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Honda Odyssey vs. Toyota Sienna



  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    the problem is that the front wheelwells get crammed with snow

    I disagree 100% - if your suspension had an inch or two lift, you'd have an extra inch or two of clearance in the wheel wells. That would definitely improve things.

    If you get ice sticking to your wheels try cleaning and even waxing them so it doesn't stick and throw the wheels off balance.

    Clearance helps, of course it does!

    I find it funny that when it comes to handling and a low center of gravity, the lower suspension on the Ody is cited as a significant advantage. Yet when we're talking about driving over snow, or ice, or even a tall speed bump, the advantage of the Sienna is dismissed as insignificant.

    It is a trade-off, you can't have both, so pick which matters more to you.

    More ground clearance helps you in the snow, period.

    I can't believe people are debating this.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Of course going to the extreme, like mounting snow chains, will make the biggest difference.

    Is there room for those on the Odyssey, though? I'm not sure, which is why I'm asking.

    Subaru recommends against those. You can mount low-profile Z-chains, but not the regular ones meant for large 4WDs. I wonder if the Ody really has room and if Honda allows that (again, I'm asking, I don't know).

    how often are you going to see that much snow

    Valid point. That's why I've said it depends on your needs. The funny thing is we have a Subaru, so I got the FWD Sienna. Never mind that our Forester has twice the traction, it also sits 2" higher, with more clearance underneath, as well as more space in the wheel wells. We did not feel the need for 2 AWD vehicles here in the Mid-Atlantic, since my wife works from home, so I'm the only one who really needs to get around.

    it's a total non issue on most maintained roads

    Agreed - and I acknowledged that earlier. Back roads are not plowed as early or as often as main roads, so we'd be stranded.

    Our last blizzard was several years ago, but it took a good 7 days or so before they got to our street. I was buying milk for neighbors with Audis simply because I could get around and they could not.

    Ground clearance absolutely does matter in that situation. It's absurd to argue otherwise.
  • jayriderjayrider Posts: 3,602
    Good post. The ground clearance debate has several sides -- no use debating it because you won't change any minds. Is extra clearance helpful in deep snow? Yes. Not much on slick ice. No advantage in braking. How often it is needed depends on where you live and the road conditions. Is it essential in most areas of the country? No. Good tires and driving SKILLS are very helpful. I've seen just as many 4 wd suv's in ditches as other vehicles on bad days. Inexperience, overconfidence,speed and stupidity are all alive and well on our winter roads. Be careful out there.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587 tire-chains-or-awd.html

    Even though they worked, note their conclusion:

    I felt like I was abusing it a bit. Maybe next time we'll rent an AWD or 4WD vehicle for the trip and avoid the chains issue altogether.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    In trying to answer my own question, I found this:

    They say it's OK, and to put them on the front axle only. I guess that means you'd also have to turn off your stability control, since wheel circumference would be affected.

    And note that even Honda mentions "your vehicle has limited tire clearance" on page 3 of the 6.

    The SC1042 retails for $36 and Edmunds said they found someone to install them for $40 (but they had to remove them on their own).

    So it's an option, ableit not a very elegant one. I'd suggest a set of snow tires instead.

    Or just get one AWD vehicle for your fleet. :shades:
  • robr2robr2 BostonPosts: 8,862
    I guess that means you'd also have to turn off your stability control, since wheel circumference would be affected.

    Why would you have to turn of stability control?? It measures yaw, pitch and slippage AFAIK. I don't believe it measures wheel circumfrence.

    Personally I use snow tires but that is because I'm mountain bound in the winter.

    One could also consider Auto Socks - - it's not a snow tire replacement but could work for those caught by suprise.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    Why would you have to turn of stability control??

    When two wheels are turning faster than the others (which will happen with any circumference change), I'm thinking it'll find something "unstable" about that. :)
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    The front wheels would have a bigger circumference with the chains, so the front axle would turn slower. The VSC would keep trying to brake the rear wheels. That would only make it fish tail, since there would be no chains on the rear tires.

    Those autosocks look interesting and may not affect the circumference as much, either. I'd see if you could mount those on all 4 tires, to maintain balance and avoid having the rear end slide out on you.

    They look easier to mount and probably wouldn't make the CLOMP-CLOMP-CLOMP noise when you drive, also. They say limit speeds to 50kph (about 31mph) but that's more than enough if you're driving in conditions where you'd need them. :shades:
  • robr2robr2 BostonPosts: 8,862
    IMHO, the change in circumfrence would be so little, it wouldn't adjust for that.

    What happens when folks put only 2 new tires on the vehicle? Wouldn't that affect it also?

    Besides, I think Honda would tell people to turn of the TSC if it were the case.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Not sure how much tolerance would be built in, but not too much if it's quick-acting.

    The auto socks seem like a much better solution.
  • robr2robr2 BostonPosts: 8,862
    Don't even have to click it - seen that one many times!!

    I'm guessing former Honda or Toyota owner.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    Epic Fail.

    Gotta love it!
  • Click and laugh:

    The only way that would work is if he would drive in reverse all the time :surprise:
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    And it would still be dragging a front axle that probably would not turn on its own. :D
  • doggrandmadoggrandma IowaPosts: 144
    Ha, ha. I spoil my dogs, but I haven't gone that ga-ga yet. ;)
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Hey, you asked! :D
    I am glad I found this discussion. Bought 09 Odyssey in Feb this year and I used to drive 98 Sienna before. Since I bought Odyssey, I am hitting almost every curb in the parking lots and it is very annoying. In the last winter storm in North East, we had about 5-6" of snow and I had spots of compacted snow on my driveway. My odyssey was scraping that compacted snow every time I drove on my driveway.
    I will appreciate if someone can suggest how to increase that front ground clearance on Odyssey
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Make sure they fit before you do this, but a simple solution is taller tires.

    Ask other Ody owners to see what sizes fit without any clearance issues. Also be sure to change all 4 tires, actually 5 with the spare, so that the stability control doesn't go crazy.
  • jayriderjayrider Posts: 3,602
    Don't think ody's have lift kits available. Next time go with the Pilot. With that much snow don't think the extra on a Sienna would be that much help.
  • Karen_SKaren_S Posts: 5,095
    A reporter is looking to speak to consumers who are researching buying a vehicle and why or why not Chrysler vehicles were considered. Please send your daytime phone number and the car you purchased to by Thursday, December 17, 2009.

    Edmunds Manager UGC Click on my screen name to send a personal message. Need help navigating? Check out Getting Started in Edmunds Forums.
    Need help picking out a make/model, finding inventory, or advice on pricing? Talk to an Edmunds Car Shopping Advisor

  • locomolocomo Posts: 29
    Anyone think that the deals will get better, for either of these vehicles, after Jan. 4 ?
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Usually they do when the new model year arrives, especially when the Sienna is being redone.

    However, I read today that JD Powers is saying December sales picked up significantly, up more than 10% from last year. If inventories are low, discount will not increase, in fact they could disappear.

    Tough call.
  • As written more than once, my 2006 Sienna LE is inferior to my 2002 Chrysler T&C LX that it replaced. I paid too much for an inferior minivan even though I paid less than Edmund's TMV for a new Sienna LE at the time I got mine. I now know that Edmund's TMV is bloated for Toyotas.

    I was impressed with the 2006 Sienna LE nice front door panels, the huge cargo space behind the 3rd row seats, the attractive instrument cluster in the dark warehouse where the dealer stored his new Toyotas, and the comfortable 8 way power driver's seat.

    However, my initial excitement with the Sienna wore off quickly when we realized it was inferior to the less expensive T&C LX. For $$$$ more, the Sienna did not have separately controlled temperature for the driver and front passenger which was standard on my T&C. The Sienna Trip Computer is inferior to the trip computer in the 2002 T&C. The front passenger and 2nd row seats of the location is not as accessible as was the spare tire in the T&C. The stereo and HVAC controls are not as convenient to use as those in the Chrysler....and the list goes on and on.

    We did not have to place a deposit to test drive a Honda Odyssey but there was a requirement of a $ 500 deposit to get on the waiting list for a 2006 Odyssey when we bought our new 2006 Sienna. There was no waiting list for the less desireable Sienna when we were ready to buy. ;)
  • ok we get it - you do not like your sienna,,,,,,but what i cannot understand is why you simply do not sell the sienna and buy another t&c or something else?

    for all your complaining you would think you might become a happier person by selling it to someone who wants it and getting something you do not feel cheated by.
  • siennamisiennami Posts: 116
    Because....if he doesn't sell his "inferior" Sienna he wouldn't have anything to constantly complain about!
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Do yourself a favor and go check out the new T&C. Cost cutting abounds. The leather is shiny and good luck finding a plastic surface that isn't hard and hollow.

    Chrysler does deserve kudos for being first with some innovative features, but I wouldn't even put it in the top tier among today's minivans.

    the Sienna did not have separately controlled temperature for the driver and front passenger

    You'll be glad to hear the 2011 Sienna LE has not only two but THREE zone climate control. Problem solved, and now it leads in that category.

    The Sienna Trip Computer

    It's been improved not to mention the similar priced Odysseys don't have one at all. Remember this thread is Sienna vs. Ody. So you pointed out another Sienna advantage. Thanks. :)

    not as accessible as was the spare tire in the T&C

    Toyota offers run-flats for those who want them.

    There was no waiting list for the less desireable Sienna when we were ready to buy

    It was more desirable to YOU, that's where you put your hard earned money.

    Now that you're looking to replace your van, and you know the Sienna LE has 3 zone climate control, I guess you'll rule out the T&C and Ody for not offering that?

    I mean, that's so important to you, after all.

    LOL :D
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    As written more than once, my 2006 Sienna LE is inferior to my 2002 Chrysler T&C LX that it replaced.

    More than once yet you're posting it over and over because...why?
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Because - the number of zones in the climate control system is obviously the most important factor in minivans.

    He did not realize that in 2006, but he does now. He repeats this because it is vitally important.

    Clearly, the way to go today is the 2011 Sienna LE, which is the only game in town with 3-zone climate control in its price range.

    I'm sure he'll buy that and not repeat the devastating mistake he made in 2006 going with fewer zones.

  • siennamisiennami Posts: 116
    Bwahahaha!!! I wish he'd just go ahead and buy the obviously superior T&C that has everything he wants.....then maybe he'd stop posting here....but then he wouldn't have anything to complain about, now, would he??? Hey, I know what....he can just go and find him another 2002 T&C that he's always longing for...I'm sure there's one in a salvage yard somewhere......
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