2011 Honda Odyssey: The S-Class of Minivans?
March 14, 2012
There are two rather pricey houses on my street and they both happen to have current generation Mercedes-Benz S550s parked in their driveways. One is white, the other is black.
Funny thing is, both houses also have Honda Odysseys parked in front of the house. One is a matching white, the other matching black, both are of the highest trim level. While two does not make a trend, I suppose that these well-healed car buyers identified the Honda Odyssey as the minivan most synomous with their S-Class automotive expectations. Sure, these two dramatically different vehicles aren't remotely in the same ballpark, but in lieu of actual luxury-brand minivans (I suppose these car buyers correctly identified the R-Class as not an actual minivan), I'd certainly say the Odyssey would've been the most luxurious and best engineered minivan. You know, S-Class-like.
Well, at least until the Nissan Quest came along. Its interior is streets ahead of the Odyssey in terms of materials quality and general luxurious ambiance. I'd also offer that its driving experience is more isolating and refined. You know, even more S-Class-like. Should the time come for them to trade in their S550-paired vans, I'd suggest they check out the Quest instead.
James Riswick, Automotive Editor