It's Honda's turn to play the nostalgia card.
Earlier this year, rumors emerged that Honda was planning to revive the 'Passport' name for a new two-row crossover. The new Passport would sit between the CR-V and Pilot in Honda's lineup, rivaling models like the Ford Edge and Hyundai Santa Fe. Now, we've learned that those rumors were, in fact, true with Honda teasing a video and a pair of images of the new Passport. The 2019 Passport will be revealed on November 27 at the 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show along with a live stream on Honda's YouTube channel.
What we know so far about the new Passport is limited. It "will be positioned between CR-V and Pilot in Honda's light-truck lineup," though the brief teaser makes it seem closer to the Pilot in size. The video teaser is meant to show the Passport's "on- and off-road capabilities," so it does have the potential to be more rugged than the CR-V or Pilot.
The old Passport was essentially a rebadged Isuzu Rodeo, but this one will be built in-house at Honda's Lincoln, Alabama plant. With the return of the Chevy Blazer and Ford Bronco, automakers are scrambling to cash in on the nostalgia card by reviving old model names. Although we do find it interesting Honda would choose to bring back an SUV that was merely a rebadged Isuzu.
It could be worse, at least Honda didn't do what Mitsubishi did with the Eclipse Cross and bring an old sports car name back from the dead to use on a crossover. We can almost picture the collective angry stares from enthusiasts who would freak out at the idea of a Prelude or S2000 crossover revival. Engine options remain a mystery but we are holding out hope that the new Passport could come with some serious power. Honda seems to be marketing this as more of an off-road oriented crossover but we'll have to wait to see it in person in LA.
"The new Passport is a more personal, powerful and off-road-capable SUV that hits the sweet spot between daily driving comfort and weekend off-road, all-weather adventure capability," said Henio Arcangeli, Jr., senior vice president of American Honda Motor Co., Inc. & General Manager, Honda Division. "With customer demand for SUVs continuing to grow, the new adventure-ready Passport is going to further solidify our lineup, attracting new buyers and keeping existing customers in the Honda family."