2011 Odyssey vs 2011 Enclave


New member
I am trying to decide between these two cars. I currently have an 08 odyssey which I really like for the roominess but I would love to get something roomy enough that is not a minivan. Anyone have opinions on the enclave 11 vs the odyssey 11. Will I feel cramped coming from the odyssey to the enclave? Is it family friendly. The passengers are 2adults and 3 kids-2 in car seats and one in a booster.


CPSDarren - Admin
Staff member
I am trying to make a similar decision. There's no question that the 2011 Odyssey is probably the safest family hauler with the most flexible seating for those with 3 or more young kids right now.

I would like something that has 3 rows of seating, respectable crash safety and avoidance and gets better fuel economy than what I have now. The 2011 Odyssey (esp the Touring version) certainly fits all that, but I just didn't see it as enough of a change for me to upgrade from my 2006 Odyssey, unless I can get a spectacular deal somehow lol. The 2011 Highlander Hybrid also meets my criteria, but I have yet to see one up close. I'm hoping to find some other alternatives at the Chicago Auto Show, even if it is something coming for 2012.

If you frequently put the cargo space of your Odyssey to good use, any mid-size SUV is going to be cramped in comparison. Even many full size SUVs simply don't have the seating or cargo flexibility of a larger minivan. Even with a third row of seating in a mid-size SUV, that last row is probably only suitable for older kids and teens and it really needs to have a split folding option if you have more than 2 kids.

I'd also be interested in suggestions for other models!


New member
Space and gear wise I would not recommend the Enclave. I have a Saturn Outlook which is almost identical except for a few minor details. We went from a Toyota Sienna. I am now after 2 years sick of trying to squeeze everything in for trips. Long trips mean not enough room for everyone to have personal space. Granted three are teens. But for times like Christmas two kids had to sit side by side so we could lay down the single seat side to hold more stuff.
We are looking at going back to a minivan and we love the Odyssey!


New member
I checked out the chevy version of the enclave (equinox maybe?) before we bought the Ody. It's been a while, so I don't remember all the details of latch attachments, seat adjustments, etc. What I do remember is:

1) Once I looked at the 2011 Sienna, I ruled out the crossover because the Sienna had so much more usable interior space.
2) Once I looked at the 2011 Odyssey, I ruled out the Sienna because the seating was so much more flexible.

So I'd say the Ody is a couple notches ahead of the crossover in terms of usable interior space.

That said, the GM crossovers can offer things like all-wheel drive, a non-minivan shape, and more flexibility in picking options. If these things are important to you, and more important than the extra space & flexibility, I can see why you might want to lean towards the crossover.


New member
I'm going to throw another idea out there. Ford Flex. The body style is either loved or hated by most people. I was coming from a minivan...needed the convenience of a van but was tired of driving one. I also have 3 kids. I didn't like always having someone in the third row. We looked at the majority of the SUVs/Crossovers in that price range. I looked at the Chevy version of the Enclave and wasn't impressed. My main issue was not having headrests in the center seating positions. For my usage, it took it from an 8 pass vehicle to a 6 passenger. The Flex had everything I wanted and then some. The basic model was a lot more deluxe that most of the other basic trims.

I have 2 littles, a teenager, a part time daycare child, and the multitude of friends that come with the littles and the teenager. Also my mommy friends and their kids. I've had a gazillion different combos in it. I've done 4 car seats and 3 adults with no problem. Hubby took it on a trip with 5 other large guys and they all fit great. I have the bench 2nd row so I can put all three kids in it and fold down the third row for cargo and such. The cargo area has a well like a minivan. It has a LOT more cargo space than my Kia van, even with the third row up.

I suppose the only negative is getting to the third row when car seats are installed in the second. I load from the hatch or have kids climb over. That's the problem with all SUV types though. Oh, it does have an option for captains chairs in the second row. That may give you more access to the third row...but then you'd also have a kiddo in the third row all the time.


New member
The Enclave is supposed to be the roomiest crossover which makes me think it might work. Anyone with experience care to chime in?

The Enclave, Outlook, Acadia and Traverse are almost identical. Frame and engines are identical. My girlfriend has the Enclave and other then a few details and the more rounded body they are identical. Even the seats. :)

If they offer a test drive spend time trying carseat out, putting in your largest stroller and everything. :thumbsup:


New member
We have an Acadia and LOVE it! It had to go in the shop last week for some minor repairsand they gave us an Enclave as a rental. It had the bucket seats for the second row(which I highly recommend). Our Acadia has the bench seat which now after being in the Enclave with the bucket seats made me wish we had got them. It was so nice for DS to walk to the 3rd row and not have to climb over the seat. It's very roomey. I can fit my huge stroller behind the 3rd row! :D One of my favorite features is the 2nd row can recline and move forward and backwards. One down fall is that it has fixed headrest. :thumbsdown: It makes it hard to install some seats.


New member
I would personally go for the Ody. We have a GMC Acadia which is just like the Enclave. I have 2 in car seats (FR and MA) and a baby due any day. I currently transport another child in a HBB to and from school. It works out okay right now with the booster, but when the baby comes my only option is to put the MA in the 3rd row (FR is too big) and the only spot with a rear tether is the middle position which practically eliminates use of the rest of the 3rd row and I can't fit the HBB next to it like that. It's been okay for 2 kids, but I am dying to get a 2011 Ody! We test drove one, but my DH wants to wait a year to get a new car. We will have to purchase car top storage for some long trips we have planned this summer, there will be no way around it. With all the seating options and extra storage space of the Ody, we wouldn't need it for that car.

About the headrests, they can come out. Here are the directions I use to get mine out. It's kind of a pain, but doable!

1) under headrest are two metal posts each shaft goes into a black plastic grommet.

2) Easier with cloth, but can be done with leather if nervous try on dealer demo and teach them as well. Facing the headrest tackle one post then another.

3) Gently push fabric/leather down metal shaft till you can see a tiny metal c-clip. One might have to tug it side to side to get the clip trough the hole cause clip is larger than the hole. It fits into an indent on the "left edge only" of each post. The clip can spin freely. It is hard to push fabric/stuffing down all this way maybe 3". Use free hand if you have one to open up c-clip with one finger and prop the side up slightly over indent. Now the other side is done with slightly less room to get in there. When you release the other shaft the rest should easily pop out. The flashlight helps you see what is happening unless you got the dual sunroofs.

4) now you can store it in the back or turn it around but it does not now firmly affix because the indents are on the wrong side and the padding doesn't let it insert all the way in. The car seat fits much better now

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