2021 Honda Pilot

MSRP $31,650 - $49,720

Ranked #11 in Midsize Suv



2021 Honda Pilot Price, Review, Ratings and Pictures

Updated on: July 13, 2020

John Bedrow's image
John Bedrow 

Automotive Journalist

Honda has been trying to dominate the midsize, compact SUV category in recent years by launching several models like BR-V, WR-V, CR-V, etc. Although these cars had minor success, they weren’t able to conquer their rivals. This year Honda is set to launch the new 2021 Honda Pilot.

The 2021 Honda Pilot is part of the third-generation model. It is considered as the largest and most popular crossover SUV by Honda in the United States. The Honda Pilot fits in the midsize three-row crossover category, but compared to its rivals, it has slightly more rear-seat room. The cargo space of the Honda Pilot is decent, with plenty of space behind the third-row to carry a weekend camping trip luggage for every occupant of the car.

See detailed review »


Decent Cargo space

Excellent Fuel efficiency

Comfortable Ride Quality

High-Quality interior material

A powerful V-6 engine

Easy-to-use Brakes


Not suitable for off-roading

Over Sensitive Driver Aids

Difficult to access the third-row

Hard-to-use Multimedia System

What's New?

There is a possibility of generational change in the year 2022 which means that there won’t be any huge design overhauls on the interiors and exteriors. However, there might be some minor tweaks to take it online with the newer generation Honda’s along with some added new features. Some of them are:

Standard 9-speed automatic transmission

Dual-zone automatic climate control is standard in base LX trim

Platinum White Pearl paint becomes available for the, um, Black Edition


vehicle bio

base price



dr SUV

passenger capacity



all wheel drive

engine type


212 cu.in.


280 hp @ 6000 rpm


262 lbs.-ft. @ 4700 rpm


6-speed automatic


brake rotors (f/r)

12.6/13 in.



111 in.


66.3 in.


78.6 in.


70.6 in.

curb weight

4287 lbs.

ground clearance

7.3 in.


passenger volume

151.7 cu ft.

cargo volume

83.8 cu ft.

towing capacity

5000 lbs.

payload capacity

1555 lbs.

fuel economy


19/22/26 mpg

highway range

57. mi.


basic warranty

3 yr./ 36 mi.

drivetrain warranty

5 yr./ 6 mi.

corrosion warranty

5 yr. /unlimited

roadside assistance


Pictures & Videos

2021 Honda Pilot Detailed Review videos
2021 Honda Pilot Interior videos


LX$31,650 onwards

EX$34,530 onwards

EX-L$37,960 onwards

EX-L w/Navigation and Rear Entertainment System$39,960 onwards

Touring$42,720 onwards

Elite$48,220 onwards

Black Edition$49,720 onwards

Colors and Styles

2021 Honda Pilot in Crystal Black Pearl color
Crystal Black Pearl

Vehicle images are guides only and may not reflect the model's exact specifications/features– exact specifications/features should be confirmed with the seller.

Expert Review, Pricing Analysis and Buying Guide

Pilot first debuted a decade ago and it went through some slight updates in 2019, which included a revamped cabin, a new and advanced infotainment system with a real volume knob, updated front, and rear designs, and more. Honda hasn’t made any changes in terms of looks, and hopefully, it remains the same when the 2021 Pilot hits the showrooms.

The 2021 Pilot isn’t as remarkable and bulletproof as the predecessors. New competitors have arrived, such as Hyundai Palisade, Kia Telluride, and many more, which provide more third-row room and cargo space. It is considered to be value for money, and it has an excellent performance, fuel economy, ride quality, and features.

2021 Honda Pilot Front View
2021 Honda Pilot Rear View

2021 Honda Pilot Features

The 2021 Honda Pilot comes in a total of five trims. The five trims are LX, EX, EX-L, Touring, and Elite. The price of the base variant LX is estimated to be around $31,550 and for the top trim Elite, the price is around $42,070. The 2020 Honda Pilot was also offered a black edition, but it is still not yet confirmed for the 2021 model. All the prices mentioned below are estimates and may be subject to change according to different states.



















Key Features

6-speed automatic transmission

Intelligent Traction Management

One-touch power moonroof with tilt feature

Intelligent Variable Torque Management (i-VTM4) AWD system

9-speed automatic transmission with Shift-By-Wire (SBW) and paddle shifters


Variable Cylinder Management 

Remote engine start

Power tailgate

Blindspot information system with cross-traffic monitor

20-inch alloy wheels


Hill-start assist 

LED Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Leather-wrapped steering wheel

Rain-sensing windshield wipers

Roof rails


Intelligent Variable Torque Management 

Smart Entry

Automatic-dimming rearview mirror

Panoramic roof

Body-colored parking sensors


18-inch alloy wheels

Fog lights

One-touch 2nd-row seats

LED headlights with auto-on/off and auto high-beam

Driver's seat with two-position memory


Multi-angle rearview camera with guidelines

Honda LaneWatchTM16

Front passengers seat with 4-way power adjustment

Heated steering wheel

Memory-linked side mirrors with reverse gear tilt-down


Tire Pressure Monitoring System with Tire Fill Assist and location and pressure indicator

Tri-zone automatic climate control system with humidity control and air filtration

Leather-trimmed interior

Perforated heated and ventilated front seats

Blu-ray Rear Entertainment System (RES) with 115-volt power outlet,


One-touch turn indicators

Driver’s seat with 10-way power adjustment, including power lumbar support 

Heated front seats 


HDMI Interface and integrated 2nd-row speakers, including


Rear privacy glass


We Recommend

Although the Pilot provides enough features in the base trim to satisfy most buyers, the EX-L trim seems like a worthwhile upgrade. Not only does it replace the tiny 5-inch display screen for a wider 9 inches one, but it also adds other features like a leather-trimmed interior, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, a sunroof, a power tailgate, heated front seats, and one-touch sliding second-row seats.

2021 Honda Pilot Engine and Performance

All trims of the 2021 Honda Pilot are set to be equipped with the same 3.5-liter V6 engine under the hood, which was found in its predecessor, this is considered to be an advantage because this engine is powerful and fuel-efficient. This V6 engine puts out 280hp at 6000 RPM and a torque of 262 lb-ft at 6000 RPM, and it is paired with a 9-Speed automatic transmission as standard. 

2021 Honda Pilot Engine Bay

Power will be delivered to either all the wheels or the front wheels, depending on the choice of trim. There is no doubt that the sporty V6 has plenty of grunt to move this massive crossover. The 2020 Pilot’s lack of body control made it disconnected from the road, and the light steering contributed to the detached feel on the highway. Hopefully, the 2021 Pilot will have better control.


Honda Pilot

Toyota Highlander

Subaru Ascent

Ford Explorer







3.5L V6

3.5L V6

2.4L Turbocharged Flat 4

2.3L Turbocharged Inline-4







6-Speed Automatic

8-Speed Automatic 


10-Speed Automatic

Power(HP @ RPM)

280 @ 6,000

295 @ 6,600

260 @ 5,600

300 @ 6,500

Torque(lb-ft @ RPM)

262 @ 4,700

263 @ 4,700

277 @ 2,000

310 @ 4,000

The Toyota Highlander, which is priced at $34,600 is the most expensive off the chart and the Honda Pilot, which is priced at $31,450 is the least expensive. The Ford Explorer has the most powerful engine off the chart with a horsepower of 300 @ 6,500 RPM and Subaru Ascent has the least powerful engine with a horsepower of 260 @ 5,600 RPM. Honda Pilot generates the highest amount of torque, which is 262 lb-ft @ 4,700 RPM and it is slightly more powerful than Ford Explorer. The Subaru Ascent is less powerful than Honda Pilot and Ford Explorer whereas Toyota Highlander is the least powerful off the chart.


Honda Pilot shows impressive results in the acceleration segment. The crossover takes just 6.8 seconds in attaining a speed of 60 mph from still which is above average for a mid-range SUV. The Pilot doesn’t have significant opposition in the acceleration department.

2021 Honda Pilot Front View


Honda Pilot

Toyota Highlander

Ford Explorer

Subaru Ascent

0-60 MPH

6.8 sec

7.3 sec

7.7 sec

8.3 sec

Quarter mile

14.6 sec @ 95 mph

16.7 sec @ 81.3 mph

16.0 sec @ 90.0 mph

16.6 sec @ 85 mph

Emission (Tons/yr of CO2 Emissions @ 15K mi/year)





The closest to Pilot’s numbers is the Highlander, which is still half a second behind. At the quarter-mile mark, Pilot’s lead is further extended, as it reaches the quarter-mile 1.4 seconds faster than the closest competitor, the Explorer. The slowest to reach 60mph speed is the Subaru Ascent, but it picks up the pace a little and finishes a millisecond before the Highlander at the quarter-mile test.

Ride and Handling

Honda Pilot offers above-average riding experience in the large SUV segment. The car features best-in-class, brisk acceleration for an 8-seater crossover, as it takes just 6.1 seconds in the 0-60 acceleration test. Interior seats are comfortable and spacious enough. They offer a decent level of comfort and quality material, interiors are more pleasing in the upper trims with heated, adjustable seats. The steering provides adequate grip and precision.

2021 Honda Pilot Handling

Despite high curb weight, the car feels lighter than most of the competitors in the segment. The Pilot features decent off-road experience as well, along with smooth acceleration and Handling experience. The crossover excels in ride quality, convenience, and usability than some other competitors in the segment. At last, the 2021 Honda Pilot impressed us with its overall riding and handling experience.


The braking power of the Honda Pilot matches its accelerating power. It is solid and firm, with a predictable response from the pedal. For a vehicle this size, Pilot’s brakes work better than the class average. Amongst the main competitors, the Pilot is the quickest to come to a stop. With a stopping distance of 119 feet from a speed of 60mph.

2021 Honda Pilot Wheel


Honda Pilot

Toyota Highlander

Ford Explorer

Subaru Ascent

Brake front (in)





Brake Rear (in)





Curb weight (lbs.)





60-0 MPH (ft.)





Pilot stops almost 6 feet shorter than the Subaru Ascent. The Explorer is the heaviest among the rivals, yet it takes just a foot more than the Pilot to come to a halt. Highlander weighs the least amongst these rivals, yet it takes almost the same distance to stop as the Subaru.

2021 Honda Pilot Fuel Economy

The fuel economy of the Honda Pilot is mighty, and it is very efficient for such a large and practical vehicle, according to both real-world testing and the EPA. When equipped with all-wheel-drive and the nine-speed automatic, the 2021 Honda Pilot’s 19-MPG city and 26-MPG highway EPA ratings are considered to be top-notch and the 2021 Elite model did even better, achieving 27-MPG combined. 

Adding All-wheel drive drops these estimates by 1-MPG across the board, as is typical in the class. The Honda Pilot, with its huge tank capacity, offers the second-best range off the chart followed by the Subaru Ascent.


Honda Pilot 

Toyota Highlander

Subaru Ascent

Ford Explorer
















Fuel Capacity(Gallons)










Rivals like Subaru Ascent and Ford Explorer perform better than Pilot in the city. Still, Pilot puts up impressive economy numbers on the highway, which increases its average above the rest. The Highlander shows better than Pilot overall, but Pilot stays close.

2021 Honda Pilot Interior

The Pilot's interior is roomy and practical, and it offers family-friendly options such as the in-cabin PA system. Most trim levels offer a three-across second row, making room for eight-passenger capacity. The pricier trims have a middle-row bench, which reduces the passenger count to seven. However, the spacious third row's low bottom-seat cushion means its only comfortable for children.

The dashboard layout of the Honda Pilot features easy-to-use climate controls, and there are a whopping 16 cupholders installed throughout the three rows. The high seating position of the Honda Pilot gives a clear and commanding view of the road. The Pilot's windows are vast in size, and the roof pillars are thin, together they make for best-in-class visibility. The seats have nice bolstering, which offers excellent support and heating and ventilation support in higher trim levels. The Honda Pilot is one of the roomiest SUVs in its class.

2021 Honda Pilot Seating Layout


Honda Pilot

Toyota Highlander

Subaru Ascent

Ford Explorer

Seating Capacity





First Row(Head-room/Shoulder-room

/Leg-room, in inches)





Second Row(Head-room/Shoulder-room/Leg-room, in inches)





Third Row(Head-room/Shoulder-room/Leg-room, in inches)





Trunk Capacity(cubic feet)





The EX-L, Touring, and Elite trims get 3-way heated seats. Elite also gets 3 way ventilated seats. Overall, the seats are roomy and comfortable. They provide good support and padding which makes long rides a breeze. It is also extremely easy to get to the third rows, with the available one-touch second-row seats, the seats fold and slide forward to provide a passage to the third row.

The Explorer, being the most significant SUV here, is expectedly the greatest in space, bragging of class-leading headroom and legroom in all the three rows. The Toyota Highlander falls short against all its rivals here and is definitely not the comfort is one’s priorities. 

Standout interior features include the following:

  • 60/40 Split-Folding Third-Row Seats
  • Keyless Entry and Ignition 
  • An 8-Inch Touchscreen System with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto Connectivity
  • Power-Adjustable Driver and Passenger Seat
  • Heated Rear Seats
  • Wi-Fi Hotspot

Cargo Capacity

The Honda Pilot is the most spacious midsize crossover SUV of this chart with sufficient and plenty of space in all three rows of seats. The Ford Explorer beats everyone on this chart in terms of trunk capacity. The Subaru Ascent has got decent trunk capacity whereas, the Toyota Highlander lags behind in terms of trunk capacity.

2021 Honda Pilot Cargo Space


Honda Pilot

Toyota Highlander

Ford Explorer

Subaru Ascent

Behind 3ndRow (ft3)





With 3rd row folded (ft3)





With All Seats folded (ft3)





Pilot’s cargo space with all seats up is not a class leader, but once the seats are down, only the Toyota Highlander comes close to its massive 83.9 cubic feet of space. When all seats are up, the Ford Explorer puts up the best numbers. 

Infotainment System

One of the weakest links of the Honda Pilot is the frustrating-to-use central touchscreen, although the much-needed volume knob has been installed in the Pilot since 2019. The 5.0 inch LCD display in the base LX trim offers the basics, whereas EX and above trims step up to an 8.0 inch LCD touchscreen with SiriusXM satellite radio, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto, voice command, and other app functions.

2021 Honda Pilot Infotainment System

The new infotainment feels intuitive. Other features include Bluetooth connectivity, Wi-Fi connectivity, and Navigation support.

2021 Honda Pilot Exterior

The new 2021 Honda Pilot is set to retain the same new rounded look as its predecessor. The boxy design was utilized with them previously, and now they are sticking to the curved shape, which keeps the Pilot similar to the CR-V model. The Pilot also manages to borrow some other design pieces from its brethren. It takes LED accented headlights and three-spoke wheels from the Accord and the read-end wagon-like design from the CR-V. The model is refreshed now, and it is a big car. It will not go unnoticed when it is on the road. 

The car's new look is owed to newly shaped sheet metal and to the design, which captures how a modern SUV should look. It shares some of the characteristics with Odyssey. This car will most likely provide the new kind of design that Honda will use for most of its future cars. Since there are no major design updates expected for the 2021 model, this should stay the same.

2021 Honda Pilot Side View


Honda Pilot 

Toyota Highlander

Subaru Ascent

Ford Explorer

Curb Weight(lbs)




















Ground Clearance(Inches)










All the SUVs in this segment are equally large and massive in proportions. The Honda Pilot and the Toyota Highlander look a lot fresher, based on pure looks than the rivals in the segment. The Subaru has more off-road capabilities and Ford Explorer looks more like a proper SUV.

Exterior Features:

  • LED Headlights
  • Panoramic Sunroof
  • Hands-Free Powered Liftgate
  • Roof Rails

2021 Honda Pilot Safety

The Honda Pilot is one of the safest vehicles in its class. It utilizes a chassis developed from the ground up to provide exceptionally great ride comfort and confidence-inspiring handling and braking performance. The Honda Sensing suite of safety technology in the 2020 Honda Pilot includes standard forward-collision alert, adaptive cruise control, forward automatic emergency braking, active lane control, and road departure mitigation. If you jump up just one trim level from the base and get a blind-spot warning system. The same safety equipment and features are expected in the 2021 Honda Pilot.

Some of the standout safety features are:

  • Adaptive Cruise Control
  • Forward Collision Warning with Automatic Braking 
  • Road Departure Mitigation 
  • Lane Keeping Assist
  • Automatic High-Beam Assist

Moving up to higher trim levels gets you additional safety features like Blind Spot Monitoring, Front and Rear Parking Sensors, and Rear Cross Traffic Alert System. 

The 2020 Honda Pilot earned a five-star crash-test rating from the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA). The 2020 Honda Pilot model was also named a Top Safety Pick by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). The 2021 Honda Pilot is expected to have the same test scores and ratings. The Honda Pilot does exceptionally well against its rivals such as the Ford Explorer, Subaru Ascent, and the Toyota Highlander, in terms of safety against its competitors with top-notch safety features and technology.

2021 Honda Pilot Competition

Honda Pilot vs. Toyota Highlander

Toyota Highlander is a couple of thousand dollars more expensive than the Honda Pilot. The Highlander provides more standard safety features like forwarding collision warning, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, lane keeps assist, and adaptive cruise control.

2021 Toyota Highlander

But that’s as far as Highlander’s advantage goes. 2021 Honda pilot offers a more reliable engine, spacious cabin, and more cargo storage. All this and the reliability of Honda at a more affordable price make Honda pilot a better choice.

Honda Pilot vs. Ford Explorer

The Explorer has been one of people’s favorite 3 row SUVs ever since it came out in 1991, and the years have only made it better. There is no doubt that the Explorer is capable of carrying you and your family around in style and comfort.

2021 Ford Explorer

The Pilot does have a few advantages. A slightly lower starting price, better acceleration, and a slightly roomier cabin. Both cars provide plenty of safety and infotainment features. These are slight nitpicking, though. Both vehicles offer plenty at almost the same asking price. Choosing between the two comes down to personal preference.

2021 Honda Pilot Final Verdict

The Honda Pilot has been a prevalent model in the United States for a long time due to its fuel efficiency, driving quality and value for money features. Still, it has faced many competitions from its rivals. But due to its fantastic performance, value for money features, comfort, fuel efficiency, and outstanding driving experience, it has managed to stay on the top ad it is still one of the best mid-size crossover SUVs in its segment. And there’s not going to be any significant changes in the 2021 Honda Pilot, which will affect its performance and contain the same feature and comfort. It is a complete all-rounder package at an affordable price, and I don’t think anyone would regret buying it.