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When it comes to the sensibility and dependability conversation, Honda SUVs and cars are a constant. The automaker’s models have been a trusted option for used car shoppers for decades. However, not every model gets a glowing recommendation; the 2016 Honda Pilot is the marque’s only model on a recent list of used cars to reconsider. 

What is Honda’s most unreliable used SUV model?

The 2016 Honda Pilot is one of the marque’s only SUVs to earn a “Beware-of-the-Clunker” rating from Car Complaints. The third-generation model has hundreds of owner-reported complaints about engine, electrical, and fuel system problems. 

A used 2016 Honda Pilot SUV parks next to a lake.
2016 Honda Pilot | Honda

Moreover, the 2016 Pilot is the automaker’s only model, SUV or otherwise, to snag a spot on Consumer Reports’ list of “Used Cars to Avoid Buying.” According to CR’s evaluators, every model on the list exhibits “much-worse-than-average” reliability, as indicated by their Annual Auto Surveys and owner responses.  

What are the most common problems with the 2016 Honda Pilot?

Over 470 2016 Pilot drivers complained to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) about electrical issues at an average of 31,658 miles. For instance, many owners reported faulty horns and alarms that would activate without a prompt. 

In addition to electrical issues, over 300 owners complained about engine issues, including the Honda SUV’s idle-stop feature. As the Honda model approaches a red light, the idle-stop function cuts off the engine for fuel economy purposes. However, the vehicle may not restart, which could strand motorists in an unsafe location. 

What year is the most reliable Honda Pilot?

While the 2016 model might be less than dependable, the 2017 and 2018 Honda Pilots have far fewer owner complaints. For instance, the 2018 Pilot has 53 NHTSA complaints about electrical issues, nearly nine times fewer than the 2016 model. As a result, the 2018 Pilot is one of the most reliable options in the third-gen lineup. 

A 2016 Honda Pilot SUV parks next to a lake.
2016 Pilot | Honda

Is it worth it to buy a Honda Pilot?

A 2018 Honda Pilot has a fair value of around $21,575 with an average odometer reading of about 77,992 miles. While the Pilot offers practicality and seating for up to eight occupants, it might not be worth it compared to its closest competitors, like the 2018 Chevrolet Traverse

The Traverse offers a more powerful 310-horsepower 3.6L V6 and an extra 6.5 cubic feet of storage over the Pilot. Moreover, the Traverse LS has a fair value of $13,178, much less than a comparable Pilot.


Only 2 Honda Models Get Owners’ Picks for the Most Problematic Vehicles