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Discussion Starter #1
I’m really going back and forth if I want to commit, l‘d like to know what others would do.

My 02’ EX-L runs fine but has 111,000 miles on it. No tranny issues so far, but if they crop up I’m stuck with a huge repair bill and/or little to no trade-in value. I’m confident I could get $5000 or more trade-in allowance. It does need the 100,000 mile service which I got 2 quotes for, both $1000. One dealer said it wouldn’t raise the trade-in value if I had it done because it would go straight to auction anyway. I haven’t spoken to any other dealers to see if they’re of the same opinion.

I’m looking at EX-L’s and here are some of the things I’m considering:
Reasons to buy now: New technology, better gas mileage, cheap to finance (1.99%), predictions of pent up consumer demand in 2012 could make dealers less willing to bargain (depending on economy) future price and interest rate increases, used 2011’s (in the future) won’t be much cheaper than buying new today (my opinion only), less future trade-in value

Reasons to wait: New Technology, no track record, no 6 speed.

I’m also considering 2008-2010 Touring but, but some of the listings are as expensive (or more) as buying a new EX-L and I don’t know if I’d want to take the risk of having to deal with some the 3rd generation’s potential problems.

I might add that we'd have this van probably 8-10 years.
 

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Chief -

I think you saw on another thread how we just picked ours up... Without knowledge of your financial situation, I say "Go for it!"...

I'm biased because ours is sitting in the garage and every time my wife comes in or out she just beams with that joy only a new car can provide. With three kids under the age of 6, the old saying is true: "When Momma's happy - the whole family is happy!"

But if you strip out the emotional and make it a purely unemotional decision... This is how we came to our decision... Might be some fuzzy math in here, but you get the point.

For us, we traded in a 2005 Pilot EX-L - paid about $30k for it / got $12k in trade. Difference - $18k. Divided $18k by the 75 months we owned it... About $240/mo. That works out better than a lease... So owning is our options.

You mentioned better fuel economy... Wife drives about 1000 miles/month. With the Pilot she spent about $175/mo in fuel. Mostly City driving... We figure our fuel savings over the pilot might run about 35%. So, about $60 plus or minus/mo. Our 1.99% car payment is $367/mo, less the $60 in savings so we're at $307/mo. Again... better than a lease.

Our Pilot had no problems - but it was less practical for our family now...

I worked with two dealers, saved close to $2k through them competing, and also got them to match the price on accessories I would have purchased online. (www.bernardiparts.com) That saved me close to $600. The van came with mud guards and a pin stripe at no extra cost (dealer-to-dealer swap) and they even threw in some OEM locking lugs. May seem trivial - but it's those little things that made my purchase enjoyable.

Anyway - you've got your own pro's and con's to consider... but we're very pleased with our choice. Like you, we preferred the EX-L to the Touring or Elite because I like to dabble in projects and we can save money that way... And like you - we plan on keeping this 8 to 10 years...

Good luck!

Herk
 

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I'd recommend the trade. You are living on borrowed time with that transmission. We traded our 04 at 104k partly because of the transmisson issues, although ours was running great. If you do buy a 2011, I recommend that you buy one in stock so you can see if the windshield is distorted so you do not get a bad one like ours. You and your spouse should look hard at that because one may notice it and the other one might not. Other than that, and the odd wind noise at times, we really like our 2011 EX. Good luck.
 

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Long time lurking here. We are in the same boat. We have a 2003 EX with 103K and no transmission issues. We are looking at either the EXL or the Touring and want to keep it for over 10 years as we start saving for children getting their own cars (daughter that's 12 1/2, son 9 1/2 and son almost 7). If we don't get one before our road trip this summer, we will have drop $1200 for the timing belt-tranny service. From all the research we have done, I know we are on borrowed time.

Even though the Touring is more expensive, we are considering if since we plan on keeping it long term. Road noise has been a problem in our 2003 and we really want something significantly better. We have test driven the EXL and liked it and plan on test driving the Touring and the EXL back to back to see if it is worth it.

Anybody here have experience with both the Touring and EXL? If we get the EXL, I have lifetime updates on my Garmin GPS and we would go after market for the DVD player. Of course the Touring comes with them but you get other upgrades including the 6spd, 3rd visors (important for the kids stuck in the back!), acoustic windshield, etc.

Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Long time lurking here. We are in the same boat. We have a 2003 EX with 103K and no transmission issues. We are looking at either the EXL or the Touring and want to keep it for over 10 years as we start saving for children getting their own cars (daughter that's 12 1/2, son 9 1/2 and son almost 7). If we don't get one before our road trip this summer, we will have drop $1200 for the timing belt-tranny service. From all the research we have done, I know we are on borrowed time.

Even though the Touring is more expensive, we are considering if since we plan on keeping it long term. Road noise has been a problem in our 2003 and we really want something significantly better. We have test driven the EXL and liked it and plan on test driving the Touring and the EXL back to back to see if it is worth it.

Anybody here have experience with both the Touring and EXL? If we get the EXL, I have lifetime updates on my Garmin GPS and we would go after market for the DVD player. Of course the Touring comes with them but you get other upgrades including the 6spd, 3rd visors (important for the kids stuck in the back!), acoustic windshield, etc.

Thanks.
The Touring and the Elite certainly have some nice features, but 40 large for a van is pretty steep. They certainly seem to be the most popular model here on the forums though. As with you, I have a Garmin (several actually) and my wife isn't that excited about the DVD system (price mainly). Also, here in Maine they put a lot of gravel on roads during the winter so replacing the windshield would be a matter of "when" instead of "if". And, in those cases I pay out of pocket so I wouldn't want to pay the price for a specialty windshield.

As I noted in my first post, lack of a 6 spd is disappointing, particularly when it's been commented that there seems to be a performance difference and also that extra 1 mpg could add up over the years with a lot of highway driving.
 

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Just my two cents...we had a strap on unit on the back of the seat and now have the built in RES.

It really does make a world of difference. Being able to control the DVD from the front seat, being able to stop and start it midstream without it starting over again, no more skipping or jumping over rough roads, controlling the volume from the front should one of the kids fall asleep...

It is "worth it" from a pure monetary standpoint? Probably not. But its an absolute godsend and I don't regret it for even a second. Sometimes, money can be happiness...

And btw--I personally would not mess with an aftermarket install on these things. Way too much technology involved and it just isn't worth the risk of voiding a warranty. I know plenty of people have done it, but with the new model, there's no way the system can be as seamless as the factory system. Plus, I got the 8/120 Hondacare (below cost from Hyannis!) and now my DVD system is under warranty for the life of the van.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Just my two cents...we had a strap on unit on the back of the seat and now have the built in RES.

It really does make a world of difference. Being able to control the DVD from the front seat, being able to stop and start it midstream without it starting over again, no more skipping or jumping over rough roads, controlling the volume from the front should one of the kids fall asleep...

It is "worth it" from a pure monetary standpoint? Probably not. But its an absolute godsend and I don't regret it for even a second. Sometimes, money can be happiness...

And btw--I personally would not mess with an aftermarket install on these things. Way too much technology involved and it just isn't worth the risk of voiding a warranty. I know plenty of people have done it, but with the new model, there's no way the system can be as seamless as the factory system. Plus, I got the 8/120 Hondacare (below cost from Hyannis!) and now my DVD system is under warranty for the life of the van.
Good points, I agree with the aftermarket comment, looked into it briefly but don't consider it an option. My wife feels that kids should do other things in the car instead of staring at the electronic nanny. I concur, but do see value especially on long trips which my youngest hates. If the widescreen was an option, it'd be a no brainer.
 

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Reasons to wait: New Technology, no track record, no 6 speed.

I’m also considering 2008-2010 Touring but, but some of the listings are as expensive (or more) as buying a new EX-L and I don’t know if I’d want to take the risk of having to deal with some the 3rd generation’s potential problems.
Some thoughts...

There's always new technology, so if you listed that because you think there will be newer technology that you want, than that'll never change. If you listed it because you're worried about issues with the new technology in the 2011... not sure what to tell you. Yes there are issues. For example, the fact that my EX-L stereo goes to mono after using the bluetooth phone setup is annoying. Is it fixable? Yes, with a firmware patch via a CD. That fix doesn't exist yet. I can only hope they are working on it.

As for no track record, I can understand that. I'm banking on Honda's track record, as opposed to the car. That's why people buy Toyota's and Honda's right? For their brand recognition of reliability (maybe not Toyota as much now...).

As for the 6 speed, if you want it for the better mpg's, it's only 1mpg better. I'm not going to do the math, but I'm guessing it's not worth the additional cost.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
As for the 6 speed, if you want it for the better mpg's, it's only 1mpg better. I'm not going to do the math, but I'm guessing it's not worth the additional cost.
The 6 spd is "exclusive" to the Touring models this year and maybe next, but I'd say it's a save bet that it will end up as standard across the model range. If I thought I could wait another year or two, I would, but now is looking to be a good time.

When I bought my 2004 Tundra the 4 spd was the standard transmission. In 2005 they increased the power, added the 5 spd and made the LSD standard. But, at the time, it was a good time to buy.
 

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Some thoughts...

There's always new technology, so if you listed that because you think there will be newer technology that you want, than that'll never change. If you listed it because you're worried about issues with the new technology in the 2011... not sure what to tell you. Yes there are issues. For example, the fact that my EX-L stereo goes to mono after using the bluetooth phone setup is annoying. Is it fixable? Yes, with a firmware patch via a CD. That fix doesn't exist yet. I can only hope they are working on it.

As for no track record, I can understand that. I'm banking on Honda's track record, as opposed to the car. That's why people buy Toyota's and Honda's right? For their brand recognition of reliability (maybe not Toyota as much now...).

As for the 6 speed, if you want it for the better mpg's, it's only 1mpg better. I'm not going to do the math, but I'm guessing it's not worth the additional cost.
The 6 speed is more than just the the 1 mpg better, the van drives better, better downshifts, and it makes better use of the engines power with it's better gear ratios. It is also faster acceleration wise, nearly 1 second in a 30-50mph merge and 8.1 vs 8.8, 0-60mph, takes it from almost worst in class to almost best in class acceleration, which is useful if you have a lot of weight on board or in an emergency maneuver, etc. Honda should have put the 6 spd in all Odysseys.
 

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The Touring and the Elite certainly have some nice features, but 40 large for a van is pretty steep. They certainly seem to be the most popular model here on the forums though. As with you, I have a Garmin (several actually) and my wife isn't that excited about the DVD system (price mainly). Also, here in Maine they put a lot of gravel on roads during the winter so replacing the windshield would be a matter of "when" instead of "if". And, in those cases I pay out of pocket so I wouldn't want to pay the price for a specialty windshield.

As I noted in my first post, lack of a 6 spd is disappointing, particularly when it's been commented that there seems to be a performance difference and also that extra 1 mpg could add up over the years with a lot of highway driving.
I like how people comment that 40 large for van is pretty steep or too much $$, but then people have no problem paying more for a Ford Flex (can run up to 45 large+) or nearly 55 large for a Sequoia, LOL! heck, the all new Explorer can nearly hit 50 large fully loaded.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Honda should have put the 6 spd in all Odysseys.
Absolutely! That's why waiting a year is also an option for myself.
 

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The 6 speed is more than just the the 1mpg better, the van is faster acceleration wise, nearly 1 second in a 30-50mph merge and 8.1 vs 8.8, 0-60mph. The 6 speed makes better use of the engines power with it's better gear ratios.
I agree, the 6 speed is a better performer, but in Canada a Touring is $6,000 more than an EX-L, so you'd have to drive allot of miles to pay for the extra cost. Sure you get more features, but if you didn't want them you are talking yourself into something you don't need, for the sake of a 6 speed.

I believe Honda will add the 6 speed across the line up for 2012. I don't have any inside information, but I note that Acura is using the 6 speed in the 2012 TL, available in March 2011. All of the competitors have a 6 speed and I think Honda has a capacity problem which they are fixing with a factory expansion this year.

I'm going to get an EX (if I can find one) or an EX RES. In October, when the new vans show up, if they have a 6 speed, I'll give this van to our company sales manager for his company vehicle and then replace it with an EX-L RES. If they don't add the 6 speed, I'll just keep the 2011 and drive it.

I've test driven both vans and though both transmissions were fine. The 5 speed provides adequate performance and for what it is worth, I found the 6 speed to be a bit busy.

I don't think you can go wrong with either.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Sure you get more features, but if you didn't want them you are talking yourself into something you don't need, for the sake of a 6 speed.
Agreed, one salesman said, "It's only $4000 more".

I believe Honda will add the 6 speed across the line up for 2012
Agreed

I don't think you can go wrong with either.
Agreed
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I like how people comment that 40 large for van is pretty steep or too much $$, but then people have no problem paying more for a Ford Flex (can run up to 45 large+) or nearly 55 large for a Sequoia, LOL! heck, the all new Explorer can nearly hit 50 large fully loaded.
I've looked a Fords and like their stuff. They have improved and as a former Mustang owner ('91 5.O LX, new for $14500) I really like the new Mustangs and the Fusion. But, the base prices are okay but the option packages are really pricey and quickly drive the price up. That's why a Flex or Explorer don't make the cut, plus I want more MPG than their offering.
 

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I've looked a Fords and like their stuff. They have improved and as a former Mustang owner ('91 5.O LX, new for $14500) I really like the new Mustangs and the Fusion. But, the base prices are okay but the option packages are really pricey and quickly drive the price up. That's why a Flex or Explorer don't make the cut, plus I want more MPG than their offering.
I sat in a 2011 Touring when it first hit the showrooms and agreed with the auto magazines who wrote that with the new level of interior refinement, Honda could have put an Acura emblem on the steering wheel.

When I headed out on the test drive, I was disappointed by the level of road noise at speed. It may have looked like an Acura inside, but had the interior noise level of a Honda. I needed a people mover so I decided the best course was to not spend more than I needed if I was getting a mini van. I'd pay for a Touring if it was a quieter vehicle. I'd consider a $46,000 Ford if they had a model that suited my purposes.

The Odyssey is a great van, but an EX is $33,900 and a Touring is $46,990 in Canada. That is $13,000 for "features". It is the same van. If it was as quiet as an Acura sedan, I'd have paid up.
 

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What I did: I have a 2004 Odyssey Ex-RES with 111,000 miles on it, no transmission issues and new timing belt. There is some minor body work issues (a dent in the drivers side quarter panel, and big chip in the windshield that hasn't "spidered" yet. I sold the car on craigslist, and got my price, and then bought a "new to me" 2008 Odyssey EX-L with NAVI, DVD, etc, etc. Got the 2008 for right around 25,000, and got about $2,000 more than the dealer would give me for the trade-in by using craigslist To me, this is an acceptable work around to the $44,000 sticker price on the 2011s. Personally, the new design doesn't cut if for me, and I'm disappointed by what I perceive as a decrease in quality of the materials used on the interior with the 2011, so if Honda wants to penny pinch, so will I, to the tune of nearly $20,000.

My hunch is that the value of the higher-end 2008, 2009 and 2010s will stay high as potential buyers a) are not attracted to the new design, and b) don't want to stomach the $40,000+ price tag.
 

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What I did: I have a 2004 Odyssey Ex-RES with 111,000 miles on it, no transmission issues and new timing belt. There is some minor body work issues (a dent in the drivers side quarter panel, and big chip in the windshield that hasn't "spidered" yet. I sold the car on craigslist, and got my price, and then bought a "new to me" 2008 Odyssey EX-L with NAVI, DVD, etc, etc. Got the 2008 for right around 25,000, and got about $2,000 more than the dealer would give me for the trade-in by using craigslist To me, this is an acceptable work around to the $44,000 sticker price on the 2011s. Personally, the new design doesn't cut if for me, and I'm disappointed by what I perceive as a decrease in quality of the materials used on the interior with the 2011, so if Honda wants to penny pinch, so will I, to the tune of nearly $20,000.

My hunch is that the value of the higher-end 2008, 2009 and 2010s will stay high as potential buyers a) are not attracted to the new design, and b) don't want to stomach the $40,000+ price tag.
I've looked at certified 2008-2010's as a fall back. Some very promising candidates.
 

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I feel like too much of these discussion are based on MSRPs--what you are actually paying varies greatly by market.

For instance, no the deal that Cleveland Steve did--granted, I am forgoing NAV (though from what I've heard about the NAV system, particularly on the last model, I'm not missing much), but I actually paid $33000 for an EXL-RES--over $3500 under sticker. I don't know what the mileage of that 2008 is, but I actually paid $8k more than he did. For a vehicle that is 3 model year's newer, with no mileage, and eligible for a much cheaper extended warranty. My tires and brakes are new so I'll be saving there as well.

In the case of the Odyssey, when I was shopping--and my initial foray into this was actually to try to trade our '07 for an '08 or '09 w/RES--the certified/low mileage late model Odysseys just didn't seem like a very good value. A testament to the strong resale of the Ody, I suppose.
 
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