2020 Chrysler Pacifica vs 2020 Honda Odyssey
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2020 Chrysler Pacifica vs 2020 Honda Odyssey

By Autolist Staff | September 8 2020

2020 Chrysler Pacifica

2020 Honda Odyssey

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2020 Chrysler Pacifica score: 7/10

Highlights:
  • Comes with an extensive list of standard features.
  • Available all-wheel-drive.
  • Slick folding seats for second-row.
  • Available as a plug-in hybrid.

2020 Honda Odyssey score: 7/10

Highlights:
  • Good safety/crash test scores with widely available driver assistance features.
  • Spacious interior.
  • Strong engine/transmission combination.
  • More modern and updated than the aging Sienna.

How they stack up:

Safety Features:

Chrysler Pacifica: 7/10

  • The National Highway Traffic Administration (NHTSA) awarded the 2020 Pacifica its highest five stars overall in crash tests. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) gave the Pacifica a 2019 Top Safety Pick score, its second-highest rating.

  • The Chrysler performed well in all crash tests. However, it scored the second-highest ‘Acceptable’ rating in IIHS’ small-overlap passenger-side crash test, when other minivans were rated the top ‘Good’ score.

  • All Pacifica models get forward collision warning and blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic detection. Hybrid models also add standard rear parking sensors.

  • Unfortunately, automatic emergency braking is only available as part of a package that also includes adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go function, automatic high beam assist, a surround-view camera, and a number of other features.

  • Nearly all other rivals include at least low-speed automatic emergency braking as standard, while the Sienna includes adaptive cruise control, lane keep assist, pedestrian detection, and other technologies on all models.

Honda Odyssey: 8/10

  • The 2020 Honda Odyssey was awarded a top five-star overall rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) gave the identical 2019 model its Top Safety Pick award, the second-highest honor. It outscored the Dodge Grand Caravan, Kia Sedona, and Toyota Sienna, and essentially tied the Chrysler Pacifica in the tests.

  • All but the base LX model come with the Honda Sensing suite of driver assistance features, which include adaptive cruise control, automatic emergency braking, forward collision warning, lane-keep assist, and blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert.

  • Every Odyssey gets a backup camera with dynamic guidelines, but a 360-degree camera isn’t offered, and it lacks front and rear parking sensors unless the dealer installs them. Toyota makes driver assistance features standard on every Sienna, while Chrysler offers them as an option even on the least-expensive Voyager model, while the Pacifica models can be equipped with a surround-view camera.

Value:

Chrysler Pacifica: 7/10

  • The Pacifica Touring starts from $35,540, which is about $2,000 to $3,000 more than its rivals. But it’s also better equipped than the base versions of minivans from Honda, Kia, and Toyota. All models get power sliding doors, a power liftgate, heated exterior mirrors, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, and other features that usually require stepping up a level or two on competitors. The similar Chrysler Voyageroffers fewer features to compete with entry-level versions of rival vans.

  • The Pacifica Hybrid commands a nearly $3,000 premium over the equivalent gasoline-only Pacifica. But it still qualifies for a federal tax credit that could make it less expensive than the equivalent gasoline model.

Honda Odyssey: 7/10

  • The base LX model starts several thousand dollars higher than the Chrysler Voyager, Dodge Grand Caravan, and Kia Sedona. At least it comes with almost all of the essentials, such as alloy wheels, power front seats, and rear privacy glass.

  • The EX gets the driver assistance technology package, as well as seating for up to eight passengers.

  • Only the mid-grade EX-L model offers options, which restricts features such as leather upholstery and a power liftgate to models that cost nearly $40,000 – or more.

  • Built-in navigation and a rear entertainment system also require an EX-L or higher trim. That’s not the case on most rivals.

  • Honda traditionally doesn’t offer many incentives on the Odyssey. That leaves bargain hunters to shop Dodge and Kia dealers for steep discounts on those vans. And while a Chrysler Pacifica can sticker for thousands more than an Odyssey with options, incentives could make that vehicle fall more in line with the Honda’s price.

Efficiency:

Chrysler Pacifica: 8/10

  • The 2020 Pacifica gasoline models are rated at 19 mpg city, 28 mpg highway, with 22 combined. The Pacifica Hybrid is rated at 30 mpg combined and 82 MPGe, with 32 miles of electric-only range. All-wheel-drive models have not yet been rated.

  • The Pacifica compares favorably to other minivans, scoring similarly to the Honda Odyssey and slightly more than all versions of the Kia Sedona, Toyota Sienna, and Dodge Grand Caravan.

  • The Pacifica Hybrid’s score matches that of some small SUVs, while its electric-only range is more than any plug-in hybrid three-row SUV from BMW or Volvo, for example.

  • While most three-row gasoline SUVs score comparably to the Pacifica in fuel economy, they usually have all-wheel-drive. And the Toyota Highlander Hybrid, the closest rival to the Pacifica Hybrid, scores 35 mpg combined even with all-wheel-drive. It’s not as powerful as the Chrysler, but also offers seven seats and better efficiency for those who may not be able to plug into a charger on a regular basis.

Honda Odyssey: 8/10

  • The EPA rates the 2020 Odyssey at 19 mpg city, 28 mpg highway, and 22 mpg combined. That’s tied with the Chrysler Pacifica and Chrysler Voyager models for best-in-class fuel efficiency. It’s also better than most three-row SUVs with similar numbers of seats, making the Odyssey relatively fuel-efficient, given the amount of space it offers.

  • What the Odyssey doesn’t have is a hybrid version. The Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid is a plug-in hybrid that’s rated at 30 mpg combined by the EPA, and also boasts a range of 32 miles on electricity only.

  • Buyers looking for the most efficient people mover on the market should be swayed by the Pacifica Hybrid’s fuel economy numbers and eligibility for federal and state tax incentives.

  • Toyota will introduce a Sienna Hybrid in 2021, too, further eroding the Odyssey’s fuel economy standing.

Driving Experience:

Chrysler Pacifica: 7/10

  • The gasoline-only Pacifica uses a 287-horsepower V6 that’s relatively good at powering the heavy vehicle. Mated to a nine-speed automatic, the Pacifica is smooth to drive, if not as effortless as the Honda Odyssey or Toyota Sienna, which have slightly more refined powertrains.

  • The Pacifica Hybrid has a 260-horsepower gas-electric combination, which is down on power compared to all other minivans, but the instant electric torque from the motor mitigates that for the most part. It’s also smoother because it uses an eCVT transmission, whereas the nine-speed automatic can be jerky under some circumstances.

  • The ride is plush and interior quiet on the highway, so the Pacifica majors in comfort as most minivans do. A Honda Odyssey feels slightly more athletic and less cumbersome in tight situations, however.

  • All-wheel-drive is available, making it the second minivan to offer it after the Sienna. Chrysler says it’s capable of transferring up to 100 percent of power to the wheels losing traction, or it can disconnect power to the rear wheels when the system isn’t in use, in order to save fuel. For 2020, the system is offered only on one trim level, but that will be expanded in 2021.

Honda Odyssey: 7/10

  • The 3.5-liter V6 and 10-speed automatic work to provide responsive acceleration. Most find the Odyssey more responsive than the Kia Sedona, and while not as powerful as the Toyota Sienna, the Honda has a more refined driving experience.

  • It’s also quieter than the Dodge Grand Caravan, although the Chrysler Pacifica and Voyager hold an edge for quietness.

  • Slow steering and a soft ride make highway cruising effortless, but it contributes to making the Odyssey feel its size in tighter spaces. While no minivan is particularly athletic to drive, the Honda can be cumbersome in urban settings. Without a surround-view camera or parking sensors, it can also be difficult to park because it’s hard to tell where the extremities of the vehicle are.

  • The Odyssey is only offered in front-wheel-drive format. Until recently, it’s been unusual for minivans to offer all-wheel-drive, but new versions of the Toyota Sienna and the Chrysler Pacifica offer this option, as do all three-row SUVs that seat seven or eight passengers. It may not be a deal-breaker, but it means the Odyssey can’t compete with these models for drivers who live in harsh weather conditions for much of the year.

Tech Features:

Chrysler Pacifica: 8/10

  • The Pacifica comes standard with a seven-inch touchscreen infotainment system using Chrysler’s UConnect system. Most functions are controlled through the screen, but there are numerous physical buttons and knobs for common items such as audio volume, temperature, and other items. It’s among the clearest and easiest to use systems on the market. A larger 8.4-inch touchscreen is available on lower trims, standard on others, and is also available with built-in navigation.

  • The UConnect Theatre Package is available across the board (standard on the Touring L Plus trim) and features two 10-inch screens mounted on the front seatbacks. It also comes with a Blu-Ray player, HDMI connectors, a household-style power outlet, and USB charging points. While this makes it easy for second-row passengers to see the screens, third-row passengers are left out compared to competing systems that have a drop-down screen from the roof, as in the Honda and Toyota minivans. Kia does not offer a factory rear entertainment system.

Honda Odyssey: 6/10

  • All but the base LX get an eight-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. But only EX-L and higher can be equipped with built-in navigation and a rear entertainment system. The latter consists of a 10.2-inch roof-mounted screen, Blu-Ray player, and a pair of wireless headphones. Touring and Elite models also get a wi-fi hotspot. But most models get the minivan essentials, such as power sliding doors and a power tailgate.

  • The Odyssey is also available with its own spin on novel minivan features. The available CabinTalk system is effectively a PA device that lets the driver speak through the vehicle’s speakers to passengers in the third row, rather than shouting in an old-fashioned manner. CabinWatch projects a video of what’s happening in the back of the van to the front passengers, effectively ending kids from hitting each other before anyone has to pull the van over.

  • Unfortunately, the Odyssey’s infotainment system is far more cumbersome to use than equivalent systems on Chrysler and Kia minivans. The menus are confusing, and it isn’t as responsive as other systems on the market. While there are some physical controls for volume and the climate control system, many functions have to be operated through the touchscreen, which can get tiresome and distracting while driving. The system in Honda’s own Accord sedan is more advanced than what’s offered in the Odyssey.

Style & Design:

Chrysler Pacifica: 7/10

  • Chrysler has tried to break from the traditional minivan shape without compromising packaging too much, so it’s adorned all Pacifica models with plenty of trim and detailing that’s uncommon of the segment. It may not be to everyone’s taste, but Chrysler also offers an appearance package to give this minivan a more aggressive appearance.

  • It’s a similar story inside, where there are both pale and dark colors available. All but the base model gets leather upholstery as standard, which is unusual in this segment, and most also offer a moonroof that has either two or three panes to cover the entire interior with light, should the occupants choose – another unusual feature among minivans.

  • The controls take some getting used to, between the rotary-style gear selector and the litany of buttons on the center console that serve as redundant controls for the UConnect infotainment system. But once familiarized, they fall more readily to hand than using the touchscreen in some situations.

  • Chrysler’s use of redundant controls is unlike that of Honda and Toyota, which put most functions in a touchscreen. Kia’s controls are somewhat better marked and easier to use, but they are sometimes more of a reach.

Honda Odyssey: 7/10

  • Last redesigned for 2018, the Odyssey hasn’t strayed far from the format that’s made it extremely popular among minivans for the last 20 years. Honda’s take on the minivan isn’t as adventurous as the Kia Sedona and its blunt, SUV-like styling. Nor is it as curvaceous as the Chrysler Voyager and Pacifica.

  • Instead, the Odyssey’s look is inoffensive and sticks closely to Honda’s current look across its line. Besides, minivans are about function over form anyway. The Odyssey’s size makes it difficult to maneuver in tight spaces, however, and Honda doesn’t offer a 360-degree camera like some rivals.

  • The interior is generally well-designed, but some drivers might be intimidated by how many buttons and switches are on the center console. While this makes them easy to reach, some controls are small and hard to find by feel. The push-button gear selector will also trip up those used to a conventional lever, although it’s likely no more confusing than the rotary dial on the Chrysler minivans.

  • Quality is generally good, but plastics are more serviceable than plush. Again, the Pacifica does a better job of providing a premium interior experience, especially on higher-end versions.

Practicality:

Chrysler Pacifica: 8/10

  • The gasoline Pacificas get Chrysler’s Stow ‘N Go folding seat system, where the third-row splits 60/40 and folds into a well in the floor. The second-row captain’s chairs collapse and fold into individual covered bins in the floor.

  • That’s where the Chrysler one-ups the competition (apart from the Dodge Grand Caravan and Chrysler Voyager), eliminating the need to wrestle out the second-row captain’s chairs to maximize cargo space. And when the seats are up, the covered bins act as more hidden storage away from prying eyes. This feature is also retained for all-wheel-drive models, but not the hybrid, which uses larger captain’s chairs that have to be lifted out.

  • Pacifica models come with seating for seven as standard, but an eighth seat is available for the middle row on all models. This seat doesn’t fit as neatly as the other rear seats, however, and has to be completely removed, even though it’s relatively light. Second-row seats slide forward to allow access to the third-row.

  • All models include a power liftgate and power sliding doors. Standard on Limited and optional on Touring L Plus is hands-free operation of not only the tailgate but the power sliding doors, which is an unusual feature. But like the hands-free tailgate operation, it could be useful for some situations.

  • But the Pacifica doesn’t have as large an interior as most of its rivals, larger than the Grand Caravan, about the same size as the Sedona, but behind the Odyssey and Sienna All of the minivans are roughly the same size, though, so it may not matter in everyday use.

Honda Odyssey: 8/10

  • The Odyssey has a reasonably flexible and spacious interior among its rivals. Its maximum cargo capacity falls short of the Toyota Sienna, but exceeds that of the Chrysler, Dodge, and Kia vans. It’s also wide enough for three passengers in the second and third-row seats, with enough legroom in the rear-most area for adults. The seats themselves are more comfortable than those found on Chrysler and Dodge competitors, while there’s a deep well for cargo behind the third row.

  • All models but the base LX seat up to eight passengers. When not in use, the middle “Magic Slide” second-row seat can be removed and the second row turned into captain’s chairs or moved together to provide easier access to the third-row seat. This is a better solution than some rivals have with sliding and folding seats to get people into the rear-most seats.

  • However, the Odyssey doesn’t offer lounge-like captain’s chairs for the second row like the Sedona and Sienna. Those second-row seats are also heavy to remove and don’t fold into the floor as they do on the Chrysler and Dodge minivans – but at least they can be removed unlike those in the Kia. Touring and Elite models are also equipped with the HondaVAC, a built-in vacuum cleaner that can reach pretty much every corner of the Odyssey’s interior.

  • The 2020 Odyssey is rated to tow a maximum of 3,500 pounds when properly equipped, which is on par with all other new minivans, and likely enough for a small trailer. However, other three-row SUVs, including the Honda Pilot, can be rated to tow slightly more. But the Odyssey does a better job than three-row SUVs in terms of providing passenger space and cargo space, with a lower loading height and that deep cargo area when the third row is up.

Cost of Ownership

2020 Chrysler Pacifica

2020 Honda Odyssey

Annual Fuel Costs

$1,478
15k miles at $2.168/gal
$1,488
15k miles at $2.183/gal
Fuel Economy

19 mpg (miles per gallon)
City
19 mpg (miles per gallon)
City
28 mpg (miles per gallon)
Highway
28 mpg (miles per gallon)
Highway

Safety

2020 Chrysler Pacifica

2020 Honda Odyssey

NHTSA Crash Test Results

Overall
Overall
Safety Features

Standard
Autonomous Braking
Standard
Autonomous Braking
Standard
Blind-Spot Warnings
Standard
Blind-Spot Warnings
Standard
Adaptive Cruise Control
Standard
Adaptive Cruise Control
Standard
Lane-Keep Assist
Standard
Lane-Keep Assist
Standard
Cross-Traffic Alert
Standard
Cross-Traffic Alert

Interior

2020 Chrysler Pacifica

2020 Honda Odyssey

Interior Features

Standard
Leather
Standard
Leather
Standard
Moonroof
Standard
Moonroof
Standard
Heated Seats
Standard
Heated Seats
Standard
Keyless Entry
Standard
Keyless Entry
Standard
Climate Control
Standard
Climate Control
Technology

Standard
Apple Carplay
Standard
Apple Carplay
Standard
Android Auto
Standard
Android Auto
Standard
Satellite Radio
Standard
Satellite Radio
Standard
Bluetooth
Standard
Bluetooth
Standard
Navigation System
Standard
Navigation System

Under the Hood

2020 Chrysler Pacifica

2020 Honda Odyssey

Powertrain

Transmission
Transmission
FWD
Drivetrain
FWD
Drivetrain
Drivetrain

N/A
Horsepower
N/A
Horsepower
N/A
Torque
N/A
Torque
N/A
Cylinders
N/A
Cylinders