2016 Honda Pilot - Audio and Connectivity

Honda's latest thinking for advanced, family-friendly technology is embodied in the new Pilot. New available features include an 8-inch capacitive touchscreen Display Audio1 connectivity interface with Android operating system and an all-new Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation System™ developed in cooperation with the experts at Garmin®.2 The Pilot's Display Audio system also enables simplified smartphone connectivity. A 9-inch, ceiling-mounted Rear Entertainment System with DVD, CD and, in Touring and Elite trims, Blu-ray™ disc capability is available, and maximum family connectivity is enabled by an expanded array of ports and plugs for every imaginable electronic device, including up to five USB ports, four with 2.5-amp charging capacity.

New Available Pilot Audio and Connectivity Features

  • 8-inch touchscreen Display Audio system with Android operating system
  • New-generation "2.0" SiriusXM® Radio3
  • Pandora®4 interface
  • SMS Text Message function
  • HondaLink™ connected-car system5
  • Blu-ray™ (Touring, Elite)/DVD/CD Rear Entertainment System (RES)

Pilot LX Audio
The Pilot LX has a standard 200-watt AM/FM radio audio system with seven speakers including a subwoofer and a USB port6 to allow the connection of other compatible devices. The system can play Pandora content from a compatible device via the USB port, or wirelessly, via Bluetooth® HandsFreeLink®.7 The audio system has a 5-inch (diagonal) display screen and conventional knobs and buttons to control the various functions. A CD player is available as a dealer-installed option.

8-Inch Display Audio Touchscreen
The new Display Audio system standard in the 2016 Pilot EX, EX-L, Touring and Elite is the most advanced system ever offered by Honda. The intuitive and easy-to-use 8-inch touchscreen lets you swipe, tap and pinch – just like on a tablet or smartphone – to control the vehicle's audio system, display settings and other advanced features. On the EX and EX-L trims, the 225-watt audio system has seven speakers including a subwoofer. The Touring and Elite trims get a 540-watt system with 10 speakers including a subwoofer.

Pilot offers AM/FM, SiriusXM, HondaLink content and HD Radio.8 A compact disc player is now offered as a dealer-installed option. Pilot trims with the Rear Entertainment System (RES) can play CDs in the same drive that plays DVDs and in Touring and Elite trims, Blu Ray media as well.

The EX-L with Navigation, and the Touring and Elite include Display Audio with a fully integrated and fully featured Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation System™ with continuously updated traffic information.

Icons resembling smartphone apps are displayed on the high-definition, capacitive touchscreen, making the interface intuitive and easy to use. Interfaces for  standard internet-sourced music and media options, such as Pandora® can be displaced and controlled on the Display Audio interface, with the ability to create personalized stations, tap to "like" songs, and view album artwork directly from the touchscreen. Display Audio also integrates touch operation of the menu and return functions for a modern and sleek look.

SiriusXM® Radio
A new generation 2.0/3.0 version of SiriusXM® Radio is a standard feature in the EX and above trims, and it provides more than 165 channels of digital programming with near CD-quality sound. The SiriusXM® signal is beamed from two broadcast satellites positioned in geostationary orbit above Earth. The beams from these two broadcast satellites combine to span the entire continental United States and some of Canada.

SiriusXM® Radio programming includes channels devoted to music, sports, talk, traffic, weather, children's programming and entertainment. When the audio system plays SiriusXM® Radio, the audio system displays the current category, station, song title or artist's name.

This latest generation of SiriusXM includes many all new features, including pause, fast forward and rewind. There is also an instant replay feature and the ability to hear all songs from the beginning on preset channels. The new Sports Flash feature lets you listen to your favorite (non-sports) programming, and if your favorite team makes a big play in a live game that is being broadcast on SiriusXM, you will receive an on-screen alert. With a touch of a soft-key you can hear up to 30 seconds of audio before and including the big play.

Pandora® Compatibility
Pilot trims EX and above are designed to provide a convenient interface for Pandora®, a free music service that allows users to open an account online and create up to 100 personalized internet "radio stations" that are based on favorite songs or artists. Users can choose among their stations and listen via computer, and can also download a free smartphone Pandora® app, which allows users listen to the same list of personalized stations via their compatible phone. Although Pandora® is free, phone data charges apply.

An iPhone or compatible Android phones can be connected wirelessly, using Bluetooth® HandsFreeLink®. To use Pandora®, the Pandora app is launched on a compatible connected smartphone and the vehicle's audio source is set to Pandora®. The audio screen shows Pandora® information and album art, and the audio controls allow listeners to choose from among existing stations, pause, resume, skip forward, and mark a track with "Like" or "Dislike" ratings. Some functionality of the Pandora® app is locked out when using the Pilot's Pandora® interface.

The Display Audio system with next generation HondaLink allows the customer's digital lifestyle to seamlessly integrate with the car and provides access to a world of cloud-based information. The all-new application-based platform connects customers to online content both inside and outside the car. The connection between the system and the user's smartphone is made through the Bluetooth® HandsFreeLink® wireless interface. A HondaLink phone app provides convenient access for many services including location searches, local weather, messaging, Maintenance Minder alerts, service scheduling by phone, and access to the vehicle Owners Guide.

HondaLink Assist
An additional new feature on Pilot EX and above is HondaLink Assist9, which can help request emergency assistance for drivers. If a compatible phone is paired through Bluetooth® HandsFreeLink®, there is a cellular connection and an airbag deployment sensor is triggered, the system is designed to automatically attempt to notify an operator, report the car's current location, and allow occupants to talk directly to the operator. The operator can then contact emergency services if needed.

Siri Eyes Free
Adding another new premium feature, Pilot EX and above integrate Apple's Siri Eyes Free mode. Compatible iPhone® users will be able to operate Siri through familiar voice commands by pressing and holding the TALK button on the steering wheel when their iPhone is paired via Bluetooth®. Using Eyes Free mode, Siri takes hands-free functionality even further and helps to minimize potential distractions by keeping the iOS device's screen from lighting up.

Owners can direct Siri to perform a number of specific tasks while they keep their eyes on the road and their hands on the wheel. Capabilities include:

  • Send text messages and e-mails
  • Read incoming text messages and emails
  • Set up calendar entries, reminders, and alarms
  • Check the weather
  • Turn-by-turn voice navigation (when the audio system is set to Bluetooth® Audio or iPod mode)
  • Sports scores and stock quotes

SMS Text Messaging
The Pilot EX and above trims have a standard SMS text message function that can read incoming texts aloud over the audio system, and allow the driver to reply with any of six factory preset messages. The system works with SMS-capable cell phones that have an active data plan and the Message Access Profile (MAP), such as the Blackberry, Droid X and others. Apple iPhone models do not support this feature, but Siri Eyes Free Mode (iPhone 5 and 6 at time of launch) offers the ability to initiate, hear and respond to text messages via voice commands.
Once a compatible phone is paired with the Pilot's Bluetooth® HandsFreeLink® system, the text messaging function is enabled. When the phone receives a text message, an alert appears on the audio touchscreen. Using the touchscreen, the driver can choose to have the message read aloud, can select among the preset reply choices, or can call the sender – all without touching the phone.
To help avoid driver distraction, the text of the incoming message is not displayed on screen unless the transmission is in Park.
Available factory preset text replies:

  • Talk to you later, I'm driving.
  • I'm on my way.
  • I'm running late.
  • OK
  • Yes
  • No

Bluetooth® HandsFreeLink®
The Bluetooth® HandsFreeLink® interface is designed to offer hands-free operation for many Bluetooth®-enabled mobile telephones. Standard on all Pilot models, the system wirelessly connects the driver's cell phone to the vehicle's audio system. This allows the driver to make or answer cell phone calls without removing hands from the steering wheel. The system is compatible with Bluetooth®-enabled cell phones that have the Hands Free Profile (HFP). A list of compatible phones can be found at handsfreelink.com or honda.com.

Bluetooth® HandsFreeLink® enables audio files to be played through the vehicle's audio system wirelessly with a feature called Bluetooth® Audio. If an audio compatible device is paired it will be added as an auxiliary source on the audio screen. This allows the Bluetooth® device's media to be played wirelessly by the audio system. Cell phone devices that support the Advanced Audio Distribution Profile (A2DP) and Audio Video Remote Control Profile (AVRCP) 1.3 allow the display of metadata for artist, album and track name on the audio screen. The vehicle's audio controls for "skip forward" and "skip backward" allow for navigation from track to track.

Bluetooth® HandsFreeLink® is designed for easy use. After the driver completes a simple one-time "pairing" process to link the cell phone with the vehicle, Bluetooth® HandsFreeLink® can communicate wirelessly and securely with the driver's cell phone when the phone is within about 33 feet of the vehicle. Once the driver enters the vehicle, the phone can be stored in a pocket, briefcase, purse or a storage bin inside the vehicle's cabin as the call transfers information through the wireless telephone interface. Certain compatible cell phones can also transfer the cellular phonebook into the vehicle through the Bluetooth® HandsFreeLink® system. After the cellular phonebook is transferred, calls can be made by making selections from the registered phonebook on the Pilot's display screen.

  • Pressing the steering wheel-mounted "Pick up" button answers the call and mutes the audio system
  • The caller is heard through the audio-system speakers
  • An overhead microphone picks up the driver's voice while minimizing background noise and echoing
  • Numbers with voice tags may be stored in the system's memory
  • To make a hands-free call, the driver first activates the system using the steering wheel-mounted fingertip controls, then speaks a preset voice tag
  • Numbers can also be dialed by speaking the telephone number
  • Automatic import of phone book and call history with compatible phones
  • Up to six different compatible mobile phones can be paired with the Bluetooth® HandsFreeLink® system

Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation System with Voice Recognition and Honda HD Digital Traffic
Standard on the Pilot EX-L Navi, Touring and Elite, the integrated Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation System uses GPS technology to provide drivers with turn-by-turn guidance to their chosen destination. This all-new navigation system, developed in cooperation with Garmin, offers many improvements, including enhanced graphics, live search, speed limit display, customized vehicle icons, 3D buildings and terrain, and more. The system includes free map database updates for up to 5 years (initial purchase plus one yearly update each year for 4 years). The system includes the HD Digital Traffic feature, which alerts the driver to current traffic conditions and can display alternate routes around gridlock. It features expanded coverage including many surface streets within the U.S., allowing the driver to choose faster, less congested routes. HD Digital Traffic is subscription-free.

The navigation system can be controlled by voice or through the 8-inch electrostatic touch-screen audio display utilizing its tap, pinch and swipe functionality. The voice-activation system can respond to more casual command phrases that require less user familiarization, in addition to the previous capability of being able to understand spoken city and street names. For example, a voice request for "Radio 98.3 FM" can now be spoken in approximately a dozen different ways ranging from "change the radio station to 98.3" to "98.3 FM." This logic applies to audio functionality of the audio/information screen. The navigation system can also be controlled by voice with conventional navigation commands like, "Find nearest Chinese restaurant" or "find nearest ATM."

The audio system is automatically muted when the "Talk" button is pressed. The voice-recognition technology allows the driver to simply speak city and street names aloud, and the system responds by displaying the matches available in the database. Points of interest on the map – such as restaurants or grocery stores – can be displayed with brand logo icons or you can have the system provide turn-by-turn navigation, all by voice command. The massive point-of-interest (POI) database includes telephone numbers that can be dialed by using the Bluetooth® HandsFreeLink® system when the driver's cellular telephone is connected to the system.

The Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation System uses GPS in combination with detailed information from the vehicle's mapping system to pinpoint the vehicle's location and to provide a host of useful mapping and route guidance features. The system's antenna receives positioning information from a network of 24 global positioning satellites. If the antenna is obstructed by a tunnel, a parking garage or a tall building, an internal gyroscopic system and a speed sensor track the location of the vehicle so that the map information remains current and reliable. The vehicle clock is independently controlled by GPS data, so when time zones are crossed while driving, the clock will automatically set itself to the current time.

Rear Entertainment System (EX-L RES, Touring and Elite)
The Pilot's state-of-the-art, factory-integrated Rear Entertainment System (RES) features a 9-inch wide VGA display that swings down from the ceiling for easy viewing with low glare, better second- and third-row viewing and reduced likelihood of motion sickness versus headrest-mounted units. The system includes a High Definition Multimedia Interface (HDMI) port for attaching high-definition players, digital TV devices such as Apple TV or Roku, compatible tablets and certain gaming consoles, along with standard composite and audio inputs. A 115-volt power outlet rated for devices up to 150 watts is included, along with a pair of 2.5-watt USB ports. The system's disc player is located in the center stack of the instrument panel, easily accessible by either the driver or front passenger. In the Pilot EX-L RES, the system can play CDs and DVDs. In the Touring and Elite trims, the system can also play Blu-ray™ discs.

The Rear Entertainment System can play audio via the Pilot's speaker system, or through a pair of included wireless headphones. Two additional headphone jacks are also provided.

USB Ports and Power Outlets
In LX trims, 12-volt power outlet is positioned above the phone pocket at the base of the center stack, with another 12-volt power outlet, a 1.5-amp USB port and auxiliary jack positioned inside of the center console. EX and above trims retain the 12-volt power outlets, while the USB port in the console is upgraded to 2.5 amps, and 1.5-amp and 2.5-amp USB ports are added above the phone pocket at the base of the center stack and all allow connectivity with the vehicle's audio system, including audio display. Touring and Elite trims add a pair of 2.5-amp USB charging ports at the rear of the center console for use by the second-row passengers.

Audio and Connectivity Features

Features LX EX EX-L Touring Elite
200-Watt AM/FM Audio System with 7 Speakers (incl. subwoofer)        
225-Watt AM/FM Audio System with 7 Speakers (incl. subwoofer)      
540-Watt AM/FM Audio System with 10 Speakers (incl. subwoofer)      
5" LCD Screen        
8" Display Audio with High-Resolution WVGA (800x480) Electrostatic Color Touch-Screen and Customizable Feature Settings  
Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation System™ with Voice Recognition and Honda HD Digital Traffic     Navi only
HondaLink® Next Generation  
HD Radio™        
SiriusXM® Radio  
Pandora® Compatibility
Bluetooth® Streaming Audio
Display Audio Interface  
USB Audio Interface 1 3 3 5 5
MP3/Auxiliary Input Jack 1 1 1 1 1
HDMI (RES input)     1 with RES 1 1
115V AC     1 with RES 1 1
12V DC 2 3 3 3 3
MP3/Windows Media® Audio (WMA) Playback Capability
Radio Data System (RDS)
Speed-Sensitive Volume Control (SVC)
Bluetooth® HandsFreeLink®
SMS Text Message Function
HondaLink Assist (when paired with compatible phone)  
Rear Entertainment System (Blu-ray™/DVD/CD)      
Rear Entertainment System (DVD/CD)     RES only    

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1 The Display Audio Interface is used for direct connection to and streaming from some current [Apple/Android] smartphones. For safety reasons, always launch HondaLink applications or perform any other operation on your phone only when the vehicle is safely parked. State or local laws may limit use of texting feature, and Assist functions may be terminated without notice. Your wireless carrier's rate plans apply. Please see HondaLink terms and conditions for details.

2 The Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation System™ is available on EX-L and above models in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico. (Honda HD Digital Traffic service only available in the United States, except Alaska).

3 SiriusXM services require a subscription after any trial period. If you decide to continue your SiriusXM service at the end of your trial subscription, the plan you choose will automatically renew and bill at then-current rates until you call SiriusXM at 1-866-635-2349 to cancel. See our Customer Agreement for complete terms at www.siriusxm.com. Fees and programming subject to change. SiriusXM satellite service is available only to those at least 18 years and older in the 48 contiguous United States and D.C. ©2015 SiriusXM Radio Inc. Sirius, XM and all related marks and logos are trademarks of SiriusXM Radio Inc.

4 Pandora, the Pandora logo, and the Pandora trade dress are trademarks or registered trademarks of Pandora Media, Inc. Used with permission. Compatible with select smartphones. See: www.pandora.com/everywhere/mobile. Not all devices compatible with USB connection. Your wireless carrier's rate plans apply.

5 Honda reserves the right to terminate HondaLink Assist services at any time or for any reason, and in the future may not be able to provide services due to changes in or obsolescence of technology integral to the service or changes in government regulation.

6 The USB Audio Interface is used for direct connection to and control of some current digital audio players and other USB devices that contain MP3, WMA or AAC music files. Some USB devices with security software and digital rights-protected files may not work.

7 The Bluetooth® word mark and logos are owned by the Bluetooth SIG, Inc., and any use of such marks by Honda Motor Co., Ltd., is under license.

8 HD Radio is a proprietary trademark of iBiquity Digital Corporation.

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