The 2016 Honda Pilot stole the show in Chicago this past February and now it’s bound to steal even more SUV enthusiasts hearts with the news it packs more horsepower than the outgoing model, along with enough trim options to make your head spin.
Yes, Honda’s finally released all the details you could want about its third generation SUV that will go on sale this summer. It’s not just curvier than the old model, it’s lighter, more powerful and more efficient. It’s a long-awaited replacement for the Pilot’s current model that’s been on the market since 2008.
First up, let’s talk powertrain. The three-row SUV will get one engine choice, a direct injected 3.5-liter i-VTEC V6 engine that will give it 280 horsepower and 262 pound-feet of torque. (That’s a gain of 30 hp over its the outgoing model if you’re counting.) It will come with new 6-speed and 9-speed automatic transmissions depending on the model.
It comes in either all-wheel drive and front-wheel drive. An all-new selectable Intelligent Traction Management system featuring Normal, Mud, Sand, and Snow modes comes on the AWD model and Normal and Snow on the 2WD drive version.
Now to the trims and you need all seven fingers to count them: LX, EX, EX-L, Touring and Elite. Add to that, two sub-trims the EX with Honda Sensing and EX-L with Honda Sensing. (Honda Sensing is a bundled up suite of safety features that includes a Collision Mitigation Braking System with Forward Collision Warning, Road Departure Mitigation System, Lane Keeping Assist System with Lane Departure Warning and Adaptive Cruise Control.)
It’s range-topping edition is the Pilot Elite model and it’s definitely Honda’s showcase piece. It comes with more features than you knew you wanted, including a panoramic roof, heated leather-trimmed steering wheel and illuminated cup holders, along with a vast array of other standard features like heated and ventilated front seats, LED headlights with auto high-beam, rain sensing windshield wipers and more.
Both the Elite and Touring trims get Honda’s new nine-speed transmission, the rest will get the six-speed. As for paint, all 2016 Pilot trims are available in eight colors including three metallic and five pearl hues.
No word yet on EPA mileage figures, but Automotive News quotes Honda Pilot Chief Engineer Marc Ernst as saying it will “reach the top of its class for EPA fuel economy ratings.”