A while back, I acted as a proxy for my 3-year-old daughter Evelyn to review my 1986 Plymouth Horizon. You folks seemed to enjoy it, and I’m not sure what that says about Doug’s expertise if his audience also enjoys car reviews from toddlers, but it’s time for my little girl to do another review.
This time she’s four, and the car is our 2007 Honda Odyssey Touring. Since she and her baby sister are the reasons this minivan is in our garage, I figured Evelyn’s opinion about this car would be pretty valuable. Here are a few unprompted statements she’s made about the family Odyssey, along with my attempt at elaborating them. Most of her comments have exclamation points at the end because she’s a very enthusiastic young lady. Just look at that big, cheesy smile.
“It Has a TV!”
These were the first words Evelyn spoke when she entered the Honda Odyssey for the first time. Being the Touring model, the top trim at the time, it’s equipped with a DVD player for the rear passengers to enjoy. On long road trips down to Milwaukee to visit the great-grandparents, the DVD player comes in handy for watching favorites like Zootopia or Lego Batman — and in the front seats, my wife and I really appreciate the wireless headphones. Sometimes we forget our kids are even back there when the DVD player is on, which means it’s doing exactly what it was designed to do. It truly improves the experience for everyone in the Odyssey.
“My Door Is Already Open!”
Evelyn was just as astounded as Doug when she discovered the magic of power sliding doors. The fact that mom or dad can simply push a button on the key fob and have the rear doors already open and ready for kid entry is extremely valuable. It’s so convenient that it makes me wonder why crossovers exist. Evelyn’s routine before van life was to run up to her door and wait for mom or dad to manually open it like a chump. Now she can climb right in and hop in her booster seat while I load up her smaller counterpart, again, without having to touch the door itself to open it. All I need to do after that is buckle her up and pull on the door handle, making it magically slide closed.
“There’s Two Mirrors. One, Two.”
Since my Odyssey is too old for the slick CabinWatch rear-seat monitoring system, I’m stuck using an analog mirror to see what my kids are up to without turning around. When I pop down the convex mirror built into the sunglasses holder in the overhead console, it allows me to see everything that’s happening in the expansive interior of the Odyssey. For some reason, Evelyn loves this feature and she wants this dad mirror to be down all the time. She likes to show off her counting skills by counting this mirror and the regular rearview mirror. Sometimes I’ll open it to retrieve my sunglasses and Evelyn will scream when I close it. I don’t understand why, because I don’t think she’s supposed to like this thing that enables the all-seeing dad to monitor her every move.
“I Want It Louder!”
I’m a little underwhelmed by Honda’s idea of a “premium” audio system in 2007, but it’s more than good enough for Evelyn. It has seven speakers including a factory subwoofer, and she likes to ask me to turn it up when one of her favorite songs comes on the radio. She’s a big Imagine Dragons fan.
“Don’t Turn So Fast!”
I’ve previously written that the body roll in my 2007 Honda Odyssey isn’t bad for a minivan, which is still true, but that “for a minivan” part holds some weight. Due to the large, boxy shape inherent to every minivan, body roll is still a factor — and sometimes it’s more noticeable than others. If I’m coming into a roundabout particularly hot, the ensuing body roll takes Evelyn by surprise and I get scolded, but not as much as I got scolded by my wife in roundabouts when I had my Focus ST.
“This Is a Cool Van!”
This is a part where Evelyn and I disagree. My Odyssey is practical, comfortable, safe and quite simply, the best family vehicle of its time. However, it isn’t cool because it isn’t supposed to be cool. But if my toddler thinks its cool, then that makes me gladder than I ever thought I would be that my daily driver is a decade-old Honda minivan. Find a Honda Odyssey for sale