Now With Some Spice. There’s nothing inherently sporty about minivans. With elongated bodies, a relatively tall ride height, and boxy proportions, minivans wear their purpose on their sheet metal. For the 2023 Honda Odyssey, the automaker has come out with a new Sport trim that dresses up the minivan with a sportier look.

The new Sport trim brings black exterior trim pieces, 19-inch black wheels, darkened taillights, and paint jobs that accent the dark touches. The cabin also gets a similar treatment with black leather upholstery and red ambient interior lighting. The changes don’t transform the Odyssey, but the Sport trim does look more exciting than most of the minivan’s other trims.

Beyond the addition of the Sport trim, Honda has discontinued last year’s base LX trim. That means the 2023 Odyssey is more expensive than the 2022 model. Pricing for the minivan has gone up by $4,300 to $38,635 (with destination). The Odyssey isn’t the same value option it was once, but it’s still a staple in the segment.

Flexible Seats. The Odyssey works as a great family vehicle, but can also pull a second shift as a work vehicle because of its flexible seating. For consumers looking for a roomy family van, the Odyssey shines with seating for up to eight people. All three rows offer adult-friendly space, while the large seats are comfortable. The available mid-row captain’s chairs are especially comfy and can act as recliners.

Consumers that need flexibility will find Honda’s second-row Magic Slide seats to be especially useful. These slide side and side and fore and aft, allowing owners to create their own configuration for their needs. Whether it’s making it easier to access the third row or providing passengers in the second row with the most amount of space, these seats beat anything you’ll find in an SUV.

Our main gripe with these seats is that they have to be removed to get the most cargo space out of the minivan. While Honda made it easier to remove the seats last year, they’re still a pain to take out. Plus, the Chrysler Pacifica is available with nifty Stow ‘n Go seats that fold flat into the floor, which are far more practical.

2023 Honda Odyssey Interior

Safety Comes First. The Odyssey isn’t as luxurious as some rivals and doesn’t come with the same amount of features as others, but it does have a lengthy list of standard safety features. The Honda Sensing suite of tech features is standard bringing forward collision warning, lane departure warning, lane-keeping assist, adaptive cruise control, automatic emergency braking, and traffic sign recognition. Blind-spot monitoring is also standard. Available features include a rear-seat monitor and an intercom system.

In crash-testing, the Odyssey earned the highest score possible from the IIHS, being awarded the organization’s Top Safety Pick+ award. The NHTSA hasn’t crash-tested the 2023 or 2022 Odyssey yet.

With Honda’s decision to discontinue the base LX trim, the EX becomes the entry-level trim in the lineup. That means the Odyssey comes with more standard features than last year. Previously, we recommended moving up to the EX trim, so seeing it become the base trim makes plenty of sense to us.

Standard equipment with the EX trim includes 18-inch wheels, LED headlights, an 8-inch display, smartphone compatibility, seven audio speakers, and tri-zone automatic climate control. While some competitors come with more standard features than the Odyssey, the EX trim makes it more competitive in the class.

Familiar Powertrain. The 2023 Odyssey continues to be available with a single powertrain. It’s a familiar one that gets the job done with pep.

The Odyssey is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 engine that makes 280 horsepower and 262 pound-feet of torque. The engine is paired with a 10-speed automatic transmission and routes power to the front wheels. While the V6 engine isn’t the most powerful one in the class, there’s plenty of power for overtaking on the highway. The Odyssey’s suspension setup consists of front struts and a multi-link rear suspension that results in a comfortable ride that should appease passengers.

With a combined fuel economy rating of 22 mpg combined, the Odyssey isn’t the most frugal minivan in the segment, though its rating makes it competitive. The Pacifica and Sienna are available with electrified powertrains that bring much better fuel economy. Additionally, competitors like the Pacifica and Sienna are offered with all-wheel drive, while the Odyssey remains front-wheel drive only.

Final Thoughts. The minivan segment isn’t nearly as large or as popular as it once was, but options like the 2023 Honda Odyssey continue to show why minivans still are the best options for consumers looking for a roomy three-row vehicle. A new Sport trim and the deletion of last year’s base LX make the Odyssey more competitive against newer options, though the minivan’s old age is starting to catch up to it.

For the competition, the Chrysler Pacifica is a handy minivan and is one of the few options in the class to be available with a plug-in hybrid powertrain. The Pacifica’s higher trims feel upscale, it has an available 10.1-inch touchscreen, and is offered with all-wheel drive. The Kia Carnival is one of the newer options in the class. It has a high-end cabin, well-equipped trims, is available with two 12.3-inch screens, comes with a 3.5-liter V6 engine, and incredibly comfortable seats.

Check prices for the 2023 Honda Odyssey »