We are in the
midst of a very
subsequently, this en-
every aspect of the
And even minivans
are no exception!
You might not expect
a minivan to make a
styling statement how-
ever, the 2011 Honda Odyssey, presented as a concept at the Chicago Auto
Show, has something to say about that. This new Honda seems to target
people who realize the benefits of a minivan but reject the ‘minivan’ image.
Okay, so what does this ‘family hauler’ have to offer and is it simply
children’s play (after all, families have children!)? Well. the upcoming
Odyssey has a ‘lightning bolt’ beltline combined with aggressive CR-Z-like
front turn signals. This is part of Honda’s move towards increasingly
expressive dynamic design.
What is the lightning bolt styling design all about? Well, the front
windshield is raked to the rear to form an aero nose. Additionally, the
wheel arches are flared to provide a very unlike wide minivan stance.
Furthermore, the rear roofline tapers in violation of conventional minivan
To set the 2011 Odyssey minivan apart from the others, the automaker
has kinked the line that separates the lower body from the glass greenhouse.
Rather than simply a styling exercise, Honda says that the kink enlarges
the rear side glass and that it improves outward visibility for the third
row seat passengers. The automaker also claims that despite the sloping
rear roof, third row passengers will gain additional room.
The 2011 Honda Odyssey will lose about an inch in length. It will gain
1.4 inches in width, and it will also lose about a half-inch in height. The
vehicle’s wheelbase will remain the same at 118.1 inches.
For motivation, the Odyssey will continue with a 3.5-liter V6 engine
providing about 250 hp and 245 lb. ft. of torque. Additionally, the
engine will have Variable Cylinder Management (VCM) that will
shut the engine down to 4 or even 3 cylinders in low demand driving
situations. This feature, will improve the fuel efficiency for all
Odyssey minivans (in the past the base model LX version did not
have this feature). Additionally, the transmission will now be a
six-speed automatic that will replace the current five-speed version.
The new Odyssey will seat up to eight passengers with its three rows
of seats. Of note is that the second row seat will provide seatbelts for
three rather than the current two passengers. The third row seat will
fold flat into the rear floor. Although not confirmed as of yet, it is likely
that the second row seat will have a stow-and-go feature similar to the
Dodge and Chrysler minivan offerings.
Concerning convenience and technology on this new Honda, it will include
DVD entertainment, voice activated navigation, Bluetooth connection, and
power convenience features. Additionally, this cutting edge minivan is likely
to be equipped with iPod, other digital media, as well as Wi-Fi connectivity.
However, do not expect Honda to favor style over the automaker’s
traditional orientation to function and ‘family’ convenience. Thus,
Honda is promising more interior space as well as better fuel economy!
The 2011 Honda Odyssey minivan offers more to enjoy inside and out!
Have an auto question or comment? You can email it to me at
Kbusch3@verizon.net. Kyle Busch is the author of “Drive the Best
for the Price…“www.DriveTheBestBook.com.