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The Odyssey has a standard Whiplash Mitigation Front Seat Design, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the Whiplash Mitigation Front Seat Design system moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.
The Odyssey EX/EX-L/Touring/Elite has standard Collision Mitigation Braking System, which use forward mounted sensors to warn the driver of a possible collision ahead. If the driver doesn’t react and the system determines a collision is imminent, it automatically applies the brakes at full-force in order to reduce the force of the crash or avoid it altogether. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn't offer collision warning or crash mitigation brakes.
The Odyssey EX/EX-L/Touring/Elite’s lane departure warning system alerts a temporarily inattentive driver when the vehicle begins to leave its lane and gently nudges the vehicle back towards its lane. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer a lane departure warning system.
The Odyssey offers optional Parking Sensors to help warn the driver about vehicles, pedestrians or other obstacles behind or, for the Odyssey Touring/Elite in front of the vehicle. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer a front parking aid.
To help make backing safer, the Odyssey EX/EX-L/Touring/Elite’s cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.
The Odyssey Touring/Elite has standard HondaLink Assist, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies, so if you’re involved in an accident and you’re incapacitated help may not come as quickly.
Both the Odyssey and the ProMaster City Wagon have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, rearview cameras and available blind spot warning systems.
The Honda Odyssey weighs 763 to 958 pounds more than the Ram ProMaster City Wagon. The NHTSA advises that heavier vehicles are much safer in collisions than their significantly lighter counterparts.
For its top level performance in IIHS driver-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, rear impact and roof-crush tests, with its optional front crash prevention system, its “Good” rating in the new passenger-side small overlap crash test, and its available headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Odyssey the rating of “Top Pick” for 2019, a rating granted to only 88 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The ProMaster City Wagon has not been tested, yet.
The engine in the Odyssey has a single overhead cam for simplicity. The engine in the ProMaster City Wagon has dual overhead cams, which add to the number of moving parts and the complexity of the cylinder heads.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Honda vehicles are better in initial quality than Ram vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Honda 16th in initial quality. With 7 more problems per 100 vehicles, Ram is ranked 21st.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Honda vehicles are more reliable than Ram vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Honda 16th in reliability. With 25 more problems per 100 vehicles, Ram is ranked 26th.
From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Honda vehicles are more reliable than Ram vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Honda 11 places higher in reliability than Ram.
The Odyssey’s 3.5 SOHC V6 produces 102 more horsepower (280 vs. 178) and 88 lbs.-ft. more torque (262 vs. 174) than the ProMaster City Wagon’s 2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.
An engine control system that can shut down half of the engine’s cylinders helps improve the Odyssey’s fuel efficiency. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer a system that can shut down part of the engine.
In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Odyssey’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.
The Odyssey has 3.5 gallons more fuel capacity than the ProMaster City Wagon (19.5 vs. 16 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.
The Odyssey has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.
For more complete vehicle control the Odyssey has a manually controlled automatic, with the available convenience of an automatic transmission and the complete gear control of a manual transmission without the inconvenience of a clutch. A manually controlled automatic allows the driver to eliminate unwanted shifts and maximize engine braking by down shifting while cornering. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer a transmission that allows complete gear control.
A 10-speed automatic is standard on the Honda Odyssey, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only a nine-speed automatic is available for the ProMaster City Wagon.
For better stopping power the Odyssey’s brake rotors are larger than those on the ProMaster City Wagon:
ProMaster City Wagon
The Honda Odyssey has standard four-wheel disc brakes for better stopping power and improved directional control in poor weather. Only rear drums come on the ProMaster City Wagon. Drums can heat up and make stops longer, especially with antilock brakes that work much harder than conventional brakes.
For better traction, the Odyssey has larger tires than the ProMaster City Wagon (235/60R18 vs. 215/55R16).
For better load carrying, ride, handling and brake cooling the Odyssey has standard 18-inch wheels. Only 16-inch wheels are available on the ProMaster City Wagon. The Odyssey Elite has standard 19-inch wheels.
The Odyssey has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.
The Odyssey has a standard space-saver spare tire so you can replace a flat tire and drive to have the flat repaired or replaced. A spare tire isn’t available on the ProMaster City Wagon; it requires you to depend on roadside assistance and your vehicle will have to be towed.
The Odyssey has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The ProMaster City Wagon’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.
For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Odyssey is 7.3 inches wider in the front and 6.3 inches wider in the rear than on the ProMaster City Wagon.
For better maneuverability, the Odyssey’s turning circle is 2.4 feet tighter than the ProMaster City Wagon’s (39.6 feet vs. 42 feet).
The front grille of the Odyssey uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer active grille shutters.
The Odyssey uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.
The Odyssey offers optional seating for 8 passengers; the ProMaster City Wagon can only carry 5.
The Odyssey has 46.8 cubic feet more passenger volume than the ProMaster City Wagon (163.6 vs. 116.8).
The Odyssey has .1 inches more front legroom, 5.8 inches more front hip room, 3.8 inches more front shoulder room, 4.1 inches more rear legroom, 5.6 inches more rear hip room and 3.6 inches more rear shoulder room than the ProMaster City Wagon.
For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the Odyssey’s middle and third row seats recline. The ProMaster City Wagon’s rear seats don’t recline.
The Odyssey’s cargo area provides more volume than the ProMaster City Wagon.
ProMaster City Wagon
Third Seat Folded
88.8 cubic feet
Third Seat Removed
45.6 cubic feet
Max Cargo Volume
144.9 cubic feet
101.7 cubic feet
A low lift-over cargo hatch design makes loading and unloading the Odyssey easier. The Odyssey’s cargo hatch lift-over height is 22.5 inches, while the ProMaster City Wagon’s liftover is 23.8 inches.
The Odyssey’s cargo area is larger than the ProMaster City Wagon’s in almost every dimension:
ProMaster City Wagon
Length to seat (3rd/2nd/1st)
The Odyssey’s liftgate lifts up in one piece, completely out of the way of loading and unloading, while sheltering the cargo loading area. The ProMaster City Wagon’s two swing out doors impair rear visibility, need a lot of clearance, and can block loading in tight quarters.
To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier, especially for short adults, the Odyssey EX-L/Touring/Elite has a standard power liftgate, which opens and closes automatically by pressing a button, or on the Odyssey Touring/Elite, by just kicking your foot under the back bumper, completely leaving your hands free. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer a power cargo door.
The Odyssey’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the ProMaster City Wagon’s (3000 vs. 1914 pounds). Maximum trailer towing in the Ram ProMaster City Wagon is only 1914 pounds. The Odyssey offers up to a 3500 lbs. towing capacity.
When three different drivers share the Odyssey EX-L/Touring/Elite, the memory seats and mirrors make it convenient for all three. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position and outside mirror angle. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer a memory system.
The Odyssey EX-L/Touring/Elite’s standard easy entry system glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer an easy entry system.
The Odyssey’s power parking brake sets with one touch and releases with one touch or automatically. The ProMaster City Wagon has a lever-type parking brake that has to be strenuously raised to engage properly. It has to be lifted up more and a button depressed to release it.
The Odyssey EX/EX-L/Touring/Elite’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The ProMaster City Wagon’s rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to open or close them fully.
If the windows are left open on the Odyssey the driver can close them all at the outside door handle. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows at the outside door handle or from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the ProMaster City Wagon can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.
Push Button Start standard on the Odyssey allows you to start the engine without removing a key from pocket or purse (Odyssey EX/EX-L/Touring/Elite’s Smart Entry will also allow unlocking the doors and cargo door without taking your keys out). The Ram ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer an advanced key system.
The Odyssey has a standard locking fuel door with a remote release located convenient to the driver. A locking fuel door helps prevent vandalism, such as sugar in the tank and fuel theft. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer a locking fuel door.
The Odyssey’s standard variable intermittent wipers have an adjustable delay to allow the driver to choose a setting that best clears the windshield during light rain or mist. The ProMaster City Wagon’s fixed intermittent wipers only have one fixed delay setting, so the driver will have to manually switch them between slow and intermittent. The Odyssey Elite’s standard wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically according to the amount of rainfall on the windshield.
To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the Odyssey has a standard rear wiper. A rear wiper costs extra on the ProMaster City Wagon.
The Odyssey EX/EX-L/Touring/Elite has a standard automatic headlight on/off feature. When the ignition is on, the headlights automatically turn on at dusk and off after dawn. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer automatic headlights.
While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors standard on the Odyssey EX/EX-L/Touring/Elite detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.
When the Odyssey EX-L/Touring/Elite is put in reverse, both rearview mirrors tilt from their original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirrors into their original positions. The ProMaster City Wagon’s mirrors don’t automatically adjust for backing.
The Odyssey’s optional rear view mirror has an automatic dimming feature. This mirror can be set to automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on it, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer the luxury of an automatic dimming rear view mirror.
Standard air-conditioned seats in the Odyssey Elite keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.
On extremely cold winter days, the Odyssey Elite’s standard heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the vehicle heater warms up. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.
The Odyssey EX/EX-L/Touring/Elite’s standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer dual zone air conditioning.
The Odyssey’s standard automatic temperature control maintains the temperature you set, automatically controlling fan speed, vents and temperature to maintain a consistent, comfortable environment. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer automatic air conditioning.
For greater rear passenger comfort, the Odyssey has standard rear a/c vents to keep rear occupants more comfortable. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer rear vents.
To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the Odyssey EX/EX-L/Touring/Elite has a standard Adaptive Cruise Control, which alters the speed of the vehicle without driver intervention. This allows the driver to use cruise control more safely without constantly having to disengage it when approaching slower traffic. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer an adaptive cruise control.
The Odyssey (except LX/EX) offers an optional 115-volt a/c outlet on the center console, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters that can break or get misplaced. The ProMaster City Wagon doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.
Insurance will cost less for the Odyssey owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the Odyssey will cost $630 to $1415 less than the ProMaster City Wagon over a five-year period.
The Odyssey will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the Odyssey will retain 47.39% to 51.03% of its original price after five years, while the ProMaster City Wagon only retains 42.69% to 43.24%.
The Car Book by Jack Gillis recommends the Honda Odyssey, based on economy, maintenance, safety and complaint levels. The Ram ProMaster City Wagon isn't recommended.
J.D. Power and Associates rated the Odyssey first among minivans in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The ProMaster City Wagon isn’t in the top three.
The Honda Odyssey outsold the Ram ProMaster City by almost 8 to one during 2018.
© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.
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