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Buy used or new Honda Odyssey?

Hello! Should I buy a new (2018 or 2019) Honda Odyssey, or one that’s a few years old? I’ll probably own it until it runs into the ground. I have the cash to buy new - was told long ago by my grandfather never to buy a new car…but have times changed? Thanks.

Used vehicle prices are not reasonable at this time. If you can buy new and really plan to keep it a long time then I say new.

  1. New and you will have no worry about previous abuse
  2. There are really good prices on left over 2017
  3. New you have a better chance of getting the options you want.
  4. On new you might even get zero percent financing and not have to pull your money out of savings all at one time.

And you get the full warranty.

If you’re worried about the changes with the revised 2018 model, either search for a new 2017, or get a 2019.

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Just for the heck of it I looked at used Odyssey vans in my area. Used prices are worse than I thought . There is just not enough savings to justify used.


Yeah…why would anyone get rid of an Odyssey! A good sign!


Normally I’d say buy 3 years old… But this is a Honda! they hold their value so used prices are high, and you plan to run it until it dies. Buy new!


When you buy a new vehicle, you start with new tires, a new battery, and even new wiper blades. That is one advantage to buying a new vehicle.


As long as used Hondas and Toyotas are so overvalued, I would buy them new. American cars I would buy 2 or 3 years old to take advantage of the greater depreciation.


Because of forest fires and floods almost all used vehicles are pricey right now. Plus with title washing buying used is risky.

If you have the money, buy new. You will have many years of trouble-free driving and you will apply all the required maintenance.

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The Honda Odyssey has had transmission problems for a LONG time. Our partner site CarComplaints has all the data you need (here) to get started if you are considering a used one. The transmission problems have been reported by owners as recently as the 2014 and 2015 model years. A few owners are even reporting issues in 2016 MY vans. The used Odyssey from 2015 back has earned the “Beware of the clunker” label from the site.

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I have looked at the ’ Car Complaints ’ site and do not consider it a dependable source. I guess I need to call our friends and tell them that the Odyssey van they have with over 200000 miles on with only required service and normal wear repairs was a bad purchase. The people who post on forums that don’t know how to properly check their fuel usage and have never read the vehicle manual are the same ones posting on Car Complaints.

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It always kills me when one person says they never had any issues and that somehow translates into the whole batch will be the same way. Even the worst cars have some that turn out to be gems. I’m not saying that is the case here but there are enough people who have had bad experiences that discounting them as somehow too ignorant to properly post about a problem they had to pay someone to fix is going a bit far IMO. Although I always take reviews with a grain of salt, when there are enough people complaining about the same/similar issues, I take note. From my own experience, beware of the VCM implementation on Odysseys. Some people have vans that do not exhibit much vibration at all, others are almost intolerable. If I had it to do over, I would have bought a Sienna instead. I guess that groups me into the ignorant, unwashed masses…


Car Guru says $2200 off in South florida on new 2018 base models. YMMV.

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My approach is similar, but with perhaps one difference

When reading reviews for products I’m considering, I specifically concentrate on the worst reviews, the ones giving the product 1 out of 5, failing grade, etc.

Then I do what you do . . . look for common complaints, patterns, etc.

Then I ask myself, “If that happened to me, could I live with it”

But to be honest . . . I weed out a lot of the complaints, if it’s clear that the reviewer is an imbecile who doesn’t know how to use the product properly, or who has wildly unrealistic expectations


an accord is not an odyssey as far as total GVW so i would expect the van to have slightly more trans issues. but new accords have cvt trans and i do not think the odysseys have them. maybe the honda engineers thru up their hands and said there is no way to prevent the overloaded vans from killing the trans?

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A transmission guaranteed not to fail could easily be designed and built, but at what cost? Everything is a tradeoff and the task of designing a viable solution within all constraints is always a tough proposition. Even so, there will always be things that were unforeseen. That is why most people avoid what is affectionately called the “bleeding edge”. Any new or novel design is likely to have latent issues even after all of the design analysis, verification, validation, accelerated life testing and so on has been done. There’s nothing like real life to screw up a great plan :wink:

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We were in your position 8 years ago and we bought new. We still have our 2011 Odyssey with 82,000 miles and no regrets. When I was weighing the pros and cons, I noted several flaws in most of the advice people give.

First, most people who do the comparisons compare things like 3 year ownership costs. Well, the cost of ownership for years 1-3 is definitely higher than years 3-6, but you have to look at how long you plan on owning the car. If you keep a car for 10 years, the average costs drop dramatically and may be quite comparable. Depending on the car, the cost of owing it from years 1-10 may be the same or even lower than years 3-13.

Other advantages of buying new:

  • You get a new car! (Yes, I know we’re being practical here, but all things being equal, most of us would prefer a new car to a used)
  • Lower loan costs - you can frequently get better interest rates on new cars.
  • You know how the car’s been treated
  • Most used cars have 40-60K on them, meaning you are soon looking at new tires, new brakes, possibly a timing belt, and other significant maintenance costs. With a new car you get to enjoy the honeymoon period of virtually no maintenance and full warranty coverage. Many dealers include free oil changes. You are also protected by lemon laws.
  • I’m generally not a warranty person, but we talked the dealer down to $700 for a 5 yr extended warranty (it actually paid for itself when we had to replace a suspension component that was covered) Warranties on used cars are much more expensive, if that’s an issue for you.
  • Finally, as others have pointed out, the availability of used cars is frequently limited, especially with minivans. When we looked, everything used had at least 50-60k miles on it and was still about $23k (vs $27.5 that we paid new) At that point, what’s the point of buying used?

If you’re willing to drive it until it is worth salvage value, you can justify buying new.


Speaking of timing belts, did you change your Odyssey’s timing belt yet?