MANY Hondas have RECALLS or Service Bulletins about the seat frame issues: seat frames should not rock or be loose (can cause an accident AND would fail most all properly administered state-required safety inspections). If you have a Honda (any) with a seat frame "rocking" issue, contact your nearest Honda dealer; if they feign ignorance (most do!), perform your OWN "due diligence" on the internet & locate the recall or bulletin yourself: it's out there... good luck!
Jeff-Shumway dot com.
We live in Western Canada where the winters can be nasty, but that's not the only reason we bought our 2004 Honda Pilot.
Sure, I thought it was pricey at nearly 50K, but the 3.5L V6 and the 4 wheel drive, seating for 8 and a Honda badge; it was win win.
We bought our Pilot new in 2004 as an 04 model, and today in January 2011, it has 120.000 kilometres and still going strong.
I do have to admit that I'm a bit fanatical when comes to maintenance, so I try to use quality, whatever I use. One of the first things I did when I brought the Pilot home from the dealership I drained the break in oil, and filled the engine with synthetic right from new (10 Km on board); something the book will tell you not to do. To this day (6 years+), I drain the engine oil at or near 6000 kms, and only use 100% synthetic (mostly what's on sale...Quaker, Mobil, Pensoil, RedLine).
For the transmission, I did some research, and it seems that you should only stick with Honda oils; same goes for the rear diff. I did the tranny and diff twice so far, and it works very good.
At 100.000 Kms, I replaced the timing belt at the dealership, and the old belt still looked like new... anyways, for piece of mind, I had it done.
I did the brakes (myself) and installed ATE grooved rotors, and used their pads as well, they work very well (brakes done at 108.000 kms).
Also the spark plugs I replaced at around 100.000 kms (used Bosch +4 Platinum tip).
At 90.000 kms I replaced the poorly performing Bridgestone Dueller something (OEM) with GoodYears Fortera TripleTread, and they are fantastic for an all season tire (specially Canadian winters, right now we have around 3' of snow on the road, and I have no issues.
Early on, I replaced the battery as well, only because of my heavy duty stereo, so I installed an Optima.
I do have some small complaints though... the inside handle above driver; I get some water leaks inside... the other is the poor quality light bulbs, branded Stanley Honda seem to have sourced... so I replaced most bulbs with at least GE and PIAA for headlights. Also the plastics seem cheap and somewhat poorly assembled.
I suppose I could mention the fuel consumption. but it is an SUV that's large enough, and I work it also... so it's not bad at 500 Kms per tank, loaded.
If I would recommend this to a friend? Yes indeed. Last summer we bought a boat (14.6"), and the Pilot pulled it like nothing was there, that and camping gear and a large puppy... so there you have it. An excellent vehicle that it does the job well with room to spare.
So if you maintain it well by following a maintenance plan, use quality oils and fuel, your Pilot too should give you many years trouble free.