EX-L vs Touring
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Thread: EX-L vs Touring

  1. #1
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    EX-L vs Touring

    In the market for a 2019 Odyssey. I'm on the fence between the EX-L and Touring. Seems like dealerships I'm shopping around are more flexible on pricing for the Touring, but unwilling to budge on the EX-L.

    I like the LED headlights on the Touring, and that's pretty much it. The rest I'm indifferent.

    My wife does not want the RES b/c she thinks it's a distraction for the kids.

    Anyone have any feedback/comments on the RES? How has it held up over the years? Any regrets getting the Touring over the EX-L? CabinTalk and CabinView worth the Touring?

    I'm worried the technology will break after a few years. I just wish they would put LED headlights in the EX-L!

    So far, here's the best pricing i've been able to get in the Bay Area (California):

    EX-L: 34K (before Tax & Fees)
    Touring: 44K (out-the-door)

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  3. #2
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    I've heard a lot of issues with cabin watch. (Not working, freezing, crashing). If you're wife doesn't want the RES then get the EX-L without it. If you want just the LED headlight, you can buy them and install on your car. (Ive bought LED bulbs that I'm happy with for my EX-L.)



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  4. #3
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    We don’t use RES often. It does have its limitations and issues.

    Cabin watch is something we use daily and didn’t think we would use it at all.

    Using both at the same time can cause problems that they are still trying to resolve since the van came out.

    Get the extended warranty if you go limited

    The led lights are fantastic


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  6. #4
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    When I looked into the Odyssey, I too was was debating on whether to get the EX-L or the Touring with the primary reason being the LED lights. I have a 2016 Pilot EX-L and the lights are horrible. They are so bad that even my wife can't tell if they are on sometimes. With this being my wife's daily driver and having young kids, we opted to go for the LED lights. What a difference those lights make!

    The RES comes in handy with long trips. Keeps the boys from getting antsy. We used it a handful of times and they like it. You could also hotspot a Amazon Fire Stick and stream if you want.

    That being said, I walked out of the dealership with an Elite (haha). Yes, I originally did not care for all those little features but certainly do appreciate them now that I have them.

    If I were in your position and am comfortable with spending the extra dollars, I would go with Touring/Elite just for the lights. Yes, you could go aftermarket LEDs but not sure how comfortable you are with doing that (performance, warranty, legality, etc.).

  7. #5
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    We were choosing between 2018 EX-L and Touring (Canadian)

    Here are my comments regarding the RES:
    - Bluray/DVD. Your kids better be old enough to navigate random disk menus with IR remote, cause you (or front passenger) can't do it from the front. And even if your kids are old enough, how many times are they gonna watch the same DVD movie over and over?
    - In-built HDD. Forget it, it has some stupid filesize limit so that even a 5 minute YouTube video in mp4 is too large to transfer.
    - RES Streaming Apps (only pre-installed). Still trying to figure out how to make them work. It pops up a notification that you need to dismiss by clicking a screen.... and it's not a touch screen. Couldn't use the remote to dismiss it.
    - Cannot install any custom apps.
    - Media Servers. Doesn't work. Been reading these forums to find a solution and still can't find anyone online these days for whom it worked.

    So it really only leaves the HDMI port with some sort of streaming device (AndroidTV, Chromecast, AppleTV, Roku, etc). Which essentially means if RES is all you care about, you are gonna be spending thousands of dollars for an average-resolution-small-factor-powered-screen.... Just a screen.

    You are better off buying a couple Amazon Fire tablets and velcroing those to the back of front seats to act like "screens". Way cheaper than buying the Touring just for the powered screen. Sure, you will need to keep them charged, but plenty of options for that too, without blowing thousands and thousands. And more functionality

    We got the Touring in large for the BSI system, the ventilated front seats, powered folding mirrors and hands-free Tailgate. The RES was a bonus, but it turns out it was a poor one.
    Last edited by slavdok; 05-09-2019 at 12:28 PM.

  8. #6
    Registered User Novalight's Avatar
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    Buy an ex l, then buy and retrofit oem led lights I belive someone has done it already

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  9. #7
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    We Bought the EX-L and have been very happy with it. We where coming from our 2016 Touring and we don't miss the RES and built in Nav at all. As far as the Headlights go I have to say I don't know what the problem is with the ones the EX-L comes with they seem plenty bright to me. I live in an urban area so we have lots of street lighting and maybe thats why they seem fine to me. That said we recently did a trip out in the country and it was very dark there at night and the lights really seemed to be very bright. Enjoy whatever you end up getting.

  10. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by slavdok View Post
    We were choosing between 2018 EX-L and Touring (Canadian)

    Here are my comments regarding the RES:
    - Bluray/DVD. Your kids better be old enough to navigate random disk menus with IR remote, cause you (or front passenger) can't do it from the front. And even if your kids are old enough, how many times are they gonna watch the same DVD movie over and over?
    - In-built HDD. Forget it, it has some stupid filesize limit so that even a 5 minute YouTube video in mp4 is too large to transfer.
    - RES Streaming Apps (only pre-installed). Still trying to figure out how to make them work. It pops up a notification that you need to dismiss by clicking a screen.... and it's not a touch screen. Couldn't use the remote to dismiss it.
    - Cannot install any custom apps.
    - Media Servers. Doesn't work. Been reading these forums to find a solution and still can't find anyone online these days for whom it worked.

    So it really only leaves the HDMI port with some sort of streaming device (AndroidTV, Chromecast, AppleTV, Roku, etc). Which essentially means if RES is all you care about, you are gonna be spending thousands of dollars for an average-resolution-small-factor-powered-screen.... Just a screen.

    You are better off buying a couple Amazon Fire tablets and velcroing those to the back of front seats to act like "screens". Way cheaper than buying the Touring just for the powered screen. Sure, you will need to keep them charged, but plenty of options for that too, without blowing thousands and thousands. And more functionality

    We got the Touring in large for the BSI system, the ventilated front seats, powered folding mirrors and hands-free Tailgate. The RES was a bonus, but it turns out it was a poor one.
    My thoughts exactly!


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  11. #9
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    I m in the same situation and located here in the Bay Area as well. It's been difficult deciding whether to go with EX-L or Elite mainly on the RES/cabin talk/electronic issues I've read about as well as how Consumer Reports ranked the Odyssey as not recommended. It's ironic that I have a lemon buyback (also a Honda) in progress that will settle soon and now I'll looking to buy a Honda van since the wife doesn't like the Sienna and the Pacifica is even more questionable on the reliability.

  12. #10
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    I can't imagine you will be happy with the in-built tiny screens and dated software 2 years from now. Save the money to buy some iPad Minis or Fire tablets. As for lights, retrofit LED Fogs (15 minute process, and then always run them, so 2/3rds of your lights will be LED since the DRL are already LED).

  13. #11
    Registered User GoLowDrew's Avatar
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    Different generation of Ody, but I have a 2014 and 2009 before that. Both have RES. They held up well for us and we beat on the DVD player. Meaning it's on 90% of the time. If you factor in mileage, that's a lot of hours. At times, it could be on 6-8 hours straight. There may be a potty break here and there. So I would say the RES has been durable for us. 10% of the time is when the fell asleep.

    Now, my 2014 DVD is on maybe 50% of the time in the last year or two, as the kids are older, and they now walk home from school.

  14. #12
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    We have an EX-L. I skipped all the Touring stuff because I didn't feel we would use it. Our kids have their own tablets, which is preferable to them (and us) for long trips. I have two friends who have the CabinTalk and say they end up still yelling because the mic/ speakers are not that great.

    As for LED lights, you can buy upgrade kits for FAR FAR less than the dealer packages.

    We have 50k miles on our van and I have not regretted it. The only thing I am going to upgrade on the EX-L is the stereo system. I often don't have the kids in the car, and I go out with my buddies often and being able to turn up the tunes would be great.

    Good luck!!!

  15. #13
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    Another factor to consider is the different transmissions in the two models. I think EX-L has the outsourced 9-speed and Touring and Elite have the Honda 10-speed. Various opinions out there (many on this forum) about the 9-speed being more troublesome. I'm not sure if the host of other issues with the 18/19 Ody (A/C issues while in Park, power door problems, sudden transmission shift into Park, mushy brakes,.etc.) are different across the EX-L vs the Touring trims.
    TK67TRIUMPH
    2000 Odyssey EX, sold at 228,000 miles in 2018
    Shopping for replacement vehicle

  16. #14
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    I, too, was debating between the two trims, and I ended up with the Touring for the following reasons in the order of priority: 1) 10-speed transmission (so far I’m happy and impressed of the smooth gear switching). 2) LED headlight. 3) Honda Vac (love it as my van now is always clear of crumb and dirt on the seats and the floor). 4) RES (my kids enjoy them). 5) automatic tailgate (it’s handy when your hands are full with bags of groceries, etc.) 6) CabinWatch is helpful to know how my passengers are doing (whether they want to rest or not). 7) I was told that Touring has bettter glass sealing => quieter cabin compared to lower trims. I don’t know for sure since I don’t ride in EX-L or lower trims, but my family and I really enjoy the quiet cabin in our Touring. Everyone feels quiet and comfortable enough to rest on each and every long road trip.

    On a different note: I decided against the Elite for one personal reason - I hate the perforated leather as I’m afraid of spilling coffee or sugary liquid which ends up as a disaster to clean. Just my 2 cents.

  17. #15
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    We went with the EX-L with no Nav or RES back in October 2017. I'm very happy with our decision. Despite the complaints from others, our 9-speed has been fine. No jarring or harsh shifts, and it hunts for gears about as often as any automatic with more than about 6 gears.

    I've never felt a tinge of envy for the Vac, RES (we have iPads for entertainment when it's needed, and Car Play for navigation), the automatic tailgate, parking sensors, or CabinWatch/Talk.

    The LED headlights, acoustic side glass from the Elite, the 110V plug, mobile hotspot and third row sunshades would be *nice* but not worth the ~$8K price bump in my opinion.

    Since you're in the Bay Area, I'll share my buying process. Once we settled on *precisely* what configuration we wanted, I spent a day or two and searched out every matching stock number from all Honda dealers in the Bay Area and greater Sacramento area (and between) - I think it was 24 dealers total. I simply asked best price OTD for the precise config I wanted, and worked them pretty hard. About half the dealers never even bothered to respond (though they were happy to spam my phone - good thing I used a Google Voice number), then of the ones that responded, half weren't even in the same ballpark in terms of price. Of the six or seven who were close, I just kept bouncing them off each other. The winner was Oakland Honda. They matched the lowest price, and offered their in house lifetime powertrain warranty. Not that it's a super big deal, but it was something. Plus Oakland is pretty close to us. It was smooth to buy it from them. Now this was back in October 2017 when the 2018s were pretty new (EX-Ls had only hit dealer lots about a month earlier), but we got it for $35K before taxes and fees.

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