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Honda Odyssey vs Dodge/Chrysler minivans



  • steverstever YooperlandPosts: 39,971
    They aren't nuts, just have different opinions.

    btw, if you compose in Notepad, you won't have all the garbage Microsoft SmartQuotes characters that get pasted in (or just turn off SmartQuotes in Word).

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  • pat84pat84 Posts: 817
    I know exactly what you mean.

    As for audio systems, the DC Infinity System is much better than the Odyssey. No question. It is one of the things I miss most in my Odyssey. As an aside, I rented a Cadillac recently. It had a sound system that was better than the Infinity. I was really impressed with it.
  • calgcalg Posts: 53
    On the Chrysler 7yr/100,000 powertrain commercials, they call it a powertrain "pledge". Is there any difference between a pledge and a warranty? Have any new Chrysler owners read the small print on their pledge? Does it read like a warranty? Any deductables? I'm not being confrontational... just curious.
  • tj_610tj_610 Posts: 132
    Just went through all the new posts since my last visit. My latest 2 cents...

    sweingast, you have just designed the perfect minivan! Call Toyota before the '03 Sienna is finalized, they need you. Only one disagreement. I test drove the Sienna, and think the Ody 5-spd tranny is better. But I am used to Hondas, so that might be personal (like anything on this board isn't LOL).

    Regarding stereos -- our van replaced my wife's Maxima with a Bose system. $$$ to replace one of those amplified speakers. Very UNIMPRESSED with overall quality. Highs and lows all muted. My '88 Civic sounds way better, with less than $400 invested in Kenwood CD and 4 Kenwood speakers. 4aodge, I agree w/lots of your posts, but not about Ody stereo. While I agree the T&C is better, I too like loud rock (and country and classical), and the Ody stereo is fine. It's no Mark Levison, but it gets the job done. I'm sure the optional subwoofer would be even better.
  • 4aodge4aodge Posts: 288
    I've never even heard the sound from a Honda Odyssey before so I've made my past comments about the audio system based upon what I've heard other Ody owners here on the boards say about it. My cousin and her family have a 1999 Odyssey LX which they seem to like but whenever I drive my uncle around in our Town & Country with the Infinity 10 Acoustic system he always comments on how good the sound is.

    I like the Infinity system alot but it is far from being the best stock system out there. It gives really good bass and the sound quality is very clear although a little more power at high volume would be appreciated. Overall it is a great system and is well worth the 700 bucks you pay to get it. Edmunds even rated it over the Sienna with the JBL system in their 2001 minivan test.
  • tj_610tj_610 Posts: 132
    In my experience, you can almost always do better getting the stock system in any vehicle, and upgrading yourself with aftermarket components. But $700 for a 10-speaker Infinity system seems pretty good.
  • tomtomtomtomtomtom Posts: 491
    Like a lot of new cars, DC van's headunit is custom made to match the rest of the panel. Aftermarket system will not fit in it...I am glad they used the Infinity system. One good thing about Honda's stereo system is you can replace them with aftermarket stuff. However, if the placement of the speakers opening in the car are bad to start with. Those good speakers can only help so much. It is true that there aren't many good aftermarket systems will cost as little as $700 and sound as good as the one in DC van
  • tj_610tj_610 Posts: 132
    That's interesting, I've never heard of a car that there was no aftermarket stereo that would fit. Granted, installation and mounting difficulty may vary, and thus cost too if done by someone else. I've always ordered things from Crutchfield, they are great if you want to find what will fit, get free installation instructions custom to your car, and don't mind doing it yourself. They also have custom bass speaker enclosures for many trucks, SUV's and vans that replace normal paneling and are thus "invisible".

    You are very right about speaker placement, but especially for tweeters. Midrange less so, and bass can be placed anywhere. Good news with tweeters is they are small and a custom installer can usually "squeeze them in" somewhere. That's if you can stomach someone, er, "modifying" your dash or door panel. That was an easy decision in my old Pontiac wagon in college, not so easy with the wife's brand new '02 EX-L. ;-)

    So, overall, you are probably right, tomtomtom -- just pay the $700 and be done! LOL. I agree that with such a large, multi-speakered vehicle, this is the easy option, and in this case a quality one. Despite everything I just said, if the Ody had such an upgrade, I probably would have just taken it, too. Now, for my future new truck, that's another story.....
  • tomtomtomtomtomtom Posts: 491
    oh yes, you could always put something in the dash however, it might not look as it belongs. Actually, if you look at Crutchfield's catalog and you will find they don't have any headunits for 2001 DC's Van with Infinity systems. I think Crutchfield is a good place to get the information but I wouldn't buy any headunits from them because of their price are MSRP. If you want I can tell you a very good internet retailer where you can get great stuff for much less.

    I agree, it is much easier to install stuff in your own car. Otherwise, the wife would ask why you put that round/dome things on the door panel and why there is a big black tube in the trunk.
  • tj_610tj_610 Posts: 132

    The box in the back of my old wagon was so big, I couldn't even get the spare tire out. Shows you where my priorities were in college.

    I'll take that internet retailer, just post the link. Thanks, tomtomtom!
  • vchengvcheng Posts: 1,284
    1999 GC Sport with 29N

    30K summary

    Miles Covered: 29,913
    Running Cost : $2,767.49
    Running Cost per mile: 9.25 cents

    Gas consumed: 1,460 Gallons
    Cost of Gas: $2,030.57
    Average Economy: 20.5 MPG
    Best: 28.1 MPG
    Worst: 13.4 MPG

    Maintenance Cost: $736.92
    Maintenance Cost per mile: 2.1 cents

    Gas Cost: $2030.57
    Gas Cost per mile: 6.8 cents

    Miscellaneous costs: 0.35 cents per mile

    (Still working on Total Cost of Ownership with depreciation and insurance)
  • sweingastsweingast Posts: 28
    Spent way to much time looking at these two vehicles. I also looked and the others but they were in a different class as to size and/or sophistication.

    I was trying to figure what I liked and disliked about these vehicles in terms non-minivan owners might understand. BMW fun to drive with all the toys, expensive and may need the attention of a good mechanic. Volvo nice, equipped with the things you need, always a little safer.

    Town&Country "The ultimate driver's minivan" Sounds kinda funny about a minivan, but this vehicle is almost fun to drive. It is only one that could put a grin on your face pulling out from a stop or going around a turn.

    Honda "Built like a rock and looks like one too" or to quote a Dudly Moore movie "Vovlo we maybe boxy, but we are safe" This vehicle is as plain and utiltarian as they come. But then again, ITS A MINIVAN ... what do you expect. Why does one need all that luxury stuff is a kid mobile?

    Both BMW's and Volvo's are great cars. They appeal to different types of buyers.
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    Interesting analysis.

    My wife and I drive a BMW 328i (to become a 530i in a couple of weeks) and a Dodge Caravan (soon to become a T&C).

    For our needs, wants, desires and tastes, we would not even consider a competitive Volvo, nor would we consider the Odyssey, and for almost exactly the reasons that you list above.

    Best Regards,
  • For our family it came down to peace and comfort, that is peace of mind.

    We have owned a 1989 Accord (196k)for 13 years and a 94 Plmouth Voyager (140k)for 7 years, before buying and ODY last September.

    All service for the Accord has been done by the local Honda dealership. They have a far more convenient service department, better hours, free cab ride to work,(not one van for everybody to ride in like the Plymouth shop) and more responsive staff.

    After 190K miles the alternator went out on the Accord on a Saturday morning, the Honda dealership replaced it that day by 3p.m. even though he thought they couldn't get to it till Monday. They patch tires for free, install light bulbs for free.

    Also as far as peace of mind, the Honda didn't have the transmission go out at 60k like the Voyager, a warranted repair, but still, no free loaner during the 4 day repair; along with several other annoying $200 service bills, during one stretch is one every five months.

    One more note about the Honda, we love the hidden third seat and overall comfort. We just completed a trip south last week and everyone was safe and comfortable.
  • odd1odd1 Posts: 226
    Have you graduated high school yet?

    I can't believe that the same people are posting the same things nearly a year later. This may be the most acrimony laden board around outside of a Toyota full sized pickup owner trying to have a constructive post on the pickup boards.

    Subaru boards are the best. I don't think I've seen a single flame there.

    Thank you new posters for actual comparisons of pros and cons of these two vans.

    Still enjoying the Odyssey.
  • sweingastsweingast Posts: 28
    I am trying to get true comparisons, not a flame war. On the Minivan Shopping thread I found the following post:

    #51 of 54 by pat84 Apr 05, 2002 (06:09 am)
    I owned a 96 Grand Caravan, drive a 99 Odyssey, and have rented several Standard length DC's and 1 Windstar. The Windstar had 7 miles on it when I drove it off the rental lot. Each van has its own advantages and disadvantages. If you want the maximum in creature comforts and good tight handling more like a sports car, buy a DC product. If you want the most room for a tall driver get the Windstar. Unfortunately it has the sloppiest handling of the three. If you want handling and a ride that is more like a smooth riding car, get the Odyssey. Compared to the DC vans the Odyssey is a little boring. I have had no problems with my Odyssey in 55 K miles.
    I have never driven the MPV, or Quest, Sienna or Sedona.
    Anyone interested in buying a minivan should first decide on the
    size. If one can live with the shorter versions, there are more selections. I would recommend that potential buyer test drive any vans that seem to meet the requirements. Do not expect to find an Odyssey to test drive.
    One last piece of advice. If you only looked at the problems sections at Edmund's you would never drive anything. There are dissatisfied customers for every van out there.

    I purposely waited a week to start this line. Pat 84 gave a fair assessment of the Grand Caravan while owning a Honda. Starting a post "Have you graduated high school yet?" does not help in the creation of "constructive" posts.

    By the way, I graduated high school 17 years ago, have a '97 Subaru Legacy Outback and have been trying to find out if I could add an aftermarket sunroof with the Outback's curved roof.
  • steverstever YooperlandPosts: 39,971
    4adodge is a younger Town Hall member who likes vans, but I haven't seen him post in the last week or two. I think odd1 was just asking after him, not trying to irritate you.

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  • dmathews3dmathews3 Posts: 1,739
    I did many, many years ago, but I sure wish I could go back to those years of yesterdays without any worries, and know what I know now.
  • 4aodge4aodge Posts: 288
    I'm currently a junior in high school and just turned seventeen on the 29th of March. I've been on vacation for the last week and a half which is mainly why I haven't been posting more. My family has always used either minivans or station wagons as our mode of transportation so I can appreciate their large cargo space and comfort.

    Our Town & Country is quite fun to drive, especially for a minivan. The reviewers at seem to agree and I think the driving experience is one reason DC minivans sell so well. It's not like driving an appliance or just a big box as in the case of other minivans. Our van currently has 40k trouble-free miles.

    I was glad edmunds finally had something good to say about their long-term Grand Caravan ES which is proving to be a fairly reliable machine. A long-term road test of the Grand Caravan ES in MotorTrend magazine also gives the van good marks, especially for comfort and convienence features.

    Afterall, it says something about a Town & Country when a seventeen year old and his friends don't mind being seen in it...
This discussion has been closed.