It's easy to tell which Autoweek editor got the keys to a Porsche or a Chevrolet Corvette--the big grin gives it away. Or that lucky staffer could be driving our long-term Honda Odyssey minivan.
After the Odyssey's first three months in our hands, its logbook was full of praise. We love the smooth but controlled ride, ample and comfortable seating and cavernous cargo area revealed when the third-row seats are stowed.
One editor noted, "I'm sorry I flew to Florida instead of driving this terrific road warrior."
You won't find the Odyssey unclaimed on any given night. In the first quarter of our yearlong test, we racked up 5,571 miles and burned through 255 gallons of fuel--for an average of 21.8 mpg (the official rating is 22 mpg).
Honda's 3.5-liter V6 is eager to shift into Eco mode, shutting down some cylinders under cruising or light-load conditions. That's aided by our maxed-out Touring Elite's six-speed automatic. But a healthy stab at the accelerator summons all 248 hp for low-drama freeway entry.
Not everyone is a fan of the Odyssey's look on the outside, with its beltline zig at the rear edge of the sliding doors. But everyone has been seduced by the sumptuous interior. Comparisons to a private jet are popular, and the wide-screen video monitor wows back-seat passengers.
The display in the center of the dash is nicely hooded to prevent glare. Unfortunately, changing radio stations is not as simple as turning a knob, so it's a good idea to load up the presets before heading out.
The Odyssey is universally praised for its smooth ride, lack of body lean in turns and ability to absorb rough roads without jostling occupants. And there's no lack of door pockets and bins to stash stuff, as the next driver typically finds out.
Drive the Odyssey tonight? Sure!
2011 Honda Odyssey Touring Elite
As-Tested Price: $45,369
Miles Driven: 5,571.4
Fuel Economy: 21.9 mpg
Fuel Cost: $976.34
Days Out of Service: None
Read more: http://www.autoweek.com/article/20111227/CARREVIEWS/111229940#ixzz1i3VbjkCI