Honda Odyssey Generations: Through the Years

There are several Honda Odyssey generations to look at in this feature! See it evolve from not-so-stylish to a modern choice with premium features.

1995: A Road Odyssey

For nearly 30 years now, the Honda Odyssey has been a proven success in the minivan market. Since 1995, the van has survived Japan’s economic crisis of the 1990s, the increased popularity of the crossover SUV, and a shift towards electric vehicles (EVs). In today’s market, with the Toyota Sienna, Kia Carnival, and Chrysler Pacifica, the Odyssey is the minivan that has been in production the longest. Honda has kept the Odyssey updated though. There aren’t any hybrid or EV options, but one has to assume discussions about those options have taken place. As the Odyssey continues to evolve in size, style, and engine variations, take a look back at how it started and the changes that the minivan mainstay has already gone through.

1st Generation Honda Odyssey (1995-1998)

1995 Honda Odyssey - hondanews.com

1995 Honda Odyssey – hondanews.com |  Shop Honda Odyssey on Carsforsale.com

  • The first Odyssey was introduced in 1994 as a 1995 model, but plans started long before it. Honda Odyssey Chief Engineer Kunmichi Odagaki traveled to the United States in September 1990 to review the U.S. minivan market.
  • As Honda was developing the Odyssey in the early 1990s, they called it the ‘PJ concept’ because it was based on the concept of a personal jet with a center aisle.
  • Odagaki and his team of 20 came up with the idea of the third-row seats folding down into the floor. After sending a right-hand drive prototype to American Honda executives, Odagaki earned their confidence.
1995 Honda Odyssey - hondanews.com
1995 Honda Odyssey - hondanews.com
  • The Odyssey was Honda’s first minivan, but it was based on the Honda Accord platform. It had a 2.2-liter four-cylinder engine, made 140 horsepower, achieved 145 lb-ft of torque, utilized a four-speed automatic transmission, and was configured in front-wheel drive (FWD).
  • The 1995 Honda Odyssey wasn’t as large or powerful as the Dodge Caravan, but it was larger than the Mazda MPV.
  • LX and EX were the two 1995 Honda Odyssey trims. The EX seated up to six passengers with second-row captain’s chairs while the LX seated up to seven passengers with two front bucket seats, a two-person second-row bench, and a three-person third-row bench.
  • Unlike some of its competitors, the 1995 Honda Odyssey didn’t have a sliding side door. Instead, designers used a swing-out, front-hinged door with fixed windows. The folding third-row concept won a lot of shoppers over because it was more convenient than physically removing and storing a full, heavy third-row seat.
1998 Honda Odyssey 2.3L I4 - hondanews.com
1998 Honda Odyssey 2.3L I4 - hondanews.com
  • The first generation of the Odyssey was manufactured in Japan, but was then manufactured in Honda’s Alabama plant.
  • There were no major changes in the 1996 Honda Odyssey or the 1997 Honda Odyssey.
  • A 2.3-liter engine, making 150 horsepower and 152 lb-ft of torque, was added to the 1998 Honda Odyssey.
  • The manufacturer suggested retail price (MSRP) for a 1998 Odyssey was $24,490.

2nd Generation Honda Odyssey (1999-2004)

1999 Honda Odyssey 3.5L V6 - hondanews.com
1999 Honda Odyssey 3.5L V6 - hondanews.com
  • After a successful launch in 1994, Honda introduced the 1999 Honda Odyssey in 1998. The sequel was larger than the original, adopting its style from the Chrysler minivan.
  • Powering this Odyssey was a 3.5-liter V6 engine. It made 210 horsepower and 229 lb-ft of torque with a four-speed automatic transmission.
  • The 1999 Odyssey had two sliding doors on either side of the van. Power-sliding doors came standard on the higher-end EX trim but weren’t available on the LX trim.
  • By 1998, many other minivans used the innovative idea of folding rear seats. The Odyssey, however, came with the first-ever navigation system on a minivan thanks to the Honda satellite-linked technology.
1999 Honda Odyssey - hondanews.com
1999 Honda Odyssey - hondanews.com
  • Honda’s navigation system became an available option on the EX trim starting with the 2000 Honda Odyssey.
  • A few features were updated in the 2001 Odyssey models, including a car alarm feature on the EX trim and height adjustment for driver’s seats in the LX trims.
  • 2002 Honda Odyssey models had upgraded traction control, front seat side-impact airbags, and VHS and DVD-based entertainment systems for passengers to enjoy.
  • The 2002 models also had more power thanks to a new 3.5-liter V6 engine. It put out 240 horsepower and 242 lb-ft of torque with a five-speed automatic transmission.
2000 Honda Odyssey - hondanews.com
2000 Honda Odyssey - hondanews.com
  • Passengers received an electronically-controlled window in 2003 models.
  • On March 1, 2005, one Odyssey model helped Honda reach a milestone with 500,000 vehicles built at the Honda Manufacturing of Alabama production facility.
  • There were no major changes in the 2004 Honda Odyssey.
  • A 2004 Honda Odyssey could get 18 miles per gallon (MPG) in the city and 25 MPG on the highway.

3rd Generation Honda Odyssey (2005-2010)

2005 Honda Odyssey - hondanews.com
2005 Honda Odyssey - hondanews.com
  • By the time the 2005 Honda Odyssey was introduced, it was becoming pretty stylish, at least for a minivan. The outside of the van didn’t change too much from the 2004 model though.
  • It grew in size, both in width and weight, but the length didn’t change from the second-generation Odyssey.
  • The 2005 Honda Odyssey expanded to four trim levels: the LX, EX, EX-L, and Touring.
  • It had the same 3.5-liter V6 engine that was in the 2004 models.
2005 Honda Odyssey - hondanews.com
2005 Honda Odyssey - hondanews.com
  • Honda removed the popular third-row collapsible seat and replaced it with a straight bench that folded down in a 60/40 split.
  • Other changes included second-row buckets seats that did not fold into the floor, a dashboard-mounted shifter, second-row windows that rolled down, and an extra storage compartment located where the spare tire used to be.
  • A power rear tailgate, a nine-inch DVD entertainment screen, voice-activated navigation, and a rear backup camera were features that were already being made available.
2009 Honda Odyssey - hondanews.com
2009 Honda Odyssey - hondanews.com
  • The Society of Automotive Engineers reassessed the Odyssey’s V6 net output in 2006 and lowered the numbers from 255 to 244 horsepower.
  • Satellite radio was added as a feature on 2007 Honda Odyssey models.
  • Honda’s Variable Cylinder Management deactivation system was added to 2008 Honda Odyssey EX-L and Touring trims. The VCM engines improved fuel economy by about 2 MPG compared to models without the VCM.
  • The 2010 Honda Odyssey, which didn’t have many upgrades or changes, was the final year of the third generation of the minivan.

4th Generation Honda Odyssey (2011-2017)

2011 Honda Odyssey - hondanews.com
2011 Honda Odyssey - hondanews.com
  • The 2011 Honda Odyssey was unveiled for the first time at the 2010 Chicago Auto Show. It had a revised body, 0.8 inches longer, 2.1 inches wider, and 0.5 inches lower than previous iterations.
  • The body material also changed. 59% of the 2011 Odyssey was made up of high-strength steel.
  • Another trim was added to the new Odyssey lineup. The trims included the LX, EX, EX-L, Touring, and Touring Elite.
  • The Touring and touring Elite trims used a six-speed automatic transmission. All other trims used a five-speed automatic.
  • Every 2011 Odyssey used the 3.5-liter V6 that made 248 horsepower and 250 lb-ft of torque. Starting with the 2014 Honda Odyssey, the more fuel-efficient six-speed automatic transmission became standard on the LX, EX, and EX-L trims.
2012 Honda Odyssey - hondanews.com
2012 Honda Odyssey - hondanews.com
  • Newly-standard features on the 2012 Honda Odyssey included Bluetooth, a USB port, and an eight-inch touchscreen display.
  • Bluetooth, an eight-inch touchscreen, a USB input, and a rearview camera all became standard on the entry-level LX trim in the 2013 Honda Odyssey.
  • Other new features available on some models included a 12-speaker audio system, a 16.2-inch rear-seat DVD screen, voice-controlled satellite GPS navigation, and a removable first row.
  • A new SE trim was added in the 2016 Honda Odyssey. This trim was placed between the EX and EX-L trims.
  • 2017 models didn’t have any major changes.

5th Generation Honda Odyssey (2018-Present)

2018 Honda Odyssey - hondanews.com
2018 Honda Odyssey - hondanews.com
  • The fifth generation of the Honda Odyssey kicked off with the 2018 model year. Main competitors in the minivan segment at this point were the Chrysler Pacifica and Kia Sedona.
  • The LX, EX, EX-L, EX-L with navigation and a rear entertainment system, Touring, and Elite were the six trims for the 2018 Honda Odyssey.
  • Each of the 2018 models were equipped with a 3.5-liter V6 that made 280 horsepower and 262 lb-ft of torque. All 2018 Honda Odyssey models came with FWD.
  • There were two transmission choices here: a nine-speed automatic transmission in the lower trims, and a 10-speed automatic on the Touring and Elite trims.
2021 Honda Odyssey - hondanews.com
2021 Honda Odyssey - hondanews.com
  • There were no major changes for the 2019 Honda Odyssey.
  • The 10-speed automatic transmission became standard across the lineup starting with the 2020 Honda Odyssey.
  • 2021 Honda Odyssey models saw minor styling updates on the exterior and interior of the vehicle.
  • There were six trims in the 2022 Honda Odyssey lineup: the LX, EX, EX-L, Touring, and Elite. The LX had a $32,090 MSRP while the Elite was priced at $47,820.
2023 Honda Odyssey Sport - hondanews.com

2023 Honda Odyssey Sport – hondanews.com |  Shop Honda Odyssey on Carsforsale.com

  • You can read a full, in-depth review of this model by clicking on 2022 Honda Odyssey: Almost Perfect.
  • The biggest change with the 2023 Honda Odyssey is the new Sport trim that has darkened headlights, 19-inch wheels, and a gloss-black finish around the fog lights, headlights, and grille.
  • The 2023 Honda Odyssey Sport has the same V6 engine and 10-speed automatic as all other trims, but it also has a power moonroof, power liftgate, and the full suite of Honda Sensing safety and driver-assist features.
  • 2023 models are available at dealerships right now. Honda seems to unveil a new generation every six or so years, so, if the timeline from the previous generations is any indication, Honda could be unveiling a new generation of the Honda Odyssey within the next couple of years.

Keep Going with the Honda Odyssey

We’ve got a variety of other Honda Odyssey coverage for you to look at, too! It made our list of the Best Minivans of 2022 and was a pick in our Critics’ Choice: Family Van for Under $20,000. You can also compare recent and older Honda Odyssey models in our New vs Used: Honda Odyssey Minivan feature.

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Jesse Batson

Jesse Batson earned his journalism degree from South Dakota State University. No stranger to newsgathering and reporting, Jesse spent 13 years in TV news. 10 of those years were spent working in Charlotte, NC, home of NASCAR. A highlight of his time there was being able to take a lap around the Charlotte Motor Speedway. His interest in vehicles, starting with Matchbox cars, a Big Wheel, and the Transformers, evolved into taking photos of motocross events. Now, he puts his research skills to use on car culture, reviews, and comparisons.

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