Redesigned and retooled to combine the best of everyday functionality and the chops to tackle unpredictable terrain, the 2023 Honda Pilot TrailSport is an unexpected delight.
Entering its fourth generation, the Honda Pilot has been a mainstay for families seeking a blend of utilitarian form and function at a conservative price point. For this generation, the team at Honda wanted to create something different, something for the brand that was rugged, tough, felt a bit more upscale and delivered on the desires of the loyal Honda families. They took the time and more than met the challenge.
ABOUT THE VEHICLE
For this introductory drive, we met at a quiet spot in Arizona with glorious views and a challenging terrain that I was not certain that the Pilot could handle. I remember briefly questioning my why — especially being that I am a Dallas-based driver that pretty much plays by Texas’ rules.
There was ice, snow, steep inclines, downward grades that were laced with snow-drenched cacti and slushy mud-lined roads that reminded me of how small we are as humans, despite our advancing technological efforts.
By time, we were done, I would be saying that I hadn’t met this version of the Pilot yet and it might just be my favorite.
ABOUT THE 2023 HONDA TRAILSPORT
At glance, the new Pilot is brawnier, bolder with a more muscular stance that takes up space and welcomes you inside. It is beautiful. Available in a handful of trims and in a range of modern neutral paint choices to the brilliant happy-inducing Diffused Sky Blue that we drove up the mountain. It signals a new age of no-compromise sensibility and fun from Honda, and we are here for it.
AMERICAN MADE, EVERY ROAD READY
Developed in Ohio and built in Alabama, this 8-seater is larger, more powerful and more flexible than any Pilot ever built. The TrailSport edition is a V6 10-speed automatic equipped with direct from the factory skid plates, 18-inch all-terrain tires custom crafted from Continental and a space brightening panoramic sunroof that actually opens to let air and light stream in.
The ride is smoother due to the new longer chassis that delivers improved suspension and increased rigidity, making it feel solid and comfortable, even on the rockiest terrain.
AS YOU NEED IT SEATING
New in this generation, all three rows make good use of the redesigned seating and cushion framework that is more comfortable and more flexible than the outgoing model. Folding, reclining and sliding seats throughout create additional legroom in the rear quadrant. The second-row, folding and removable jump seat, is available in the Elite edition, is storable under the floor of the trunk.
It weighs about 30 pounds, but is sturdy and moveable, which means that you can have your choice of a wide walkway to enter the third row, additional cup holders or an extra seat at anytime with ease.
LIFE READY WITH SMARTER TECH AND EASIER STORAGE
Built with the active family in mind, the 2023 Pilot Trailsport has a place for everything and keeps you connected while on the go. The standard tech that you expect in a family hauler is present and updated. Phone storage in the wider, higher center console can hold two phones with ease and can wirelessly connect to both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto in the 9-inch version and by wire in the 7-inch version.
The Bose-enhanced sound system has 12 well-placed speakers that allow for clear, crisp sound experience throughout the vehicle and not just in the front row. The really nifty catch all cubby that left a couple of generations ago makes a welcome return. Also, families will be pleased to find that there are 14 cup holders, 6 illuminated USB-charging ports and additional cargo holds in the rear of the vehicle.
MULTIPLE TRIMS AND LESS THAN $60k
Built in Lincoln, Alabama, this 4th-generation of the Honda Pilot is the most powerful ever made. Equipped with a 3.5-liter DOHC V6 delivering 285horsepower and 262 lb. ft of torque housed in a more rigid frame and set up to win with a solid suspension and 6 easy to access drive modes including the new Snow and Tow modes.
Buyers can choose between the Sport, EX-L, TrailSport, Touring and Elite trims. Buyers desiring a luxurious driving experience, with extra comfort features and lovely textures that elevate the everyday, go for the Elite trim. Buyers that want a no-compromise option that is equipped with factory-designed skid plates, off-road tuned suspension and can handle those out of the way paths as well as the carpool line, choose the TrailSport option.
Starting at $39,150 in the Sport Trim and topping out at $52,030 in the Elite trim, the 2023 Honda Pilot is comfortably priced and packed full of features that make it a win-win for buyers, families and drivers on the road. You also get the renowned Honda Sensing safety suite standard across all the trims that has passed the IIHHS safety tests with flying colors to protect you and your precious cargo.
WHERE TO FIND IT?
The 2023 Honda Pilot is arriving at dealerships right now. If you need a referral to a trusted dealer, let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org.