The 2012 Honda Pilot SUV went on sale yesterday, with a new three-bar front grill replacing the rather awkward grill-within-a-grill design of the pre-facelifted model, which Honda also claims slightly improves the aerodynamics. That, as well as some minor friction-reducing enhancements to the drivetrain, gives two-wheel-drive 2012 Pilots a 2mpg fuel economy advantage over the outgoing 2011 model; four-wheel-drive models get a 1mpg increase. Other than that, the 3.5L i-VTEC V6 remains largely unchanged, putting out the same 250hp as in the 2011 Pilot.
The 2012 Honda Pilot is a half-inch longer overall, but all other dimensions, including all interior dimensions for all eight passengers, will remain the same. The interior itself has some minor tweaks, including Bluetooth hands-free phone operation and wireless music streaming, and 15GB of media storage. The EX-L model will also add a backup camera and a power tailgate.
Honda also says the 2012 Pilot will be quieter than before, with an acoustic sound-deadening windshield and revised rear suspension mounts to reduce NVH.
The 2012 Honda Pilot starts at a base price of $28,470. The top level Touring model's starting price is $39,220.