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Honda Odyssey vs Dodge/Chrysler minivans

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Comments

  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    Yeah, I'm having fun (in a strange way) myself. :P

    We all just put different premiums on different features. Personally (only speaking for myself) if the ability to reach the rear hatch was such a big deal, I know it is something I can resolve without crabbing about the manufacturer's shortsightedness.

    However, there ARE other features on the market (stability control for one) which are NOT 'necessities' but which I did desire. Unfortunately, if a manufacturer doesn't offer them, there is no easy homemade solution to provide for it.

    Yes, I've driven for a number of years without stability control.....I've also managed to get by without a power rear hatch and sto'n'go seats.

    However, my wife HAS spun (previous car; 4runner) and slid sideways across a curb, peeling one tire off the trim. I'm still amazed the SUV wasn't flipped. She had another near head-on collision and her emergency avoidance (again, in the 4runner) had the vehicle half off the road sliding toward an embankment. Fortunately, in both cases, the worst that came out of it was some very minor body damage and frazzled nerves. But I'd just as soon not push our luck any further. If there are advancements on the market which will help keep a vehicle under control in an emergency situation, that's where my money goes. Maybe it's because I spend more time hauling kids than air compressors.

    We can continue to debate the convenience of sto'n'go until the cows come home. I don't care; that and a power rear hatch are pure convenience items. You want to dock Honda for "didn't think enough of the buyer to add a power hatch at a reasonable price."; that's fine. I'll dock DCX for not thinking enough of family safety to provide ESC at a reasonable price.

    And it was available to DCX through their parent company since MB INVENTED the technology nearly a decade ago.
  • jipsterjipster Posts: 5,345
    "No stability control or curtains airbags with rollover protection? Simple solution;keep the van at home and admire the stowable seats"

    Naaahh dawg...think of your strap solution and apply it to the above quote. No stability control? -snow chains on all year. No curtain airbags? -pillows rolled up into quilts suspensed from the roof by sewing thread...impacts over 5mph will tear string releasing said protection. No rollover protection?- have the kids wear football helmets and shoulder pads. The wife could don a hockey goalies mask & pads. There's a solution to every problem if you just put your mind to it. :P
  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    Now why didn't I think of that.....?

    zoom zoom!
  • marine2marine2 Posts: 1,155
    We all just put different premiums on different features. Personally (only speaking for myself) if the ability to reach the rear hatch was such a big deal, I know it is something I can resolve without crabbing about the manufacturer's shortsightedness.


    I can't see putting on a strap when for a few dollars I can add it on. It is a convience item, but isn't that the reason we buy vehicles with power windows, automatic transmission, power door looks, and etc? We don't need any of those things, but we get them becaause it makes things easier. My wife is not only short, she is thin. She weighs about 105 lbs. With those two struts holding the hatch up, it takes an amount of pull to get it back down. This fixes both problems for her. (You know about trying to keep the little woman happy don't you?) Especially if you want to be happy.

    However, my wife HAS spun (previous car; 4runner) and slid sideways across a curb, peeling one tire off the trim. I'm still amazed the SUV wasn't flipped. She had another near head-on collision and her emergency avoidance (again, in the 4runner) had the vehicle half off the road sliding toward an embankment. Fortunately, in both cases, the worst that came out of it was some very minor body damage and frazzled nerves. But I'd just as soon not push our luck any further. If there are advancements on the market which will help keep a vehicle under control in an emergency situation, that's where my money goes. Maybe it's because I spend more time hauling kids than air compressors.


    Neither my wife or I have had any major mishaps. A couple of small ones. Our kids are grown and gone and we don't have the grandkids that much. We live in the desert where there is little rain and no snow, so those things are not that important to us. We have lived without them for well over 30 years, so I think we can go on a little longer. We have air bags, traction control, seat belts and antilock brakes, so we are not without protection.

    We can continue to debate the convenience of sto'n'go until the cows come home. I don't care; that and a power rear hatch are pure convenience items. You want to dock Honda for "didn't think enough of the buyer to add a power hatch at a reasonable price."; that's fine. I'll dock DCX for not thinking enough of family safety to provide ESC at a reasonable price.


    I think Chrysler would if they had the money. But if you are reading the papers, their German cars sales are way down and are in the red. Their American sales are up slightly, but one only has to look what they have taken off their vans compared to my brother's van to help do it. There is a list of items he has on his 2001 Plymouth that are no longer on my van. As you know, American manufactures are and have been, saddled with expenses, Asian companies don't have and have had to cut prices to the bone to try and sell them. I am sure Chrysler, Ford and GM would love to put on their vans what Honda and Toyota put on theirs. But the money is not there and that hurts them even more, as people such as yourself, buy their products to get these things. They also sell them at a great profit which helps them put even nicer things on their vans the other companies can't do.

    I think you need to look at it from both sides and then maybe you'll understand.
  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    "I think Chrysler would if they had the money."

    That's just it. MB already had the technology (it was already done). The ESC system uses the ABS system which is already on the van. All that is added is sensors to monitor yaw rates, steering wheel angle, and vehicle speed. The rest of it is software/programming into the computer controlling the ABS system.

    I'd be willing to bet Chysler had to invest more money developing sto'n'go and re-engineering the chassis/seats than they would have had to invest on stability control.

    However, sto'n'go looks really cool on the showroom. ESC doesn't.

    Talking about features that DCX had to decide to put on the vans to save money? Perhaps that's why Honda didn't put the stuff like autoheadlamps/power tailgates/power pedals/overhead consoles on their Ody EX. Dodge owners aren't the only folks on budgets.
  • marine2marine2 Posts: 1,155
    That's just it. MB already had the technology (it was already done). The ESC system uses the ABS system which is already on the van. All that is added is sensors to monitor yaw rates, steering wheel angle, and vehicle speed. The rest of it is software/programming into the computer controlling the ABS system.

    I'd be willing to bet Chysler had to invest more money developing sto'n'go and re-engineering the chassis/seats than they would have had to invest on stability control.

    However, sto'n'go looks really cool on the showroom. ESC doesn't.

    Talking about features that DCX had to decide to put on the vans to save money? Perhaps that's why Honda didn't put the stuff like autoheadlamps/power tailgates/power pedals/overhead consoles on their Ody EX. Dodge owners aren't the only folks on budgets.


    I don't know how much it would cost to put that on but yes, it does comes down to what will sell more when your on a tight budget. Their minivans have been Chrysler's bread and butter and I am sure if they could have been able to add it on and sell what they needed to sell, they would. But if it comes down with what a few thousand want compared to what tens of thousands want, they're going to do the latter.

    I don't have to see Honda's books to know they are making many thousands of dollars more on their vans than Chrysler is. I think that is a given to anyone that reads the papers or hears the news. American manufactures are losing billions and their bonds are rated as junk bonds which costs them higher rates to borrow money to come out with new models, new engines and trannies.

    I know many people don't understand how GM,Chrysler or Ford losing 40,000 to 60,000 jobs effect them if they work for the state, airlines or a furniture store. But it sure does. It effects almost all Americans in almost all professions.
  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    "I know many people don't understand how GM,Chrysler or Ford losing 40,000 to 60,000 jobs effect them...."

    This stuff belongs in a different forum, but.....

    There are plant closings/layoffs etc. by GM, DCX, Ford.....in THIS country. Yet they are increasing production of vehicles (and hiring labor) in Mexico and Canada.

    At the same time, more and more 'import' brands are either expanding or building new facilities in THIS country.

    Is the TOTAL number of jobs devoted to automobile manufacture down in this country? Yes, but not NEARLY as much as one would think by listening to the news because all you remember are the figures for jobs lost. Otherwise, the aggregate number of jobs lost is due to lower sales of vehicles (total North American sales down last year due mostly to increased fuel costs) and increased plant efficiency meaning fewer manhours needed to build the vehicles.
  • marine2marine2 Posts: 1,155
    but I'll say this before we get chewed out for getting off the subject.

    The total number of vehicles are down, but mostly for American vehicles, not Asian vehicles, they are up. It's not just laying off a lot of workers, it's closing down whole plants.

    Yes foreign plants are opening in this country. But they are not paying the wages, or the premiums for insurance, medical, pensions or vacations that American companies are paying. They are getting tax breaks American companies are not getting because they are new. American companies can't afford to build newer , more automated plants like these foreign companies coming in.

    Yes they have plants in Mexico. If they didn't, they would be out of business by now. But they try and keep plants here. Chrysler is moving much of their minivan production from Canada to St Louis. They have to do something to make up for the big advantage the imports have on American manufactures and it's huge.
  • dennisctcdennisctc Posts: 1,168
    Really do you own a ODY??? So your talking about something you are just guessing about. Funny that your talking about ego, thats something you really understand!!

    No guessing here, I went to 5 Honda dealers when looking for a minivan over a year ago....all abusive and arrogant with their "take it or leave it attitude". This is common for Honda dealers, not uncommon. One also just has to review the Ody section here on Edmunds for problems and issues that are endless (05 problems not fixed for 06 like wind noise!). Again, I don't have to push any problems....Ody owners do that themselves. I'm just glad you went from the worst ever minivan i.e.. your 2001 DCX, to the absolute best minivan ever - your perfect 2005 Ody!! Congrats!!!!
  • dennisctcdennisctc Posts: 1,168
    Nooo, it's easier to spend a few dollars and make it easy on my wife. Hate to think I would buy a new van and have to hang straps on it, just because the manufacture didn't think enough of the buyer to add a power hatch at a reasonable price.

    I'm sure there's aftermarket straps available that are color coordinated to the Ody's interior!!

    I don't think I'll keep my van parked because Chrysler didn't put stability control on it, or I didn't opt for side air bags. Heck, Americans would have to park 95% of their vehicles if that were the case. As a matter of fact, didn't you drive before Honda offered them?

    What I can't figure out is why big loving Honda Corp doesn't offer stability control on their brand new Civics??? They must want people not to drive them either, or they're heartless and want to see the younger buyers killed in accidents that stability control always prevents!!!
  • marine2marine2 Posts: 1,155
    What I can't figure out is why big loving Honda Corp doesn't offer stability control on their brand new Civics??? They must want people not to drive them either, or they're heartless and want to see the younger buyers killed in accidents that stability control always prevents!!!

    Maybe I should have the wife park our 2004 Civic since it doesn't have it on it.

    Even with the same color strap as the Ody, I don't think I want the van. No stow-n-go.
  • "What I can't figure out is why big loving Honda Corp doesn't offer stability control on their brand new Civics??? They must want people not to drive them either, or they're heartless and want to see the younger buyers killed in accidents that stability control always prevents!!!"

    Most likely, it was a marketing decision. There are always a few things they hold back for a year or two to pump up sales 2-3 years after a new model debuts. Very sad that they opted to omit an important safety feature, though. Granted, stability control tends to be more important for minvians and SUVs, so that may have been a factor, too.
  • dennisctcdennisctc Posts: 1,168
    However, my wife HAS spun (previous car; 4runner) and slid sideways across a curb, peeling one tire off the trim. I'm still amazed the SUV wasn't flipped. She had another near head-on collision and her emergency avoidance (again, in the 4runner) had the vehicle half off the road sliding toward an embankment.

    SEE!!! more proof for my theory that women shouldn't be allowed to operate anything that has wheels of any sort!! be it a baby carriage, a grocery cart or a motor vehicle!!!! :P
  • marine2marine2 Posts: 1,155
    Granted, stability control tends to be more important for minvians and SUVs, so that may have been a factor, too.

    I would think it would be more important on the Civic. There is little protection there against most of these much bigger vehicles.

    Got to fix supper for the wife, I'm out of here
  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    "What I can't figure out is why big loving Honda Corp doesn't offer stability control on their brand new Civics???"

    Marketing decision on Honda's part. But then, if I were in the market for an economy car, I wouldn't be considering a Civic.

    Actually, I'm pretty interested in the upcoming '07 Dodge Caliber SRT4. It will have stability control.
  • dennisctcdennisctc Posts: 1,168
    I'm waiting for the new Chrysler Aspen SUV to hit this fall. I saw a manufacture's Aspen an employee was driving and he let me check it out. To heck with gas, give me a HEMI for towing my new Airstream! :)

    The Aspen will also have stability control, but more importantly - HEATED STEERING WHEEL :)
  • "I would think it would be more important on the Civic. There is little protection there against most of these much bigger vehicles."

    Stability control is very helpful at reducing rollover risk. SUVs (and minivans to a lesser degree) are more top-heavy than cars, so they tend to gain more benefit. That's not to say small cars don't benefit at all, it can still help a driver retain control. For example, one NHTSA study showed a 63 percent reduction in fatalities for SUVs with stability control vs. a 30 percent reduction in passenger cars with stability control. The IIHS hasn't done this type of study, yet, but says, "SUVs typically have high single-vehicle rollover rates, and these crashes usually involve drivers losing control of their vehicles, so it wouldn't be surprising if SUVs benefitted more from ESC. This will be a subject of a future study when more vehicles are equipped with ESC and data are more plentiful."

    http://www.iihs.org/sr/pdfs/sr4001.pdf
  • socalawdsocalawd Posts: 542
    I'm waiting for the new Chrysler Aspen SUV to hit this fall. I saw a manufacture's Aspen an employee was driving and he let me check it out. To heck with gas, give me a HEMI for towing my new Airstream!

    I'm thinking a Magnum with Hemi, ESP and side airbags. Be damned all the bad reliability info and JD powers and consumer reports!! Chances are it will be just fine.

    The Aspen will also have stability control, but more importantly - HEATED STEERING WHEEL

    Yep thats really important to me it was a cool 58 degrees when I went to work this morning.
  • socalawdsocalawd Posts: 542
    No guessing here, I went to 5 Honda dealers when looking for a minivan over a year ago....all abusive and arrogant with their "take it or leave it attitude". This is common for Honda dealers, not uncommon.

    I had only one bad experience while dealing with 5 dealers in So. Cal. All the others were very nice. So as usual results may vary and your experience isn't everyones! The Dodge dealer I bought from was the most high pressure place I ever went too, and I probably shounldn't have bought from them!!

    One also just has to review the Ody section here on Edmunds for problems and issues that are endless (05 problems not fixed for 06 like wind noise!). Again, I don't have to push any problems....Ody owners do that themselves.

    Yet you still do push the problems whenever you get a chance! If I move stuff in here from the reviews of DCX products you call it bashing.


    I'm just glad you went from the worst ever minivan i.e.. your 2001 DCX, to the absolute best minivan ever - your perfect 2005 Ody!! Congrats!!!!

    Again you try and pin stuff on me I didn't write. Please keep your words out of my mouth as you always say even when I quote you. ;) :P ;)
  • http://www.theautochannel.com/news/2005/08/02/139171.html

    The best 2005 Cars Mazda Miata 7%

    The best 2005 SUV Chrysler Pacifica 13%

    The best 2005 Minivan Nissan Quest 12%

    The 2005 2006 Dodge Charger & Magnum and Chrysler 300 all have VSC. They are all REAR wheel drive.
  • dennisctcdennisctc Posts: 1,168
    I'm thinking a Magnum with Hemi, ESP and side airbags. A Magnum, even with HEMI can't pull didly! like 2000 lbs!
  • aaron_taaron_t Posts: 301
    Actually, Magnum RT w/ the Towing prep package can tow 3800 pounds.

    Tow package contents:
    Load Leveling and Height Control
    Severe Duty Engine Cooling

    Hitch sold separately.
  • aaron_taaron_t Posts: 301
    Gotta love surveys & studies. They can "prove" anything.

    I would be interested in data comparing the type of drivetrain using ESC. RWD vehicle tend to benefit more than FWD. ESC is still only offered on a low percentage of vehicles sold in 2006. Besides high end luxury marques where ESC has been offered for 10 years at premium expense, RWD vehicles have been targeted by manufacturers next. What high sales volume vehicles have been avail bile on the market over the last 5 years that are RWD? SUV's. Why is it any surprise what that survey concluded? Duh!

    I work for a supplier that develops and sells ABS/TC/ESC. I personally would love it for every vehicle to have ESC because my company would benefit and, of course, so would I. Taking a tour through our garage and the types of vehicles that we are developing ESC, the majority are still RWD based. I know there are situations when ESC helps FWD vehicles, but they are far more rare than RWD based vehicles. Great, Ody has ESC. The majority of people that think it is so valuable rely on marketing to feed that. Like I said, studies can prove anything. What sells (new) vehicles is marketing. No one needs a new vehicle with the latest features, safety or convenience. Isn't the average age of a registered vehicle in California like 8 years with 110k miles?

    I, personally, am working on a FWD car application. It's a job. It supports my life. I do what I'm told. We also have DCX minivans in the garage, but I do not know what type of system (ABS/TC/ESC) is being developed.
  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    "I would be interested in data comparing the type of drivetrain using ESC. RWD vehicle tend to benefit more than FWD."

    And why is this? ESC helps to maintain driver control when vehicle direction doesn't match steering wheel direction. It helps to correct both oversteering situations and understeering situations. Or do you see some odd benefit to the vehicle not following the intended path of the driver?
  • "Gotta love surveys & studies. They can "prove" anything."

    True. Also gotta love people who will refuse to believe anything, regardless of how compelling the evidence.

    Somewhere in between are scientifically sound surveys and people who can understand the results. Any driver can lose control of any vehicle. Stability control can reduce this risk, even though the risk is certainly greater in large SUVs compared to sports cars.

    The reason truck-based SUVs are targeted for ESC is not only because of RWD (many are 4WD or AWD). The main reason is because they also have a high center of gravity and that makes them more prone to rollovers. In addition, many tend to have inferior suspensions and handling due to the live axle and other tuning that is optimized for heavy duty off-roading and towing. RWD vs. FWD may also be a factor, but it doesn't invalidate the studies. At best, you could argue that FWD/AWD crossover SUVs (like a Pacifica or Freestyle or Murano) wouldn't benefit from ESC as much. I wouldn't disagree, since they have more in common with cars than truck-based SUVs, anyway.
  • aaron_taaron_t Posts: 301
    Oversteer in FWD vehicles is extremely rare. Understeer is more common, but still very few people outside of driving enthusiasts in sporty vehicles complain about it. I have yet to heard of a minivan driver or SUV driver comment on how their vehicles plow so bad when taking an off ramp or twisty back road.

    Since most vehicles in the past 20 years have been FWD, the average driver is not experienced with oversteer. Therefore, when it happens in any vehicle, he does not react correctly and loses control. I personally believe (controlled) oversteer can be beneficial at times, but the majority of the public (and police and judges I've learned :( ) do not agree. Anyway, more people are driving more miles in RWD vehicles in the last 10 years, from large trucks and SUV's to new car platforms. Thus, the ESC band aid popularity.

    Also, understeer cannot not cause vehicles to flip over. Oversteer can.

    So, do I have a problem with ESC's ability to improve the ability of the vehicle to stay on the driver's intended path? Nope. But ESC can only do so much to help any vehicle. Mild understeer for which ESC improves control rarely causes accidents. There is only so much tire traction to work with when there is gross understeer. You still need extra pavement that may not exists on a curve/turn.
  • aaron_taaron_t Posts: 301
    True. Also gotta love people who will refuse to believe anything, regardless of how compelling the evidence. Somewhere in between are scientifically sound surveys and people who can understand the results.

    Who is that, me? What evidence, this study? The article did not provide much data, mainly conclusions. I'm a reasonably intelligent person. Can I draw my own conclusions based on my own experiences and studies? Can't you too?

    The reason truck-based SUVs are targeted for ESC is not only because of RWD (many are 4WD or AWD). The main reason is because they also have a high center of gravity and that makes them more prone to rollovers.

    That is your assumption or conclusion and obviously was one of the study as well. ESC increases the control limits for a vehicle directed path, just like rorr said. There are many types of crashes that ESC helps prevent without rolling over. That back end comes around and hits another vehicle or cement barrier, or guardrail, for example. All can be dangerous and deadly. I would not focus on only roll overs when designing an ESC system or studying accident data related to it.

    RWD vs. FWD may also be a factor, but it doesn't invalidate the studies

    The study did not evaluate FWD vs. RWD which is probably not what the sponsors wanted to investigate. Should they have? It's another control parameter they did not even consider or by which aggregate the data. Would that be important? I think so, but this study has no idea.

    BTW, 4WD = RWD for 99% of all miles driven. Did the study examine the 4WD vehicles to determine if 4WD was locked at time of crash? Could AWD have helped as well?
  • "Who is that, me? What evidence, this study? The article did not provide much data, mainly conclusions. I'm a reasonably intelligent person. Can I draw my own conclusions based on my own experiences and studies? Can't you too?"

    It was a general comment, as I assume yours was. Incidentally, the IIHS status report was not a study itself. You can find the actual study in their references or on the NHTSA website.

    "That is your assumption or conclusion and obviously was one of the study as well. ESC increases the control limits for a vehicle directed path, just like rorr said. There are many types of crashes that ESC helps prevent without rolling over. That back end comes around and hits another vehicle or cement barrier, or guardrail, for example. All can be dangerous and deadly. I would not focus on only roll overs when designing an ESC system or studying accident data related to it."

    I do not disagree that RWD is a part of the issue or that ESC helps with other instabilities than those that lead to rollovers.

    "The study did not evaluate FWD vs. RWD which is probably not what the sponsors wanted to investigate. Should they have? It's another control parameter they did not even consider or by which aggregate the data. Would that be important? I think so, but this study has no idea."

    If the study's intent is comparing a typical SUV to a typical car, then no, I'd say it is not important. If typical means RWD, so be it. That's the idea. If you are more interested in FWD SUV crossovers, then the typical SUV is probably not of interest to you. Like minivans, these vehicles fall somewhere in between as far as the importance of ESC goes. If that happens to be closer to the car side because of the FWD system, then I have no problem with that, either. I never said otherwise.

    My reply was in repsonse to marine2's comment that stability control would be more important on a Civic. I think minivans would benefit more from ESC than a Civic, though not nearly as much as a typical [truck-based] SUV. What do you think?
  • aaron_taaron_t Posts: 301
    If the study's intent is comparing a typical SUV to a typical car, then no, I'd say it is not important.

    And since minivans are IMHO more related to cars than truck-based SUV's despite the center of gravity, I feel the conclusions in that article provide little relevance to the value of ESC on the Ody vs. its competitors.

    I think minivans would benefit more from ESC than a Civic, though not nearly as much as a typical [truck-based] SUV.

    Hmm, that's tough. Minivan = higher CG than Civic, but less likely to be driven near handling limits and invoke ESC. So, ESC on minivan will reduce rollover likelihood more than Civic, but Civic drivers are more likely to activate ESC per mile driven. That's my hypothesis. Which would benefit more? What type of benefit, rollover or accident prevention? Accident deaths? I do not know.
  • "And since minivans are IMHO more related to cars than truck-based SUV's despite the center of gravity, I feel the conclusions in that article provide little relevance to the value of ESC on the Ody vs. its competitors."

    I agree, and said as much at the other part of my last response. I also never used this article to provide any type of conclusion about ESC on the Odyssey vs. its competitors. I'd think ESC is just about equally important on all minivans, though it's possible one with poor handling characteristics might benefit a bit more.

    "Hmm, that's tough. Minivan = higher CG than Civic, but less likely to be driven near handling limits and invoke ESC. So, ESC on minivan will reduce rollover likelihood more than Civic, but Civic drivers are more likely to activate ESC per mile driven. That's my hypothesis. Which would benefit more? What type of benefit, rollover or accident prevention? Accident deaths? I do not know."

    Most of the studies focus on fatalities, since that data is much more common and accurate than other types. In addition to the higher center of gravity for the minivan, the handling limits are generally lower than a sedan or coupe. Also, we're talking about minivans vs. Civics, not their drivers. If driver aggresivity is introduced, one could also argue that the driver of a typical family interested in minivans would be just as cautious in a sedan, so for them the lower handling limits of the minivan would make ESC more important in an emergency situation. If you're an aggressive driver concerned about safety, then I might agree ESC is a good feature on any type of vehicle. In any case, I'll stick with my previous hypothesis that minivans fall somewhere in between typical SUVs and cars regarding the benefit of ESC, possibly closer to the typical car.
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