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Discussion Starter #1
Three weeks ago we said goodbye to our old faithful 2002 Ody EX. We purchased the van new in Jan, 2002, and ran her for over 9 years and just shy of 140k miles. The vehicle still looked and ran great, and we collected a little under our asking price of $6k in a private sale. But my wife was getting nervous about the age & mileage of her daily driver and our long distance transport, and we just felt it was time to move on. Statistics being what they are, sometimes it’s best to walk away from the table with your winnings intact!

History? We picked up a bad whine beginning around 30k that turned out to be a cooked 2nd gear. The tranny was replaced as part of the internal oiling recall at 35k. I believe that they damaged the neutral safety switch when swinging in the new unit, as it was cracked and slowly failed within a year or so thereafter. It was covered by the Honda Care extended warranty – the only benefit we ever received or needed. Other than fluids, filters, a battery, tires & brakes, the van cost us nothing. Even the struts were hanging in there – she still drove tight. It was the most solid and reliable vehicle we’ve ever owned. We were indeed lucky, as I know these boards are full of negative experiences. Fortunately, I can report they aren’t all that way.

My thanks to those that posted info on the little things that made ownership easier, like how to change that damn cabin air filter!

I conversed with the new owner the other day, as I had some paperwork for him. Three weeks in they are still extremely happy, so it’s a win all around.
 

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Glad to hear you had a good experience. What did you replace the Ody with?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I guess I should have said that! With some reluctance, we went back for another Toyota, but this time a CPO rather than new.

My wife is the primary driver of the van, so her preferences carry a lot of weight. Our first choice would have been another Odyssey, having had an excellent ownership experience with the last one. We didn’t even get out of the parking lot with the new 2011. She hated everything about it, particularly the exterior styling and the impact of those windows on drivers visibility. Next up was a CPO 2010 & 2008(?) Ody, but the price was high and she didn’t like that the rear quarter windows are fixed. She frequently leaves them open to vent the van.

So now off to look at some others. The Kia Sedona felt too truck-like. It’s just not as refined. We'd owned a Grand Caravan before and driven some rentals since, so decided to pass on them. Too many issues... Then we drove an LE and XLE 2011 Sienna. They were both pretty nice, but there were issues with the quality of materials, fit & finish, price, etc. She hated the way the middle seats move, and just couldn’t master folding them. Their sliding tracks look like a real liability. Plus, we’ve also been burned on ‘first year’ models before, and so when we looked at the recalls and owner comments on a Sienna board, we were a little bit worried about the potential for problems.

Finally we tried a CPO Sienna (I think it was an 8 passenger ’08). It had the most ‘familiar’ feel to her, and hit all the right buttons (looks, feel, function, etc.). It took a tri-state search and some driving to find the best deal (we wanted a 7 passenger). Eventually we ended up with a ‘drives like new’ CPO ’08 LE 7 passenger with 20k miles for $19k. After 3k miles, she's still happy, so I'm OK with it.

We added a Platinum warranty to that to be sure it was a good choice. Toyota's have been less than trouble free these days as well, so added protection is worth the peace of mind.
 
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