Best in Class 3 Row SUV!!!
By Impressed Honda Owner on Tuesday, July 07, 2015
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 100
overall rating 10 of 10rating details
- Overall Rating
Pros: "Full package for the money...hard to beat!"
Cons: "Not much at the moment"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"This is my second Honda in 3 years. I purchased a 2012 CRV back in 2012 (still have it and love it); you can see my original review of the CRV dated March 18, 2012 under the title "EXCELLENT "SUV" for the Money!" and an updated review of the CRV in May 29, 2013. Needless to say, I like the Honda brand and purchased a 2016 Pilot Elite.
Let's get to the Pilot. With a growing family, I test drove multiple 3 row SUV's and the one I felt ok with the most was the Highlander...until I heard about the new Pilot coming up so I waited. Very GLAD I waited! First impressions of the Pilot were very very good. I wasn't crazy about the design in pictures, but in person it's a different story. Exterior was very sharp and very pleasing on the eyes. From the A pillar back, it looks beautiful, I just wish they put a little more effort in the front end design (not ugly, but not my favorite part of the vehicle). I love the wheel design too. Very Audi and Mercedes like.
Inside, if you go with a Touring or Elite, it almost feels like you are sitting in a luxury vehicle, and yes, I've owned multiple luxury vehicles, I know the feeling :-). Very very minimal use of plastics, most of the cabin is soft touch materials that you find in Audi, Mercedes, BMW, etc... The cabin and dash are not cluttered with buttons and levers everywhere, it is very simplistic, classy and clean (almost Audiesque). I saw a couple of complaints about the touch screen in reviews, but I had no problem, feedback was quick and easy to use. If you see my CRV review, you'll know how much I hated Honda's infotainment system, so with the new Pilot, first impressions were, wow, Honda finally put some money into this! I love it so far.
The seats are very comfortable and upscale (everything in that car feels upscale if you go with Touring or Elite). The second row seats were just as comfortable as the first row. Plenty of USB and charger plug-ins in the back for kids. One of the most important things for me was the third row room and trunk room while the third row is up (trying to avoid a minivan...yea yea I know, they are the most practical for families). You can easily and possibly comfortably fit a 6' person back there; anyone under that size will be very very comfortable. I personally sat back there and will be happy to sit back there for a long trip, it's a pleasant place to be. The seats weren't quite as comfortable as the second row, but they are comfortable enough, and definitely way more comfortable than the competitions.
I opt'd for the Elite because of the captains chairs and the ease of access to third row since it will be occupied; my only complaint from initial impressions is that you have to go with the Elite to get the captains chairs. Also, I am giving the interior design a 9 here instead of a 10 because if you get the bench seats and have car seats (not booster seats) on each side of the bench seat, you can't move the bench seat forward to allow someone access to the third row (hence the reason why we opted for captains chairs); so my issue with that is why haven't manufacturers copied Infiniti's second row design where it tilts down and slides forward with a car seat to allow access to the third row (check out the Infiniti QX60 second row design on youtube...pretty cool). I guess Honda wants you to pay for the Elite to get the captains chairs.
Next step was if I can at least fit a double stroller in the trunk while the third row is up...yep! and with room to spare for groceries.
Lastly, the drive. Driving impressions were pretty good. Very quiet, very smooth, a little on the artificial side of feedback from the wheel (but hey, it's not a sports car so who cares, right?). Throttle response can be a little bit better too.
So those are my initial impressions of the 2016 Pilot. Overall a big 10. I keep telling myself I am so glad I did not end up going with the Highlander or the Infiniti QX60 (except for that seat design in the Infiniti that I love) because the Pilot blows them out of the water! I'll do my usual updated review after about 20,000 miles of driving. If you're looking for a 3 row SUV, get yourself into a Pilot, you'll LOVE IT!"
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