The new Honda Passport ticks all the right boxes and will surely do well for the Japanese car company. Even so, allow us to guide you in the selection process.
It’s still weird to think that, up until a few weeks ago, if you were shopping a Honda SUV larger than a CR-V with room for five and loads of gear that you would not be satisfied with the Honda Pilot. Fact of the matter is that, like all new car buyers, we want options and many of them. The 2019 Honda Passport is that option.
The fact that Honda did not offer a 5-seater, two row midsize SUV could understandably send customers across the street to a competing car brand. With wisdom reflecting two decades of building utility vehicles, Honda trimmed the Pilot’s large butt, removed the third row of seats and called it a day, or Passport.
Will this be enough to convince consumers to return to the other side of the street and forget about the new Hyundai Santa Fe, Ford Edge, Chevrolet Blazer, Nissan Murano and Jeep Grand Cherokee that were being considered? The answer, in our opinion, is a resounding yes.
While some of these competitors may offer a little something extra over what the 2019 Honda Passport has on tap, none provide all of the truly important elements under one roof as does the Honda.
Honda Passport Comparison Tests
We are convinced that the Passport is the right choice but if you need more pointers, read the following to find out if the it’s the right SUV for you.
Why you should buy a 2019 Honda Passport
1) The new Honda Passport is in fact based on the Pilot which means it will be reliable, hold its value and keep ownerships costs at a reasonable level.
2) The 3.5-litre V6 is plenty powerful and capable. It’ll allow the owner to tow up to 5,000 lbs and keep life moving along briskly if such is the desire.
3) The Passport shares its wheelbase with the Pilot meaning that the cabin is, in no uncertain terms, enormous. Although 15cm shorter overall, its trunk is equally large and capable of holding over 1,400 litres of stuff.
4) Its starting price may be elevated compared to some competitors however the level of standard features is complete enough to make it a value leader.
5) Honda’s made an effort to physically distinguish the Passport from the Pilot. In fact, the Passport looks rugged and very truck-like compared to the Pilot.
Why you should not buy a 2019 Honda Passport
1) Our only mild concern reliability-wise is the presence of the standard for all 9-speed automatic transmission. Although it performed well on drive day, we’re not sure how it’ll do in the medium and long run.
2) Honda product planning forces the buyer up the trim echelon if real colours are wanted by the buyer. There’s a blue at the $45,590 EX-L and if you want the lovely red hue, it is only available with the $48,990 Touring version.
3) At $41,990, the base Passport Sport is, as we noted, more expensive than some of its competition. If AWD is not on your want-list nor are 20-inch wheels, you’ll have to consider a Ford Edge SE or Chevy Blazer 2.5L, for example, which retail for $6,000 to $7,000 less.
On a scale of whether or not you should buy a new 2019 Honda Passport, you simply need to drive it and you will be convinced. If you’re familiar with the way Honda products drive, you’ll be enamoured with the Passport’s comfort and handling levels. If you’ve never driven a Honda but have any of the other aforementioned SUVs, we promise you won’t be disappointed.
As a tip, the better purchases are at each extremity – in other words, the EX-L offers too few mandatory extra features for the price jump. The Sport is well priced and equipped and if you want everything, the Touring’s practically a bargain.