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1108 2011 Honda Odyssey Touring Elite July Update
four seasons long-term tests

2011 Honda Odyssey Touring Elite - Four Seasons Update - July 2011

Miles to date: 10,072 / Months in service: 4

SUMMER
2011 Honda Odyssey reviews to date

With more than two thousand miles accumulated, July was one of the Odyssey's busiest months since its arrival in early April. The majority of those miles were added by our deputy editor, Joe DeMatio, during his ten days with the car over the Fourth of July holiday. He rounded up several other staff members before heading to Traverse City, Michigan for some sun, sand, and the northern Michigan city's well-known cherry festival.

Always the doting son, DeMatio made a stop on the way north to see his mom. "When I picked up my 88-year old mother to take her to dinner, she appreciated the easy step-in height but was shocked to find out that she was in a Honda, saying, 'I thought Honda only made small cars.' She was no doubt thinking about the 1978 Civic CVCC hatchback that was part of the DeMatio family fleet when I was growing up. This big van just didn't compute to as a Honda."

Before stuffing themselves with cherry pie, cherry cobbler, chocolate-covered cherries, and the like, they picked up west coast editor, Jason Cammisa who flew in to Traverse City's -- what else -- Cherry Capital Airport. Being based on the West Coast, Cammisa hadn't driven our Four Seasons Odyssey and was eager to get some seat time and, as is his want, levy his opinion on the big people mover.

He had plenty of praise for the Honda, calling it "handsome, comfortable, and a quick and quiet highway cruiser." He raved about the expansive cabin and thoughtfully configured interior storage spaces as well. The compliments ceased when he got to the Odyssey's powertrain, though: "The engine is okay until it reaches 4000 rpm at which point it becomes coarse and unpleasant." He was equally critical of the Honda's six-speed transmission which he felt completed shifts too slowly and harshly. "Instead of a single, fluid gear change, the Odyssey has five perceivable steps each time it shifts." The back-seat staffers agreed but DeMatio tempered all the kvetching by adding, "yes, the Toyota Sienna's powertrain is smoother but the Odyssey's engine and transmission are more than acceptable, and I suspect that few buyers will complain about them."

As of this writing, the Odyssey has just returned from a very different road trip: to the Kanrocksas music festival. Come back next month to read about the vehicle's wild makeover and how well it survived its rock-and-roll weekend.

2011 Honda Odyssey Specs
  • Overview
  • powertrain
  • chassis
  • measurements
  • equipment
  • options
Base price (with dest.) $44,030
As tested $44,613
Body style 5-door minivan
Accommodation 8 passenger
Construction Unibody construction
Engine 24-valve SOHC V-6
Displacement 3.5 liters (212 cu in)
Power 248 hp @ 5700 rpm
Torque 250 lb-ft @ 4800
Transmission type 6-speed automatic
Drive Front-wheel
EPA Fuel Economy 19/28/22 (city/hwy/combined)
Steering Hydraulically assisted
Lock-to-lock 3.5
Turning circle 36.7 ft
Suspension, front Strut-type, coil springs
Suspension, rear Multilink, coil springs
Brakes f/r Vented disc brakes; ABS
Wheels 18-inch aluminum alloy
Tires Michelin Primacy MXv4 all-season
Tire size 235/60TR18
Headroom f/m/r 38.3/38.8/38.0 in
Legroom f/m/r 40.9/40.9/42.4 in
Shoulder room f/m/r 64.4/63.5/60.9 in
Wheelbase 118.1 in
Track f/r 68.1/68.2 in
L x W x H 202.9 x 68.4 x 79.2 in
Passenger capacity 170.1 cu ft
Cargo capacity 38.4/93.1/148.5 cu ft (behind third/middle/first row)
Weight 4560 lb
Weight dist. f/r 56/44%
Fuel capacity 21.0 gal
Est. fuel range 460 miles
Fuel grade 87 octane (regular unleaded)
Standard Equipment
  • 3.5L V-6 engine
  • 6-speed automatic transmission
  • Vehicle Stability Assist (VSA)
  • Traction control system (TCS)
  • Electronic brake force distribution (EBD)
  • 4-wheel Antilock Braking (ABS)
  • Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS)
  • Blind-spot Information System (BSI)
  • Front and rear parking sensors
  • 650-watt AM/FM/CD audio system with 12-speakers and subwoofer
  • MP3/Auxiliary jack
  • USB audio interface
  • MP3 CD-ROM playback capability
  • Navigation with voice recognition and multi-view rear camera
  • 16.2" DVD rear entertainment system w/ HDMI and wireless headsets
  • SiriudXM Satellite radio
  • Bluetooth
  • Hard disk drive
  • 115-volt power outlet
  • 12-volt power outlets
  • Multi-function steering wheel
  • Tilt/telescope steering column
  • Tri-zone automatic climate control
  • 10-way power driver's seat with memory
  • 4-way power passenger seat
  • Heated front seats
  • 60/40 split 3rd-row seat that folds into floor
  • Multi-function 2nd-row center seat
  • Power windows, locks
  • Second- and third-row sunshades
  • Exterior temperature gauge
  • Power moonroof, with tilt
  • 18-inch allow wheels
  • Dual power sliding doors
  • Power tailgate
  • Auto-leveling HID headlights
  • Heated power-door mirrors
Packages & Options
  • Roof rails
  • $210
  • Cross bars
  • $373
reywang
After looking at 2 on the road so far, I still cannot use the word "handsome" to describe this vehicle. And sadly, Japanese vans were some of the cheapest before, now they are grossly over-priced. I don't need all the equipment that they have stuffed on the vehicle. For those who have raised their own personal debt ceilings, this may be for you.

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