2012 Caravan is a Contender!
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Thread: 2012 Caravan is a Contender!

  1. #1
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    2012 Caravan is a Contender!

    Heresy alert. I might buy a Caravan next time.

    Went to check them out and was shocked at how well they drove, how comfortable the seats were, how fast it could accelerate and how cheap they are!

    Got a quote on an SE equipped almost exactly the same as the Ody LX: $21,500 (plus tax and title). This is WITH the option pack needed to get rear AC. Only missing feature vs the LX is that the GC middle windows are fixed at that price/model point. Same as my 03LX.

    They also had a special on a 'Crew' model for $24,000. That has more doodads on it than a current Ody EX.

    So, true believers, talk me out of it. Yeah, I know Chryco makes iffy transmissions. So does Honda. Yeah I know resale sucks. Not an issue, I drive them to 200k miles. The stow/go middle seats are marginal comfort, but good enough for kids, plus they still have armrests on BOTH sides, a dumb omission in the Ody.

    What's the Ody LX got that makes it worth thousands more than a Dodge?
    2012 EX (hers) 03 LX (reserve force)
    2013 Chevy Cruze Eco (stick!) commuting average 40mpg

    Gone:Caddy CTS (neutered, aka auto trans), Jetta 1.8T (stick!),95 & 02 Saturn SL (stick!)

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  3. #2
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    The GC feels and rides well when new, but it deteriorates quickly after that. An Ody at 100K miles feels like a GC at 5K miles. A GC at 100K miles feels worn out. That's the difference. If you are going to keep it for 200K miles, get an Ody.

    Dave
    2002 Odyssey EX FG
    Honda hood deflector, mud guards, AC condenser screen mod, Zyml wax, Honda ATF cooler, Amsoil EaO20 oil filter, Amsoil synthetic 5W20, Amsoil ATF 6/2011, Krown rustproofing, block heater (gets cc...cold in Canada in winter!)

  4. #3
    Registered User payor_co's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by davedrivesody View Post
    The GC feels and rides well when new, but it deteriorates quickly after that. An Ody at 100K miles feels like a GC at 5K miles. A GC at 100K miles feels worn out. That's the difference. If you are going to keep it for 200K miles, get an Ody.

    Dave
    Plus is doesn't look like a rolling box.

    Also you said that re-sale is not an issue, go ahead and price your '02 with an '02 Chrysler and see what the comparo is.. You also mentioned that they are priced cheap, we'll there is a reason for that.

    We are probably all biased here on the Ody side, with the exception of Willy (no offense)
    Last edited by payor_co; 01-25-2012 at 06:00 PM.
    10 Touring Crystal Black Pearl 75k
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    http://acurazine.com/forums/garage/2...-05TSXPAT.html


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  5. #4
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    Chrysler has iffy tranny's??? I'm not going to try to talk you out of anything but the wifes '98 caravan has had precisely zero issues with engine or tranny - she's at about 145k now.


    The new ones do look like boxes though.
    Last edited by lifetimewarrant; 01-25-2012 at 06:39 PM.

  6. #5
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    The refreshed for 2011+ town and country got 2nd place in a c&d comparison although still behind 1st place odyssey. If magazine reviews have any weight for you I'm sure it's not a bad choice.


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  7. #6
    Registered User Kscha41's Avatar
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    If the new ones are the same as the previous one's, I would turn around and run. My buddy has an 01 and that thing is one big pile of ****. It creaks, clunks, rattles, they all rust like crazy, and he lost reverse at 99,650 miles. I would stick with the ody.

  8. #7
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    i was recently on vacation and rented a 12' GC for a week (i own an 07 exl) and yea, it goes really nice....the penatsar and the 6speed tranny is a great combo. you keep the revs up and the tranny shifts so fast.....bang, bang, bang......the dash lights are quite nice as well, but aside from my oddy's spongy brake feel, it was night and day difference between the two.......ride quality, fit and finish and overall was nice to be back in the oddy's seat. i've had a cryke before and fking never again - warranty goes up on that GC and get rid of it!!!

  9. #8
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    After my wife walked away from this major collision last week:

    full sized truck moving at 40 mph versus wifes 2008 ex-l

    ...there isn't a chance in hell anyone will be able convince her to trust her life and the lives of our children to a dodge. She's sold for life on Honda safety.

  10. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by payor_co View Post
    Plus is doesn't look like a rolling box.

    Also you said that re-sale is not an issue, go ahead and price your '02 with an '02 Chrysler and see what the comparo is.. You also mentioned that they are priced cheap, we'll there is a reason for that.

    We are probably all biased here on the Ody side, with the exception of Willy (no offense)
    OK, I did. My 03 Ody LX w/ 195,000 miles has an Edmunds estimated private party sale price of $3,000.

    A Grand Caravan SE w/ similar equipment and 195,000 miles has a private party sale price of $2,250.

    So after 10 years, I might get back $750 of the price difference. Maybe.

    Meanwhile a good deal on an Ody LX is about $26,000. The similarly equipped (except the middle row windows) GC SE can be had for $21,500. (And I haven't haggled yet)

    Resale is looking like a pretty poor argument right now.

    I'm intrigued by the 'wear out' comments. Can you be more specific? Did the struts go, or ball joints, sway bar links, what? Some of these things aren't hard to replace. My Ody has been very good in the suspension department, but those things aren't substantially harder to do than the work I HAVE had to do on the Ody(EGR valves, corroded HVAC resistor, radiator, sliding door parts, PS pump, motor mounts). Tell more.

    As to comparisons with an old 01 GC, be serious. There literally isn't one part in common. And I'm not aware of substantial safety rating / crash test differences between the Ody and GC. Data I've missed?

    Our LX has been a very good vehicle, but is hardly an argument for mystical Japanese invincibility. Their poop stinks too and they put on pants one leg at a time, just like the chrysler designers. Not sure why anyone would assumes that good crash experience in a Honda would extrapolate to a suspicion that Dodge wouldn't do as well....
    Last edited by manualman; 01-26-2012 at 09:38 AM.
    2012 EX (hers) 03 LX (reserve force)
    2013 Chevy Cruze Eco (stick!) commuting average 40mpg

    Gone:Caddy CTS (neutered, aka auto trans), Jetta 1.8T (stick!),95 & 02 Saturn SL (stick!)

  11. #10
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    Unlike most on this forum, I actually have OWNED both Caravan and Ody. The Caravan (bought new and sold at 120K in good condition + origional tranny) had fewer problems than the Ody by far. That comment about "GC at 5K feels like the the Ody at 100k is TOTAL > BS. The tranny is no more likely to go than any other FWD van including Ody or Toyota. My brother's Sienna tranny went south at 83K. Personally I'm going back to Dodge next time.
    Last edited by yeoldeoddy; 01-26-2012 at 11:39 AM.
    2000 Ody
    Origional trans 143K
    Trans cooler, ATF changed every 25k.

  12. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by manualman View Post
    . And I'm not aware of substantial safety rating / crash test differences between the Ody and GC. Data I've missed?
    From Edmunds:

    2012 Grand Caravan:
    In government crash testing, the Grand Caravan was given an overall score of four out of five stars, with four stars for overall frontal-impact and five stars for overall side-impact testing.

    2012 Odyssey:
    In government safety testing, the Odyssey scored a perfect five stars in overall, frontal- and side-impact crash protection.

  13. #12
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    Excellent rating info and great contribution to the thread.

    Thanks.
    2012 EX (hers) 03 LX (reserve force)
    2013 Chevy Cruze Eco (stick!) commuting average 40mpg

    Gone:Caddy CTS (neutered, aka auto trans), Jetta 1.8T (stick!),95 & 02 Saturn SL (stick!)

  14. #13
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    While I don't have personal experience gc reliability I do still see a few 80s and early 90s caravans running around still.


    Sent from my Autoguide iPhone app

  15. #14
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    Guess I'm biased and i don't have any other arguments for you.. I did notice at NADA.com that the price of the resale is higher on the Honda than what you had stated from Edmunds. I would imagine its because the Dodges get bought by rental car companies and have flooded the market with them.. maybe, its just my guess.

    Looks like your leaning the Dodge way and I know that price most definitely plays a part of this equation. Good luck with whatever you choose.

    Check the Dodge forums for their opinion.. that might be the tie breaker you are looking for.

    Pat
    10 Touring Crystal Black Pearl 75k
    03 ACURA TL NBP - 153K
    http://acurazine.com/forums/garage/2...-05TSXPAT.html


    Retired:
    08 EXL-RES Slate Green Metallic
    04 EXL-RES Sandstone Metallic
    94 Toyota Tercel - "the beater" 192+

  16. #15
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    Don't buy cars made in Canada. We don't make good cars up here...just kidding!



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