They ask it in the same manner that a technology pro might ask: Why do you still have dial-up?
You get the idea.
For me, minivans must be considered as long as they’re still around. My family has roots dating back to the long-ago introduction of the minivan. Yes, the first true Chrysler minivan -- which defined the segment -- that was rolled out by none other than Lee Iacocca.
And minivans were a big part of my traveling days as a parent with young children. You had to have one of those big boats to carry the kids and all their cargo, right? I drove minivans in every corner of
Naturally, those minivans were dinosaurs compared with what’s available now. Oh, what I would have given for an in-vehicle video entertainment system for the youngsters back in the day.
But I digress.
My most recent minivan tester was the 2016 Honda Odyssey SE. The Odyssey is in my personal “Big Four” of minivans, joining the Dodge Grand Caravan, Chrysler Town & Country and Toyota Sienna. All of them offer a lot. They’re rolling hotels.
Yeah, minivans might not excite the auto purist’s heart, but they’re entirely functional for road trips and serious errands.
The tested SE’s starting price was $33,375, and that included everything, including a blizzard of five-star government safety ratings. I loved the remote, dual, power sliding doors. Makes things so much easier. Everybody gets settled in before I settle into the driver’s seat. This is a big deal if you’re a parent, take my word for it.
Comfort/convenience features are numerous. The tester had the DVD rear-seat entertainment system that I longed for all those years ago. It was a treat to try it out as a passenger in the parked Odyssey.
If you have to live in your vehicle, this is a good choice.
The 3.5-liter V-6 churned out a respectable 248 horsepower, good enough for most situations, although the power plant did let out a wail on extremely steep hill climbs. That’s not a deal-breaker.
Do be advised that fuel mileage is fair at best: 19 miles per gallon in the city and 28 mpg on the highway.
Volunteer passengers loved the spacious interior, back-seat amenities and plentiful cupholders and storage spaces. Some actually left singing the praises of the minivan.
I think that’s what I’d call progress.