By on April 21, 2020

2018 Honda Odyssey EX Lunar Silver rear -Image: © Timothy CainIn spite of considerations involving pickups, downsizing, and three-row utility vehicles, our family ended up in our second consecutive Honda Odyssey in the spring of 2018. This time, against conventional wisdom, we were early adopters of the new-for-2018 fifth-generation Odyssey. Against my own internal bias, we acquired a vehicle with a nine-speed automatic transmission, nine-speeds having disappointed me previously in everything from the Chrysler 200 and Pacifica to the Fiat 500X, Jeep Renegade, Jeep Cherokee, and Honda’s own Acura TLX and MDX.

And against conventional buying patterns, we opted for one of the five remaining vans on offer in the North American marketplace. Changes in the typical family vehicle buyer’s tastes have seen demand for vans plummet: segment-wide volume was down 15 percent in the U.S. in 2019; 2020 minivan volume will fall for a fourth consecutive year. Current minivan market share stands at just 2 percent, down from 4 percent in 2011 and 6 percent in 2006. In a market that (quite unpredictably) slid by more than 12 percent in 2020’s first-quarter, van sales were down 21 percent, a loss of over 21,000 U.S. sales.

It’s a bizarre outcome given the undeniable, incontrovertible, unquestionable fact that the Honda Odyssey is the best vehicle on the market. (Read More…)

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