Elite w/Navigation and Rear Entertainment System 4dr SUV AWD (3.5L 6cyl 9A)
We looked at the Tahoe, Armada and Highlander and the pilot won us over on its winning combination of performance, economy, advanced AWD system and value. We travel to Vermont often on narrow, private roads that are not always plowed well. Honda's i-VTM is really the Acura SH-AWD with torque vectoring. On dry roads it helps some, but it is also a winner in the deep snow, shifting power left to right as well as front to back as needed. Really great system. The cargo space in this rig is HUGE, especially with part or all of the 3rd row down. The cargo area is equivalent is size to the Tahoe and more usable as the load floor is lower. The acceleration is decent and I like the intake noise as the VTEC kicks in at higher revs. Without flogging it, I've seen high 20s for MPG on the highway. Overall, over the first 1500 miles, we've gotten 23 MPG combined. The 9 speed feels a bit weird around 4th or 5th gear but it isn't a big deal. The push button shifter took some getting use to, but after a day we were used to it and it wasn't a big deal. I really liked the looks of the Tahoe, but for the money (and even not considering the money), the Pilot is an unbeatable combo of utility, economy and performance.
Touring w/Navigation and Rear Entertainment System 4dr SUV (3.5L 6cyl 9A)
Overall, I am happy with the Honda Pilot, and would recommend. However, because of some of the items noted below, I am not able to give a rating higher than 3 stars. I really wanted to purchase the EX-L trim with V6. But ending up purchasing the Touring trim. With respect to the EX-L trim. Why is Honda forcing the consumer to select between one of: Honda Sense, navigation, or rear entertainment? These three options can not be combined on the EX-L. A Honda salesman tried to convince me that built-in navigation is no longer necessary with addition of Andriod Auto and Apple CarPlay. If you have ever traveled to rural areas without cellphone data coverage, you'll understand the need for built-in navigation. The 'Honda Lane Watch'. If this is such a great feature, why doesn't the Elite have two cameras (both driver and passenger sides)? Instead, the Elite adds real 'Blind Spot' detection feature. I would much rather have the blind spot detection with large illuminated icon on the side mirrors, instead of the 'Honda Lane Watch'. If the majority of your turns are in the right lane, you will quickly understand the annoyance (don't need to see grass or sidewalk). An illuminated icon on the side mirror is quick for the driver to process. Whereas, the "Honda Lane Watch" requires the driver to remove their eyes from the road, and look at the in dash monitor to determine if there is a car in the lane. The main point of safety features is to help the driver focus on the road. Which "Honda Lane Watch" doesn't, because you have to watch live video feed and make decision. The Touring and Elite has 'Engine Stop' feature. The Honda Pilot isn't a hybrid like Toyota Prius, so not sure why Honda engineers felt this feature was necessary. Really annoying in stop-and-go city traffic. When you come to a complete stop, the engine shuts down. There is capability to disable 'Engine Stop', but must be disabled each time you start the car. In 2017, a lot of manufactures offer the motion activated rear lift gate. This should be included at the Touring and Elite trims. If you don't care about connectivity (Andriod Auto or Apple CarPlay), go with model year 2016. It is the exact same as 2017, without connectivity. I can confirm what has been said in other reviews: the active safety features are overly sensitive, and shifting is rough at low speeds.
Touring w/Navigation and Rear Entertainment System 4dr SUV AWD (3.5L 6cyl 9A)
I LOVE my new Pilot! It is comfortable, quiet, and a nice ride. There is plenty of interior room, and head/leg room, even in the 2nd and 3rd rows. Good storage between two front seats. With the 60/40 3rd row split you can put different size cargo in and only give up minimal seating. The rear 'trunk' space is very limited, so I would suggest installing roof rack bars and investing in a sturdy storage container. The climate control and entertainment options keep all rows of travelers happy too. Plenty of cupholders too. One of the issues I have experienced is a seriously over-sensitive front impact safety sense. It 'screams' BRAKE at you and shakes the steering wheel even when there is no chance for front impact (this is especially true when vehicle is taking a corner to the right and there is a car coming around the same curve on the opposite side). Can be very unnerving.
Touring w/Navigation and Rear Entertainment System 4dr SUV AWD (3.5L 6cyl 9A)
This is the first new car that I have purchased that I am thinking of trading after less than 1000 miles driven. I bought the Pilot AWD Touring package because Honda forces you into that package to get some of the options. I knew when I bought this SUV that I would hate the push button transmission and I do. It has too many gears and at times, especially at lower speeds, it seems to get confused as to what gear it should be in. I can really feel it when I turn down into my subdivision and kind of coast. It seems to hunt for the right gear when you don't need to put your foot on the gas. The default setting for Honda's gas rating is to turn the engine off at stops. What a pain this is and I wonder what this will do in the long term to the starter and battery. You can defeat this, but you have to remember to push another button every time you push the drive button. Would be a great SUV if I could get over the transmission. Buyer's remorse, wish I had gone with the Highlander or bought the EX-L without all the options that I thought that I wanted. You don't really need all those options.
What Honda does well is create vehicles that are solid and dependable, but not necessarily fun to drive, with certain exceptions. I have a 2017 Pilot EX-L and it has a very nice interior that has many features and comforts which add to a smooth driving experience. It is very spacious, both for passengers and cargo and has a lot of safety measures and technology that are on par with anything in its class. On the highway, this car is as smooth as can be. My only two complaints are the following: It isn't terribly interesting to drive. I just lost a 2006 Jeep Commander that drove like a car and hugged the road. The Pilot feels "safe" and almost boring to drive. I felt that the Toyota Highlander handled better, but I went with the Pilot because of other things that beat out Toyota. It handles more like a van than an SUV and I feel that the driving "experience" is less than exciting. It's fine and it drives nicely, but I want a little more engagement. The second complaint is that the touchscreen is not terribly intuitive, which is not only annoying, but is distracting to use while driving. Yes, some of the controls are also on the steering wheel, which helps, but even for the passenger, the screen isn't the easiest (although I hear it is an improvement over the last model). There is no volume button or dial and therefore you have to locate the touch volume and tap it repeatedly to change the volume. There is no need for that, as a dial is far easier to use while driving. Technology should make things simpler, not more difficult. I have a 2010 Audi A4 with outdated technology, but it is much easier to use. Those two things aside, the car is very comfortable and grows on me the more I drive it. The traction in snow is excellent, as is braking and it is a very well made vehicle. If Honda could add a little more excitement to the car, it would really increase the overall enjoyment. The Pilot isn't fun by any means, but it is a solid vehicle with a great reputation and it will serve you well. No regrets, thus far.