As our 2011 Honda Odyssey Touring Elite is getting settled into our long-term fleet, it's the little things that start becoming more apparent. One of the features I've noticed, which I really appreciate, is the power doors (and honestly, what minivan doesn't come with that option nowadays?). The nice thing about these power doors is you can turn the car on or off during the opening or closing of the doors, and they finish their operation without any hesitation. That's more than I can say for other minivans.

The backup sensors, multi-view rear-view camera, and Blind Spot Information System are especially welcome additions to a vehicle this size; however, with the incredible visibility afforded by large picture windows throughout the cabin, these features are almost superfluous. The combination of these features make it comforting to know I rarely have to worry about my blind spot while driving the Odyssey.

Another small thing I have noticed about our beloved minivan: the auto dimming of the GPS screen can't be turned off. On numerous occasions I have set the dash lights setting to daytime during spotty sun/shade driving situations, or near the end of the day, and the system keeps reverting to auto. This becomes annoying when the lighting scenario changes just enough to set off the sensors, causing the screen to go back and forth from day to night settings. It's really quite distracting.

All in all, we're still enjoying having the Odyssey in fleet. I went without it this past weekend, and actually missed having the ability to tote larger items from trips to Ikea or garage sales; the ever-versatile Odyssey was being used as a support vehicle for yet another photo shoot, getting completely blasted with El Mirage lakebed powder in the process. I'm curious to see just how much of our abuse this minivan will take from us.


Our Cars
Months/miles in service 1/2712
Avg econ/CO2 19.3 mpg/0.98 lb/mi
Energy cons 170 kW-hr/100 mi
Unresolved problems problems None
Maintenance cost $0
Normal-wear cost $0