Monday, January 14, 2008

New Honda Pilot full of techno-gadgets

For years, Honda's Pilot SUV has been a staple of Americana. It has earned Car and Driver Magazine's prestigious "5 Best Truck" award six straight years, from 2002-07. It's big, with room for eight and wasn't too terrible on gas. Monday, Honda unveiled a prototype for the newly redesigned Pilot that debuts late this spring at the 2008 North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

The prototype is boxier than the old Pilot and brings to mind several U.S. SUVs. Honda claims the new version has more interior room and some gas-saving gadgetry.

Honda claims a 6-foot man can comfortably park himself in the third room thanks to a redesigned platform. All 2009 Pilots will feature Honda-exclusive Advanced Compatibility Engineering (ACE) body structure and the most extensive use of high-strength steel in any Honda product to date.

The ACE body structure enhances frontal collision compatibility with vehicles of different sizes and bumper heights. A pedestrian injury mitigation design in the front of the vehicle is designed to help absorb energy in the event of a collision.

The Pilot's V^ entine will operate in a six-cylinder mode for power and four and three-cylinder modes during cruising to improve gas efficiency.

The interior is very futuristic with XM radio and iPod ports, satellite based navigation and Honda has also moved the gearshift to sit next to the radio controls on the dash, away from the steering wheel.

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