Roomier and more versatile than most competitors; clever storage solutions; comfortable ride; generous features for your money
Hyperactive and unsophisticated safety tech; a style icon it is not
The Pilot receives its first significant update since it was completely redesigned three years ago. There are slight styling changes and refinements made to the powertrain, but it's the features content that received the biggest boost. The Honda Sensing suite of accident avoidance tech is now standard on all trims, while all but the base LX get an updated touchscreen interface.
Very few people choose the base Pilot LX, and it's easy to see why: the EX adds a massive amount of desirable equipment for a reasonable $3,000 more. Besides the EX-L's leather upholstery, there are few features in the upper trims that would be difficult to live without. The Elite trim in particular seems like a questionable value given its price jump and feature content beyond the Touring.
The Pilot is available in five trim levels: LX, EX, EX-L, Touring and Elite.
The base-level LX ($31,450) comes standard with 18-inch alloy wheels, a forward-collision warning system, automatic emergency braking, lane-departure warning and lane-keeping assist, adaptive cruise control, three rows of flat-folding seats, a rearview camera, Bluetooth, two USB ports and a 7-speaker sound system with an auxiliary audio jack and a media player interface.
Moving up to the EX ($34,330) adds an abundance of extra equipment: Automatic headlights, LED foglights, extra body-color exterior trim pieces, remote ignition, blind spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic warning systems, 3-zone automatic climate control, heated front seats, an 8-way power driver seat, 1-touch sliding rear seats, Honda's latest 8-in touchscreen interface, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, HD radio and satellite radio. With all-wheel drive, you also get multiple low-traction driving modes (Snow, Sand and Mud).
Next up is the EX-L ($38,755), which adds a power liftgate, a sunroof, acoustic windshield glass, leather upholstery, a 4-way power passenger seat, driver memory settings, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, second-row sunshades and an auto-dimming rearview mirror. The inelegantly named EX-L Navi & RES package adds integrated navigation, a 115-volt house-style electric outlet and a rear entertainment system (RES) that includes a 10.2-in roof-mounted display, Blu-ray player, HDMI input, built-in streaming apps and CabinTalk (which projects the driver's voice through the rear speakers and wireless RES headphones).
Going up to the Touring ($43,515) adds the 9-speed automatic transmission, 20-in wheels, roof rails, LED headlights, parking sensors, extra sound deadening, a 10-speaker sound system, in-car Wi-Fi, the integrated navigation and all the RES features. Heated second-row captain's chairs can be added as an option in place of the standard second-row bench seat. Seating capacity is reduced to seven.
Opt for the top-of-the-line Elite ($49,015) and you'll get LED headlights, auto-dimming and power-folding mirrors, automatic wipers, a panoramic sunroof, heated and ventilated front seats, the second-row captain's chairs, a heated steering wheel and a wireless smartphone charging pad. Unlike all the other trims, it only comes with all-wheel drive.
|Basic||3 Years/36,000 Miles|
|Drivetrain||5 Years/60,000 Miles|
|Corrosion||5 Years/Unlimited Miles|
|Roadside Assistance||3 Years/36,000 Miles|
2019 Subaru Ascent -- Imagine building a Honda Pilot with Subaru Outback parts, and that's pretty much what you'll get with the all-new Ascent. Subaru's 3-row crossover is very similar to the Pilot in overall concept, but there's a chance you might prefer Subaru's take (plus its extra space) -- so make sure to check it out.
2019 Chevrolet Traverse -- Want the most space possible, but refuse to go the minivan route? Well, the Traverse is the biggest kid on the playground. It's absolutely enormous inside for people and cargo, besting even the Pilot and Ascent. It also impresses on the technology front.
2019 Mazda CX-9 -- On the opposite end of the spectrum, the CX-9 is the way to go if you want to forget you're driving a huge family vehicle. It's the athlete of the segment, and although it can't match the Pilot's space, the Mazda's classy interior, efficient engine and relatively fun-to-drive nature should impress.
Used Acura MDX -- If you like what you see here, you might want to consider a used Acura MDX. Think of it as a luxury version of the Pilot, with high-end features, equipment, gadgets and materials.