Why Does Everyone Love the Honda Odyssey?

I’ve got a mystery to solve. You could say I’m going on a quest, or an Odyssey rather because it’s time to figure out what’s so great about the Honda Odyssey. More and more of these vans are popping up around town being driven by men and women who chose the Odyssey over trucks and three-row SUVs. 

Is the Honda Odyssey a good van? 

Recently, while walking my dog around Asheville, NC, I noticed a house with two Honda Odyssey vans parked in the driveway. One was hooked up to a camper, and the other had large kayaks on the roof rack. 

a silver 2021 Honda driving down a treelined road
2021 Honda Odyssey | Honda

First of all, I was shocked to see two Honda Odyssey vans as children played around them. Unless one van was from out of town and visiting the area for hiking, camping, floating in the river, and more, then both parents had a Honda Odyssey. 

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It seems like either the mother or father would opt for a different vehicle. It’s rare to see couples that both drive the same vehicle unless they’re Jeepers. Also, the vans looked like they were ready to hit the trails, possibly making them more capable than I thought. 

Honda Odyssey Performance 

I can’t say what model years I saw, but I can provide information about the 2020 Honda Odyssey. It starts around $30k, which is a little more than expected. It also only gets up to 19 mpg in the city and 28 mpg on the highway, which is less than expected. 

To my surprise, the Honda Odyssey comes with power. It has a single engine option, a 3.5-liter V6 engine that provides 280 horsepower and 261 lb-ft of torque. It can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 6.6 seconds. That’s extremely fast for a van! Also, the Honda Odyssey can tow up to 3,500 lb. 

burgundy 2020 Honda Odyssey driving along a shoreside roadway
2020 Honda Odyssey | Honda

Unfortunately, the 2020 Honda Odyssey is not equipped with all-wheel-drive. Minivans are just now getting that feature. The Toyota Sienna and Chrysler Pacifica both will offer AWD by 2021. They have hybrid powertrains as well. We can’t say if the Honda Odyssey is good in snow or not, although reviews suggest that it’s very slippery. 

2020 Honda Odyssey features 

The 2020 Honda Odyssey is praised for its abundant amount of storage. You can access up to 156 cubic feet of cargo space. The second row makes it easy to access the third row of seats.

Plus, there are deep pockets behind each seat and deep storage bins for personal items. However, it was noted that the second-row seats are difficult to remove. 

a silver Honda Odyssey parked on a picturesque seashore
2019 Honda Odyssey

The interior is comfortable. The large leather seats cradle passengers, and the sliding doors make it easier to get everyone in. However, there aren’t power sliding seats in the third-row like competitors have. 

Also, the Honda Odyssey tech is adequate. The 8” infotainment center can connect to Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The optional Wi-fi hotspot can keep people connected, and the intercom helps those in the third-row hear you. However, safety features, such as lane-keeping assistance could use improving. 

Honda Odyssey touring elite trim interior
The cavernous and sophisticated interior of the ever-wise Honda Odyssey

It’s unclear why the Honda Odyssey is so beloved. It seems pretty spacious and useful, but overpriced compared to rivals that offer more features. It may be time to take a test drive or review other vans to determine how significant the Odyssey truly is.