Our Odyssey has now completed its eleventh month and eclipsed an unbelievable 35,500 miles. Last month we thought the minivan might be starting to show its age after numerous editors complained about hearing an assortment of squeaks and rattles while driving. An inspection turned up only a loose roof rack and, since it was tightened, there have been zero noise complaints.
This is not for lack of trying. Midway through February, Tim Jennings, husband of editor in chief Jean Jennings, hit the dog show circuit with Bob the Chesapeake Bay retriever. They headed south toward warmer weather but drove through a snowstorm on the way back as they neared West Virginia. "It was a slow go and there were lots of wrecks. I was really impressed with how well the Odyssey performed in near blizzard conditions." After he had added 2000 miles to the big Honda, he called it "an excellent all-purpose vehicle."
However, some people are just not happy unless there is something to critique, and a few staff members have begun to revisit the debate regarding the Odyssey's transmission. "The Odyssey's transmission is a bit shuddery when the ambient temperature is well within good operating range, but show it some good, old-fashioned Midwestern cold and things get much worse," commented assistant web editor Ben Timmins. Another assistant web editor, Jake Holmes, agreed with Timmins's assessment but was a bit more forgiving, saying, "the problem will probably vanish once the weather warms up."
With little else to complain about, some drivers have begun to nitpick the Odyssey, giving their opinions on minor improvements that Honda could make to its best-selling minivan. One editor, admitting that the Odyssey is already bursting at the seams with technology and convenience features, suggested that power-folding mirrors be made available. "At over 5 feet, 8 inches wide, not including the additional 10 and a half inches each side mirror adds, the Odyssey is a wide vehicle. Power-folding mirrors would certainly make parking in structures or at home in a garage easier and safer."
Assistant web editor Jake Holmes was critical of the Odyssey's surround sound system. "Satellite radio sounds really bad when the surround sound is turned on. I'm no audiophile, but quality with the fancy Dolby Logic 7 disabled seems far more realistic and clear."
Check back next month to read about the Honda Odyssey's final month at Automobile Magazine.