2017 Honda Odyssey Touring Elite new car reviews

As far as minivans go, the Honda Odyssey has been a consumer favorite for years. Our test car came with the top-of-the-line Touring Elite Package. That meant safety features like blind spot indicators and interior niceties like a beverage cooler in the center console and a built-in vacuum cleaner.

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Tom Suddard Tom Suddard
Digital Experience Director

Geez, this thing was plush. It’s to driving what first class is to flying. Cliff’s notes: Comfortable. Fast enough. Super roomy. Great on gas.

I’d buy one if I was a mom, if I was a dad, or if I was just a guy that had $47,000 to spend on a daily driver. One complaint: towing capacity. The only reason I have an E-250 instead of a minivan is because a minivan won’t tow an enclosed trailer. With that caveat out of the way, though, the Odyssey was awesome. Did I mention it has a vacuum? Yeah, exactly. It’s one of the best utility vehicles around as long as you don’t own a trailer.

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DrBoost
DrBoost MegaDork
12/28/17 10:42 a.m.

Our Odyssey ownership has taught us just how right Chrysler got the minivan, and how far off the mark the Japanese can be when they try to copy the segment leader (which is just about all the Japanese do).  Sub-par ergonomics and a lack of torque are standouts in daily use  

I have to go pick up a water heater in a few. Not looking forward to dismantling the interior in sub-zero temps. Stow and go is the bee's knees. 

Driven5
Driven5 SuperDork
12/28/17 1:34 p.m.

'New' car review for used car shoppers?

Boost_Crazy
Boost_Crazy HalfDork
12/28/17 1:50 p.m.

In reply to DrBoost :

Wait- who copied who? Check out who had a minivan with seats that fold into the floor first. Or just about any modern feature. You really think the Japanese just make bad copies of the market leader? Despite often being the market leader?

grover
grover Reader
12/28/17 2:02 p.m.

In reply to DrBoost :

Man, 

my experience could not be more opposite. I’ve got 186k on our oddy and it’s carried washer/dryers, couches, a 6 top thermador range- all with a dvd system with wireless headphones that kill the rear speakers and let the parents listen to their own thing. I don’t love driving around a minivan, but it’s been a great vehicle. Middle stow seats would be great, but it allows a low floor and space as it is. 

DrBoost
DrBoost MegaDork
12/29/17 7:08 a.m.

Sub-par ergonomics, no middle row stow and go, lack of torque, higher maintenance costs, stupid-shaped rear cargo opening, inability to fit a 4x8 sheet on the floor, weird dash layout, power doors that freeze shut ALL THE TIME, power doors that are nearly impossible to open if the battery fails ( good luck to your kids trying to get out of the van in an accident, they are trapped), wide, wide, wide (despite not being able to handle a 4x8 sheet), can't make the front seat comfortable (subjective). 

 

We put over 300k miles on two Chrysler minivans (used cars when we got them) and with one exception (handled under warranty), they were stone reliable.  

Both vans had front and rear A/C working and no trans issues when they were sold well north of 225k. Same duel economy from the old-tech 3.8 as the newer Oddy. All that being said, the Honda isn't worth the Honda tax. 

DrBoost
DrBoost MegaDork
12/29/17 7:23 a.m.
Boost_Crazy said:

In reply to DrBoost :

Wait- who copied who? Check out who had a minivan with seats that fold into the floor first. Or just about any modern feature. You really think the Japanese just make bad copies of the market leader? Despite often being the market leader?

Jason K.

That's what they've done since day one.  Toyota's first passenger car was such a rip-off Dodge and Chevy designs that some parts were interchangeable.  

Fast forward to my life time, there's the Japanese MG (miata), the Japanese Mercedes (Lexus), Japanese BMW (Infiniti). It's part of the Japanese and Chinese culture. It's not considered bad form to copy (or in some cases literally steal) a design or product. It's just business.  

My point was, they aren't making a revolutionary minivan here, just making another FWD minivan. They are chasing the leader and it's amazing how far short they fell considering the stability of the company compared to Chrysler, who you need to consult today's paper to see who owns them.

Driven5
Driven5 SuperDork
12/29/17 12:38 p.m.
DrBoost said:

Sub-par ergonomics, no middle row stow and go...

Middle row stow and go seats = sub-par ergonomics. So part of it depends on whether you're more concerned with comfortably hauling people or plywood.

NickD
NickD UltraDork
12/29/17 3:46 p.m.

But who's ready for the '18 Odyssey, with sufficient torque to rip your children apart?

DrBoost
DrBoost MegaDork
12/29/17 4:33 p.m.
Driven5 said:
DrBoost said:

Sub-par ergonomics, no middle row stow and go...

Middle row stow and go seats = sub-par ergonomics. So part of it depends on whether you're more concerned with comfortably hauling people or plywood.

A bunch of words or phrases, separated by commas indicates a list. It lacks middle row stow and go.....and.....has sub-par ergonomics 

Bobcougarzillameister
Bobcougarzillameister MegaDork
12/29/17 4:49 p.m.

Agree with Dr Boost on the "not worth the Honda tax"

dj06482
dj06482 SuperDork
12/29/17 8:00 p.m.

Our '05 Odyssey has been very useful.  So much so that if it has any life in it when we're looking to replace it, I will probably keep it around as a utility vehicle.  I just transported two 12' by 30" sheets of Corian yesterday, an only about 1' was sticking out the back (hatch was raised).

I'd definitely consider another Odyssey when we're looking to replace it, but am also planning on driving a Sienna and a Grand Caravan/Pacifica.  I liked the Grand Caravan rental we had a few years ago, but it was kind of a wash with our Odyssey.  They each have their pros and cons.

Pete Gossett
Pete Gossett MegaDork
12/29/17 8:40 p.m.

Will it still beat a Porsche on the autox course though?

ProDarwin
ProDarwin PowerDork
12/29/17 10:22 p.m.

Ours gets the job done.  If I could do it again, I'd get a Mazda5 instead, but this was the right price at the right time.  I highly doubt I would be considering a Chrysler instead, unless I was buying a nearly new one.   There isn't much of a Honda tax on the vans once they are 10 years old.

The single worst thing about the Odyssey is VCM & the pair of active engine mounts that Honda charges $250-500 each for.  I just replaced these yesterday (PITA) with aftermarket parts... which suck.  There is no good solution here.

Oh, and you can definitely put a 4x8 flat on the floor in our 2007 odyssey.  I did it, in order to get the wood I used for my race sim.

Driven5
Driven5 SuperDork
12/29/17 10:47 p.m.
DrBoost said:
Driven5 said:
DrBoost said:

Sub-par ergonomics, no middle row stow and go...

Middle row stow and go seats = sub-par ergonomics. So part of it depends on whether you're more concerned with comfortably hauling people or plywood.

A bunch of words or phrases, separated by commas indicates a list. It lacks middle row stow and go.....and.....has sub-par ergonomics 

Thank you Dr. Obvious. I'll try to refrain from explaining the irony of your 'list' in a similarly condescending fashion.

Ian F
Ian F MegaDork
12/30/17 7:57 a.m.
DrBoost said:
Driven5 said:
DrBoost said:

Sub-par ergonomics, no middle row stow and go...

Middle row stow and go seats = sub-par ergonomics. So part of it depends on whether you're more concerned with comfortably hauling people or plywood.

A bunch of words or phrases, separated by commas indicates a list. It lacks middle row stow and go.....and.....has sub-par ergonomics 

That's not what he meant.  The stow-n-go seats are compromised for passenger comfort so they can fold into the floor.  I would not want to spend a long trip sitting on those seats. If the primary use for my van was hauling people, then stow-n-go might be of lesser importance.

DrBoost
DrBoost MegaDork
12/30/17 9:08 a.m.
Driven5 said:
DrBoost said:
Driven5 said:
DrBoost said:

Sub-par ergonomics, no middle row stow and go...

Middle row stow and go seats = sub-par ergonomics. So part of it depends on whether you're more concerned with comfortably hauling people or plywood.

A bunch of words or phrases, separated by commas indicates a list. It lacks middle row stow and go.....and.....has sub-par ergonomics 

Thank you Dr. Obvious. I'll try to refrain from explaining the irony of your 'list' in a similarly condescending fashion.

Sorry man. I was feeling salty about something else when I typed that. I tried to re-word it to make it low sodium. I didn't do a good job. Thank you for not stooping to my level of immaturity. 

DrBoost
DrBoost MegaDork
12/30/17 9:21 a.m.

Here's my used car/quasi comparison of the T&C and the Odyssey. 

The only changes to that are the fact that I think we have over 40K on the Honda now, not 10, and the fuel economy is about 19.5. After the years of ownership, the center stack layout still feels odd to my wife and I. I no longer chalk it up to lack of familiarity due to the time with the van, and that I change cars like most folks change underwear, and NO other vehicle has annoyed me like this one does in that regard  

Linky

Tom_Spangler
Tom_Spangler UberDork
12/30/17 9:34 a.m.

Agreed about the Honda Tax.  Despite my general uneasiness toward FCA products, if I were in this market again, I'd probably go with the Pacifica.  It's just a damn shame that Ford and GM abandoned this segment.

ProDarwin
ProDarwin PowerDork
12/30/17 10:31 p.m.
Ian F said:

That's not what he meant.  The stow-n-go seats are compromised for passenger comfort so they can fold into the floor.  I would not want to spend a long trip sitting on those seats. If the primary use for my van was hauling people, then stow-n-go might be of lesser importance.

 

To be fair, all the vans where the back of the center row can fold flat (into floor or not) have compromised comfort.  The back pivot axis is raised up significantly compared to a traditional auto seat geometry to allow for the folding.  This means when you recline them way back, you end up with the bar in your lower back.

Boost_Crazy
Boost_Crazy HalfDork
12/31/17 2:43 a.m.

In reply to DrBoost :

 

Boost_Crazy said:

In reply to DrBoost :

Wait- who copied who? Check out who had a minivan with seats that fold into the floor first. Or just about any modern feature. You really think the Japanese just make bad copies of the market leader? Despite often being the market leader?

Jason K.

That's what they've done since day one.  Toyota's first passenger car was such a rip-off Dodge and Chevy designs that some parts were interchangeable.  

Fast forward to my life time, there's the Japanese MG (miata), the Japanese Mercedes (Lexus), Japanese BMW (Infiniti). It's part of the Japanese and Chinese culture. It's not considered bad form to copy (or in some cases literally steal) a design or product. It's just business.  

My point was, they aren't making a revolutionary minivan here, just making another FWD minivan. They are chasing the leader and it's amazing how far short they fell considering the stability of the company compared to Chrysler, who you need to consult today's paper to see who owns them.

 

 

I think you may have missed a decade- or two or three. 

DrBoost
DrBoost MegaDork
12/31/17 6:42 a.m.
Boost_Crazy said:

In reply to DrBoost :

 

Boost_Crazy said:

In reply to DrBoost :

Wait- who copied who? Check out who had a minivan with seats that fold into the floor first. Or just about any modern feature. You really think the Japanese just make bad copies of the market leader? Despite often being the market leader?

Jason K.

That's what they've done since day one.  Toyota's first passenger car was such a rip-off Dodge and Chevy designs that some parts were interchangeable.  

Fast forward to my life time, there's the Japanese MG (miata), the Japanese Mercedes (Lexus), Japanese BMW (Infiniti). It's part of the Japanese and Chinese culture. It's not considered bad form to copy (or in some cases literally steal) a design or product. It's just business.  

My point was, they aren't making a revolutionary minivan here, just making another FWD minivan. They are chasing the leader and it's amazing how far short they fell considering the stability of the company compared to Chrysler, who you need to consult today's paper to see who owns them.

 

 

I think you may have missed a decade- or two or three. 

Yeah, it's not worth my time to document mediocrity (styling and design). 

Jaynen
Jaynen SuperDork
12/31/17 8:47 a.m.

Our 2010 just went over 100k and got the timing belt/waterpump/spark plugs done. Have had no issues and carried everything from car parts like miata hardtops and rollbars, to 3 piece sectional 6 person sofas. It has towed our 3200lb trailer albeit I am paranoid about the trans and put a big cooler on.

I found out about a VCM muzzler device and went ahead and ordered that just to stay off any future issues

Fueled by Caffeine
Fueled by Caffeine MegaDork
12/31/17 9:07 a.m.

Let’s argue about minivans.  Seesh.  

 

Now is back to important things like the p71 is crap.  The Miata is a hairdressers car, the Astro van is really just a more maneuverable child abduction device. 

nutherjrfan
nutherjrfan Dork
12/31/17 3:22 p.m.

In reply to Fueled by Caffeine :

and Nissan hasn't made anything sporty since the '90s. devil  

SVreX
SVreX MegaDork
12/31/17 4:51 p.m.

My 1997 Odyssey had seats that folded into the floor. Chrysler did not have it until 2005. 

And that 1st gen Odyssey of mine would have torn up nearly any other minivan on an autocross course. 

Not much Chrysler love here, but I sure don't understand the Honda hate. 

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