2016 HONDA ODYSSEY – CHECK FOR PROBLEMS
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2016 honda odyssey
EPA est City/Hwy
19/28
Starting at
$32,700
Engine
3.5L V6
Power
248 hp
Powered by Honda
Starting at
$32,700
Engine
3.5L V6

Power
248 hp
EPA - est City/Hwy
19/28
Seats
8


2016 Honda Odyssey The Car Connection


MSRP Starting From

$32,700


The Car Connection Expert Review
Bengt Halvorson

Bengt Halvorson

Deputy Editor

MSRP Starting From

$32,700


DISLIKES
  • Front seats lack support
  • Pricier than the competition
  • No longer so "mini"

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The Odyssey remains one of the most visually interesting minivans, with its lightning-bolt beltline.

As far as the design goes, Honda managed to add a little visual interest to this box on wheels with the last redesign of the Odyssey, including the “lightning bolt” detail along the side.

That latter feature can be a bit controversial to onlookers, but affords great outward vision for rear passengers. And it speaks of how the entire design balances one-box practicality with a good sense of style. Honda at least tried in this latest generation, using careful applications of chrome, expensive-looking lighting elements, and a unique profile to differentiate it from the rest of the minivan crowd.

With the 2016 Honda Odyssey, this minivan lineup continues to look like it has more in common with the brand's sedan lineup than it does with Honda's crossovers. Small bits of brightwork and a more arched roofline found their way to the Odyssey, and in addition to that distinctive beltline crease, there are small windows ahead of the side mirrors, which make the Odyssey look a little futuristic while adding a smidge of visibility for front occupants looking out.

In back, the look is more flared and sculpted than typical for a minivan, giving this model an aerodynamic edge and a bit more visual excitement. It's slightly wider than typical, too, which translates to a more planted look (and more interior space).

Inside, the Odyssey is more utilitarian, with the last redesign bringing only evolutionary changes. The instrument panel design is familiar and upright, remaining somewhat swoopy and space-maximizing. In stark contrast to the sea-of-buttons look that's offered up in the dashes of some Honda and Acura passenger-car and crossover interiors, with large knobs and controls and a refreshingly simple layout.

The Odyssey remains one of the most visually interesting minivans, with its lightning-bolt beltline.

360° Exterior View

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Well-tuned ride and handling make the Odyssey a delight to drive compared to most ofther big-family vehicles.

The 2016 Odyssey isn't flat-out quick, but it feels plenty fast for this kind of vehicle. It takes about 8.8 seconds to get to 60 mph; that's in the same league as other minivans, while in handling and general responsiveness we think the Odyssey is one of the better picks in its class.

The Odyssey, overall, has a set of car-like attributes extending to its driving dynamics; altogether, it inspires confidence when it's time to brake, turn, accelerate, change lanes, or stop.

Honda's 248-horsepower, 3.5-liter V-6 is included in all models, and it generates 250 pound-feet of torque. It's paired with a 6-speed automatic transmission that delivers decisive, quick, smooth shifts when you're accelerating rapidly. But we've noticed that shifts can occasionally be balky when things aren't as urgent—when you're getting gently back on the gas out of a corner, or accelerating lightly, for instance. And with only an lower-gear mode and an O/D-off button on the gearshift selector, there's no straightforward way to simply control shifts when you're on a mountain road.

The Odyssey handles much more like a V-6 Accord, even though its looks align more closely with the larger Pilot SUV. Thanks to some expert chassis engineering, this minivan corners with poise and control but not much harshness as a trade-off; that's because of well-tuned, isolated front and rear subframes that help avoid the queasy secondary motions that plague many big, family-hauling vehicles.

Although the Odyssey isn't tuned for performance driving, its variable-displacement power-steering system has great weighting and even a little road feedback, and it's far better than the electric power steering systems that Honda has installed in its smaller CR-V and Civic models.

Well-tuned ride and handling make the Odyssey a delight to drive compared to most ofther big-family vehicles.

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The Odyssey's middle-row seats don't fold into the floor, yet you make up for that with excellent seat comfort in all positions.

Versatility, comfort, and interior space are pretty much the top priorities—or among them—for minivan shoppers. And among these, the 2016 Honda Odyssey seriously delivers.

Whether you're a parent to many, a regular carpool driver, or a grandparent with occasional family-hauling duties, the Odyssey likely has what you need. It's loaded with smart features, and both the second and third rows of seats can fit full-size adults or slide fore and aft to accommodate up to eight.

We can't say the Odyssey's front seats are among the best in this class; but they aren't completely neglected. They're relatively wide, and comfortable enough for everyday driving, although we'd have liked a bit more back and lateral support for long trips.

Moving back to the second row, it can actually slide outward, changing the width depending on whether there are two adults, three passengers, or a combination of child seats there. And there are now five sets of LATCH connectors for child seats.

The third row is comfortable enough for those up to about average adult height, for short stints. The seat feels rather low and the cushioning is definitely a step below what you get in the other rows, but in some trims it gets an armrest, and the folding mechanism is very well-designed, with a spring mechanism making it easy to do for either half with a single arm, in one fluid motion with only the firm pull of a strap.

With both the second and third rows folded, there's enough space and a continuous cargo floor good for two 10-foot-long, 2-by-4 studs, or 4-by-8 sheets of plywood. For smaller items, there's a media drawer with damped motion, a cooler compartment that can hold several cans or bottles, and a trash-bag ring—one of those simple things you'll wonder how you've managed without. Interior materials and trims aren't in the luxury realm, but they're not bad for also being Wet Wipe-friendly.

Overall, the Odyssey's cabin is a surprisingly quiet, refined space. Some high-tech wizardry helps serve that impression; active noise cancellation and active engine mounts both work to quell vibrations from the engine's fuel-saving cylinder deactivation, while the former also temps to quash excess road noise.

The Odyssey's middle-row seats don't fold into the floor, yet you make up for that with excellent seat comfort in all positions.

The 2016 Odyssey remains an excellent pick for the safety-conscious, with nearly all the safety gear you might want on offer.

The 2016 Honda Odyssey keeps with its safety-minded family mission and offers up some impressive occupant safety, only missing a perfect score because its set of active-safety features hasn't been updated in this rapidly evolving market.

The NHTSA gives it five stars overall, with a sole four-star rating for rollover resistance.

The IIHS gives the Odyssey its Top Safety Pick award, which includes top "Good" ratings in each of five crashworthiness tests. It misses distinguished honors, however, due to its available forward-collision warning system that only complies with IIHS "Basic" front crash prevention standards—alerting the driver, but not automatically braking.

EX-L trims and above include lane-departure and forward-collision warning systems. To get blind-spot monitors as well, you'll have to buy the most expensive model, the Odyssey Touring Elite.

Not only is the Odyssey safe in an accident, but also both its handling and visibility are excellent, which can both aid in accident avoidance.

All Odyssey models offer standard Bluetooth as well as a rearview camera, while the LaneWatch sideview camera—which shows a camera view along the right side of the car when the right turn signal is activated—comes on all but the base LX model. The entire lineup now includes five LATCH locations (the official clips). What that means is that you can fit up to five child seats in some cases—or up to four seats of any kind.

The 2016 Odyssey remains an excellent pick for the safety-conscious, with nearly all the safety gear you might want on offer.


NHTSA 5-Star Safety Rating

2016 Honda Odyssey Models

Overall Rating

5/5

Overall Frontal Barrier Crash Rating: (5/5)
Overall Side Crash Rating: (5/5)
Overall Side Barrier Rating: Not Rated
NHTSA Roll-over Resistance Rating: (4/5)



Insurance Institute for Highway Safety Ratings

2016 Honda Odyssey Models

Side Impact Test Good
Roof Strength Test Good
Rear Crash Protection/Head Restraint Good
IIHS Small Overlap Front Test Results Good
IIHS Moderate Overlap Front Test Results Good


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The most expensive Odyssey Touring Elite trim is where you'll have to go for the most desirable entertainment, convenience, and safety features.

The 2016 Honda Odyssey is offered in LX, EX, EX-L, Touring, and Touring Elite trims. Features, and value for money, are areas where the Odyssey doesn't quite add up to grand slam. Many of the most desirable features remain the exclusive domain of the Touring and Touring Elite models. And that can be frustrating, as there are no a la carte options.

At the base level, the Odyssey is a reasonably good value, however. Bluetooth is standard on all Odysseys, as are 2 GB of audio storage, USB audio connectivity, a rearview camera, and an 8.0-inch information display. The LX also includes air conditioning; power windows, locks, and mirrors; and a stereo system with a subwoofer.

At the very top of the lineup, Touring Elite models add to a blind-spot monitor, a 650-watt sound system with hard-disk storage, theater surround sound, and HID headlights. Those in the back for long car rides will appreciate the 16.2-inch wide-screen entertainment system, which can show one source or split the screen in half to display two separate inputs (including HDMI). The top model also gets HondaLink, which allows owners to use a smartphone app to access Aha internet-based entertainment, or hear Facebook and Twitter updates via text-to-speech.

The HondaVAC system, that's available only on the Touring Elite, was co-developed with Shop-Vac. This powerful integrated vacuum cleaner is located on the left side of the cargo compartment, with accessories and nozzles included. It's hard-wired to the vehicle's electrical system, so it never needs to be charged or plugged in.

In between, the Odyssey splits the difference, but not everyone will agree that mid-trim EX and EX-L add enough for their significant step up in price. Tri-zone climate control, heated mirrors, Homelink, second-row sunshades, and Honda's LaneWatch camera system are included in EX models and higher. The EX also adds a mirror to help aid conversations between front- and rear-seat occupants.

EX-L trims and above include advanced safety features, including active lane-departure and forward-collision warning systems. A power tailgate is also included at this level and beyond. Heated leather seats, a cooling box, power moonroof, and a utility tray are among the additions, and the EX-L models equipped with navigation include 15 GB of hard-drive space. The navigation system has an especially clear, intuitive display, and we like the controls better than the systems in some of Honda's other models; it has a built-in Zagat guide, a huge point-of-interest database, a high-contrast VGA display, and free FM-based traffic information.

The most expensive Odyssey Touring Elite trim is where you'll have to go for the most desirable entertainment, convenience, and safety features.

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The 2016 Honda Odyssey is among tops in fuel economy for its class.

The 2016 Honda Odyssey has what it takes, both under the hood and aerodynamically, to get some pretty respectable fuel economy ratings out of what's a big, quite heavy family vehicle.

The Odyssey achieves ratings of 19 mpg city, 28 highway, 22 combined—which rank high among its competitors including the Toyota Sienna and Kia Sedona, but slightly lower than the Nissan Quest's 23 combined rating.

The Honda Odyssey will likely lose more ground to the all-new hybrid Chrysler Pacifica, which goes on sale later this year. The EPA rates the Pacifica at 22 mpg—same as the Odyssey—however, the plug-in hybrid version will travel up to 30 miles on electricity and could easily top the Honda in terms of fuel efficiency.

In short, if you need three rows of seating and want a regular, non-hybrid powertrain, the Odyssey is the way to go, and be mindful of your fuel budget.

The 2016 Honda Odyssey is among tops in fuel economy for its class.


Fuel Economy Information

Ratings Based on 6 cyl, 3.5 L, 6-Speed Automatic

22

Combined

4.5 gals/100 miles

19

City


28

Highway


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