By Cars.com EditorsApril 6, 2011
About the video
Cars.com's Dave Thomas takes a look at the 2011 Honda Odyssey. It competes with the Toyota Sienna, Chrysler's Town & Country, Dodge Grand Caravan, and the Nissan Quest.
(upbeat music) <v Announcer>Cars.com Auto Review. Hi, I'm Dave Thomas with Cars.com, and this is a 2011 Honda Odyssey. There's a lot of debate whether you should get a minivan or a large three-row crossover.
But if you're looking to seat eight people comfortably and get good gas mileage, this is the best option. If you think you're gonna lose driving excitement by buying a minivan, well, you're pretty much right, but at least the Odyssey is one of the more exciting minivans to drive out there. Now that does mean you get a little firmer ride, but believe it or not, this van gets the best gas mileage in the class. The Odyssey may be one of the best minivans on the market, but it's also one of the most expensive minivans on the market, starts around $28,000. You can get it pretty well equipped between 30 and $35,000, or you can get the top trim level that we have here, the Touring Elite, $44,000, but it's jam packed with comfort and technology features. Believe it or not, depending what trim level Odyssey you get, this whole center stack will change. You'll have different size display screens, and actually different buttons to use. Now the top of the line Touring, Touring Elite has this really beautiful LCD screen in the middle. This is actually Honda's all-new navigation system. The Odyssey is the first model to get it. It's really crisp, very easy to read street names. It works really well. It also has voice activated search for all systems, including music, so it works just like Ford's SYNC system, where you say the artist's name, and it'll find it for you. <v Device>Highlighted options. Other commands are also available. So how's a car salesman gonna convince you to buy a $44,000 minivan? Well, he's gonna show you a feature like this. It's a 16.2 inch widescreen DVD player. It can actually split the screen, so one movie's over here, one's over here. So two kids can watch what they want. And they can listen on these wireless infrared headsets. Or if you want to go tailgating with your buddies, there's a 650 watt stereo surround system as well. Well, high-tech features are nice. The most interesting family feature in the Odyssey is it's expandable second row of seats. It's actually available in most trim levels. So you don't have to get the Touring Elite to get it. It gives you an extra three inches of width. That means you can fit three child-safety seats all the way across. The middle seat actually slides forward a few inches. So if you have a safety seat in there with your infant, you can reach them a little easier from the front seat. The Odyssey may be the quintessential minivan with a third row that tumbles flat into the back, but it's all those other features I've shown you, along with Honda's storied reliability, great gas mileage, and even the performance have put it over the top. <v Announcer>For more car related news, go to Cars.com or our blog KickingTires.net.