Monthly Archives: June 2018

Here’s Why The 2017 Honda Pilot Is An Amazing Road Trip Car.

Just last Sunday, my friends and I took a road trip down to the Salton Sea near Palm Springs in southern California. We opted to use a 2017 Honda Pilot as our shuttle of choice, this particular Pilot was featured on the CarVisionLA YouTube channel. In the 500+ miles we drove that day, we learned very quickly the Pilot is a great car for road trips, and now I’m going to explain why.

The rear seats are HUGE!! Even with regular sized people in the front seats, there’s still loads of legroom in the Pilot. Although the rear seats don’t recline that much, they do slide back a fair amount, which yields plenty of room. There were six full size cup holders in the second row alone, and plenty of storage for external batteries and cell phones in the doors, making the rear seats an excellent road trip experience.

The storage continues to the front seats too. The center console in the 2017 Pilot is super cool; the cover slides into the back, leaving a huge storage compartment between the front seats. When the cover is slid back on, there’s a nice platform to hold snacks. The 7-inch infotainment screen in the Pilot is clear, crisp and easy to navigate. The addition of Android Auto and Apple Car Play also really add to the value of the in-car system.

We loved the smooth ride and quiet interior. The Pilot did a great job keeping the road and wind noise out of the cabin. Even cruising at 85mph, the Pilot was calm and collected. Annoying rattles and squeaks can degrade both drivers and passengers on long road trips, and all three of us were delighted at the car’s performance.

Pilots aren’t driver’s cars by any stretch of the imagination, but our $38,400 tester was plenty adequate. Its six speed automatic transmission is happy to downshift a couple gears to get up and pass someone on the highway, and the 3.5L V6 loves to rev. Although 280 horsepower doesn’t seem impressive (especially for a 4,200lb tank), it’s enough to get this family hauler to 60mph in just about 6.5 seconds.

On our trip, we had to fill up twice, with the Pilot averaging 15.7 miles per gallon: a far cry from Honda’s claim of 25mpg on the highway.

In conclusion, it’s hard to find flaws with the 2017 Honda Pilot as a road trip car. Perhaps in the future we’ll compare it to some of its competitors, maybe a Toyota Highlander?

Below is a video summary of all explained in this article.

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It’s Time to Explain My Irrational Love For The Toyota Tercel (Finally).

As many of you know, one of my all time favorite cars ever is the 5th generation Toyota Tercel, sold in the US from 1995-1998. That’s right, a 25 year old, tiny, cheap, dinky econobox is my favorite car ever, but before you judge me, let me explain.
The Tercel’s specs may not seem impressive, their low weight makes their horsepower more than adequate. The 5th gen Tercel came with a Toyota 5E motor which makes around 90 horsepower -half of many cars today. Although that’s not much by today’s standards, it only weighs 2000 pounds -basically half of cars today also. It’s combination of low power and light weightness gives these cars excellent fuel economy -40 MPG on the highway.

Although these cars are inexpensive, it’s wrong to call them cheap. These cars were built to last, with most examples over 200,000 miles and some even over 400,000 miles. That’s the distance to the moon… and back. Tercels today regularly go for around $1000, with nice examples about $1500.

These cars are also adorable!! Their cute little faces and tidy rear ends spark joy every time I see them. The overall side proportions were modeled after an “e36” BMW 3-series, and boy do they look good. Doesn’t it just look happy?

Although these cars are very reliable and rarely fail, parts for Tercels are extraordinarily inexpensive. Engines go for a low $500 and transmissions fly for only $250. The cars were put together simply which makes maintenance and repairs also very simple.

Just recently on my annual trip to Toyotafest, I saw my favorite example of my favorite car ever. With over 420,000 miles, this car still looks factory fresh.

The Toyota Tercel is all the car you’d ever need. It’s plenty spacious, plenty quick, plenty inexpensive, very reliable, very adorable, very dependable, very maintainable, and very desirable (to me).

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