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2022 Honda Odyssey: Sleek people carrier

Benjamin Yong Darpan, 28 Jul, 2022 10:56 AM
  • 2022 Honda Odyssey: Sleek people carrier

Five models later, the Honda Odyssey remains a family favourite within the segment that, to be fair, is not overly robust in Canada. Still, this hasn’t deterred the Japanese manufacturer from giving buyers quite a bit of bang for the buck for the recently refreshed minivan.

Marketed as the “ultimate family vehicle,” the fifth-generation exterior receives quite the update. All grades receive more powerful and efficient LED headlights, integrated into a new sleeker black three slat grille wearing a top chrome strip replacing the outgoing wing design. The central air intake and foglamp bezels have been slimmed down providing a contemporary look. On the opposite end, the rear wing between the taillights are also replaced by a complementary horizontal black garnish housing a thin polished strip.

As always, the sliding doors on either side may be opened and closed remotely via the fob, and in addition to being super convenient for loading people and stuff, is a hit with the kids. Inside, there’s fresh finger-print-magnet piano black trim on the doors and front door handles. Providing a pop of colour are the slightly restyled seating boasting contrast stitching and tri-colour floor mats. And now, the front-row passenger too will find adjustable lumbar controls available (EX-L and up).

Another change is the ability of the middle bench to lay nearly flat making the cabin more versatile. The van possesses some serious cargo carrying potential. Even in the upright position, the 929 litres at the very back can easily accommodate a children’s bike standing up. Fold all the rear seats down and the capacity balloons to a whopping 4,103 litres. 

Our top-of-the-line Touring loaner had some extra goodies like 19-inch alloy wheels, perforated leather for the front two rows, exclusive dash decoration and illuminated USB ports. Among the useful returning parent-friendly features are the panoramic mirror built into the roof-mounted sunglasses holder and CabinTalk PA system, both helping drivers keep tabs on the little ones. Sadly, though, the facelifted offering no longer includes the much-loved HondaVac vacuum cleaner due to supplier issues. 

An excellent 3.5-litre i-VTEC V6 motor continues to propel the minivan, mated to a 10-speed automatic transmission. Its 280 horses is plenty to peel out the front tires upon spirited application of the accelerator, however the fuel consumption manages to stay modest. A couple of pieces of technology help: engine stop-start and Variable Cylinder Management that can switch between three and six-cylinder operation depending on load.

A leader in the safety space — in fact last year earning the coveted Institute for Highway Safety’s (IIHS) Top Safety Pick+ rating — the vehicle is loaded with standard driver assist features like emergency braking, pedestrian detection, lane departure warning and assist, dynamic cruise control and many others. As well, the stiff and strong underlying Advanced Compatibility Engineering (ACE) body structure is proven to protect occupants in the event of a collision. 

For North American customers, the 2022 Honda Odyssey is built in Lincoln, Alabama and retails for a starting price of MSRP $44,645.

Highlights (as tested):   

MSRP: $54,005 

Motor: 3.5-litre V6

Horsepower: 280 @ 6,000 rpm   

Torque (lb-ft): 262 @ 4,700

Gearbox: 10-speed automatic

Layout: front engine, front-wheel drive   

Fuel economy: 17.3 L/100 km mixed city/highway (observed)

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