2003 Honda Pilot Consumer Review: Transmission Failed

2003 Honda Pilot - Consumer Review

Average Consumer Rating

852 Total Reviews

LX 4dr SUV (3.5L V6 AWD 5-speed Automatic)

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Build Quality
Reliability Value
Transmission Failed
By Steve on


2003 Honda Pilot LX AWD 4dr SUV (3.5L 6cyl 5A)


Having owned and driven multiple Honda Accords since a 1979 model, I was expecting a similar non-eventful and reliable experience with a 2003 Pilot that was purchased used. But the transmission has just failed at 140k miles. Sadly, this is standard for the Honda Pilot if you quickly glance around the internet. The same problem extends to other Honda models with the V6: the Accord, Odyssey, and Acura TL. These and other Honda transmission issues have been subject of numerous recalls and class action suits over the years. I am otherwise a Honda fan and enjoy the Pilot, but this one reliability issues is a serious shortcoming that anyone purchasing must be financially prepared for.

Best Features

Seating for eight. Typical Honda ergonomics with plenty of storage and flexibility. 5-star crash rating. General build quality (other than the transmission).

Worst Features

Transmission reliability must be improved. Ride bumpiness is poor, even over speed humps. The 2009 Pilot does get better gas mileage from the 17 mpg you should expect with a 2003. Sound system quality is also poor.
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