HONDA ODYSSEY EXV-S

Simply Her (Singapore) - - Smartshopper Road Test -

From $180,999, from Kah Mo­tor Fuel con­sump­tion: 7.9 litres/100km Main safety fea­tures: Six SRS airbags, ABS, EBD, Ve­hi­cle Sta­bil­ity As­sist (VSA) Sys­tem. Fam­ily-friendly fea­tures: Dual-zone air-con­di­tion­ing, con­ver­sa­tion mir­ror, auto-dim rear view mir­ror (to cut down high-beam glare from tail­ing ve­hi­cles), auto head­lamps. This zippy car packs a good mix of fam­ily-friendly fea­tures to keep driver and pas­sen­gers happy. THUMBS UP FOR: • A smooth drive. It drove, turned and re­versed breezily, like the Pre­via, but a too-re­spon­sive brake pedal made my maiden drive a lit­tle jerky in slow traf­fic. • The largest boot space. It edges out the El­grand by a mere 5cm to claim top spot. The third-row seats can be tucked un­der, into a cel­lar-like space that keeps them hid­den and makes room for up to five suit­cases – three large 32-inch ones and two cabin-sized ones. • A com­fort­able steer­ing wheel that’s not

too small or thin. • A low floor (about 8cm lower than those of the other cars), as well as han­dles and lights by the door, make board­ing a cinch for kids and old folk. • It has pedal shifters – switches that let the driver shift gears man­u­ally, usu­ally to rev the en­gine for quick ac­cel­er­a­tion. I felt they were good for a bit of mo­tor­ing fun, but un­nec­es­sary in a fam­ily car. The blind-spot in­di­ca­tor is a great safety fea­ture. Th­ese icons on the side mir­rors flash when there are ve­hi­cles in my blind spots, to warn me against switch­ing lanes. Cam­eras on both sides of the car al­low me to check the dash­board screen be­fore open­ing the pas­sen­ger doors. WHAT COULD BE BET­TER: • It did not cush­ion the im­pact of bumpy

and noisy roads as well as the El­grand did.

It has the most com­fort­able third-row seats, which feel like a re­clin­ing sofa thanks to the slight in­cline of the bench; the other cars have flat benches. This makes up for its lower head­room.

It's the only car that can re­verse- or par­al­lel-park on its own (with on­screen in­struc­tions to the driver to ap­ply the brake at times). It is an ap­peal­ing idea in the­ory, but in prac­tice, it’s quicker to re­verse-park man­u­ally; for par­al­lel park­ing, it takes prac­tice to over­come the fear of ac­ci­den­tally scratch­ing other cars.

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