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Hi, My wife and I traded in our 2002 EXL-RES for a lightly used 2010 EXL-RES last month. We refused to buy a new 2011 park that ugly thing in our driveway. Anyway after a thousand miles, Ive formed some opinions on the 2010 van. Basically, newer does not necessarily mean better.

First and formost, the VCM is a joke and seriously annoying on the freeway. It hiccups and jumps in and out with annoying frequency. All that, and my mpg so far in mixed driving is only 16mpg. 6 less than what the 2002 was getting. Hopefully a trip to the dealer can mitigate that issue. Acceleration is strong and much more linear than the 02 which did not have a flat acceleration curve.

The brakes are mushy and very soft. This was typical of every 3rd generation example we test drove over the past few months.

Steering is a bit over powered, not quite as much feel as the 02, and the leather covered steering wheel is too thin.

The front seats are nicer, with better support and softer leather. The headrest are more solid, but they intrude more for shorter drivers like my wife who is 5'4". Im 6"1 and they are fine for me.

The lights are better and should be considering how big they are. Will be installing OEM foglights soon.

The dealer installed new Bridgestone OEM tires, EL42s which are terrible in snow and rain. Scary actually. Nokian WR G2's will be on soon.

The dashboard layout is better in some ways, less so in others. The instrument lighting is very good, except for the side mirror/heater controls on the door. The heated seat buttons are easier to reaach. The coin box is a joke. The HVAC controls are overly complicated and I wish I had a rotary dial for both temp and fan speed. The buttons they use require too much time to find and look at. The center ducts above the HVAC controls are too low. On the 02, I could aim one right onto my hands as they sat on the steering wheel, which was nice on cold Ohio days. Not with the 2010, they dont point that far to the side , too low and are blocked by the gear shift lever anyway. The heater is wimpy, with terrible airflow to the footwell and windshield.

I like that I can have heated air out of the ceiling ducts in the back, that helps keep the windows clear. As Ive said in previous posts, I think automatic temp control in cars is more of a marketing tool rather than proving any real value.

The ride is better damped and smoother on the highway. The 02 hopped around a bit on rough surfaces.

We really like the rearview camera in the mirror, a nice touch! Sunroof too!!

Finally, the windshield has a large green border across the top which restricts my view. Always disliked those.

Overall, we like the van and hope a trip to the dealer can fix the VCM and brakes issue.


Thanks!
 

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We made a similar jump from an '01 to a '10 EXL R&N. We haven't had issues with the VCM on/off and feeling it. We can't tell. We are getting about 16mpg on the '10 and got about the same on our '01. My wife has a lot of stop and go / short trips. Unfortunately there just seems to be some variation with MPG on these vans. I am guessing the dealer isn't going to do anything for you other than address the VCM engagement issues.

We love the '10 but we were coming from a plain LX. Wife likes all of the features the new van + the upgrade to EXL R&N. We didn't really want the navi, but it was all the dealer had. Since we mostly drive very close to home, we don't use it much. The few times we have tried to find something without an address (searching the database) it has been very frustrating.
 
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