Honda Motor Co., hobbled by chip shortages and other logistical challenges, is coming off a tough year in the U.S. But the brand is counting on the redesign of three core crossovers — HR-V, CR-V and Pilot — and increased output to spark a rebound in 2023.
The retooled 2023 Pilot undergoes notable, if incremental, gains in exterior dimensions, power and interior space.
The three-row Pilot, Honda's third best-selling crossover in 2022 after the CR-V and HR-V, is technically a unibody crossover. But in its newest iteration it represents the closest thing Honda has to a bonafide SUV — reaching beyond the size and capability of even the midsize Ridgeline pickup.
The latest Pilot, based on Honda's new light-truck architecture, stretches 3.4 inches longer than the crossover it replaces. The wheelbase grows by 2.8 inches to 113.8 inches, while the front and rear tracks are extended by more than 1 inch. The bigger size leads to a smoother ride and greater stability, Hondasaid, while adding more space in the second and third rows and in the cargo zone.
The biggest change is in the design; it features more rugged styling capped by the addition of an adventure-themed TrailSport trim that Honda has adopted on other light trucks, notably the Passport and Ridgeline. The Pilot is also available in base Sport, EX-L, Touring and Elite trims.
The crossover's 3.5-liter V-6 engine has been revised slightly and is paired with a new 10-speed automatic transmission. Honda said it is its most powerful engine yet with 285 hp and 262 pound-feet of torque.
Journalists recently had the chance to get behind the wheel of the fourth-generation Pilot in northern Arizona and we've rounded up some reviews.