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My wife and I got our first Honda Odyssey in Feb. 2020, a 2019 EX-L with navi which had about 50k miles already. We're having an intermittent issue with the accelerator and the dealer doesn't seem to even believe us, much less have any idea what might be causing this. I know we're not crazy because there is a similar thread here: hesitation on acceleration Since that thread was about a different generation, I thought I would start a new thread.

Basically, when starting from a stop - either dead stop or coasting stop, but after applying the brake, when you start gently pressing the accelerator, nothing happens for an inordinate amount of time. Likely only a second, but feels much longer when you're trying to make a left hand turn in front of oncoming traffic. The van may be barely rolling, because the brake isn't engaged, but you're only coasting with no response from the gas pedal. Then, after the short delay the engine feels like it is trying to catch up to where it should be based on the amount you've already depressed the pedal, and the van starts so fast the tires are peeling out.

This doesn't happen every time, and there are times the response feels like the van is a little heavy, but the pedal is doing something and is at least a smooth acceleration if not a fast one.

Pressing the pedal hard from the get-go doesn't seem to cause the issue, so if you're cool with racecar starts out of parking lots and at left hand turns then you might not ever notice the issue, but if you're trying to cart a family and not make anyone spill their drink then it may not happen every time, but likely at least once in every trip.

The dealer updated the computer when we took the van in and complained about this the first time, and it wasn't fixed by the software update.

Happens whether the eco drive mode is engaged or not engaged.

Has not happened yet when I have the hold break mode enabled, but I haven't tested this theory long.
 

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I have noticed exactly what you describe on my 2018 EXL. It is very startling and that 1 second delay is enough to make cross traffic too close for comfort. Then when it suddenly guns, your passengers think you are driving badly
 

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Welcome aboard, Lilfish :)! I drive a 2018 EX and have had the same problem with the 9-speed. It was cured by a software update, however, it has recently returned during very cold days. It doesn't happen often but when it does, it is a nuisance.

I assume you're out of warranty? When this happens to your car, what are your weather conditions? Is it extremely cold? Sadly, I think this is a design issue and no dealer is going to handle the problem with competence. On the other hand, it can be dangerous when you need to move your car out of the way quickly. It will take a catastrophe and a lawsuit before Honda will step up to the plate. Perhaps you could mention this to your the dealer and see if you get any action. At the very least, if their techs can't figure it out, they should make a call to the Honda U.S. tech line. Please keep us posted and perhaps give yourself extra time at busy intersections where you need sudden power.
 

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I assume you're out of warranty? When this happens to your car, what are your weather conditions? Is it extremely cold?
Thanks for the welcome to the forum and taking the time to reply.

It was past the 36,000 mile warranty when I purchased, and I guess now about at the end of the 60,000 powertrain warranty as well.

Because the issue is intermittent, I've looked for any pattern to inform the dealer about, but haven't yet discovered anything noteworthy. It could be happening slightly more often in the extreme cold, but not enough of a difference to say this for sure. We had a snap of extremely cold weather in Memphis, TN (sub 32 f deg daytime temps) recently and it didn't happen every time or anything like that. Back to 60 deg days here and the issue still occurs. I don't have a long commute (~10min), so the engine may not be fully warmed up when it happens. Don't have a long enough commute to know if it happens less after the engine is fully warm.

Perhaps unrelated issue, but have had to replace my battery twice in the last year (2nd time was under warranty still), and the issue seemed to decrease frequency with a new battery, but then increase frequency just before the battery needed to be replaced again. Next time I take it to the dealer, I'm going to ask them to check the battery again. Wondering if some sensor isn't getting enough power or something weird like that.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I have noticed exactly what you describe on my 2018 EXL. It is very startling and that 1 second delay is enough to make cross traffic too close for comfort. Then when it suddenly guns, your passengers think you are driving badly
Exactly. The van started out as my wife's daily driver, and was very aggravating for her, and made her feel unsafe. Now I'm driving daily and understand her aggravation. Your passengers think you are just a bad driver and gunning the engine at takeoff.
 

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lilfish

This is a known issue with the German generic ZF 9 speed transmissions. This forum even has a post about joining the class action against honda concerning the very issue, among other issues, concerning this transmission. You might try and join the case.

As for correcting the issue, the dealer service managers have no solution for it because American Honda has not , will not, can not provide one. It’s the reason the nine speed ZF transmission only showed up for two years in the Odyssey.

I have the same issue. If you take a moment to disable ECO mode each time you get in the vehicle, that will remedy most of the hesitation issues. You will lose fuel MPG’s, however.

I’ll never buy another Honda/Acura again without a full in-depth research project. Any of their products NOT made in Japan BY the Japanese have all sorts of quality issues. Another post by my user name outlines many found on my 2019 EX-L when I bought it brand new. I’ve been very disappointed with what I got for the amount I had to pay.......never again will I be hooodoooed like this again.

On a brighter note, I own a 2020 Acura RLX Sport Hybrid SHAWD. Every system, every item on and in the vehicle is as it was designed and operates with an intent that the driver would expect. Some of the exact same systems and hardware are utilized on the current generation Odyssey. The systems on the Odyssey don’t operate with the same expectation or precision. Many owners of Odyssey on this forum have commented that they shut down these systems as annoyances or dangers presented.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
This is a known issue with the German generic ZF 9 speed transmissions. This forum even has a post about joining the class action against honda concerning the very issue, among other issues, concerning this transmission. You might try and join the case.

As for correcting the issue, the dealer service managers have no solution for it because American Honda has not , will not, can not provide one. It’s the reason the nine speed ZF transmission only showed up for two years in the Odyssey.
Well, that's not what I was hoping to hear, but appreciate it nonetheless.

I have the same issue. If you take a moment to disable ECO mode each time you get in the vehicle, that will remedy most of the hesitation issues. You will lose fuel MPG’s, however.
The issue seems to happen to me whether or not eco mode is engaged. Are you saying I need to push the eco mode button to turn it on and back off each time I turn on the car, and that will avoid most of the hesitation issues? Not worried about fuel MPGs right at the moment, so have been driving with the eco mode turned off by default.
 

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lilfish


On the center stack left of the electric shift plate there is an ECON button. When disabled the instrument panel behind the steering wheel will not show the ECON icon lit in the bottom left of the panel display.

Keep it turned off for several drives to learn the difference. Once you turn it back on you should be able to feel a marked difference in throttle response.
 

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lilfish


On the center stack left of the electric shift plate there is an ECON button. When disabled the instrument panel behind the steering wheel will not show the ECON icon lit in the bottom left of the panel display.

Keep it turned off for several drives to learn the difference. Once you turn it back on you should be able to feel a marked difference in throttle response.
Right, so I've been driving with the eco mode turned off - no econ light on the panel. When I turn eco mode back on, then the throttle does respond more slowly, as expected, but this is a different issue from the throttle not responding at all.
 

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Not sure if this is going to help.. but as mentioned, the german transmission software is.. lacking. Whether it was designed for comfort or smoothness, it's very annoying. On my latest BMW the problem is as painful as described. I can, however, swap between different sport modes etc that help this problem. The big help is, however, a pedaltuner or pedalbox. I know it'll be a while before anyone actually changes/updates the transmission software, but this "device" helps all the drive by wire (electronic) pedals.

I did quickly look, and although a lot of honda's are listed (Accord, CRV, Civic..) The Odyssey is not. I would think they do use the same assembly across a lot of models.

It basically changes the potentiometer readout from the gas pedal, so that programmed in "dead spot" can be tailored out. Someone might want to look into it/contact the company.
 

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lilfish

Mine has “no response at all” on every decell turn-in and then press pedal......nothing happens ......then chirps the wheels the same feeling and effect you describe.

Nothing will fix it. My 2019 EX-L now has 18,648 miles. It’s new for all intents and purposes. There’s nothing short of pulling the transmission and TCU and swapping it with the 10 speed and it’s TCU that will make it any better.

It’s a dud transmission. It’s all over the net on almost every vehicle manufacturer represented forum out there where these transmissions were installed.

Wishing you and yours the very best.
 

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lifish,
It sounds like you have a problem in your throttle position sensor (TPS) changing resistance foot pedal resistance into your CPU. I do not know how Honda built this TPS in the Honda but as far as any variable acting resistor can fail, in a given position, and then some times work as it never had a problems, it cheap enough I would try to replace just that.
I could not find the part on Honda part website, as I may not be calling it by the proper name.
 
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lifish,
It sounds like you have a problem in your throttle position sensor (TPS) changing resistance foot pedal resistance into your CPU. I do not know how Honda built this TPS in the Honda but as far as any variable acting resistor can fail, in a given position, and then some times work as it never had a problems, it cheap enough I would try to replace just that.
I could not find the part on Honda part website, as I may not be calling it by the proper name.
It would be great if it were something this simple, but I would expect a TPS going bad to create error codes the dealer would have caught the first time around? Certainly won't hurt to ask specifically about this when I take it back in.
 

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It would be great if it were something this simple, but I would expect a TPS going bad to create error codes the dealer would have caught the first time around? Certainly won't hurt to ask specifically about this when I take it back in.
The only thing I would say is the code will clear on some time or problem is not current. With any type of problem, you would think it should log it and keep it in history with the car for it's life. But they only put so much eRAM in place. But at least they would be able to see the problem if they did. Hope you/the dealer can find it soon, I definitely would not like that happening to me with our driver's on main streets as I would be rear ended in a heart beat as they love running red lights here in Omaha, NE
 
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To quickly rule out a TPS problem, bring the RPMs up to about 3,000 using the Sport mode paddles. Hold the speed constant and if the engine "hunts" or hesitates, the TPS is the likely culprit. It will feel like a miss in a spark plug from cars of long ago. An import specialist mechanic taught me that years ago :).
 

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To quickly rule out a TPS problem, bring the RPMs up to about 3,000 using the Sport mode paddles. Hold the speed constant and if the engine "hunts" or hesitates, the TPS is the likely culprit. It will feel like a miss in a spark plug from cars of long ago. An import specialist mechanic taught me that years ago :).
Tried this on the way home, and did not have any trouble keeping the speed/RPMs constant with steady pedal pressure.

However, excitingly, while in sport mode I identified a way to recreate the issue every time. This should help me greatly in communicating the issue to the dealer.

The issue is actually the gear shift between 1st and 2nd gear, but only when the pressure on the accelerator is released briefly and then pressed again. i.e. if you keep even pressure on the pedal while shifting from 1st to 2nd, there is no issue. If, however, you start to accelerate in 1st, then let off the gas pedal shift to 2nd and hit the pedal again there is a significant lag time before the throttle responds.

Once I figured this out in sport mode I could recreate the sensation in regular Drive mode every time by gently starting to accelerate, let off the pressure at about 5 mph and pressing the pedal again. This is why left hand turns are problematic, because you start to ease into the intersection let off the gas then try to hit it again to make the turn.

Previously, I thought it wasn't responding at all from a dead stop, but evidently I was wrong - it starts to respond in 1st gear but quickly starts switching to 2nd and lags in the transition.
 

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Tried this on the way home, and did not have any trouble keeping the speed/RPMs constant with steady pedal pressure.

However, excitingly, while in sport mode I identified a way to recreate the issue every time. This should help me greatly in communicating the issue to the dealer.

The issue is actually the gear shift between 1st and 2nd gear, but only when the pressure on the accelerator is released briefly and then pressed again. i.e. if you keep even pressure on the pedal while shifting from 1st to 2nd, there is no issue. If, however, you start to accelerate in 1st, then let off the gas pedal shift to 2nd and hit the pedal again there is a significant lag time before the throttle responds.

Once I figured this out in sport mode I could recreate the sensation in regular Drive mode every time by gently starting to accelerate, let off the pressure at about 5 mph and pressing the pedal again. This is why left hand turns are problematic, because you start to ease into the intersection let off the gas then try to hit it again to make the turn.

Previously, I thought it wasn't responding at all from a dead stop, but evidently I was wrong - it starts to respond in 1st gear but quickly starts switching to 2nd and lags in the transition.
Brilliant, lilfish! Thanks for your observation. It's often difficult to reproduce things like this and hence, a lot of users drive away from dealerships with the car still malfunctioning and the dealership smiling. I've also had the same thing happen making right hand turns. Using your idea, it should be possible to reproduce the issue under all circumstances. I wonder if the software can be tweaked to prevent this VERY dangerous situation from occurring?
 

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Please update post dealer inspection. I’m following this closely and curious to what the resolution is.
 
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