Used 1997 Honda Passport SUV

1997 Honda Passport
List price range

Pros

  • Attractive exterior and strong engine.

Cons

  • Isuzu Rodeo offers better value. Interior ergonomics are not up to par.

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Edmunds' Expert Review

vehicle overview

Honda issued a notable upgrade in 1996, adding airbags for the driver and front passenger. Also new were roof-mounted speakers that expanded available cargo space in the revised interior, plus an improved stereo system. The new dashboard, did away with the old angular look, replacing it with an organically swept affair complete with more legible gauges and improved ergonomics. Nothing has changed since then,

Passports are spacious for five inside, and V6 models have a swing-out spare tire that creates even greater elbow room. The rear seat folds flat, resulting in a long cargo floor, but the clamshell tailgate design makes it difficult to access the back of the cargo area easily. They are however, better for watching softball games. Fortunately, the rear glass will open independently making it easier to load small items.

Road noise might be a drawback, though the 3.2-liter V6 engine is quiet-running and strong with either five-speed manual shift or the available four-speed automatic transmission. The 2.6-liter four-cylinder engine, formerly available on the DX model has been discontinued; partially due to poor sales, and to keep the DX from competing with Honda's new mini sport-ute: the CRV. Passports equipped with automatic transmissions have Power and Winter modes, the latter starting off in third gear to reduce wheel-spin on slippery pavements. Towing capacity is 4,500 pounds with the V6 engine.

Anyone seeking a capable blend of comfortable highway ride and tempting off-road talents could do well to look for a Honda dealer. However, Isuzu markets a version of the Passport and calls it the Rodeo The Rodeo tends to be a bit less expensive, and comes with a more comprehensive warranty. For those reasons, we suggest you stick with a Rodeo.

Top consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 1997 Honda Passport.

149,000 Miles and still strong
mfredrickson, 1/15/2013
When purchasing a fifteen year old car, one must be wise. There are a plethora of aspects within an old car that can go wrong, no matter how well built the car is. However, I lucked out. I purchased my 97 Red Honda Passport 4x4 Loaded out with everything but leather and a sunroof over a year ago now. I bought it with a low 130,000 miles and since have put about 20,000 on within the one year of ownership Ive had. It has been a fantastic car. Only problems I have had was an old alternator and a bad window motor. My Suv has brought me through many a snow storm in one piece and keeps on running strong day in and day out. Overall, I love my passport. It isn't perfect, but it is darn good.
Too many problems w/ vehicle
Diane Schnell, 8/9/2005
Well I have had a few trips to my mechanic on this vehicle. They are still baffled w/ not being able to pin point a misfiring that keeps the vehicle bogging then lunging! It has been taken apart 4 times now and replaced oxygen flow sensor, 02's and other stuff and still can't keep the check engine light off or find the problem. It is horrible on gas mileage!! Obviously this year needed a recall... and I have had nothing but problems since I purchased from a private party 4 months ago.
HONDA OR ISUZU
CATHERINE, 6/4/2002
EVEN THOUGH THIS SUV GOT ME OUT OF A HUGE WRECK, I HAVE HAD A LOT OF PROBLEMS WITH THIS TRUCK. I DONT KNOW IF THE PREVIOUS OWNER DIDNT TAKE CARE OF THE TRUCK OR I AM JUST HAVING BAD LUCK. I AM NOT IMPRESSED WITH THE PERFORMANCE. EVERY MONTH IT IS SOMETHING DIFFEENT AND THE DEALERSHIP I BOUGHT IT FROM IS NO HELP EITHER. I THINK THAT IF HONDA MADE THERE OWN SUV, IT WOULD BE A LOT MORE RELIABLE. I WILL NEVER BUY ANOTHER CAR MADE FROM A DIFFERENT MANUFACTURER THAT HAS SOLD THE RIGHTS TO ANOTHER DEALER. MY TRUCK SAYS HONDA BUT ALL THE PARTS ARE ISUZU. THAT SHOULD HAVE TOLD ME SOMETHING RIGHT AWAY.
1997 Honda Passport Review
Tom R, 2/17/2003
I am constantly doing engine and drivetrain repairs on this vehicle. The engine has a constant tick from the valves. At higher speeds there is a lot of wind noise coming from the doors. I would not recommend owning this vehicle.
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Features & Specs

MPG
15 city / 17 hwy
Seats 0
5-speed manual
Gas
190 hp @ 5600 rpm
MPG
15 city / 17 hwy
Seats 0
5-speed manual
Gas
190 hp @ 5600 rpm
MPG
15 city / 17 hwy
Seats 0
5-speed manual
Gas
190 hp @ 5600 rpm
MPG
14 city / 17 hwy
Seats 0
4-speed automatic
Gas
190 hp @ 5600 rpm
See all Used 1997 Honda Passport SUV features & specs

Safety

NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver4 / 5
    Passenger3 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
  • Side Barrier Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    DriverNot Rated
    PassengerNot Rated
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    RolloverNot Rated
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of RolloverNot Rated
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Not Tested
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Not Tested
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test
    Poor

More about the 1997 Honda Passport
Used 1997 Honda Passport SUV Overview

The Used 1997 Honda Passport SUV is offered in the following styles: EX 4dr SUV 4WD, LX 4dr SUV, LX 4dr SUV 4WD, and EX 4dr SUV.

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