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Honda Odyssey vs. Toyota Sienna

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  • 05ody05ody Posts: 103
    Also you can lock the rear heat so that the kids (or whoever) cant change it and with that on you can only control the rear heat from the front. I found this handy seing how alot of kids are very courious and also the window locks are a nice feature.
  • 05ody05ody Posts: 103
    I also like the sync mode on my odyssey. Very nice feature. I never knew they had it in the sienna though. We started off leasing the Odyssey but we would of lost about $3000(cnd) leasing for 5 years. So we just made some payments on it. I like on the Touring model how it also has the auto climate control for the rear. That would of been nice but I cant complaine the rear heat/air works great! I think im going to have to look more closley in my aunts Sienna I guess I mist alot of thier features! :blush:
  • irgirg Posts: 197
    It may make a difference depending what model your aunt has, I am not sure. I have the XLE, so it is an automatic climate control, 3 zone system. The LE models are not automatic, although I think they do have a 3 zone system controllable up front as well, although don't quote me on that. Not sure what the CE model has.
  • hansiennahansienna Posts: 2,312
    Winner? I like the Ody EX better overall than the Sienna LE BUT I can not convince myself it is worth $27,206 (MSRP $28,710) vs $$24,900 of Sienna LE with MSRP $27,289. :cry:
    Surprisingly, the Sienna seemed to be more responsive than the Ody when the accelerator was pushed to the floor...at any speed. ;)
  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    "Surprisingly, the Sienna seemed to be more responsive than the Ody when the accelerator was pushed to the floor...at any speed. "

    I'm not surprised - both are very good performers. While the Ody has a big advantage in ultimate hp, the Sienna is substantially lighter with virtually the same torque rating. As far as pure acceleration goes, I wouldn't be surprised in the least that the Sienna felt quicker.
  • 05ody05ody Posts: 103
    Oh...my aunt has an LE. I guess next time I see the Sienna I will take a close look.
  • hansiennahansienna Posts: 2,312
    YES. There were controls on the dash and also in the rear for the Rear A/C on the 2004 Sienna LE that I took for a test drive today. ;)
    The Sienna LE had only the optional power sliding passenger side rear door and the overhead console...NO power driver seat and NO cast wheels. :cry:
  • cbeckcbeck Posts: 2
    We just got through shopping for a minivan for my parents. We chose the Honda, but it was a close call. Toyota's third row seat has a gas shock the helps raise and lower it and I feel it is safer and easier to use than the Honda. The Sienna is a bit quieter on the highway. But the Honda's plush front and second row seats are what won us over! It has been a long time since I have sat in such a comfortable car. Another thing we really like on the Odyssey is the pull up shades that are built in to the sliding doors. I have owned many cars of many different brands, so I am not loyal to a brand. I will say one thing though: When comparing all brands of minivans, Toyota and Honda have them beat!
  • Just got home from the dealer with a new Sienna XLE, option package 6. In the end, the things that pushed me over the edge were:

    1. I like the interior better - It feels more "high end" than the Odyssey EX-L we were looking at.

    2. Larger rear storage area.

    3. Power lift gate.

    4. Less road noise.

    It was a close call, though. We went back to both dealerships multiple times. There were a couple of things I wish I could transfer from the Odyssey to the Sienna:

    1. Larger rear window/lower rear seats to increase view out the back.

    2. Nifty removable/stowable 8th seat.

    Overall, I'm pretty excited, and I can't wait for daylight so I can go drive the thing. The dealership was super nice, but took them FOREVER to get us from the sales department to the finance department to finalize the deal, so we didn't get out of there until almost 10pm.
  • hondakid6hondakid6 Posts: 1
    When my parents told me that they were looking for a new van to buy, I fliped to Con.Reports issue w/ the Ody. and Sienna and said there ya go. My parents and I test drove an 05 Sienna and Ody. but first the Ody. I was more excited then they were... and so we got the ody. book that has pics and specs and i noticed there was a green ody. with grey interior, yet the pic said sage brush pearl. I influenced there decision to purchase the Ody.(he he... i liked it better, though they were leaning toward it as well) and we ended up getting that same color as the pic but it was not green, nor did it have grey interior. It was more like a bluish green... more blue though. Was that a color honda just decided at the last minute to cancel and change to the one we have? Its a popular color... ive seen many on our trip to san antonio, which was a very pleasant 23 hr drive...i must say. :shades:
    i just couldn't stop thinking about it.... im sure you guys have seen it... or does anyone have a green 05 ody.?
  • The colors of the their vans seen in person with naked eyes do not resemble those seen on the computer screens on in the magazines. I almost bought an Ocean Mist based on the colors on the honda.com site but it was much duller looking when I went to collect it. There was an Midnight Blue Pearl sitting on the lot that looked more sharp and much different from what I had seen on screen. So we ended up buying it
  • 05ody05ody Posts: 103
    Hey I got the same color as you! but in Canada they call it Slate Grey Pearl. I could of sworn it was blue but the color changes as the lighting changes! Very neat and people seem to like that color! Enjoy your new Ody! :)
  • cavillercaviller Posts: 331
    It was a close call, though. We went back to both dealerships multiple times. There were a couple of things I wish I could transfer from the Odyssey to the Sienna:

    1. Larger rear window/lower rear seats to increase view out the back.

    2. Nifty removable/stowable 8th seat.


    I was in for an oil change today and took a close look at the interior of the new Odyssey. I was not impressed with the 8th seat. It's not even wide enough to fit a narrow booster, let alone a larger carseat or adult. It might be useful for a booster or small carseat in a pinch, but the only regular passenger I could see using it regularly is a an average sized 8-12 year old child or a smaller teen. It is light and easy to remove, however, if you stow it you still have to put the entire lazy susan assembly somewhere.

    The rest of the interior was OK. I liked the more simple dash layout of the old Odyssey, personally. The various adjustment levers, straps and buttons did not seem all that robust but all seemed to work fine. I did appreciate the 60/40 split rear seat, though they've forgone the tailgate feature which came in handy. While it was easy to operate, the feet on the 60 section were very difficult to engage into the floor anchors.

    They said the 2006 models should arrive early next month, though they were not aware of any changes.
  • amosanon1amosanon1 Posts: 23
    We are also looking for a Slate EX-L RES here in Connecticut. We really like the color. Sometimes it looks gray; sometimes green; sometimes blue. But they are impossible to find! Two dealerships are searching up and down the east coast for a dealer that will trade with them, and no luck yet. So we might be waiting a few weeks. We thought about going with a second choice, perhaps silver, but then we decided that if we are paying 30K for a car, we deserve the color we want--even if we have to wait for it.
  • 05ody05ody Posts: 103
    The 8th seat is actually very comfortable. I sat in it for about 4 hours and not one complaint. It looks small but it fits just right.
  • 05ody05ody Posts: 103
    Oh thats funny. The slate grey Pearl was the only color they had when we bought the Odyssey!! I guess it was just luck because we love it its so unique!! no regrets for waiting for another color. But you are right, if your paying $30 grand plus, you should get the color you want when you want!! :D
  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    I'll second that.

    The first time I saw the +1 seat, I couldn't believe how small it looked. But then I actually tried it. It is much, much more usable than it looks. Before anyone passes judgement on it, they should actually TRY it.
  • I have elementary school kids, so that 8th seat would have been great for carpooling when someone calls and says, "I'm running late - can you take one more home today?" Here in Northern California we don't have school buses, so everyone has to drive the kids to and from - major drag. Booster seats are no longer an issue - it's how many little butts can we legally get in the car! Since I'm one of those who refuses to put small fry in the front seat, even with the "smart" airbags, I'd have liked that 8th seat. But, I liked the Sienna just that much more than the Honda, but I wanted some of the other features on the XLE over the LE. So in the end, my friends' kids lost out to my own preferences.

    I've spent the morning familiarizing myself with the car, running errands, figuring out where I'm going to put my stuff in the car. I have to say I love it. My kids have each claimed "their" seat, after much fighting over who was going to get to sit on the side with the rear AC controls. I was pleasantly surprised to find that it was easier to park for me than I expected. I'm used to driving a '97 caravan (short wheel base), which I never could seem to get straight into a parking place. The Sienna is quite a bit bigger (both longer and wider), but I seem to have a much easier time of parking it properly. Go figure.
  • cavillercaviller Posts: 331
    The first time I saw the +1 seat, I couldn't believe how small it looked. But then I actually tried it. It is much, much more usable than it looks. Before anyone passes judgement on it, they should actually TRY it.

    GOOD POINT. Perhaps it gets more comfortable the longer you own it and rationalize it? I'm not a big guy. Even so, I spilled over the edges onto the other seats. I'm sure it's been adequately reinforced and tested. Having taken a close look when I folded it for the lazy suzan, I didn't get a lot of confidence that it would be a great idea for a heavy adult to be using in the event of a serious rear-end crash.

    I measured under 11" from the inside of one seatbelt anchor to the other. Yeah, you can probably still squeeze in if you or your child seat are much wider than that. Honda did do a good job with the space they had available to kludge in another seat. I'm sure it would come handy, as one of our kids might fit into it without a booster in a couple years and I'm sure I could make one child restraint or another fit there if needed.

    Even so, I hope the Sienna 8th seat is a lot more functional when I see it. I'll reserve judgement on which design is superior until then. It does appear Toyota designed it from the ground up, rather than kludge it into the existing 7-passenger version. You do apparently lose some width and armrests from the outside captain's chairs to get the 8th seat. Not a bad compromise if you haul kids in back 99% of the time, but probably not worth it for those carrying adults for frequently.

    On the other topic, I'd almost buy the Odyssey on having the exterior styling with the slate grey color alone. Both are very safe vans, and I could deal with the interior seating quirks of the Odyssey. The new one is still nicer than our 2001 in that regard. We've been really happy with our 2001 and the dealer, but I was really hoping the interior would have impressed me as much as the exterior.
  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    "Even so, I hope the Sienna 8th seat is a lot more functional when I see it."

    It is.

    "You do apparently lose some width and armrests from the outside captain's chairs to get the 8th seat."

    You do.

    "It does appear Toyota designed it from the ground up, rather than kludge it into the existing 7-passenger version."

    First, yes, Toyota did design both their 7 passenger and 8 passenger versions 'from the ground up'. The Sienna was a complete redesign in '04 when they were released. However, the Ody was also a complete redesign in '05 when the +1 seat was released. Meaning it is NOT a "kludge" fit into an existing 7-passenger version.

    Second, all you are seeing is two different approaches taken by Honda and Toyota. If you intend to use 3 across in the 2nd row fairly frequently, the Toyota 8-seater makes much more sense. However, to offer 3 roughly equal sized seats in the Toyota, they slightly reduced the size of the outboard seats and eliminated the armrests.

    Honda took a different approach. They thought that more buyers would be interested in the ability to OCCASIONALLY carry 3 across in the 2nd row. Therefore, they kept the outboard seats full sized with armrests. Think of the Ody EX or EX-L like the 7 seat versions of the Sienna with the added capacity to occasionally carry a 3rd butt in the 2nd row.

    Was Honda right that more buyers would be interested in occasional 8-passenger capacity rather than frequently? I don't know and I don't care. All I know is that for OUR situation, we liked the idea of having an 8-seater but also knew the middle seat would only rarely be used and didn't want to have the outboard seats smaller or w/o armrests. If we had bought the Sienna (and we WOULD have bought the Sienna if the local dealers hadn't been so proud of them), we'd have bought a 7-seater. As it is, we consider the +1 seat a "bonus" seat which doesn't compromise on the comfort of the two outboard seats in any way.

    All I was attempting to point out was that, for occasional use, the +1 seat is actually better than it looks. Some folks simply take one look at it and think "no freakin' way am I sitting on THAT".
  • cavillercaviller Posts: 331
    However, the Ody was also a complete redesign in '05 when the +1 seat was released. Meaning it is NOT a "kludge" fit into an existing 7-passenger version.

    The 2005 is a nice evolution, but calling it "complete redesign" is a stretch. It's not the dramatic change we saw from 1998 to 1999, when they went to the new chassis. If you look at them, you will notice that the 2005 Odyssey second row seating is very similar to the 2004 version. Perhaps calling it a kluge is a little extreme, but they did pretty much just stick a small 8th seat in between the existing ones and called it +1.

    I understand the differences in the two vans and how their use may vary from person to person. Indeed, I'd call the +1 seat a bonus, too. I'll be happy to have it if I purchase the Odyssey, but I won't fool myself into thinking I'd want to sit there for any extended duration. In fact, this is basically why I'm not strongly considering a Sienna XLE or Limited. At that point, I'd rather have the EX or EX-L for the +1 seat.
  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    "...but I won't fool myself into thinking I'd want to sit there for any extended duration."

    Fair enough. But I wasn't trying to fool anyone into thinking they'd WANT to sit there. Obviously, given a choice, I'd much rather sit in the outboard seats. All I'm saying is that it is more useful/usable than it looks. I've personally had people look at it, tell me it was completely useless, and then (after sitting in it) saying, "wow, this seat's actually pretty comfortable".

    If you're over 6'0" and/or in excess of 180#'s, no I wouldn't recommend it. But for it's intended occupant (kids of normal build up to and including most HS'ers) I think it should be just fine.
  • hansiennahansienna Posts: 2,312
    What did you own before the '97 Caravan? :confuse:
    If you had owned a small sedan like a Civic, Corolla, Nubira, etc. the difference in size between it and the '97 Caravan would be much greater than between the Caravan and the Sienna. :blush:
  • minivanguyminivanguy Posts: 85
    If you really research the two vans. You'll find out that there is basically a 90% change in the 2004 to 2005. To me that's "DRAMATIC"!!! ;)
  • OK, you may have a point - I drove an MR2; had a little "incident" in that and switched to my husband's Mitsubishi Eclipse. When child number one came along, it became clear that the Eclipse just wasn't going to cut it as a family car, hence the Caravan. But you'd think after driving it for 8 years I'd have figured out how to get it straight into a parking place, and yet I never did. Today I got the Sienna spot on every time I tried. Go figure. Mind you, I haven't tried to parallel park, so that might be another story. I've always been able to parallel park just fine, but this one seems so much longer than my Caravan, I'm almost afraid to try. (Of course, compared to parallel parking an MR2, this is going to be like trying to dock the QE-II, but that poor MR2 is just a distant, fond memory at this point.)

    The only complaint I've had, after a full 24 hours of ownership, is that the kids are bemoaning the lack of reachable cupholders in the middle row. I know I could move the console back there, but I like it in the front. A minor point, I know, but I thought I'd throw it out there for those still contemplating their purchase. I'm toying with the idea of buying a second little console at Target or someplace. Not that I'm ever going to let the kids eat or drink in my brand new car...ha ha ha ha.
  • kjokjo Posts: 24
    The Sienna LE had only the optional power sliding passenger side rear door and the overhead console...NO power driver seat and NO cast wheels

    My LE has 8 way power driver seat and cast wheels and 4 wheel disc. I t just depends what option package is on it. I might also add that the I like the cast wheels on the LE much better than the Ody EX. ;)
  • jim2363jim2363 Posts: 7
    Hi, all. I am looking for some advice on choosing between the Odyssey and the Sienna. I just sold my Subaru WRX-4 kids and a divorce have put me in the hunt for something a lot bigger.
    I'm leaning towards the Sienna because I've been spoiled by AWD but I could see myself buying either one. The dealers that I have been to here on Long Island are not coming off MSRP for the Odyssey (I was considering the EX-L for the sunroof) and they are offering the preferred price for AAA members but that's it. Can anyone recommend a good Honda dealer? Or is it just that there isn't room to move on the EX-L? The best price I've gotten is $26,882 + tax for the EX and $29,449 for the EX-L. I'm not sure the sunroof and the improved engine are worth the difference. Has anyone done better? If so, where?
    One of the Toyota salesman told me that the Odys have trouble with their electrical systems and transmissions after a year or so and I can't find any evidence of these claims on this site or the others I've visited. Does anyone have any experience with this problem? Have I mentioned that I hate car salesmen and this whole process?
    As to the Toyota-the best price I have so far for an Sienna LE 7 passenger is $29, 345 with $1,350 for a dealer installed sunroof. There is a customer cash back plan for $1,000, but that sum is taxed so the savings is not all that significant (we have 8.625 sales tax here). Has anyone done any better? Can anyone recommend a better dealer?
    Thanks in advance for everyone's help.
  • regganaeregganae Posts: 22
    We will be purchasing an Ody or Sienna (still researching both) when my husband gets back from Iraq this fall. We are moving back to Germany next year, and I want to know how the Odyssey will hold up with speeds of around 100mph, since there is no speed limit on the autobahn. When we drove our civic over there, we got it up to 123mph, and it has had no problems. But I am concerned, especially since the Ody is redesigned, about the road noise at that speed and if it will eventually cause harm to the engine.

    It is very difficult to drive on the autobahn going less than 80mph, as there are BMW's and other faster vehicles blowing past you going around 180mph (are poor civic would literally get blown off the road when we first got there and got used to driving so fast). I wonder which performs better at these speeds, the Odyssey or the Sienna?? Does anyone know???? :confuse:
  • toyotakentoyotaken Posts: 897
    I quite honestly have not heard of any electrical problems with the Ody. Both are very comparible vans. Alot of it is going to come down to your personal taste. In general, the Ody will feel a bit sportier/truckier (depending on perception) while the Sienna will feel a bit more composed and quiet. Styling again may come into play. Keep in mind that you're not obligated to deal with dealers in the "City" if you don't mind making some phone calls and/or email requests. It may be worth your while to take a few minutes to drive to a dealer that is outside of the City if they're willing to work with you some more and are a bit more upfront and direct with you.

    Hope this helps.

    Ken
  • jim2363jim2363 Posts: 7
    Thanks Ken. I just priced both on CarsDirect and I am amazed at the price savings, especially on the Toyotas. I guess I'll have to go look at them both again this weekend and decide what options I have to have. carsDirect is quoting the Ody EX-L at $28, 548 and th XLE AWD at $about $29K. Can't believe the difference.
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