2020 Honda Odyssey

2020 Honda Odyssey Review: Family Fun Time

by Morgan Carter

As spacious and accommodating as an SUV is, sometimes you need something more. Enter the Honda Odyssey minivan, an even more spacious and accommodating option. But don't let its looks deceive you: the chunky minivan is fun to drive and offers a long list of available features, too. With a V6 engine delivering 280 horsepower and 262 lb-ft of torque to the front wheels, the Odyssey is nimble around town and capable on the highway, with enough cargo capacity for eight passengers' luggage. Combined with an attractive price tag and competitive fuel economy, the Honda minivan fares well against its competitors, like the Toyota Sienna and Chrysler Pacifica. Some of the available features, such as the Honda Sensing safety suite, could be available as standard rather than being locked behind higher trim levels, but, overall, the Honda Odyssey is a solid option when considering a family-friendly, safe, and even engaging minivan.

2020 Honda Odyssey Changes: 🚙What’s the difference vs 2019 Odyssey?

The new year may not bring many changes for the 2020 Honda Odyssey, but what has changed has made quite an impact. The nine-speed automatic gearbox that was introduced with the 2018 new generation has now been completely phased out in favor of the ten-speed automatic transmission that used to be reserved for the upper trims. Also, marking the minivan's 25th year in the market, Honda is offering a 25th Anniversary Package, which offers buyers unique styling elements for the exterior.

Pros and Cons

  • Roomy interior
  • Modern, user-friendly infotainment
  • Capable V6 engine
  • Large cargo capacity
  • Long list of available tech and safety
  • Advanced safety features don't come standard
  • Not enough power points for so many seats
  • Hard to configure second- and third-seats

2020 Honda Odyssey Trims

Trim Engine Transmission Drivetrain Price (MSRP)
LX
3.5-liter V6 Gas
10-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
$30,790
EX
3.5-liter V6 Gas
10-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
$34,790
EX-L
3.5-liter V6 Gas
10-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
$38,060
Touring
3.5-liter V6 Gas
10-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
$45,060
Elite
3.5-liter V6 Gas
10-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
$47,420

2020 Honda Odyssey Exterior

Minivans are designed for functionality, with form being a secondary concern. At least, that's what you might think. The Honda Odyssey manages to be stylish without making any sacrifices to utility. Most models ride on 18-inch wheels, with 19-inch on the top-tier only, and come equipped with halogen headlights, daytime running lights, and an LED brake light strip on the tailgate. Fog lights are added on the EX, while the Touring replaces the headlights with LED variants. If you opt for the 25th Anniversary Package, your minivan will feature unique badging on the rear and sides, along with chrome treatment for the door handles, 19-inch wheels, and roof rails.

2020 Honda Odyssey Front View Honda
2020 Honda Odyssey Rear View Honda
2020 Honda Odyssey Front View 1 Honda
See All 2020 Honda Odyssey Exterior Photos

Dimensions

Nothing about the minivan is small, as it stands between 68.3 and 69.6 inches tall. You'll need to be mindful of the 203.2-inch length and 78.5-inch width when maneuvering around town or trying to find a parking space, but the 118.1-inch wheelbase leaves plenty of room inside the vehicle for its seven to eight passengers. The van is unsurprisingly heavy, with the lightest model weighing in at 4,398 pounds, while a fully decked out version will add a couple of hundred pounds, with an overall weight of 4,593 lbs.

  • Length 203.2 in
  • Wheelbase 118.1 in
  • Height 68.3 in
  • Max Width 78.5 in
  • Front Width 67.3 in
  • Rear Width 67.2 in

Exterior Colors

The color palette for the Odyssey van is not overly extensive or adventurous, focusing mostly on classic neutral tones with a splash of red and blue thrown into the lineup. All colors are standard options, with no premium palette available. The base LX gets access to Platinum White Pearl, Lunar Silver, Modern Steel, and Obsidian Blue Pearl. By upgrading to the EX or above, you driveunlock Pewter Pacific, Forest Mist, Crystal Black Pearl, and Deep Scarlet Pearl as additional choices.

  • Modern Steel Metallic
  • Lunar Silver Metallic
  • Platinum White Pearl
  • Obsidian Blue Pearl
  • Crystal Black Pearl
  • Pacific Pewter Metallic
  • Forest Mist Metallic
  • Deep Scarlet Pearl

Odyssey Performance

A 3.5-liter V6 engine powers the Honda Odyssey minivan, directing 280 hp and 262 lb-ft to the front wheels only. This isn't uncommon, with only one rival, the Toyota Sienna, offering an all-wheel drivetrain. The ten-speed automatic transmission mated to the powertrain delivers smooth shifts, especially compared to the questionable nine-speed of years past. Despite the minivan's size and weight, the powertrain does a good job of moving it around town. Almost perfectly on par with segment rivals, the Honda is able to make the 0-60 sprint is around seven seconds in real-world testing.

On par with the Toyota Sienna, and only 100 lbs behind the Chrysler Pacifica, the Honda minivan has a towing capacity of up to 3,500 lbs. While it won't be pulling full-size caravans, it can certainly manage a lightweight camper, boat, or trailer with all your camping or beach gear for a weekend away.

2020 Honda Odyssey Front View Driving Honda
2020 Honda Odyssey Rear View 1 Honda
2020 Honda Odyssey 3.5L V6 Engine Honda

Engine and Transmission

The Honda Odyssey doesn't offer any choices when it comes to engine, drivetrain, or transmission. Every model comes equipped with a 3.5-liter V6 engine that develops 280 hp and 262 lb-ft. This power is regulated by a ten-speed automatic transmission, with the nine-speed automatic gearbox from previous years completely phased out. The front-wheels do all the work on the minivan, with no 4-wheel-drive offered.

Despite its lack of customization options, the Odyssey is not wanting for power. Getting up to speed is quick and smooth, even more so thanks to the now-standard ten-speed automatic transmission, which has received refinement from its early implementations and is no far more intuitive. Merging and passing on the highway should be relatively easy, even with a full 8-passenger load.

  • Engine
    3.5-liter V6 Gas
  • Transmission
    10-Speed Automatic
  • Drivetrain
    FWD

Handling and Driving Impressions

Minivans are by no means designed to be thrilling drives, but that doesn't mean they should actively disappoint. The Honda Odyssey is a well-behaved driver that instills confidence without sucking out all the fun.

Sharp, reactive steering at lower speeds helps the hefty minivan maneuver around busy town streets or packed parking lots. On the highway, the steering gains some weight to keep the vehicle stable, but on-center feel is a bit lacking. There is a surprising amount of feedback for a minivan, but it's not unwelcome. The brakes are just as capable, adjusting the pressure of input in a predictable manner and bringing the large minivan to a stop in just 123 feet from 60 mph.

The suspension handles road imperfections without complaint, although the larger 19-inch wheels on the Elite or Anniversary Package don't do the job as well, delivering a more jarring ride over consistently rough roads. The comfortable seating helps to mitigate some of this, thankfully.

Despite its size, the Odyssey handles in a more car-like fashion than you might anticipate. The talkative steering and good road manners combine to deliver a pleasing driving experience, and the van never loses its cool when maneuvering around town or the occasional sharp turn.

Odyssey Gas Mileage

The Honda Odyssey gets downright average fuel consumption for the segment. With only one drivetrain and engine available, the minivan can cover 19/28/22 mpg across the city/highway/combined cycles. This is on par with rivals like the Chrysler Pacifica and Toyota Sienna, with the former getting the exact same figures and the latter dropping a couple of mpg across the highway and combined sectors. However, the Sienna does offer an AWD, which is slightly less efficient and the Pacifica has a hybrid variant with vastly better gas mileage estimates. With a 19.5-gallon tank of regular gasoline at its disposal, the Odyssey is able to travel for up to 429 miles before needing to pull into a gas station.

  • Fuel Tank Capacity
    19.5 Gallons
  • Fuel Economy
    City/Hwy: 19/28 mpg
* 2020 Honda Odyssey LX Automatic

2020 Honda Odyssey Interior

The Odyssey is as spacious as you would expect from any minivan, perhaps even more so. Three rows of seats can accommodate up to eight passengers, with plenty of head- and legroom to go around. The interior is well-styled, perfect for a daily driver that might need to keep its passengers comfortable over even longer journeys. The standard infotainment suite is sparse but well laid-out and easy to use, a quality that remains even after upgrading to the larger, more complex suites on the upper trims. Regardless of whether you go for the cloth or leather interior, the cabin is well-built with upscale materials that focus on comfort and quality.

2020 Honda Odyssey Dashboard Honda
2020 Honda Odyssey Driver Seat Honda
2020 Honda Odyssey Dashboard 1 Honda
See All 2020 Honda Odyssey Interior Photos

Seating and Interior Space

Space is hardly an issue inside the minivan, with plenty of head- and legroom throughout the cabin. The base LX model can accommodate seven passengers, while the rest of the range makes space for one additional occupant. You lose an inch or two of headroom as you move back through the cabin, but even the rear-most seats should be able to accommodate most adults. Legroom, however, is ample no matter where you sit. As is common in such bulky vehicles, visibility can be an issue. The rearview camera and available blind-spot monitoring help, but a surround-view camera would be even better. The sliding rear doors make it particularly easy to enter and exit the minivan, and the sliding second-row seats provide easy access to the third row.

  • Seating capacity
    7-seater
  • Front Leg Room 40.9 in
  • Front Head Room 40.7 in
  • Rear Leg Room 40.9 in
  • Rear Head Room 39.5 in

Interior Colors and Materials

Function comes before form in the minivan, but that doesn't mean skimping on quality. While the lower-tier LX and EX may come upholstered in gray and beige cloth respectively, the material is upscale and feels good. But, if you want a more plush interior, you will need to upgrade to at least the EX-L trim level, which sees the seating appointments replaced with leather upholstery in beige. On the plus side, there isn't an abundance of hard plastics that you might expect from a large passenger vehicle, with the interior door handles and dashboard featuring quite a fair amount of soft-touch surfaces. Unfortunately, you are limited for choice when it comes to interior color options, with only beige, mocha, or gray offered, regardless of the upholstery you go with. The Elite benefits from perforated leather for the sake of the ventilated front seats.

2020 Odyssey Van Trunk and Cargo Space

Cargo space in such a high-capacity vehicle is a primary concern. If you are going to be transporting up to eight people, you certainly need room for all their belongings. While the Odyssey may not be able to fit full-size suitcases for eight people, it can certainly handle a dozen carry-ons with its 32.8 cubic feet of space behind the third-row seats. If you only need to take five people on a longer getaway, you can fold down the third row to free up up to 89.2 cubic feet of cargo space on the EX, dropping to 86.6 in higher trims. This should be more than enough to handle everyone's luggage. For optimum capacity, you can fold-down or even remove the second row of seats to provide a total of 144.9 cubic feet in the base specs, with 140.7 available on the upper three variants. Thanks to the high roof and width of the minivan, transporting even unwieldy items should be a breeze with the seats removed.

Small-item storage is very accommodating and remains mindful of the overall passenger capacity. There is no shortage of cupholders, with each row of seats providing enough for the number of passengers. The glove compartment is standard, but the center armrest cubby is cavernous. There is also plenty of space below the center stack for larger items, perhaps even an extra carry-on if you couldn't fit it in the trunk.

2020 Honda Odyssey Built-In Vacuum Honda
2020 Honda Odyssey Built-In Vacuum 1 Honda
2020 Honda Odyssey Built-In Vacuum 2 Honda

Odyssey Infotainment and Features

Features

Every new Honda Odyssey comes equipped with automatic climate control, rear-compartment heating vents, cruise control, push-button start, and two 12-volt power outlets. An eight-way power driver's seat coupled with a manual tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel helps to ensure comfortable driving, while the front passenger seat offers four-way power-adjustment. Upgrade a trim level, and you get access to heated front seats and a 12-way power driver's seat with lumbar support. The Honda Sensing suite is also made available, while tri-zone climate control replaces the standard system. The EX-L upgrades the upholstery to leather, which also wraps the steering wheel, a power programmable tailgate is equipped. The Touring adds Hondavac and comes with a power moonroof installed. The top-tier Elite adds ventilation to the already heated front seats.

Infotainment

The infotainment suite on the Honda is not overly complex, but that also means it is easy to operate, and boasts high-quality graphics and quick responses to inputs. The standard system comprises a five-inch LCD screen with Bluetooth compatibility, along with an auxiliary audio jack and two USB ports. A seven-speaker sound system channels sound throughout the cabin. The EX upgrades to an eight-inch touchscreen interface that supports Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, SiriusXM, HD Radio, and HondaLink apps. Back-seat passengers can enjoy the rear entertainment system that comes equipped to the Touring and Elite trims. The 10.2-inch monitor folds down from the roof and offers Blu-Ray and HDMI playback. Navigation is added to the infotainment suite, along with HD Radio, Wi-Fi hotspot capability, and a CabinWatch monitor is equipped along with a CabinTalk PA system. The premium Elite trim upgrades to an 11-speaker sound system with multi-zone audio and adds a wireless charging pad.

Odyssey Problems and Reliability

J.D. Power awards the Odyssey minivan a dependability score of 78 out of 100, which is neither impressive nor disappointing. The vehicle has not received an abundance of complaints and was not subject to recalls for 2020. The 2019 model, however, had a few problems and was recalled six times for reasons that include: loose battery terminal connections, faulty timing belt teeth, an improper coating on the rear brake caliper pistons, and faulty sliding doors that may open while driving.

Honda provides a three-year/36,000-mile basic warranty, corrosion cover for five years, and a drivetrain warranty for five years or 60,000 miles, whichever comes first.

Warranty

  • Basic:
    3 Years \ 36,000 Miles
  • Drivetrain:
    5 Years \ 60,000 Miles
  • Corrosion:
    5 Years \ Unlimited Miles
  • Roadside Assistance:
    3 Years \ 36,000 Miles

Odyssey Safety

The NHTSA's review of the 2020 Honda Odyssey returned five stars for overall safety, while the IIHS gave it an overall rating of Good, as well as awarding it the title of 2019 Top Safety Pick. In fact, it has received the award every year since 2016, skipping only 2017. It is also one of the few vehicles rated with a superb score for easy installation of child seats.

Honda Odyssey Key Safety Features

The base Odyssey vehicle comes equipped with only the bare essentials in terms of safety features. This includes ABS, EBD, stability and traction control, and eight airbags: dual front, front knee, front side, and side curtain. The Honda Sensing safety suite is only available from the EX upwards and includes forward collision avoidance, road departure mitigation, lane keeping assist, and lane departure warning. Blind-spot monitoring and automatic high-beam headlights are also available on the upper trim levels, although a multi-angle rearview mirror is standard across the range.

Verdict: 🏁Is the Honda Odyssey a good car?

The minivan segment may not be an overly populated one, but that doesn't mean it isn't important to stand out. Honda seems to realize this, and the Odyssey minivan is clearly designed to turn heads. While it won't win any beauty pageants, the minivan is still elegantly styled, and it handles remarkably well despite its bulk and awkward dimensions.

The Odyssey is available with a long list of features, including smartphone integration and a full suite of advanced safety aids. Unfortunately, many of these desirables are not standard on the base model, forcing you to upgrade a trim or two. However, this is not uncommon for the segment, with the Chrysler Pacifica locking its best safety features behind even higher paywalls. Despite this drawback, the Honda minivan impresses in just about every other area. It offers superior passenger capacity and its cargo capacity is rivaled by only a select few competitors.

None match the Odyssey's playful driving dynamics, however, and its price tag is hard to beat. Coupled with competitive fuel economy figures and excellent safety ratings, it's not hard to see why the Honda Odyssey is leading the pack in most critics' opinions. Try it out, and we guarantee you won't be disappointed.

🚘What’s the Price of the 2020 Honda Odyssey?

The Odyssey is well-priced for the segment, with a starting price of $30,690, at least a grand below similar rivals. But if you want more than the bare-bones LX, though, you will be considering the EX or better, starting at $34,690. The mid-tier EX-L goes for sale below $40k at an MSRP of $37,960, while the touring hikes the price quite a bit to $44,960. To get behind the wheel of the premium Elite trim, you will need to put aside $47,320. With a bit of customization and extra fees, you can expect to hit the $50k mark. These prices exclude tax, registration, licensing, and Honda's destination charge of $1,095.

2020 Honda Odyssey Models

You can have the Honda minivan in one of five trims: LX, EX, EX-L, Touring, or Elite. There is no choice when it comes to powertrain, though. Each of the Honda Odyssey models has a 3.5-liter V6 engine that directs 280 hp and 262 lb-ft to the front wheels. Rowing the gears for this powertrain is a ten-speed automatic transmission.

The LX is the foundation upon which the rest of the range is built, but it is little more than that. Riding on 18-inch wheels, the minivan is equipped with standard halogen headlights and daytime running lights. An eight-way power driver's seat and four-way power passenger seat come standard, along with automatic climate control, cruise control, push-button start, and two 12-volt power outlets. The infotainment comprises a five-inch LCD display, Bluetooth, two USB ports, and a seven-speaker sound system.

Quite a few extra features are added when you upgrade to the EX, including heated front seats, a 12-way power driver's seat, and tri-zone climate control. The Honda Sensing safety suite is also added, which comprises forward collision avoidance, road departure mitigation, adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assist, and lane departure warning. An eight-inch touchscreen interface replaces the LCD screen and Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, SiriusXM, and HondaLink support are added.

The mid-tier EX-L adds a certain degree of comfort and luxury by upgrading to leather upholstery and wrapping the steering wheel in the same. A one-touch power moonroof is installed, and a power programmable tailgate makes loading cargo that much easier. An auto-dimming rearview mirror is also installed.

The penultimate Touring trim comes equipped with a rear entertainment system for your back-seat passengers to enjoy, comprising a 10.2-inch monitor that supports Blu-Ray and HDMI inputs. A CabinWatch monitor and CabinWatch PA allow you to keep an eye on your passengers for safety and convenience. Navigation and Wi-Fi capabilities are added to the infotainment system.

The top-tier Elite upgrades the sound system to an 11-speaker setup and adds multi-zone audio. A wireless charging pad is added for convenience, and the front seats gain ventilation on top of heating.

See All 2020 Honda Odyssey Trims and Specs

Honda Odyssey Additional Packages

As is common with most Honda vehicles, features are locked behind trim levels, with little option to customize in the form of packages. However, as this is the Odyssey minivan's 25th year, Honda is offering a special Anniversary Package. Available in either A ($2,800) or B ($1,500) guises, the package comprises a signature smart key, chrome door handles and roof rails, a rear bumper protector, illuminated door sills, and an emblem kit on the side and rear. The 19-inch chrome-finish alloy wheels are exclusive to Package A, accounting for the price premium. On the EX-L, you can also equip navigation and the 10.2-inch rear entertainment system from higher trims, with an additional fee of $2,100 applicable.

Some worthwhile standalone accessories include roof crossbars ($195), a roof bike attachment ($170), backup sensors ($500), and additional cargo bins ($410).

🚗What Honda Odyssey Model Should I Buy?

The Honda Odyssey EX should provide you with all the amenities you need in a minivan, in terms of both comfort and safety. It isn't as premium as the Touring or Elite, but it also isn't as expensive. You get the Honda Sensing safety features as well as modern features like Android Auto or Apple CarPlay. The tri-zone climate control and larger infotainment interface are certainly welcome too. If you can afford the extra cost, then the EX-L or Touring might be more to your taste with their leather interior and extra conveniences like a hands-free liftgate or a CabinWatch/CabinTalk. Just give the entry-spec model a skip.

2020 Honda Odyssey Comparisons

Toyota Sienna Toyota
Chrysler Pacifica Chrysler
CompetitorHorsepowerMPGPrice (MSRP)
Honda Odyssey280 hp19/28 mpg$30,790
Toyota Sienna 296 hp19/26 mpg$31,640
Chrysler Pacifica 287 hp19/28 mpg$34,045

2020 Honda Odyssey vs Toyota Sienna

With a bit more power on tap, the 296-hp Toyota Sienna is very capable around town and on the highway. It also offers all-wheel-drive, whereas the Honda Odyssey is restricted to front-wheel-drive only. However, the Odyssey gets a smoother ten-speed automatic transmission. The Sienna supplies comparable cargo space to the Honda, but it comes standard with advanced safety features like forward collision mitigation and lane keeping assistance, which are reserved for upper trims on the Odyssey. Where the Honda minivan redeems itself, however, is in its impressive handling dynamics and comfortable ride quality. It also provided more passenger space than the Toyota. With a slightly lower price tag and competitive fuel economy, the Honda Odyssey is the better choice, but you may need to make a larger initial investment to get the best value for your money.

See Toyota Sienna Review

2020 Honda Odyssey vs Chrysler Pacifica

The Chrysler Pacifica is almost as new to the market as the Honda Odyssey, having been redesigned only a year prior. As such, it presents buyers with a similarly upscale interior, but it doesn't offer the same level of spaciousness as the Honda, with less passenger and cargo space than is common for the minivan segment. The advanced safety features available on the Pacifica are also locked behind one of the highest trim levels, and don't even come standard; you'll need to opt for the Advanced Safety Tec package. And, while the Chrysler may offer comparable performance figures, with a 287-hp and 262-lb-ft V6, it isn't as capable on the road as the Honda. The Pacifica does offer a hybrid model, which helps it stand out from the pack, but in almost every other regard, the Honda Odyssey is the better financial buy. Still, we can't shake the inkling that the Pacifica feels more premium, and while it doesn't have the same driver thrills, passengers will love you more for buying it, and the tech-savvy will fall in love with its easier to use infotainment. At the end of the day, the Pacifica edges the contest.

See Chrysler Pacifica Review

Honda Odyssey Popular Comparisons

2020 Honda Odyssey Video Reviews

Check out some informative Honda Odyssey video reviews below.

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Photos
$30,790 - $47,420
Price Range (MSRP)
Honda Odyssey