Advertisement
Go

Honda Pilot

Get Your Price
 


The Honda Pilot is a mid-size crossover SUV that wears a rather boxy, trucklike shape, but drives with the comfort and predictability of a family-friendly wagon--with or without optional all-wheel drive. The Pilot is built in Alabama, alongside the somewhat related Acura MDX and the Honda Ridgeline pickup truck. MORE: Read our 2015 Honda Pilot review When it was introduced in 2003, the Pilot was... Read More Below »
TCC Rating Trend
7.8
/ 10
TCC Rating
7.0
/ 10
TCC Rating
7.6
/ 10
TCC Rating
7.6
/ 10
TCC Rating
7.6
/ 10
TCC Rating
7.6
/ 10
TCC Rating
New Honda Pilot Reviews
Latest

2015»

7.6
/ 10
TCC Rating

2014»

7.6
/ 10
TCC Rating
Used Honda Pilot Reviews

2013»

7.6
/ 10
TCC Rating

2012»

7.6
/ 10
TCC Rating
Select a year to view more information:
Recall History
Honda Pilot
7.6 out of 10

New & Used Honda Pilot: In Depth

2014 Honda Pilot

2014 Honda Pilot

Enlarge Photo
Shopping for a new Honda Pilot?

GET A FREE PRICE QUOTE

The Honda Pilot is a mid-size crossover SUV that wears a rather boxy, trucklike shape, but drives with the comfort and predictability of a family-friendly wagon--with or without optional all-wheel drive.

The Pilot is built in Alabama, alongside the somewhat related Acura MDX and the Honda Ridgeline pickup truck.

MORE: Read our 2015 Honda Pilot review

When it was introduced in 2003, the Pilot was originally marketed as a more car-like alternative to the mid-size utility vehicles that were then based on trucks. Today, its competitors--think Chevrolet Traverse, Ford Explorer, Toyota Highlander, and others--are all based on car platforms.

That first 2003 Pilot offered good acceleration from a torquey 3.5-liter V-6 (making 240-255 hp), along with a smooth ride, respectable handling, and top-of-the-line safety ratings—including a roster of safety features (standard side and side-curtain bags and stability control) that was ahead of its time. A front-wheel-drive model was introduced in 2006 and the Pilot got a mild refresh.

The second-generation Pilot, introduced for 2009, hasn't quite appealed in the same way aesthetically as the first-generation Pilot, as the exterior seems an attempt to look more macho and rugged—against the grain as more utility models are becoming smoother and sleeker.

But that boxy exterior pays off inside. The Pilot may be the best family option for buyers who needed the abilities of a minivan, but didn't want to be seen in one. The overtly boxy exterior of the Pilot now yields to an interior that's chunky and utilitarian in design--but offers most of the appointments of a minivan.

Its three rows of seating fit up to eight people, and it has all sorts of cubbies, bins, and trays. We found the instrument panel design a bit cluttered on newer Pilots, with more hard plastic pieces than most vehicles in this class. In the current generation, the shifter also moved to the center console from the more usual position on the column.

Though the third-row seats were quite small in the first Pilot, those in the current generation have been reconfigured and are much better for tall passengers. In fact, they're among the very best third-row seats for very tall adults. The third row folds flat for cargo space when not in use.

For the 2012 model year, Honda improved the efficiency of the drivetrain slightly, and made some cosmetic changes to the front end and the interior. A rearview camera system—still much-needed for some Pilot drivers—was made standard for 2013.

Powertrain performance remains strong, with a 250-hp, 3.5-liter V-6 and a five-speed automatic transmission. Despite having just five gears, the Pilot's fuel economy is near the top of the class for a vehicle with this amount of interior space. The Pilot doesn't handle in a particularly sporty way, with a relatively soft suspension and high-sidewall tires, but it feels safe and stable.

The Pilot remains one of the safest vehicles in any class, with top crash-test results from both the federal government and the IIHS in frontal and side tests. The rather high seating position and boxy proportions afford a better outward view compared to many other curvier modern crossover designs. Honda has recently announced a series of recalls, affecting the Pilot going many years back, for airbag, parking brake, and fuel system issues.

The Honda Pilot goes mostly unchanged for 2015, though a new Special Edition SE trim is now available as a mid-priced trim. It's offered in five different trim levels: LX, EX, SE, EX-L, and Touring. All five are offered in 2WD or 4WD, but beyond that you need to ante up to one of the top two trims in order to get a lot of the more desirable options and convenience features.

A replacement for the Pilot is expected in 2015.

Used Honda Pilot Models

The still current Honda Pilot that was introduced for the 2009 model year renewed its family credentials; but the more truck-influenced design flew counter to the prevailing winds; just as utility vehicles such as the Ford Explorer were on the verge of going more carlike, Honda took its family crossover more to the truck side in styling—and gave it a new instrument panel that was stylish but cluttered and confusing. With the 2012 Pilot, Honda reconfigured the center stack and made the cabin quieter. 
Advertisement
Other Choices Read More
8.0
/ 10
TCC Rating
8.6
/ 10
TCC Rating
8.8
/ 10
TCC Rating
8.0
/ 10
TCC Rating
8.2
/ 10
TCC Rating
Advertisement
New Car Price Quotes
Update ZIP
We are committed to your privacy. By submitting this form you agree the phone number you provided may be used to contact you (including autodialed or pre-recorded calls). Consent is not a condition of purchase.
Advertisement

 
© 2014 The Car Connection. All Rights Reserved. The Car Connection is published by High Gear Media. Stock photography by izmo, Inc. Send us feedback.