The Ford Explorer and Jeep Grand Cherokee L need no introduction. And the Kia Telluride has already made its mark. In this context, the Honda Pilot must continue to evolve.
Price: from $48,340
In its Timberline version ($53,024), the Ford Explorer is among the Pilot TrailSport’s toughest competitors on the trails. Promising on paper, its platform does not deliver its full potential in terms of accreditation. The suspension is firm and snappy over rough pavement. The four-cylinder engine is sufficient for the task, but the slightly more fuel-efficient V6 offers smoother performance. Alas, the 10-speed box is languid compared to Honda’s offering. Inside, the presentation is pleasant, but the third-row seats are tailor-made for very young children. The Honda does better on this point.
Jeep Grand Cherokee L
Price: from $54,690
The fifth generation of this model has very strong similarities with its predecessor. This deliberate conservatism, however, hides an (almost) complete overhaul. The steering offers amazing road feel and remarkably well-dosed assistance. And what about the lower center of gravity by introducing wider tracks and the air suspension that is both more responsive and more sophisticated. All of these elements contribute to the confidence that you feel at the wheel of the Grand Cherokee L. For now, the V6 is the most sensible choice to animate it, but fuel consumption is high. More expensive to acquire than the Honda, the Jeep nevertheless offers a neater interior and good visibility. The trunk volume ranks in the good average of the category, as does the interior space. The Pilot’s cabin, however, is smarter.
Price: from $52,859
Hailed by critics, the Telluride (this also applies to the Hyundai Palisade) remains one of the darlings of the category. And for good reason. This South Korean utility appears more rewarding, plush and also more spacious than many of its competitors, including the Pilot. Compared to this one, the Telluride appears better equipped. And it also has better warranty coverage: 5 years/100,000 km compared to 3 years/60,000 km for the Honda. The Telluride doesn’t win all the points of comparison, however. The consumption of its V6 engine is just as high as that of the Pilot and, unlike the latter, it gets bogged down much more quickly on unmarked trails.