2012 Honda Odyssey Minivan Review | Edmunds.com

2012 Honda Odyssey Minivan

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Honda Odyssey Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 3.5 L V 6-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 5-speed Automatic
  • Horse Power 248 hp @ 5700 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 18/27 mpg
  • Bluetooth Yes
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats Yes

Review of the 2012 Honda Odyssey

  • Though it can end up being expensive, the 2012 Honda Odyssey is a top pick for a minivan thanks to its highly versatile interior, long list of features and responsive handling.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Agile handling; fuel-efficient V6; quiet cabin; configurable second-row seat; top safety scores; easy-to-fold third-row seat.

  • Cons

    Pricier than some competitors; some desirable options and features only offered on upper trim levels; button-heavy dash.

  • What's New for 2012

    The 2012 Honda Odyssey expands feature content on EX models, which now includes Bluetooth, a USB audio interface and a multi-information display with an 8-inch screen as standard equipment.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

  Average Consumer Rating (11 total reviews)  |  Write a Review

Second time owner

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Vehicle: 2012 Honda Odyssey EX-L 4dr Minivan w/Rear Entertainment (3.5L 6cyl 5A)

This is my second Odyssey my first was 2010 this one 2012. They both seem to have similar problems with the quality of the front end. I have had the 2012 for 2 yrs now and these are my thoughts. Before I go on let me say that I'm very familiar with how a car works mechanically. With 22,000 miles the van is in the shop for the following problems. Noise in left front, worse in the winter, grinding noise from engine,worse a low idle and strong vibration when applying brakes, worse when on highway. Just received call from service manager and here is the list of things that need to be replaced. Stabilizer links and bushings, Power steering pump, Front brakes and rotors and the two front tires.

1 of 3 people found this review helpful

My honda odyssey is a

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Vehicle: 2012 Honda Odyssey EX-L 4dr Minivan w/Rear Entertainment (3.5L 6cyl 5A)

I purchased this new in 2012 and paid cash for this car. It broke down on the interstate 150 miles from Atlanta with a clogged ERG valve with 30,000 miles on it. The carborator broke apart also and it spent 7 days in the shop. This was in 2013. Now, 4/2014, I drove 1,000 miles after I changed the oil & all the oil is burning up! They are going to re-built the entire engine because it is burning oil at a rate of a 30 year old car! I will Never purchase a Honda again! Do your research because I have after all these problems and many Honda owners have had similar problems. They are lemons and my $40,000 went down the drain! I will Never Buy Honda Again!

15 of 38 people found this review helpful

2012 honda odyssey still vibrating

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Vehicle: 2012 Honda Odyssey EX-L 4dr Minivan w/Rear Entertainment (3.5L 6cyl 5A)

As I head towards arbitration in January 2013 with Honda and do more independent research, it appears that this unfortunate vibration issue has been occuring as long back as 2001. Honda should be ashamed. I am making a personal mission to spread the word of the lack of Honda quality. Honda offered 4500 (2000 of which the lawyer gets) to shut me up and move on. I said, "Thanks but no thanks". Im taking my chances and going before arbitrator. I wanted Honda to pay the difference of what I owe and the KBB so I can just get rid of this thing. They said no. Consumers can only be fooled for so long Honda. The word will spread. [HTML removed]

4 of 7 people found this review helpful

Love this van!!

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Vehicle: 2012 Honda Odyssey EX-L 4dr Minivan w/Rear Entertainment (3.5L 6cyl 5A)

For one I am young, but have 3 kids 4,6, and 9! I was very hesitant on getting another mini van after i got out of my 2005 Dodge Grand Caravan about 2 yrs ago! But i love this van! I dont feel like I am driving a mini van! The kids love the space that we have now after coming out of a 2010 Kia Forte Koup! They can move!!! The vans design is fabulous and love the 3 seats in the middle row! This is my first Honda ever so pretty thrilled with it so far! The drive is smooth! You dont even know its running after you start it! Has alot of power and love the electric doors and trunk! If you are looking for a good quality van this is for you!

10 of 12 people found this review helpful

Drive it on the interstate

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Vehicle: 2012 Honda Odyssey EX-L 4dr Minivan w/Rear Entertainment (3.5L 6cyl 5A)

I traded in my 2008 Odyssey Ex-L with Nav. and rear entertainment for the 2012 EX-L. I tried to return the van the next day and was told my trade was already shipped off and they didn't have it anymore. What a disappointment in the drive. The dealership is not near the highway so the test drive was fine. It wasn’t until after I bought the van and got onto the Interstate that “buyer’s remorse” set in. The wife and I could hardly carry a conversation from the loud road and wind noise. The steering is much more sensitive and it felt like the van was getting blown all over the highway. My 2008 was much quieter and the drive was more enjoyable than this 2012. We travel a lot on the interstate and if I ever get equity back I’m trading it in as soon as I can.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

It checks the boxes but

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Vehicle: 2012 Honda Odyssey EX-L 4dr Minivan w/Rear Entertainment (3.5L 6cyl 5A)

OK my 2005 Sienna XLE needed new --loved it. First thing, I can't believe how the interiors of these vans have CHEAPENED over the years. So much so I couldn't stomach the new Sienna. The Ody was just passable. Already the door switches are scratched because of the cheap plastic. I almost pulled the trigger on the Quest but couldn't get over the ugly stick and the suboptimal tranny (CVT). I have a Maxi CVT, it's just the load killed it. In any case driver console is just cheap. All the rest of the car is great. What were they thinking? Also should have 110 in 2nd row, not 3rd. Lots of finishing not good. Had to slap a few panels in, pull some plastic and carpet fibers. Hmm...

Gas Mileage


  • 18
  • cty
  • 27
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs

Full 2012 Honda Odyssey Review

What's New for 2012

The 2012 Honda Odyssey expands feature content on EX models, which now includes Bluetooth, a USB audio interface and a multi-information display with an 8-inch screen as standard equipment.


If you've ever savored the convenience of power sliding doors, you know there are certain things only a minivan can provide. The 2012 Honda Odyssey is a front runner in this competitive segment; the model has long been a class leader, and a redesign last year made it even more appealing. Relative to the previous generation, the current Odyssey is bigger than its predecessor, which translates into more legroom for second- and third-row passengers. Its styling is more interesting as well.

Minivan buyers expect high levels of family-friendly functionality and the Odyssey doesn't disappoint. There's seating for up to eight passengers, an easy-to stow third-row seat and versatile second-row seating that can be configured to accommodate up to three child seats. Ride quality is smooth and handling is better than average, plus the van's V6 delivers both fuel efficiency and brisk acceleration.

The Odyssey won't be the best match for some shoppers. The Toyota Sienna is available with certain high-end features that you won't find on this Honda -- namely all-wheel drive, keyless ignition/entry and adaptive cruise control. The Nissan Quest provides a higher-quality cabin and its second row folds easily into the floor. Price-conscious buyers, meanwhile, might be better served by the more affordable Dodge Grand Caravan. But for most, the Honda Odyssey is an ideal choice, offering the sort of universal competence that fosters mainstream success.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2012 Honda Odyssey is offered in five trim levels: LX, EX, EX-L, Touring and Touring Elite. The entry-level LX comes reasonably well equipped with 17-inch steel wheels, keyless entry, automatic headlights, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, a power driver seat, a 60/40 split-folding third-row seat, air-conditioning, full power accessories, cruise control and a five-speaker sound system with a CD player and an auxiliary audio jack.

Step up to the midrange EX and you'll get 17-inch alloy wheels, power-sliding side doors, heated outside mirrors, tri-zone automatic climate control, a removable front center console, a multi-adjustable second-row seat, retractable second-row sunshades, a conversation mirror, Bluetooth phone connectivity and a multi-information display with an 8-inch screen. EX models also come with an upgraded audio system offering 2GB of digital music storage, seven speakers, a USB audio interface and steering-wheel-mounted controls.

EX-L versions add a power liftgate, a sunroof, leather upholstery, a power front passenger seat, heated front seats, a chilled storage box, a rearview camera, an auto-dimming rearview mirror and satellite radio. The EX-L's options list includes a choice of two systems: a voice-operated navigation system with 15GB of digital storage and a multiview camera (which presents a wider spectrum of visibility than the standard rearview camera), or a rear-seat entertainment system. These two systems can't be ordered together on the EX-L.

Move up to the Touring model and you gain 18-inch alloy wheels, foglights, front and rear parking sensors, memory settings for the driver, retractable third-row sunshades and a fold-down armrest for third-row passengers. Additionally, both the navigation and rear-seat entertainment systems are standard. The Touring Elite model adds xenon headlights, a blind-spot warning system, an upgraded rear-seat entertainment system with a widescreen video monitor and a premium 12-speaker surround-sound audio system.

Powertrains and Performance

The Honda Odyssey comes with a 3.5-liter V6 rated at 248 horsepower and 250 pound-feet of torque. The LX, EX and EX-L models send that power to the front wheels through a five-speed automatic transmission; Touring and Touring Elite versions get a six-speed automatic. EPA estimates for the five-speed automatic-equipped versions are 18 mpg city/27 mpg highway and 21 mpg combined, while those fitted with the six-speed transmission post 19/28/22.

In testing, a six-speed Odyssey Touring Elite accelerated from zero to 60 mph in 7.9 seconds, which is essentially a dead heat with the Toyota Sienna's 7.7 seconds. However, opting for a five-speed model ups that time to 8.8 seconds.


The 2012 Honda Odyssey comes standard with antilock disc brakes, stability and traction control, active front head restraints, front side-impact airbags and side curtain airbags that cover all three rows. In Edmunds brake testing, the Odyssey required 129 feet to come to a stop from 60 mph, which is an average distance among minivans.

In government safety testing, the Odyssey scored a perfect five stars in overall, frontal- and side-impact crash protection. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety rates the Odyssey a "Top Safety Pick," with the minivan earning a top "Good" rating in frontal-offset, side-impact and roof-strength crash testing.

Interior Design and Special Features

Owners of the current Odyssey enjoy a second-row seat that's nearly 4 inches wider than the one seen in the previous generation, and this change makes the seat roomy enough to fit three car seats side by side. The reconfigured seat's center section also slides forward 5.5 inches (except on the LX trim) to put little ones within easy reach of mom and dad. Compare this to the twin captain's chairs found in many other minivans that can seat only two.

The current model outpaces the previous generation when it comes to third-row legroom, with an additional 1.1 inches; the 60/40 split-folding bench is also easier to use, thanks to changes in the folding mechanism. Unlike with the Dodge Grand Caravan and the Nissan Quest, one must physically remove the Odyssey's second-row seats should you require its total interior cargo capacity of 148 cubic feet.

Clever details abound, including a removable center console with a handy flip-up trash bag holder and a "cool box" beverage cooler built into the bottom of the dash's center section. Top-of-the-line Touring Elite models also get a rear-seat video entertainment system that includes a super-wide high-definition 16-inch screen that can display two different program sources -- say, a DVD movie and a video game, for example -- at the same time.

With more than 80 buttons and dials at the driver's command in the range-topping Touring Elite, the Odyssey's dash can be a bit daunting. Fortunately, most of these controls are logically grouped for easier operation, but we found their small labels hard to decipher at a glance.

Driving Impressions

Even though the Odyssey is outpowered by the Toyota Sienna's 266-hp V6, its acceleration is still brisk enough to allow for confident highway passing and merging. Touring models are a bit more responsive thanks to a six-speed automatic transmission that executes quick, smooth shifts. The current generation features a retuned suspension that delivers a comfortable ride and relatively crisp handling.

On the inside, the 2012 Honda Odyssey is as quiet as a premium luxury sedan. Road and wind noise are almost completely absent, as is noise from the drivetrain. Honda's continuing use of active noise-cancelling technology contributes to the impressively peaceful cabin by emitting counter-phase sound through the speakers to eliminate much of the drone that passengers would otherwise hear.

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