2003 Honda Pilot EX 3.5 from North America


Piece of junk!


The transmission went out.

Alternator went out.

Brake rotors keep warping.

Heater and A/C fan makes a loud noise.

3rd row seat latch broke.

General Comments:

This SUV is made very cheap and everything feels plastic.

Transmission problems!!!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 5th November, 2014

2003 Honda Pilot EX 3.5 from North America


Very poor quality for a Honda


Transmission went out at less than 100,000 miles even though it had been serviced regularly and the recall had been done on the transmission. A $2600 fix which I am not presently able to pay.

General Comments:

If you buy a Pilot, plan on selling it before the powertrain warranty runs out.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 24th April, 2008

8th Jan 2009, 14:04

My 2003 Pilot transmission also went out at just barely over 100,000 miles! I think this is a recurring problem for the 2003 model Pilot. I have read other places of others having the same problem.

24th Jan 2009, 03:36

What bothers me about the Pilot is that it is a front wheel drive SUV. And why should it be, especially for such a large size vehicle? You can get 4 wheel drive too, but it's not really 4 wheel drive as it is front wheel drive based with no hill descent reduction gears.

29th Mar 2009, 10:45

We bought a 2003 Pilot in June of 02. So far, the fan for the rear HVAC unit stopped working at 36000 miles. That is the only problem we have had in 123k miles. Scheduled maintenance is on the pricey side, but it is worth it. We will probably replace it with a new one in another 2 years or so...

2003 Honda Pilot EX V6 from North America


The Honda Pilot is an outstanding large SUV


Little problems have been an annoyance. The adjustable grills on the rear-seat heating/air conditioning vents always break, so that we could not adjust where the air goes. The silver plating on the interior door handles began to flake off at about 45,000 miles.

One design flaw surfaced quickly. We always had trouble figuring out how to set the DVD player so that the kids could watch DVDs in the back, using the wireless headphones, while we listened to the radio or CDs in the front using the front speakers. We could always eventually get there, but it was never easy. It drove us crazy, and typically required about 15-30 minutes of frustration to figure it out.

General Comments:

Overall, the Honda Pilot was excellent. It drove very nicely, and handled large numbers of passengers in relative comfort. We used it to haul kids everywhere, especially to sports events. We threw kids in the seats and had plenty of room in back for the baseball bags, snowboards, etc.

We just traded the Pilot in for a Civic Hybrid. Our taxi days are finished, as our kids are getting their own drivers licenses and vehicles.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 14th June, 2006

2003 Honda Pilot LX 3.5 V6 from North America


Decent, but over hyped


Eats front tires like crazy, had to replace the two front Bridgestone Dueller H/T's at 13000 miles.

Pulsation from brake pedal when braking, possibly warped rotors, dealer refuses to do anything about it, car still within warranty.

Air Conditioning rather weak for Florida, where car is driven.

Poor Gas mileage.

Interior plastics scratch easily.

General Comments:

With the exception of the brakes, the car has been reliable. However it is a heavy and big car for what we are using it for, and it shows whether it is tire wear, lean during turns, fuel consumption or braking.

Perhaps a Minivan or Station wagon would have done the same job more efficiently.

Dealership is typical of the MEGA dealerships (have to pray that nothing goes wrong, so that you don't deal with them).

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 30th December, 2005

24th Mar 2006, 09:59

I have a 2003 Honda Pilot. The brakes pulsating is the ABS. They are supposed to feel like that when they’re activated. Having said that, they should only pulsate when they’re activated (braking in a slick spot).

I’m very happy with mine, I’ve had no problems. Perhaps you should go to another Honda dealership with the problem? I have had excellent customer service at my dealership, so much so that I’m pretty biased to dealing with them.

I hesitate to go to any other vehicle make because I certainly haven’t experienced such professionalism at any other dealer. They practically do back flips for me!

18th Dec 2006, 21:33

Not many people mention poor quality of materials on the car's interior. I was suprised by dull, cheap plastics on the door trip of '07 LX. No velour seats etc. But then, it's "only" $30k.

29th Aug 2007, 10:03

I have a 2003 EX. I have to disagree with the gas mileage comment; Best in its class! The V6 engine is great on gas (for an SUV) without sacrificing power. I was shopping for an SUV in 2002 and almost bought a Durango! I've been a faithful Honda owner since 1989 so I leapt for joy when Honda introduced the Pilot. I ordered ours when we were overseas before I even got to touch one. Very happy. We have 57K miles on it now. Regular oil changes (the normal maintenence schedule), bought a set of new tires, and complied with the transmission and air bag recalls. That's it! Very reliable... definitely recommend.