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2023 Honda Pilot: Bigger, Newer for Generation Four

2023 Honda Pilot TrailSport
Photo: Honda
Honda also expands the Pilot's lineup with a new TrailSport version Automotive expert , Updated:
2023 Honda Pilot TrailSport - Profile
2023 Honda Pilot TrailSport - Profile
Photo: Honda

•    Honda today unveiled the fourth generation of its Pilot SUV.

•    The 2023 Honda Pilot comes in a new TrailSport version designed for off-road driving.

•    The SUV is again powered by Honda's 3.5L V6 engine.

•    The new model is bigger and offers more interior space than ever.

The Honda Pilot gets a makeover for 2023. The model is completely redesigned for this fourth generation, though it respects the spirit of its predecessors in every way even as it gets improvements in a number of areas. 

The styling
The Pilot's appearance has been updated to give the model more character, and so the styling is rugged, ready for adventure. It’s marked by a large vertical grille, a very horizontal beltline and flared fender flares. The A-pillars have been moved back slightly to give the model a sportier profile with a longer hood. 

In the process, the Pilot 2023 gains 88 mm in length. The wheelbase is also longer and the track is also wider, making the model more grounded than ever. Up front, the signature design continues development we’ve seen with other recent Honda models.  brand's latest products. The back end, however, is more unique to the Pilot. 

The lineup includes five models for 2023: Sport, EX-L, TrailSport, Touring and Black Edition. All of them use Honda's 3.5L V6 engine, which has received small adjustments this year. Those bestow it with five more hp for a total of 285, while torque remains at 262 lb-ft. A 10-speed auto is the transmission of choice, and all-wheel drive is standard, of course. 

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Find out here the price of Honda Pilot Trail Sport 2023 in Canada

2023 Honda Pilot TrailSport - Back
2023 Honda Pilot TrailSport - Back
Photo: Honda

TrailSport
Off-road ready models are in vogue and Honda joins the parade with this new Pilot. With more rugged styling and exclusive off-road features, including a new Torque Logic system, this is the version for those who enjoy getting off the pavement. 

The TrailSport is the only Pilot with an off-road suspension raised by 25 mm. This increases ground clearance but also improves approach and departure angles. The version also features unique stabilizer bars optimized for off-road articulation and comfort. Shock valve and spring settings are also exclusive to this trim level.

18-inch off-road tires and skid plates round out the important features of this new proposition.

2023 Honda Pilot TrailSport - On the trail
2023 Honda Pilot TrailSport - On the trail
Photo: Honda

Here are distinguishing features of the other Pilot trims for 2023: 

The Sport version is recognizable by its glossy black grille, chrome exhausts, black roof rails and 20-inch 7-spoke Shark Grey wheels. 

The EX-L variant adds a chrome strip to the grille, as well as 18-inch 5-spoke alloy wheels.

The Pilot Touring offers more upscale styling with a black grille and B-pillars, chrome accents on the exhaust system, and 20-inch alloy wheels.

As for the Black Edition, it adds black accents throughout, including the wheels, mirror caps, and Black Edition logos. 

The Pilot can also be delivered with the HPD package for those who want a model with even more character. Created in collaboration with Honda Performance Development (HPD), the package features 20-inch HPD matte black alloy wheels, fender flares, a side skid plate, and HPD decals.

On board
We can expect to find the quality that Honda has traditionally delivered. Then, because of the Pilot's new, larger proportions, we'll find an even more spacious cabin. 

The second-row seat, for example, can be removed (optional) and stored under the floor to increase cargo capacity. The additional space then gives a cargo capacity of 3,219 litres, the most ever offered by a Pilot. 

The second row offers 60 mm more legroom, plus reclining seatbacks. The third row also promises to be more comfortable with a 16 mm gain. 

Finally, in the front, the seats feature new stabilizing technology designed to reduce fatigue on long trips, for example.

The Pilot can once again be delivered with an 8-occupant interior configuration.

2023  Honda Pilot TrailSport - Interior
2023 Honda Pilot TrailSport - Interior
Photo: Honda

Technology and safety
No surprise, the offer is very comprehensive. The multimedia system is displayed on either a 7-inch or 9-inch touchscreen depending on the version. The equipment generally gets more sophisticated the higher up the range you go; for example, wireless connection for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto applications starts with the EX-L version. 

Users will find USB-C ports here and there, as well as a space that can accommodate two smartphones for charging. 

For safety, the Honda Sensing suite is of course present once again. 

We’ll have the opportunity to delve into the new 2023 Honda Pilot at greater length once we’ve had occasion to drive it.

2023 Honda Pilot TrailSport - Seating
2023 Honda Pilot TrailSport - Seating
Photo: Honda
2023 Honda Pilot TrailSport - Wheel
2023 Honda Pilot TrailSport - Wheel
Photo: Honda
2023 Honda Pilot Elite
2023 Honda Pilot Elite
Photo: Honda

From this author

Daniel Rufiange
Articles By
Daniel Rufiange
  • Over 17 years' experience as an automotive journalist
  • More than 75 test drives in the past year
  • Participation in over 250 new vehicle launches in the presence of the brand's technical specialists