2011 Honda Odyssey Overview
It’s rare to see the words “exciting” and “minivan” in the same sentence, but here goes nothing: The fully redesigned 2011 Honda Odyssey is an exciting addition to the minivan segment.
“Out with the old, in with the new” is the motto for the 2011 Odyssey, which features a brand new exterior and interior for this model year. Power comes from a 248-horsepower, 3.5-liter V-6 that puts out 250 pounds-feet of torque and features Honda’s fuel-saving cylinder deactivation system, which shuts down cylinders in the engine when they are not needed to save fuel and increase efficiency. LX and EX trims are outfitted with a five-speed automatic transmission, while the Touring and Touring Elite get a six-speed.
For a large vehicle, fuel economy on the 2011 Odyssey is an impressive 18-19 mpg in the city, and 27-28 mpg on the highway. These numbers mean the Odyssey outranges much of the competition, including the Toyota Sienna, Dodge Grand Caravan, and Chrysler Town and Country.
The first thing you notice on the Odyssey is the abrupt drop off on the belt line below the side windows, right after the sliding door. Honda says the look was inspired by lightning bolts, and the “bolt” also allows for improved third-row visibility. Throw in a larger, more aggressive grille, with sleek front headlamps and 17- or 18-inch wheels, the 2011 Odyssey is anything but bland.
So how does the interior fare amidst all these changes? On a minivan, powertrain and exterior upgrades are important but the most important changes will be those in the cabin; and inside, the 2011 Odyssey does not disappoint. Smart features like a flip-up ring to mount a trash bag for second-row passengers, a “cool box” up front that can keep a six-pack of soda chilled, and a center second-row seat that slides forward to keep a young child closer to the driver and passenger, speak to the Odyssey’s utility – as do the fifteen cupholders spread throughout.
Available technology on the Odyssey improves the cabin and helps keep passengers entertained. EX models and above get tri-zone automatic climate control, with optional heated leather seats and moonroof. A navigation system with improved graphics is also an available option. The crown jewel of the Odyssey’s optional equipment, however, has to be the rear entertainment system and its 16.2-inch widescreen display, which can split the screen and play different programming for the right or left side of the cabin. Navigation and the rear entertainment system are standard on Touring/Touring Elite trims.
For any car that you drive your family in, safety must be a priority and that is definitely true for the 2011 Odyssey. Front-, side-impact and three-row side curtain airbags keep you safe in case of a collision, while antilock brakes and an active electronic stability system help keep you out of one. A blind spot warning system is also available and the Odyssey also has LATCH anchors for up to five child safety seats.
The redesigned and reinvigorated 2011 Honda Odyssey hopes to make a splash with family oriented consumers, and it looks like they have with a whale of a car.