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Thanks to the modern styling and creative features of today’s minivan, the vehicle that once was anything but hip is now one of the coolest vessels to tote a family around town. With the 2018 Honda Odyssey ready to hit the road, the potential of the minivan has come to fruition in ways that the earliest designers could have only dreamed of. And that potential has helped the Odyssey keep a leg up on key competitors like the 2017 Kia Sedona.

For anyone ready to boost their everyday driving experience with a top-rated minivan, this Honda Odyssey vs. Kia Sedona breakdown is a can’t-miss read. Here’s how these two minivan rivals compare.

Safe for the Whole Family

Odyssey: Although safety is essential to every vehicle, it is doubly important when you’ve got precious cargo in the rear seats. While kids watch their favorite movies in the back of the Odyssey, parents can breathe easy thanks to the wealth of top-of-the-line safety features provided. The Honda Sensing system offers some of the best safety tech available today in any class, and it includes features like a Collision Brake Mitigating System, Lane-Keeping Assist System, Road Departure Mitigating System, and much more.

Drivers can also have eyes all around the normal trouble zones. Included in the Odyssey is a rearview camera as well as the CabinWatch system, which is particularly good at keeping tabs on rambunctious children in the way back. This wide-angle CabinWatch system projects an image of the rear seats onto the touchscreen, and its integrated Bluetooth intercom system lets you be heard throughout the cabin without having to raise your voice.

Sedona: While the top-line models of the 2017 Kia Sedona can offer similar overall safety measures, a comparison of lower and mid-level options give the edge to the Odyssey, both inside and outside. While the 2017 Sedona does draw decent reviews for its available tech in the top models, lower trim levels also favor the Odyssey thanks to the Honda Sensing system that is available at the EX level or higher. The CabinWatch system in the Odyssey is a major diverging point from the Sedona, which doesn’t yet offer a comparable interior camera system. Although the Kia Sedona does generally receive high grades for safety, expect to pay a premium to tap into the best safety features that Kia has to offer.

honda odyssey built in vac
Photo: automobiles.honda.com

For Sheer Convenience

Odyssey: One of the main reasons that drivers go with a minivan is the convenience factor, which has been a priority for Odyssey engineers since the first models appeared in the mid-1990s. For 2018, the redesign has taken convenience to the next level with some creative adjustments designed to improve its everyday driving experience. One of the key additions to the Odyssey is the Magic Slide second-row seat, which provides significantly improved versatility than previous models. The HondaVAC is also a key difference with any competitor in the space, as the built-in vacuum makes cleaning up after a backseat mess as easy as possible.

Sedona: Some of the most convenient features in the Sedona, like the hands-free liftgate, are already available with the Odyssey, which more than retains its competitive edge. With its relatively immobile second-row seats, no cabin camera and no accompanying vacuum, the Sedona simply has a difficult time keeping up with the Odyssey in terms of convenience.

honda odyssey family technology
Photo: automobiles.honda.com

All Aboard the Technology Train

Odyssey: Even though most of the best technology in the Odyssey is for safety and convenience, there are plenty of in-cabin features to love. For the EX-L models, a 10.2-inch entertainment screen lets kids stream their favorite videos. The Odyssey’s intercom system can also go back and forth between the minivan speakers and a child’s headphones, making it easier than ever to communicate with passengers.

Sedona: Both the Sedona and the Odyssey offer exciting tech like Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, allowing easy connectivity to devices when you want to listen to the newest podcast or stream a playlist. The Sedona, however, has no comparable system for backseat entertainment and communication throughout the cabin, which gives the Honda minivan a clear advantage for families.

Tops in Fuel Efficiency

Odyssey: As fuel efficiency continues to accelerate around the minivan class, both the Kia and Honda van sit near the top, although the Odyssey maintains an edge in both city and highway driving. With the Odyssey, drivers can expect to get 19 MPG around town and 28 MPG on the highway, making it a superior choice whether you’re taking a trip to Pompano Beach or commuting through Florida City.

Sedona: While the Odyssey’s MPG is at the top of the class, the Sedona brings an MPG split of 18/24 on lower and mid-level models. The top trim level of the Sedona also comes with a slight drop in MPG, bringing it down to 22 miles per gallon on the highway for the SXL. Close but no cigar.

honda odyssey for sale miami
Photo: automobiles.honda.com

Minivan Style Redux

Odyssey: Even though styling formerly used to take a back seat to the most practical parts of a minivan, both the Odyssey and Sedona have made significant strides in changing the family-toting minivan image. Like with past years, the Odyssey continues to push the envelope with an aerodynamic rear design that provides more visual flair than its rivals. Just like with other features, however, much of the best styling tends to happen on Odyssey’s interior, including a lightning bolt window line in the back that offers much better visibility to passengers.

Sedona: Although it does draw high marks for features like LED running lights and a clean front-end, the Sedona tends to rate below average compared to competing and more stylish minivans. Ultimately, the Sedona has made improvements but still offers a more box-like appearance than the sleeker Odyssey.

Final Odyssey vs. Sedona Verdict

The 2018 Honda Odyssey continues to enjoy rave reviews from both industry insiders and everyday drivers, which is why its reputation remains difficult for even its best competitors to measure up against. Thanks to a slew of new additions, the fifth-generation Honda Odyssey comes with all the bells and whistles you would expect from a best-selling minivan. And that, friends, is why the Odyssey is a better buy than the Kia Sedona.

It’s time to see for yourself why the 2018 Odyssey makes the grade. Visit one of our Miami or Riviera Beach Honda dealerships today to test drive the new Honda Odyssey minivan, and give your family the traveling companion they so desperately need. Locate your closest South Florida Honda Dealers showroom, and let’s get started, shall we?

Sources & Photos:

https://automobiles.honda.com/odyssey/

https://www.cars.com/research/kia-sedona-2017/

https://www.edmunds.com/car-news/first-impressions/2018-honda-odyssey-first-drive.html

https://www.edmunds.com/honda/odyssey/2018/minivan/

https://www.kbb.com/honda/odyssey/2018/

https://www.kbb.com/kia/sedona/2017/

http://www.thecarconnection.com/review/1107971_2017-honda-odyssey_styling_2

http://www.thecarconnection.com/review/1106829_2017-kia-sedona_styling_2

https://www.kia.com/us/en/vehicle/sedona/2017