The 2019 Honda Pilot is the Japanese brand's largest SUV. It can swallow huge amounts of passengers and cargo and offers a comfortable and safe ride. The vehicle is also a popular choice thanks to its available all-wheel drive and reputation for reliability, making it a good buy for families of all sizes.
The 2019 Honda Pilot offers only minor updates for the current model year:
All versions of the Honda Pilot continue to feature a standard 3.5-liter V6 engine. It generates 280 horsepower and 262 lb-ft of torque and is matched with a 6-speed or 9-speed automatic gearbox. Fuel economy for the Honda Pilot is listed at 20-mpg city and 27-mpg highway for front-wheel drive models with the 9-speed. The base 6-speed drops one mile per gallon from the city measure.
All-wheel drive, 9-speed editions of the Honda Pilot also slash one mile per gallon from city and highway mpg. All-wheel drive, 6-speed models show 18-mpg city and 26-mpg highway.
The 2019 Honda Pilot competes with the following vehicles:
The EX is the most popular trim level for the 2019 Honda Pilot. It includes:
All of which improve on the base model LX in terms of equipment.
The 2019 Honda Pilot is a great choice for families who need 3 rows of seating and all-wheel drive. It delivers substantial cargo room, making it a versatile option.
The 2019 Honda Pilot's styling has been tweaked compared to the previous year. New LED headlights are standard and come with a revised front end. Both the front and the rear bumpers have also been changed for 2019.
18-inch wheels are standard on the Honda Pilot LX, EX, and EX-L. 20-inch rims become available with the Pilot Touring and the Pilot Elite. The latter trims also add chrome accents, while the EX-L features a power moonroof. The Elite extends its roof opening to a full panoramic design.
The restyling for 2019 gives the Honda Pilot a more rugged look. This is most apparent up front, where the bumper's new 'skid plate' design makes it look less like a minivan. The Pilot is not the most fashionable of the 3-row SUV set, but it's certainly on par with most of its rivals.
Small changes have been made to the interior design of the 2019 Honda Pilot. Drivers will notice a more modern gauge cluster, while higher trim levels enjoy an easier-to use, nicer-to-look-at audio system.
The Honda Pilot features a textured cabin with glossy plastic accents and soft-touch panels on the doors and dashboard. Large transmission buttons on the center console take some getting used to but are well-labeled. Similarly, a volume knob for the stereo and toggles for the climate system are well placed. High trims feel a little less-than-special, based on price, but entry-level to mid-tier models are well-appointed.
There is ample room inside the Honda Pilot in the first two rows of seating, with cloth upholstery standard and leather available. The driver is perched tall in the saddle, with a good view of the road ahead. Second row passengers can recline and slide their seats for maximum comfort. They can also control their own heating and cooling and have the option of heated seats. The third row is lower to the floor than most adults would prefer, but it is suitable for children and easy to access. LATCH attachments are provided. There are both 8 passenger and 7 passenger versions of the SUV available.
The interior of the Honda Pilot is littered with storage nooks and pockets, including a useful center console. Large items are easy to load into the rear of the vehicle. There is a hidden storage compartment under the floor at the back. With 2nd and 3rd rows folded flat, you will have no trouble sliding bicycles and ladders into the Pilot, although it’s not class-leading when it comes to overall cargo room.
The 2019 Honda Pilot has upped its game when it comes to technology. It remains very competitive with other 3-row SUVs in its class.
The 2019 Honda Pilot provides a number of attractive technology and convenience features, including:
The 2019 Honda Pilot comes standard with:
All versions of the 2019 Honda Pilot include the Honda Sensing suite of safety features. It's a formidable set of protections that watch over driver and passenger, and it includes:
Other safety equipment for the 2019 Honda Pilot includes LaneWatch, included on the EX trim and up. This feature shows a view of the passenger-hand side of the vehicle on the infotainment screen when the turn signal is activated. Elite models gain a full blind spot monitor that watches both sides of the vehicle for unseen traffic, and also assists when reversing.
The 2019 Honda Pilot sits comfortable in the middle-of-the-road when compared against other 3-row sport-utility vehicles. With its large size and hefty weight, the Honda Pilot is not particularly interesting to drive, nor does it offer stand-out acceleration or handling. It is quite comfortable as a commuter and serves well on long-distance trips thanks to its respectable power and well-tuned suspension system.
One area where the Honda Pilot does excel is managing deep snow and ice-covered roads. Offering several drive modes - including one helpfully labeled 'Snow' - the Pilot provides exceptional traction in the dead of winter, even during raging blizzards that would paralyze lesser SUVs. Given that the vehicle shares much of its drivetrain with the Honda Ridgeline mid-size pickup, this feels entirely appropriate. Don’t look for any special off-road features like hill descent control, however.
One more benefit of the Honda Pilot's 2019 refresh is the transmission. The 9-speed automatic had been criticized in the past for rough shifting and occasional pauses between gear ratios. That behavior has been erased for the current model year, and the transmission now starts in 2nd gear by default to further smooth things out.
The 2019 Honda Pilot is an attractive choice for large families or those who want to haul a lot of gear with them wherever they go. If you live in the northern part of the country, and don't mind the Pilot's middling fuel efficiency, we think it's worth a test drive.
The Honda Pilot was most recently redesigned for the 2016 model year. This means that there are many recent used models available that share much of their feature set with the 2019 edition. Given Honda's reputation for reliability, we're confident in recommending a used Pilot. It's worth verifying that the older 9-speed transmission is smooth enough for your tastes, however.
The 2019 Honda Pilot LX starts at an MSRP of $32,495 and tops out at a hefty $49,065 for the Elite trim level. It is on sale now.
The Honda Pilot appeared in 2003 as the first-ever full-size SUV from the brand. Much like the current model, it counted on available all-wheel drive and V6 power to tempt buyers away from more traditional sport-utility vehicles. It offered 8 passenger seating right from the start, too. The Honda Pilot would grow larger in 2009 but stick to the same formula, eventually expanding into the current generation's expansive footprint with a redesign in 2016.