The arrival of a second little one in a pair’s life often means many issues: the demise of romance, the beginning of sibling rivalry, and the acquisition of a 3-row SUV. As the latter has all but usurped the minivan as the most popular kid-schlepper, the Honda Pilot has turn into a go-to alternative for frazzled parents. Rarely seen without no less than one sticker displaying allegiance to a college or sport-as well as a type of reproductively braggadocious stick-household decals-the Pilot’s ubiquity is a testomony to its competence.
Honda reliability, a roomy inside, and a practical form are what promote the Pilot. Absent is any sense of fashion or luxury. The 2016 Pilot seeks to amend that, and, in so doing, take a few of the drudgery out of parenthood even because the automobile delves additional into its role as a surrogate minivan.
Always able, the Pilot didn’t want a rethink, just a few refinement. For the third-gen model, that refinement begins with the styling. Whereas the outdated model tried to look tough, the new mannequin prefers to be smooth, with a unified facet-glass space and sweptback corners on the familial Honda front end.
The new Pilot is larger than earlier than, with 1.eight inches extra in wheelbase and 3.5 inches additional in length. But its additional inches did not bring with them extra pounds. The loaded Elite model with 4-wheel drive that we examined weighed 4302 pounds, 309 fewer than the Pilot 4WD we ran in 2011. As dad and mom know, family obligation is commonly a recipe for packing on extra pounds, so give the Pilot a round of applause for its weight-loss success.
A 3.5-liter V-6 once more powers the Pilot, however it is a new, direct-injected engine. A variant of the unit in the Acura MDX, it makes 10 horsepower less here however runs on regular fuel. Its output of 280 horsepower and 262 pound-toes of torque handily beats the previous engine’s 250 and 253. Honda scrapped the earlier 5-pace computerized in favor of a six-speed in LX, EX, and EX-L models, whereas the fancier Touring and new Elite trim ranges get fitted with the ZF nine-pace, which can also be borrowed from the Acura.
Solely the Elite comes with particular person second-row buckets, which were unavailable before. Some dad and mom take into account them important to each problem-free access to the third row and the avoidance of again-seat warfare, though they drop the seating capacity to seven (six, actually, on condition that three-throughout within the third row is fairly optimistic). To also scale back work whereas attending to the standard third row, EX-L and higher trims have the easy one-contact buttons that scoot the second-row seats forward. The space back there's not unhealthy, but the cushion could be very low and flat. With all the seats in place, baggage capacity is healthier than most, with room for a quartet of standard-size curler bags standing up behind the rear-most seatback.