Production-Ready Pilot Steers Course For Honda Lineup

A production-ready version of the highly anticipated Honda Pilot, an all-new Honda-designed and built SUV with 8-passenger theatre-style seating and the largest cargo carrying capacity in its class, debuted today at the 2002 New York International Auto Show. The Pilot will go on sale in June.

"The Pilot provides Honda with a world-class player in the SUV market," said Tom Elliott, executive vice president, American Honda Motor Co., Inc. "It combines the rugged versatility of traditional sport utilities with Honda's legendary dependability, quality and reliability. We expect it to set a new standard in the SUV segment, in much the same way the Odyssey has done in the minivan segment."

The Pilot features a 240-horsepower, 3.5-liter, VTEC V-6 engine and Honda's patented VTM-4™ (Variable Torque Management 4WD) advanced four-wheel drive system. The interior is the most versatile and functional in the class, with two rows of 60/40 split folding seats and up to 90.3 cubic feet of cargo space behind the front seats.

Designed for the "Ultimate Family Adventure", Honda engineers developed a number of family-friendly features including a multi-function center console with a large center storage bin, dedicated cell phone cradle, 12-volt power outlet, CD storage tray and removable cup holders. EX models feature a second-row child's activity tray that incorporates cup holders and a storage tray for pocket-size game machines, crayons, markers or fast food items, including a special holder for fast food sauce containers.

The Pilot employs highly efficient body crumple zones and sophisticated airbag technology, and is expected to achieve a Five Star safety rating for both frontal and side impacts. Additional measures have been taken to insure a high level of protection for third-row occupants in front, side and rear collisions. In keeping with Honda's long standing commitment to environmental leadership, the Pilot will be a Low Emissions Vehicle (LEV) with excellent fuel economy and is constructed with 90 percent recyclable components.

The Pilot will be available in two trim levels, LX and EX. LX models will come well-equipped with a host of standard equipment including air conditioning; cruise control; AM/FM stereo with in-dash CD player; driver and front passenger front and side airbags; and power windows, mirrors and door locks.

Pilot EX models add such features as aluminum alloy wheels; synchronized front and rear automatic climate control; a seven-speaker, high-powered stereo; and options including leather interior, a Honda Satellite-linked Navigation System or Honda's DVD Rear Entertainment System.

The Pilot will be built alongside the Acura MDX and Honda Odyssey by Honda Canada Mfg. in Alliston, Ontario. Pricing will range from $26,000 to $32,000 and sales of about 80,000 vehicles are expected during its first 12 months on the market.

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