Caitlin Duncan. Honda. October 19th , 2017.
Located behind the instrument panel, the Honda Odyssey cast magnesium steering hanger beam replaces the multi-part steel unit in the previous Odyssey. Its purpose is as a structural attachment point for the steering column and instrument panel, as well as a structural element that helps the passenger cabin retain its shape in certain collisions. For the first time, the Odyssey body structure also utilizes composite materials to further reduce weight while enhancing rigidity and noise dampening. One example is inside the C-pillars, where composite stiffeners, together with the structural foam mentioned above help improve body rigidity. Another example is the base that supports the Odyssey battery. Created from a single composite casting, it holds the battery securely while adding minimal weight to the overall body structure, saving 2.9 lbs. over the previous Odyssey.
The 2018 Odyssey enhanced Advanced Compatibility Engineering™ (ACE™) body structure is the second generation of Honda proprietary ACE structural design. ACE is an exclusive body design that enhances occupant protection and crash compatibility in frontal crashes. It uses a network of connected structural elements to distribute crash energy more evenly throughout the front of the vehicle, helping to reduce the forces transferred to the passenger compartment. It can help to more evenly disperse the forces transferred to other vehicles in a crash as well. ACE also helps reduce the chances that one vehicle will override or underride another, improving crash compatibility of vehicles that differ in size. ACE goes further by offering additional strength and protection in small overlap frontal collisions, which are among the most severe. Multiple material grades, including ultra-high-strength steel, are used in the Odyssey body construction to help optimize safety performance.
In a first for Odyssey, Honda Active Shutter Grille system located below the front bumper reduces aerodynamic drag especially at cruising speeds, directly helping to improve fuel efficiency. Included on all 2018 Odyssey trims, the system uses an electric actuator controlled by a processor that tracks major temperature parameters, including engine coolant and radiator temperatures, intake air temperature, transmission oil temperature and air-conditioning requirements, all of which can vary due to weather, road conditions, vehicle speed, throttle and gear positions, and towing activity. The system either opens or closes the four shutters simultaneously to control the amount of air flowing through the engine radiator and the air conditioner condenser. The system is designed to keep the shutters closed as much as possible - even in city driving.
The 2018 Odyssey shares the same 118.1-inch wheelbase with the previous-generation Odyssey for superb second- and third-row seating roominess, easy ingress and egress, and superior ride comfort. The overall length increases fractionally to 203.2 inches due to a 0.4-inch longer rear overhang, while the width decreases by 1.1-inches to reduce frontal area, reducing aerodynamic drag. Overall height is nearly identical. The dimensional adjustments do not compromise interior roominess, as the new Odyssey offers fractionally more front and third-row headroom, retains almost identical overall passenger volume, and offers more cargo volume, with two inches more length in the cargo area, than the previous generation.
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