2021 Honda Pilot Redesign
2021 Honda Pilot Redesign– The current-generation Honda Pilot is many years old, but it barely shows its age. The Pilot receives a special edition trim and comes standard with a nine-speed automatic transmission across the line (previously reserved for the upper trim level, while the lower-spec model uses six speeds).
For an additional three speeds forward, the entry-level 2021 Honda Pilot LX sees a $ 725 increase in price, to $ 33,370. Hence, it is more expensive than the base Chevrolet Traverse (which is also a lot bigger) but still cheaper than the similarly sized Toyota Highlander. Prices on the mid-tier EX and EX-L trim have swelled by $ 525, while the new Touring, Elite, and Black Editions for 2020 saw a negligible price increase of $ 325.
While it’s nice that every Pilot now comes standard with Honda’s nine-speed automatic transmission, which replaces the six-speed unit on the LX, EX, and EX-L, we have a complaint about nine-speed. Even after Honda changed the transmission for the 2019 model year, it still wasn’t as smooth as we’d like.
There’s also a new trim level for 2021. A new SE slot (that’s a “special edition” —that’s, the original) between the EX-L and Touring trims. It combines the luxurious features of the EX-L (leather seats, second-line sunscreen, a powered driver’s seat with two-position memory, hands-free foot-activated rear door, and cordless phone charger) with blackened 20-inch wheels. , roof rails, grids, and skid plate trimmings. You’ll pay at least $ 40,080 for SE.
Other updates throughout the Pilot 2021 range include new standard dual-zone automatic climate control on the LX, and Platinum White Pearl paint options for the Black Edition, which also continue to offer black and red design accents and perforated leather seats.
We have 2020 and 2021 leftover to see if these small changes are keeping Pilots fresh in a highly competitive segment filled with increasingly new or redesigned competitors.
2021 Honda Pilot Engine, Transmission and Performance
The Pilot V-6 has a sporty sound and lots of power, and we liked the unobtrusive behavior of the nine-speed automatic transmission. Honda is not the most troublesome three-row crossover to drive, but its size is large enough to make it feel heavy when cornering.
The 20-inch wheels in the top trim spoil the ride a little bit but enhance the Pilot’s otherwise tacky appearance. And the vehicles are relatively smooth when loaded with people and goods. The pilot’s lack of body control made him appear disconnected from the road sometimes. And its lightweight steering makes it easy to maneuver at parking lot speeds but also gives off a detached feel on the road.
2021 Honda Pilot Real-World Fuel Economy and MPG
Fuel economy is strong in the Honda showroom, and the Pilot is very efficient for large, practical vehicles, according to the EPA and our real-world testing. The front-wheel-drive model will achieve 20 mpg in the city and 27 mpg on the highway. Adding all-wheel drive reduces 1 mpg from both government rankings, for a total of 19 mpg city and 26 mpg highway. The all-wheel-drive-only Elite model we tested outperformed highway ratings, hitting 27 mpg on our 200-mile route.
2021 Honda Pilot Interior, Comfort and Cargo
The Pilot interior is spacious and practical and can be obtained with family-friendly options such as the in-cab PA system. Most trim levels offer a second row with three bars, for those who need eight seats. The more expensive model did not use a seat for the two captain seats, reducing the number of passengers to seven. However, the wide third-row low seat cushion makes it practical only for children.
The Pilot dashboard layout features easy-to-use climate controls and clearly marked gauge clusters, and there are a whopping 16 cupholders throughout the cabin.
The SUV’s elevated seating position provides the driver with excellent views of the highway, and the large windows and inconspicuous thin roof pillars provide best-in-class visibility to the Pilot. This Honda has a very large cargo area and lots of useful interior space. It’s one of the roomiest SUVs in its class, but cargo capacity between the seven and eight-seat configurations differs, as the Elite and seven-seat Touring trims feature a non-detachable second-row center console.
2021 Honda Pilot Infotainment and Connectivity
The frustrating central touchscreen is one of the Pilots’ weaknesses, although Honda installed a much-needed volume knob in 2019. The base 5.0-inch LX screen offers the basics, while the EX-and-above trim gets an 8.0-inch touchscreen with SiriusXM satellite radio, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto integration, voice commands, and other application functions. Navigation is optional on the EX and standard on Touring and Elite.
2021 Honda Pilot Safety Features and Driver Assistance
The Honda 2021 pilot earned a five-star crash test rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), but has not been tested by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).
Each Pilot has a number of standard driver assistance technologies. Key security features include:
- Standard front collision warning and automatic emergency braking
- Standard line departure warning and lane maintenance assistance
- Standard adaptive cruise control
- Warranty and Maintenance Protection
- Honda’s warranty is completely average for its class. Hyundai, for example, offers much longer, and Toyota provides the added bonus of free scheduled maintenance.
How big is the Pilot?
Honda did a wonderful job of getting as much interior space as possible from the Pilot. Although the exterior dimensions are among the smallest in its segment, the interior is among the most spacious and functional. The second row is typically spacious, while the third row has ample leg and headroom for full-size adults and teens. However, the seats are lower than those on the Palisade, Telluride, and Chevrolet Traverse, so it’s not that comfortable in the end. The roofline and rear windows are quite boxy, so there is less chance of feeling stuffy.
Cargo capacity is great, although it looks a little below average on paper. Most notably, the Pilot can fit as much baggage behind its third-row as the Palisade even though it should have less room. This is thanks to the clever floors, which can drop a few inches. It’s also two-sided: one rug, the other textured plastic for dirty stuff.
Keep in mind that if you don’t need a lot of space, the Honda Passport is basically a two-line, five-seater Pilot.
What was the pilot like to drive?
The pilots provide a comfortable and quiet ride, the handling and steering are inspiring, and the smooth engine has more than enough power. The advanced torsion vector all-wheel-drive system even improves on-road grip in addition to bad weather traction. This basically clears the bar for the segment.
That said, the Pilots are pretty impressive behind the wheel too. It’s almost more like a minivan in an SUV outfit. While it’s a little more engaging than the Subaru Ascent, it’s also not the best choice for those hoping to maintain driver engagement from their extended family vehicle.
The Mazda CX-9 would be a much better choice for that, while the new Toyota Highlander brings more responsiveness and communication to the driver. We’re not going to say that the Kia Telluride or the Hyundai Palisade are particularly memorable too, but there’s something about them (maybe just style) that manages to avoid the minivan vibe.
2021 Honda Pilot Trim and Specifications
2021 Pilot LX
- Starting from $ 33,370 MSRP *
- 280-horsepower direct injection, i-VTEC® V6 engine
- Honda Sensing®
- LED headlights with auto-on / off
- Multi-angle rear view camera
- Seats 8 passengers
2021 Pilot EX
- Starting from $ 36,050 MSRP *
- 8 inch Display Audio with high resolution touch screen, Apple CarPlay ™, and Android Auto ™ smartphone integration
- Heated front seat with 10-way power driver seat
- Smart Entry with Walk Away Auto Lock®
- Tri-zone automatic climate control
- One-touch 2nd row seats
2021 Pilot EX-L
- Starting from $ 39,480 MSRP *
- Interior with leather upholstery
- Power truck tailgate
- Moonroof with one touch
- Integrated 2nd line sun glasses
- Three USB charging ports
Pilot Special Edition 2021
- Starting from $ 40,630 MSRP *
- Black Roof Rails
- Wireless Smartphone Charging
- Black Painted 20-inch Alloy Wheels
- Hands-Free Access Power Tailgate Door
- Special Edition Badging
2021 Pilot Touring
- Starting from $ 44,040 MSRP *
- Honda ™ Satellite Connected Navigation System
- Blu-ray ™ Rear Entertainment System (RES)
- Mobile hotspot capability
- Blue ambient LED lighting and front drink holder
- Premium 590 watt audio system with 10 speakers
2021 Pilot Elite
- Starting at $ 49,540 MSRP *
- Standard all-wheel-drive (AWD) variable torque
- Panoramic roof
- Cordless phone charger
- The front seat is heated and ventilated
- LED front row map light
2021 Black Pilot Edition
- Starting at $ 51,040 MSRP *
- Black Edition Exterior Trim
- Black Edition Leather Interior
- 20 inch black wheels
- Red Ambient LED Lighting
- Heated Second Row Captain’s Seat
2021 Honda Pilot Price
In our opinion, the Pilot Special Edition represents the best combination of features and price. This includes black 20-inch wheels, hands-free power rear door, leather upholstery, roof rails, second-line sun protection, sunroof, and wireless charging. We’ll also be adding $ 2,000 all-wheel drive as this raises the Pilot’s maximum crane rating from 3,500 pounds to 5,000.
- Honda Pilot LX 2WD: $ 33,370
- Honda Pilot LX AWD: $ 35,370
- Honda Pilot EX 2WD: $ 36,050
- Honda Pilot EX AWD: $ 38,050
- Honda Pilot EX-L 2WD: $ 39,480
- Honda Pilot EX-L AWD: $ 41,480
- Honda Pilot SE 2WD: $ 40,080
- Honda Pilot SE AWD: $ 42,080
- Honda Pilot Touring 2WD: $ 44,040
- Honda Pilot Touring AWD: $ 46,040
- Honda Pilot Touring with AWD Rear Captain Seat: $ 46,340
- Honda Pilot Elite AWD: $ 49,540
- Honda Pilot Black Edition AWD: $ 51,040