This week I bring you the first-ever Honda Passport TrailSport. Honda describes TrailSport as the brand's new "halo" trim for its light trucks. The 2022 TrailSport sits in the middle of a three-trim Passport lineup between the base EX-L and the top-of-the-line Elite.
The TrailSport trim adds a more aggressive look to the Passport with a unique grille, skid plates painted in silver and more aggressive bumpers. It's also distinguished by uniquely designed tires that includes sidewall tread for a more rugged look. The tires are housed by 18-inch gray machined wheels. A 10mm increase in track width is designed to improve stance and stability.
Orange TrailSport badging adorns the front and tail end. The new badging looks great and the AWD badge looks great set in glossy black as opposed to chrome you find for the rest of the lineup. Power folding, heated, side mirrors are designed for narrow trails, and Honda's added a heated windshield wiper parking area for frigid weather.
The TrailSport is equipped with LED low-beam headlights, LED fog lights and LED taillights. In the rear you find a tailgate spoiler along with dual exhaust. On top, you find roof rails.
Under the hood you find a 280-horsepower 3.5-liter V6 mated to a 9-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters. The TrailSport is also equipped with all-wheel drive, four-mode intelligent traction management with Snow Mode, Sand & Mud Modes, and Hill Start Assist.
The Passport is very roomy inside the cabin and I'd expect it to comfortably seat 5-passengers well. There is plenty of leg and head-room throughout the TrailSport's leather-trimmed black interior.
TrailSport badging embroidered on the front headrests is really well-done. As is the badging molded into the utility-minded rubber floor mats. Orange contrast stitching on the dash, steering wheel and seats is also well-executed. The cabin also features matching orange ambient lighting.
The 10-way power driver's seat is comfortable, the passenger's seat is 4-way power. The front heated seats also feature drop down inner armrests. The TrailSport's leather-wrapped and heated steering wheel is a tad on the larger side for my taste, but fits in with the rugged look.
A wide center console is home to a push-button shift, cupholders, drive modes and a button to turn the somewhat noticeable automatic stop/start on and off. The center console bin offers plenty of storage space, but I'm not a huge fan of the faux textured wallpaper-like surface used on the center sliding console. The center stack isn't fancy in terms of tech with standard controls for the climate functions.
Second-row passengers also enjoy cushioned seats along with a center armrest with cupholders, nice seat back pockets, their own A/C vent, two USBs, a 115-volt and window sunshades. The 60/40 rear split seats recline slightly. You can operate the one-touch fold down seats from the cargo area.
The Passport is not short on utility. The cargo area is huge, and there's also a rear under floor cargo storage area. There are great, utility-minded rubber floor mats for the front and rear rows and a hands-free power tailgate.
Standard features include push-button start, tri-zone climate, remote engine start, walk away auto lock and a power moonroof.
The first thing I have to say about the technology is about the digital driver display. It by far offers the largest easy to read text on any vehicle that I can recall. It's night and day compared to the small text you find in Toyota's and is one differentiating feature between the two brands technology.
The 8-inch multimedia touchscreen is surrounded by glossy black. I liked the color, large graphics and map quality as well as its responsiveness. It also hosts a multi-view camera. The system includes Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, Bluetooth and HD Radio. A 7-speaker standard audio system sounds better than 7-speakers might indicate.
Ride and Drive
The Passport is an easy to drive SUV with a truck-like feel to it as opposed to a car-like ride. It delivers a confident ride, steering and braking feel. The V6's acceleration matches its 4,000+ weight. Ride height and visibility out both the front and rear windows is great.
New for 2022, Honda adds some great standard safety features to the entire Passport lineup: rear seat reminder and rear seatbelt reminder. The Honda Sensing suite of safety and driver assistive technologies is also standard on every Passport and includes: Collision Mitigation Braking System with Forward Collision Warning, Lane Keeping Assist System, Road Departure Mitigation with Lane Departure Warning and Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC). The TrailSport is also equipped with Blind Spot Monitor with Rear Cross Traffic Alert and parking sensors.
The paint color is the only option on this model which MSRP's as equipped for just over $44,000. A great value in today's market for a brand new SUV loaded with convenience features along with AWD capability.
- What I liked most: Its well-executed TrailSport design elements and all the standard convenience features.
- What I would change: The surface material of the center console bin,
- MSRP: Base price: $42,470; as equipped: $44,090.
- Fuel Economy: 19 city/24 highway/21 combined.
- Odometer reading when tested: 2,977 miles.
- Weight: 4,229 pound curb weight.
- Spare Tire: Compact Spare.
- Length-Width-Height: 189.1” long/78.6 wide/72.2.” high.
- Fuel Tank Capacity: 19.5 gallons with the capless filler on the driver's side.
- Official Color: Platinum White Pearl ($395)
- Ground Clearance: 8.1-inches of ground clearance (with AWD).
- Towing Capacity: 5,000-pound towing capacity (with AWD, with additional equipment).
- 2022 Honda Passport TrailSport in a few words: An easy to to like, capable and roomy SUV that wears its new more rugged look well.
- Warranty: 3-Year/36,000-Mile Limited Warranty/ 5-Year/60,000-Mile Powertrain Limited Warranty. 3-year Roadside Assistance.
- Final Assembly Location: Lincoln, Alabama.
- Manufacturer's website: Honda