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2009 Honda Pilot Pros and Cons at TrueDelta: 2009 Honda Pilot review by piotrg



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Summary: great ergonomics, comfort, stable ride, responsive performance, reliability.

Reviewed: 2009 Honda Pilot

4dr SUV 250-horsepower 3.5L V6 5-speed automatic AWD

2009 Honda Pilot Love Letter

OK, it is a box, but a very handsome box. I know that the styling doesn't imbue one with the feel of sleek machine, but in this case you really should not judge a book by its cover. Regardless of what my opinion is, how you will view the exterior is very personal, but the one aspect of the "boxy" look is that it allows to lots of room inside, and I mean lots.
My feelings are that the Pilot presents a very confident appearance, I like that.


The Pilot feels solid, it is responsive in both acceleration and steering without feeling clunky or too soft. In turns it maintains positive stabilty and inspires confidnece. I had the distinct honor of piloting my Pilot through several snowstorms. It handled the snow with ease. I never had reason to worry. It is as good in adverse weather as my 94 Jeep and that is quite a compliment.
The inside is very roomy and comfortable. The interior layout is intuitive and easy to manipulate. Seats are comfortable and supportive, maybe a bit too much. I have heard other Pilot owners complaining about cabin noise at highway speeds. I hove not experienced this problem. Although not comparable to a sedan, I found it to be fairly quiet and had no problems carrying on a conversation while traveling 70-75 mph.
The 8 person seating really means 8 people, adults, comfortabley. Even the 3rd row seats are wide enough for adults.
Another criticism of the Pilot that I read in some reviews was the quality and feel of the interior dash and door panels. I feel that the hard plastc is in character with the purpose and overall utility of the vehicle. The surfaces are tough enough for family use, easy to clean and care free. This is after all a utility vehicle.
The modest appearance of the Pilot belies the understated comfort of the interirior. I always felt that Honda did an excellent job in thinking out the small details like the 110v outlet in the center compartment, the multiple USB ports in both front and back, numerous shelves and stash places for all your stuff.
Finally there is the reliabilty thing. So far the Pilot has been flawless. It feels and drives like a new car. I look forward to many pleasant years of piloting.
Take it out for a drive and see how it feels.

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Response from Member5539

4:27 pm November 29, 2015

Everything said here good about the 2009 Pilot is basically true. I will add some negative facts which have been experienced by my daughter with her LX during the first 105,000 miles. Her Pilot subject to normal use, no trailer pulling, very little mountain driving. Full maintenance always carried out per vehicle reminder system.

Front suspension bushings failed prematurely and amplified brake vibration after warranty expired. 2-1/2 years later Honda acknowledges with refund for repair.

99,000 miles transmission cooler pipe in radiator fails suddenly, pumping trans fluid throughout cooling system, and leaving her stranded in traffic. Luckily, no coolant into trans but expensive repair to replace radiator. This was very common problem on 2005 models. No build correction on this issue?

Normal Honda recommended 105,000 mile maintenance very expensive. $3400.00 from Honda Dealer including rear shocks which had completely stopped working. Timing belt, pulley, tensioner, water pump, serpentine belt and tensioner, valve adjustment, filters, changed all fluids, wiper blades, etc.,etc. Mechanic reported exhaust valves were too tight and would have burned had they not been adjusted.

Most other vehicles today use a timing chain and hydraulic valve adjusters which means much less routine maintenance cost.

Yes, a great vehicle, but be prepared for the maintenance expense.


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