Standard 3-row seating; affordable pricing; excellent powertrain; lots of technology and safety features
Honda's infotainment system isn't quite the best; prices won't be very negotiable for a while
The Pilot is completely redesigned for 2016. In addition to new styling inside and out, the latest Pilot touts powertrain upgrades, new safety features and dramatically improved technology compared to its predecessor.
Choosing from the Pilot's list of trim levels is challenging because they're all appealing. We'd probably leave out the bare-bones LX, and we'd skip the pricey Elite in favor of an Acura MDX, but otherwise, we think any Pilot will do. If we were choosing, we'd probably go with the EX-L and Honda's optional Sensing package, as we can do without the Touring's navigation system and its 9-speed automatic transmission. Find a Honda Pilot for sale
The Pilot is available in five trim levels. From least to most expensive, they are called the LX, EX, EX-L, Touring and Elite.
The base-level LX ($31,000) comes standard with Bluetooth audio and phone connectivity, a backup camera, 18-inch alloy wheels, 3-row seating and a USB port for music.
Moving up to the EX ($33,400), you'll get automatic headlights, 3-zone automatic climate control, a HondaLink infotainment system with an 8-in touchscreen, the excellent LaneWatch blind spot camera, a power driver seat, extra USB ports, satellite radio, and keyless access with a push-button starter.
Next up is the EX-L ($36,900), which adds a power rear lift gate, a power sunroof, leather upholstery, heated front seats, a power passenger seat, an auto-dimming rearview mirror and 1-touch sliding rear seats.
Going for the pricey Touring ($42,000) adds the 9-speed automatic transmission, along with a navigation system, a rear-seat DVD player, rear sunshades, 20-in alloy wheels and a memory system for the driver's seat. The Touring also adds the Honda Sensing package, which is optional on the EX and EX-L and includes adaptive cruise control, a forward-collision warning system with automatic braking, lane-departure warning and lane-keep assist.
Opt for the top-of-the-line Elite ($47,300) and you'll get heated and ventilated front seats, heated rear seats, a heated steering wheel, a panoramic sunroof, LED headlights, automatic high beams and standard all-wheel drive.
While Honda doesn't really do options like most automakers, it's worth noting that the Honda Sensing package is optional on EX and EX-L models. Also optional on all Pilot trims is all-wheel drive, except on the Pilot Elite, where it's standard.
|Basic||3 Years/36,000 Miles|
|Drivetrain||5 Years/60,000 Miles|
|Corrosion||5 Years/Unlimited Miles|
|Roadside Assistance||3 Years/36,000 Miles|
2016 Ford Explorer -- Recently face-lifted for 2015, the Explorer offers a lot of technology and a little more interior room than the Pilot. It also touts an available 4-cylinder and a high-performance Sport version with a turbocharged V6.
2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee -- The Jeep Grand Cherokee has been among America's most popular SUVs for decades -- and with good reason. It boasts everything from an affordable base model to high-end luxury and high-performance versions -- and it offers excellent off-road capability, to boot. The only thing it doesn't have is a third-row seat.
2015 Toyota Highlander -- The Pilot's chief rival is Toyota's popular Highlander, which was also recently redesigned. While these two crossovers closely square off in a lot of ways, only the Highlander offers a fuel-efficient hybrid version.
Used Acura MDX -- If you like what you see here, you might want to consider the Acura MDX. Think of it as a luxury version of the Pilot, with high-end features, equipment, gadgets and materials. Pricing is higher, though, so you may want to consider a used model.