We're talking thousands of dollars more than last year.
The 2022 model year Honda Pilot SUV crossover is currently on sale and is mostly unchanged compared to last year. Design-wise, that is. What's significantly different is the starting price. The 2022 Pilot carries a base price of $39,060, or $40,285 with destination. Last year, the base price was $32,250. Do the math and you'll see that's a $6,810 difference. What's going on here? It's actually very simple.
A closer examination of the official website reveals that both the LX and EX trims have been discontinued. Without those cheaper versions, the price goes up. The new trim lineup is as follows: EX-L, Special Edition ($39,660), Touring ($43,620), Elite ($49,120), and Black Edition ($50,620).
There's only a $600 difference between the EX-L and Special Edition but the price goes up significantly more after that. Hopefully a less expensive and still well-equipped base model will happen because spending more than $40k on a family crossover seems like too much of a stretch for many customers.
On the plus side, the EX-L trim is just $400 more than last year and comes with a larger touchscreen and improved LED headlights. Now in its third generation, the popular and reliable Pilot is beginning to show its age compared to newer rivals like the Toyota Highlander, Hyundai Santa Fe, and Subaru Ascent.
Those determined for a crossover whose third row can be inhabited comfortably by children and most fully grown adults should look no further than the hot-selling Kia Telluride and its equally popular sister ship, the Hyundai Palisade. The Pilot has a third row as well which Honda proudly notes offers more legroom than either of those South Korean competitors.
Then again, the Telluride and Palisade both start at around $32,000. So yeah, we find it odd that Honda eliminated its two cheapest Pilot trims for the upcoming model year. Hopefully, a repackaged and competitively priced base model will still happen.
UPDATE: A Honda spokesperson reached out to CarBuzz and confirmed that a new Pilot base trim will arrive for model year 2022. An exact launch date nor pricing are currently available but we'll provide an update once we have the details.