Honda has something in store for its patrons in its 2018 Odyssey model. Regardless of the minivan stigma, there is no stopping Honda. It has been indeed an innovative minivan player for decades, and its future 2018 Honda Odyssey is slaying state-of-the-art features.
Minivan Stigma and the Odyssey Evolution
Despite that, minivans carry a stigma of a family moving car and are made for parents – such as perspectives that minivans are a source of embarrassment when one is seen driving one. But Honda’s new 2018 model is a source of great pride.
The Honda Odyssey has an impressive history of making generations of continually evolving units to meet the changing needs of its customers. Honda has consistently set the standards for space, safety, comfort and dynamic performance even in a minivan.
The Odyssey History Unveiled
The Odyssey has been tagged as the popular minivan in the United States for seven (7) years in a row ranging from the year 2010 to 2016. There have been reports that the Odyssey’s U.S. sales summed to 2.5 million units. Honda Odyssey has been acknowledged as the fourth best-selling model in the United States.
The latest modification in the unit is its lack of the gearshift knob. Instead, it will have a column of four buttons, where transmission modes will be electronically controlled. Honda Odyssey Chief Engineer for the 5th Generation (Chad Harrison) even stated that the new model has a new nine-and-10-speed automatic transmissions and it greatly requires a shift-by-wire technology. “Yes, you can simulate a traditional gearshift in that situation as some other makers have,” Harrison said in a statement while at a media introduction for the 2018 Odyssey.
Minivans vs. Other Car Classifications
However, last April 2017, weaker U.S. sales pushed the automotive maker into negative zone. There are sliding demands for other Honda car categories. Honda’s U.S. sales plummeted for the month by seven (7) percent to 138,386 vehicles. It signals the slipping of the company since the collapse of a new-car market is also affecting the company. As of April, all of its car sales were down for the whole month – displaying double digit losses. Even the demand for the Odyssey minivan was going downward by 47 percent to 6,984 vehicles.
The same thing has happened to Chrysler Pacifica (another leading brand for minivans). There are serious drops in volume, which has not been forecasted by Pacifica. So far, the reduction this year turns out to be 18 percent.
Current Market Dilemma
For the whole United States, minivan sales volume has decreased. There are reports that the minivan category missed 70,000 sales since August 2016, year-over-year. Mitsubishi CEO, Osamu Masuko, even said, “I think SUV sales will continue growing even if gas prices rise.” He further adds that customers prefer such type due to higher seating and an increase in sense of security and safety. This makes the SUV segment increase its market share all over the world.
The chart below shows Honda’s performance from January 2017.
The automobile market is being affected by a wide range of factors from car companies’ competition, to emerging models being released and not to forget the state of the art features being applied to new vehicles today. Is the new Odyssey the answer to a rise in Honda’s plunging stocks? The company believes that it can contribute to its market comeback. If the company would be sensitive enough not to do Chrysler Pacifica’s slip-ups, then the Odyssey minivan might stand a chance in the market.