Honda has gotten rid of the boxy styling of the outgoing Pilot for a more aerodynamic look that mimics its smaller sibling, the popular CR-V. The 2016 Honda Pilot – which goes on sale this summer – has a larger, eight-inch display screen, an improved navigation system and up to five USB ports to power the family’s devices. The new Pilot was introduced at the 2015 Chicago Auto Show this week.
New amenities include an optional heated steering wheel and heated second-row seats. Under the hood is a new 3.5-liter, direct injected V-6 engine with start-stop technology – Honda calls it ” Idle Stop technology” – to save on fuel. Buyers can choose one of two new transmissions, a six-speed or a nine-speed, and front-wheel-drive or all-wheel-drive configurations. Green Car Congress notes that this is the first time Honda has put stop-start technology into a non-hybrid vehicle.
Fuel economy wasn’t announced, but increased use of lighter materials has dropped 300 pounds of weight, so the new Pilot should beat the old model’s 25 mpg on the highway.
New safety features include LED high beams that automatically dim for oncoming traffic and Honda’s first road departure mitigation system – borrowed from Acura – which monitors the vehicle’s road position and can correct the steering or brake if it senses an imminent collision.