Any Input on These Two Vehicles?

Updated on December 03, 2009
K.D. asks from Cumming, GA
15 answers

Ok, so the transmission on my Honda Odyssey went out, and with 200,000 miles on it we decided not to fix it and get a new car. We have narrowed it down to the '05-'06 Nissan Pathfinder, and '04-'06 Honda Pilot. Anyone who could share their experience with these 2 models would be great. We've got to buy soon, and I don't know anyone that's had either.

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So What Happened?

Well, we test drove both, and I really loved the pilot just like everyone else. But we couldn't ( at this time) justify the extra money it would take to buy a comparable Pilot. We found a really great deal on a Pathfinder that made it really easy for us. It's not a Pilot, but it is VERY sporty, which I love and it has a sunroof- I've always wanted a car with a sunroof. Anyway, thanks all for the input.

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answers from Greensboro on

Never driven a Pathfinder, but I bought a used '03 Pilot in '07 just before my twin boys were born. LOVE IT!! Great space. Very reliable. Comfortable. I have 107000 miles on it and plan to drive it for as long as I can. Then, will probably do another Pilot. Hope that helps.

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answers from Knoxville on

We have an '05 Pilot and an '09 Pilot (yeah, we love the Pilot THAT much!) It's a wonderful car for so many reasons. Plenty of space for people to sit, and great storage capacity when you have the third row folded down. Our "09 had the LATCH in all three seats in the middle and back rows, but our '05 only has them on the sides, so you might want to see which year they began putting them in all three because that's really handy if you have two kids and want to put one in the middle. If you put both your kids by the window, then of course, you don't need to worry about that!

So, it's been a great car and we have really loved having it! I vote Pilot for you guys!



answers from Nashville on

Go to to see a comparison. I like that site a lot.



answers from Houston on

The last time we purchased a vehicle was 2006. We had narrowed it down to either the Honda Odyssey or the Honda Pilot. I chose the Pilot and have never regretted my decision. It holds 8 people (counting the driver), has all the safety features of the Honda line, and is easy on gas. We looked at the Nissan, Toyota, Ford and Chevy lines before narrowing it down. To me, the Pilot felt a bit more roomy than the Nissan and handled better than the Toyota. My husband and I have 2 teenagers and the Pilot fits well with our lifestyle - work commute, sports, beach, trips, etc.



answers from Fayetteville on

My friend has a Honda Pilot. It's awesome! She and her family love their vehicle. They constantly use it with their two kids and sometimes travel with their big dog (lab). There's plenty of room and rides smoothly. It's a very comfortable vehicle. Good luck finding one that suits your growing family!



answers from Fayetteville on

I have an 06 Honda Pilot....I love it. A few things I would have done differently with kids - opt for the leather seats. The Fabric upholstery literally stains with water even though it has been cleaned several looks horrible. I would have also gone ahead and gotten the DVD system installed upon purchase. That is hind sight.

You will find that the cargo space with the third row seat up and in use is much smaller than the cargo space in your van. However, we have a roof top carrier that we use for long trips anyway.

I love the way it drives and handles. Gas Mileage is pretty good... when we lived in NC/GA where it is flat I was getting 24 in the city and close to 28 on interstate trips. Now we live in a little more hilly, mountainey region and my gas mileage has dropped significantly around home on short trips.

I also opted for the 06 model over the previous years b/c side curtain airbags all the way to the 3rd seat are standard in an '06.

Good luck as you choose!



answers from Raleigh on

My sister-in-law has the Honda Pilot. I think it is an '06. They have really enjoyed it. I have not heard of any problems with the vehicle.



answers from Nashville on

Pilot Pilot Pilot Pilot Pilot!!!!!

My dad owns one and I love it!!! The model years you are looking at have a good body size. We just purchased a Toyota Highlander (hubby loves toyotas) and if it wasn't for his love of toyotas I would have gotten a pilot. We have a 6 and 3 year old and have plenty of room.

I haven't had luck with Nissans. During my teenage years and early twenties Nissan was all I would own, but something happened and the last two Nissans I've had have been lemons and I have bought the cars new not used. So my opinion of Nissan went down a few notches.

I think the Pilot may have more room too and you may have an option for a third row seat which comes in handy if you neet to tote other children. Other than that the third row stays down and you have lots of room.

Good luck



answers from Nashville on

try Consumer Research



answers from Chattanooga on

I'll be the sole voice for the Pathfinder :) I've got a 2006 model, and have really enjoyed it. It's got plenty of room for us, really have no complaints to speak of. My husband has his eye on a Toyota Sequoia because of the larger backseat (he's 6'4", so I understand, but he NEVER rides back there, so what difference does it makes?!?!). This is my second Nissan, and I've had good luck with both. Good luck with your choice!



answers from Jacksonville on

A friend just sold their pilot in your age range because they needed more cargo room. They have five kids, so it seated everyone, but then there wasn't much of any room for luggage, and they'd have to borrow a cargo thing to go on top. Other than that, they loved it. They bought an odyssey to replace it.



answers from Wilmington on

I agree with the Pilot people. I just traded my 2007 Pilot in for a 2010 yesterday. I have never had a single problem with the '07, and look forward to to the same with my 2010. They have plenty of room for whatever you need to lug around-strollers, groceries, kids, etc. I test drove a Pathfinder before I got the '07, and I thought the ride in it was not as comfortable and there was not as much room in the back seat as the Pilot. I should add that I REALLY wanted the Pathfinder before I went test driving, and was disappointed when I found I didn't like it as well. Good Luck!



answers from Memphis on

I have an 08 Honda Pilot and I LOVE it. I feel it hugs the road, and I looked in the Baby Consumer Reports for 07 and Honda Pilot ranked #1 for small SUV. I was used to driving a little car so I test drove a couple of SUV's and I never felt they hugged the road like the Pilot.

About the Pathfinder... I think there is a safety issue there. I think they roll over too easily. I had a couple of friends flip them in college. (I am sure it had to do with their driving too, but I steered away from that one because of that.)

When I was buying my 08 pilot there was a couple who had had an 06 and they were gettning another pilot. They assured me I would love it. I feel it was a good purchase. We also got a GREAT trade in value on my old car from the Honda place. My only gripe about the pilot is that the lights don't come on automatically... they go off automatically, but I don't know why they didn't make them come on by themselves. That seems like it would be an easy improvement. (I was used to that in my previous vehicle.)

Hope this helps.



answers from Charlotte on

Hey K.. We had the 2005 Pathfinder and it was hard with 2 small kids. Just maneuvering in a out w/ my newborn and 2 year old was pretty difficult. Parking spaces are so narrow these days that doors that swing out are hard to manage w/ small kids. And when you're trying to get kids into car seats, or especially when trying to remove an infant carrier from the base in the car, I found it to be often frustrating. I felt like I had to turn my children on their sides (while buckled in the infant carrier) just to be able to squeeze them through the space available when opening the door as wide as I could, trying not to bang up the car beside me. (Are you just looking at SUVs? I swore I would never drive a minivan, and would always drive an SUV, until we rented one while on vacation. They are MADE for people w/ young children. I swallowed my pride, and ended up loving mine.) Additionally, there were things about the Pathfinder that were just not well made: the seat cushions are *very* hard (I thought firm would be advantageous) and after more than 30 minutes in the car, I became very uncomfortable. The key fob is an engineering disaster. Very sensitive and so very easy to set off the car alarm when keys are in your pocket or bang up against something in your purse. We even called Nissan to see if they had updated the key fob and would send us a new one -- they didn't/wouldn't and even said they'd had a lot of calls . . .
Does the one you're looking at have running boards, to step up on to get into the car? We had to have some put on because it was really hard for me to get in -- although I'm not terribly short (abt. 5'4"), I was 8 months pregnant at the time we got it. But still needed a little boost to get in, even when not pregnant.
I'm sure there were more disadvantages. But that's about all I remember right now. The benefits that I miss about an SUV are cargo space, cargo space, and cargo space!! Plus being higher up off of the ground was a benefit to me as well.
Hope this helps!

After re-reading, I see that you've had a minivan, so you know all about them! Good luck making your decision!



answers from Nashville on

I have a Pathfinder and I never regretted my decision until....we had our 2nd child. If both of your kids are in regular car seats, great. But, if your 9 mth old is still in an infant carrier, there will not be enough room for the carrier to be in properly and the passenger seat to go back to a comfortable position for an adult. (doesnt work on drivers side either) That is my only complaint, otherwise its been a great reliable vehicle. I will be trading it soon for an Armada because I want a bigger backseat!! Good Luck!

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