The Honda Pilot Barely Edges Out the Competition for Highest-Quality Seats

Automobile manufacturers are continually improving upon their product lines to create safe, affordable, and dependable vehicles. The Honda Pilot has some of the best seats in its class for an SUV and impresses customers with a comfortable driving experience.

When it comes to seating, car companies strive to meet both the driver’s and passengers’ needs. It’s not always about comfort. Consumers are looking for configurations that are both functional and adjustable

J.D. Power set out to find the highest-quality seats in the auto industry. The Honda Pilot was put to the test and narrowly managed to beat out the competition in the SUV market.

J.D. Power study of the highest-quality seats

The 2020 J.D. Power Seat Quality and Satisfaction Survey is an annual study conducted to provide automobile seating information to manufacturers and consumers alike. Responses are gathered from current year model owners to determine which vehicle has the highest-quality seats (not the most comfortable). Questions address the quality, design, and owner’s experience with the features of the seating system.

The responses received are analyzed and combined with specific data on every model sold in the United States. The data used includes seat configurations, seat belt systems, and available features of each trim package. The result provides valuable information to suppliers who, in turn, can determine the strengths and weaknesses of vehicle seating products.

Each model is also given a ranking based on the number of reported problems received per 100 vehicles currently in use. The higher the number of issues reported, the lower the quality of the seats. The lower the number of reported problems, the higher the rate. J.D. Power separated the vehicles by segments, including compact, midsize/large car, compact SUV, midsize/large SUV, truck/van, and luxury SUV.

How the Honda Pilot ranked in the J.D. Power study 

The Honda Pilot ranked first among midsize/large SUVs with a score of 7.5 reported problems per 100 vehicles. The versatile seats, manufactured by Bridgewater Interiors, can accommodate eight passengers comfortably. The second row consists of adjustable captain’s chairs, with the option of bench seating. 

The third row has foldable seating that easily converts into generous cargo space. Getting in and out of the rear seating area is simple with the push of a button on the one-touch second-row seats.

Plush leather improves the seat’s durability, allowing for all-weather comfort and easy cleanup. The Honda Pilot seats let owners customize their seating plans to meet the needs of everyday driving.

The vehicles with the highest-quality seats


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Coming in at a close second in the midsize/large SUV segment on the J.D. Power Survey is the Ford Edge. With seats made by Magna, the Edge received 7.7 reported problems per 100 vehicles. Bringing up the rear was the Nissan Pathfinder with a score of 8 reported problems per 100 on its seats manufactured by Adient.

The competition was fierce in this segment, with all the top three vehicles having a small margin of difference in reported problems. In other categories, the difference was much more extensive. In the compact SUV segment, the Chevy Equinox had 4.2 reported problems, while the third-place Hyundai Kona had 6.4 reported problems per 100 vehicles.

The spread was even larger in the truck/van segment, where the Bridgewater Interiors seats in the Ram 1500 saw 3.9 reported problems. The Chevy Silverado had a reported 6.8 reported issues with their seats from Lear Corporation.

J.D. Power said that vehicle owners “say the leading issue with seat quality is their seats have insufficient range of adjustment.” They also claim that the “vast majority of seat problems cited by vehicle owners are also design-related.”