ASSOCIATE EDITOR GRAHAM KOZAK: I had a couple of nights in the 2015 Honda Odyssey Touring Elite -- which sounds a bit like a vaporwave band name, for what it’s worth -- and I completely forgot to put the built-in HondaVac thing to the test. I don’t have kids, but I think that’s one of those neat little features that seems really useful (the grown-ups I mentioned it to agreed) and helps set the Honda offering apart from its competitors.

After all, everyone from Chrysler to Kia offers minivans. Generally, they’re all good and practical vehicles, all riding on the cushy side with comfy captain’s seats up front. And despite sub-$30K starting prices, they all tend to get fairly expensive fairly quickly when you load them up with features. Or, as in the case of this Honda, select a range-topping trim.

For a vehicle that seems destined to serve as a second living room, $45,430 isn’t outrageous -- you do get a lot, including rear entertainment systems, tech-like blind-spot warnings and that aforementioned built-in vacuum.

Toyota likes to advertise that its Sienna van is available with all-wheel drive; it’s the only such offering in the segment (of course, crossovers are basically vans, and lots of those come with AWD). But I think the road manners of the Honda show that you don’t necessarily need four driven wheels to get around in snowy conditions. Though all-wheel drive is great for peace of mind, front-wheel drive handles itself just fine. If you’re still concerned, invest in a set of winter tires.

But don’t cave in and get a crossover just because it seems more “rugged” (hint: it’s probably not) or “useful” (another hint: few things are more useful than a van). Is the Honda Odyssey the right minivan for you? If you like built-in vacuums, absolutely.

If not, I’ll say that it is a very credible offering anyway. It doesn’t want for power, its infotainment system is easy to use (even if it’s a little clunky-looking) and it comes from a company with a solid reputation, recent airbag foibles notwithstanding.

ONLINE FEATURES EDITOR JAKE LINGEMAN: As far as minivans go, the 2015 Honda Odyssey is a good one. This one seems expensive, but it does have nearly every option known to man, except for a heated steering wheel. It was freezing on the recent morning I had the van, and I would have used that.

It was nice and slippery, too, but the Odyssey took it in stride. Those front wheels just pull and pull and pull, in whatever direction you point them. Power is good from the V6; it’ll get up and go if you plant your foot.

I took the expressway home, so there was a good amount of traffic. The pre-brake warning kept going off every time someone slowed down in front of me. It seems a bit too sensitive, I think. Although, better safe than sorry I suppose.

Steering effort and overall handling are good -- definitely tuned for comfort. The bumps and potholes don’t really upset it, except for some semi-loud bangs in the cabin.

The radio setup has been sufficiently upgraded, or at least it has in this trim. I continue to enjoy the two-screen setup, one for the radio stuff and one for everything else. It also immediately read my Apple iPhone, which is always a bonus.

This van feels cavernous. It takes a little longer than I’d like to heat up, and you can definitely hear some squeaks and rattles from the back of the car. With the seats folded down, though, you could fit a ton of stuff.

The styling screams Honda; if you like that, you’ll like this van. Personally, I like the look of the Toyota Sienna better. The Chrysler Town & Country, this and the Sienna all start at about $30K, and they’re all darn fine minivans, if you’re into that sort of thing. You can’t really go wrong. 

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