Comfortable seating for all. Midsize SUVs like the 2020 Honda Pilot aren’t exactly rare; there are tons of options on the market these days. The Pilot offers seating for up to eight, or seven if you go with the second-row captain’s chairs. Unlike a lot of options, adults can sit comfortably in all three rows.
Passengers in the front seats are treated to seats that provide all-day comfort. In the second row, occupants get approximately 40 inches of leg room, which is impressive for the segment.
A one-touch button allows passengers to tumble down the second row for easier access to the rear seats. In the very back, riders get roughly 32 inches of leg room, making it comfortable for adults and tall teenagers.
Cargo space in the Pilot is impressive, too, but not class-leading. Behind the third row, there’s 16.5 cubic feet of cargo space. In total, it can hold up to 83.9 cubic feet of cargo.
One of the safer midsize SUVs. The Pilot comes with a lengthy list of standard safety features. Honda Sensing, which is the automaker’s suite active safety aids, is standard on every trim.
It includes adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assist, road departure warning, and automatic emergency braking. Other standard safety features include forward collision warning and automatic high beams.
In crash tests, the Pilot also earned high marks. The IIHS named it a Top Safety Pick, and the NHTSA gave it a five-star overall safety rating.
Handsome, conservative styling. While other automakers are going down the route of trying to make SUVs sporty and more dramatic, Honda’s stuck to its guns by penning a design that should appeal to the majority of consumers.
Clean, round lines mean the Pilot will age well. On the inside, its design is straightforward and uncluttered, putting ease of use before everything else.
Dependable performance. Performance for the Pilot won’t blow drivers away, but it’s enough to get the job done. It's equipped with a 3.5-liter V6 that makes 280 horsepower. The majority of Pilots come with a six-speed automatic transmission, while Touring, Elite, and Black Edition get a nine-speed automatic.
Unlike some of its competitors, the Pilot comes with front-wheel drive as standard and is offered with all-wheel drive as an option. The engine makes good power and is a refined unit, capable of handling daily tasks with ease. Its towing capacity of 5,000 pounds is good for the class,s too.
When properly equipped, the Pilot keeps up with the segment when it comes to fuel economy. It's rated at up to an EPA-estimated 23 miles per gallon combined.
Final thoughts. For consumers in need of an SUV with seating for up to eight or seven, the 2020 Honda Pilot should do the trick. It features a spacious cabin, comfortable seating in all three rows, an excellent list of safety features, and a capable V6 engine. Even against newer competitors, the Pilot can hold its own ground.
The Pilot isn’t the most enjoyable or athletic vehicle. If you’re looking for something that’s fun to drive, you’ll have to look elsewhere. The current Pilot dates back to 2016, which makes it one of the older ones in the segment. Some options in the segment have newer, modern interiors. The six-speed automatic can be clunky at times, while the nine-speed automatic doesn’t bring a huge uptick in fuel economy.
There’s a whole bunch of competition out there. The Kia Telluride is one of the new models on the road, but has quickly risen to the top. It has a more upscale design on the inside and outside, high-end features, and comfortable road manners.
For drivers that want something that’s more athletic, the Mazda CX-9 is a great choice. While the CX-9’s interior isn’t as spacious as the Pilot’s, it's much more enjoyable to drive, feels like a luxury vehicle in higher trims, and has a much more striking design.