Vehicle Overview

Honda launched the midsize Pilot sport utility vehicle for 2003, billing it as "not too big, not too small." Larger than the company's compact CR-V and youth-focused Element, the Pilot replaced Honda's Passport.

New for 2005 was a 255-horsepower V-6 that operated via a drive-by-wire throttle system. Upper gear ratios in the five-speed-automatic transmission were modified to yield smoother transitions. All trim levels added a tire-pressure-monitoring system.

More standard features, including a Maintenance Minder and three-row side curtain-type airbags, go into 2006 models. For the first time, a two-wheel-drive version with Variable Cylinder Management is available. The VCM system can automatically switch the Pilot's 3.5-liter V-6 between six- and three-cylinder modes to improve fuel economy.

Under new Society of Automotive Engineers testing standards, Honda's V-6 engine is now rated at 244 hp and 240 pounds-feet of torque. Actual performance is the same.

Three versions are available: LX, EX and top-of-the-line EX-L. Honda's Vehicle Stability Assist electronic stability system and XM Satellite Radio are standard on the EX-L. A new rear camera is integrated into models with the navigation system.

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    Replacing the Battery
    If the indicator does not come on when the button is pressed, replace the battery. Battery type: CR1616 1. Unscrew the cover with a small Phillipshead screwdriver. Press a button to pry open ...

    Audio System Lighting
    You can use the instrument panel brightness control knob to adjust the illumination of the audio system. The audio system illuminates when the parking lights are on, even if the radio is turne ...

    Driving
    This section gives you tips on starting the engine under various conditions, and how to operate the manual and automatic transmissions. It also includes important information on parking your ...