voice to come through instead like a PA system. So your grands can’t drown you out when you warn them loud and clear to cut it out!
Driving the Odyssey (Touring Elite trim) is an effortless experience. Heft is not felt when maneuvering the vehicle which can actually be compared to driving a sedan because it is so surprisingly nimble. The Odyssey is smooth, stable, quiet, and absorbs rough road surfaces like a champ. When taking sharp corners, very little body roll is experienced. Braking is on the mark. The Odyssey’s acceleration is also lively for a minivan; she will get you up to speed on highways in no time. All 2019 models come with a 3.5-liter V6 engine that is good for 280 horsepower and 262 lb-ft of torque. At the pumps, the Odyssey is not-too-parched for a minivan, 19/28 mpg city/highway.
The well-dressed Odyssey is the right move for those who want to feel they can trust the vehicle they put themselves in when hitting the road. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has awarded the Odyssey with a ‘Top Safety Pick’ honor again this year when equipped with available Honda Sensing and LED headlights.
Honda has kept the bar raised with a vehicle like the popular minivan that brings it when it comes to safety. The available Honda Sensing Suite of safety features includes technologies like lane departure warning, collision mitigation braking system, road departure mitigation system, forward collision warning and lane keeping assist.
Utility and space do not have to trump styling, and the Odyssey is proof of this. The well-tuned and functional-at-every-turn minivan with the stellar driving dynamics is not only a great people hauler but should also be a vehicle to consider if you’re a big box store junkie, avid Home Depot DIYer or antique hoarder!
Prices start at $30,090. Need more info? www.Shop.Honda.com