Brace yourself suburban dwellers, the 2018 Honda Odyssey Minivan is here to fulfill all of your vehicular needs in one, clever, efficient moving package. Stuff, people, animals, kids, more stuff, more kids, the new Honda Odyssey can handle it.
The 2018 Honda Odyssey will be motorized by a 3.5-liter, direct-injected V-6 engine. There’s a whole can of alphabet soup acronyms that go along with it (i-VTEC for example), but what matters is how the V6 puts out 280 SAE net horsepower and has two available new transmissions.
There’s a 9-speed automatic and, for upper trim levels, an all-new 10-speed automatic.
Aerodynamics & Handling
The body is more rigid and lightweight as there’s new chassis technology hidden underneath. The new aerodynamic designs are expected to result in best-in-class fuel economy ratings. Bad weather won’t be a problem with Honda’s Intelligent Traction Management system that has normal and snow modes. There is also Agile Handling Assist and better brakes for improved all-weather traction and control as well.
There’s lots of advanced materials in the 2018 Odyssey, including ultra-high-strength steel, aluminum, and magnesium to minimize weight and improve rigidity. Weight is down by 96 pounds and torsional rigidity is up 44 percent from the outgoing model.
The steering is new and quicker too with the Dual-Pinion Electric Power Steering unit. Out back, there’s a compact new trailing arm rear suspension and stabilizer bar, improving handling and ride comfort. It also helps give the 2018 Honda Odyssey the most spacious rear cargo area in the class.
Connectivity & Controls
In-vehicle connectivity, that is, stuff like listening to the radio and watching movies and such, is facilitated by a bunch of tech wizardry. There’s New Display Audio with an 8-inch high-resolution touchscreen interface: that’s the nerve center for a multitude of new audio and telematics options.
When it comes to updates, owners can download them to the Display Audio operating system and rear entertainment system via 4G LTE, Wi-Fi, or USB.
There is also something called CabinWatch that allows you to spy, er watch your kids, using a camera. Second and third row speakers and rear entertainment system headphones will also allow the driver to talk to rear passengers though the CabinTalk system. A new “How Much Farther?” app lets passengers track the family’s trip progress, so you little brats can shut up already.
And finally, there is CabinControl, that allows you to use a downloadable app and smartphone to control the rear entertainment system, rear cabin heat, and air conditioning.
You want seating options? Oh yeah, there’s Easy Access, Super, and Wide modes, and even something called Buddy mode. This is all thanks to the New Magic Slide seating system with an easily reconfigurable second row seat, for optimal passenger comfort, people-and cargo-hauling flexibility, and easy access to the third row of seats.
Honda thinks they’ve really ticked all the USA check boxes, because the all-new 2018 Honda Odyssey was designed and developed in North America at Honda’s R&D Center.
They keep the production close to home too, with both the Odyssey itself and its 3.5-liter V6 engine being manufactured exclusively at Honda’s Lincoln, Alabama plant using domestic and globally sourced parts. The new 10-speed transmission will be produced at the company’s transmission plant in Tallapoosa, Georgia, the first of its kind for a minivan.
Can’t wait for the 2018 Honda Odyssey? We recently took a detailed look at the 2017 model, in case you need your Odyssey tomorrow.
Tony Borroz has spent his entire life racing antique and sports cars. He means well, even if he has a bias towards lighter, agile cars rather than big engine muscle cars or family sedans.