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Auto review: 2023 Honda Pilot gets the makeover it deserves

Marc D. Grasso, Boston Herald on

Published in Automotive News

While other manufacturers hurry to market with EV SUVs or tiptoe into the hybrid market, Honda continues to be the master of the consumer automobile market. In Grasso’s Garage this week, we test-drive the flagship 2023 Honda Pilot Elite.

Our tester was the fourth-generation 2023 Honda Pilot Elite wrapped in Modern Steel Metallic. The largest SUV to date, the Pilot boasts a 113.8-inch wheelbase and length of almost 200 inches. Rugged and athletic, it stands 71 inches high and 67.5 inches wide. The redesigned exterior styling offers a large upright grille, powerful lower bumper and LED lights. Bigger tires and increased storage make the Honda Pilot the king of the carpool.

Seating is more comfortable than the third generation Pilot: There's eight-passenger available seating with a third row that has grown a half-inch and a second row that reclines 4 more degrees and gains 2 more inches in legroom. Front row changes include a high and wide center console with great storage, 14 total cupholders and cell phone charging for two. Cargo space grew 13.2 cubic feet to a total of 196.8 cubic feet.

The 10.2-inch drivers digital display is typical Honda with great visibility and technology, while the 9-inch touchscreen is easy to use. The Bose Premium Stereo has 12 speakers. Powering the 2023 Honda Pilot Elite, is a familiar 3.5-liter DOHC V-6 offering 285 horsepower and 262 pound-feet of torque. Paired with a 10-speed automatic transmission, this is Honda’s first 10-speed which is very smooth for the AWD Pilot Elite. Seven drive modes, 5,000 pounds of towing capability and eight color options ensure that consumers have just about everything they can possibly need in choosing a family SUV.

As Honda continues to deliver realistically priced automobiles for consumers in many markets, the Pilot easily tops the family market. Honda vehicles' longevity, pricing and dependability have made the company what it is today. Add that to great design, utility and, what is most important for many, safety, and Honda is always a win in Grasso’s Garage with the Pilot being the best flagship to date.


2023 Honda Pilot Elite


MPG: 18 city / 23 highway / 20.4 as tested

As Tested:$50,150

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