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Just as other minivan manufacturers announce their models’ departure from the market due to low sales and popularity, Honda seems to be doing the opposite.

The automaker appears to be investing in the improvement of the Odyssey, so much so that its 2021 version is now hailed the safest minivan on the market.

While safety remains as top priority for carmakers, it’s on a whole other level when it comes to minivans as they are mainly used to transport families. Adding advanced safety technology has become imperative for these vehicles and the upcoming Honda Odyssey is no exception.

Based on recent crash tests conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), the popular model earned a Top Safety Pick+ rating, marking the first time a minivan was awarded the recognition.

rear closeup of 2021 honda odyssey
The 2021 Odyssey is now one of the seven vehicles from the Honda lineup to have earned an IIHS Top Safety Pick recognition or higher this year. | Source: Honda

As well as a top rating for the ease of use of its latch cheat seat attachment, the Odyssey also garnered “Superior” marks during vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-pedestrian avoidance tests—thanks to the Honda Sensing suite, which comes as standard equipment. The suite is a collision mitigation braking system with pedestrian detection, lane departure warning, lane-keeping assist, forward collision warning, and adaptive cruise control.

Another factor that helped the Odyssey earn the safety award, according to the agency, is Honda’s Advanced Compatibility Engineering body structure, which is designed to ensure protection for occupants during frontal collisions an advanced supplemental restraint systems.

For the highest IIHS recognition, the minivan had to score no less than “Good” ratings in six crash tests, which include collision tests on the driver-side small overlap front, passenger-side small overlap front, moderate overlap front, side, roof strength, and head restraint tests. Meanwhile, “Acceptable” or “Good” ratings are required for the headlights in all trim levels.

The newly updated minivan is available for a starting price of $31,790. It comes with a refreshed front fascia with LED headlights, a revised front bumper, a blacked-out grille, and new paint colors. It is powered by a 280-hp 3.5-liter V6 engine paired with a ten-speed automatic transmission and, for the 2021 model year, will only available with a front-wheel-drive.

The new Odyssey is now one of the seven vehicles from the Honda lineup to have earned an IIHS Top Safety Pick recognition or higher this year.

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