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September 5, 2007

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Honda adds Value Package and Special Edition to Pilot lineup

TORRANCE, Calif. – The Honda Pilot offers traditional SUV versatility with eight-passenger seating in a refined and comfortable package that also achieves the highest five-star crash safety rating by the federal government for both frontal and side impacts1, and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) rates the Pilot as a "Top Safety Pick - 2007."

For 2008, a Value Package (VP) and a Special Edition (SE) have become available. The well-equipped Pilot VP replaces the Pilot LX in the lineup and the premium Pilot SE package adds to the features of the Pilot EX, which remains in the lineup.

The Value Package adds rear privacy glass, machined alloy wheels, XM® Satellite Radio, upgraded audio including a 6-disc CD changer with three additional speakers (including a subwoofer), steering-wheel mounted audio controls, roof rails, and body-colored door mirrors, door handles and rear spoiler. The Special Edition adds features to the Pilot EX and includes a DVD rear entertainment system, XM® Satellite Radio, moonroof, 115-volt power outlet and ambient console lighting.

All 2008 Honda Pilots are available with either two-wheel-drive (2WD) or four-wheel-drive (4WD). Pilots with 2WD feature a 3.5-liter, i-VTEC® V-6 engine with Variable Cylinder Management™ (VCM®) for enhanced fuel efficiency. Variable Cylinder Management deactivates three of the engine's six cylinders during cruising and deceleration. An "ECO" indicator light illuminates on the instrument panel when the vehicle is operating at an optimal level of fuel efficiency.

In keeping with the Honda "Safety for Everyone" initiative, all Pilots are equipped with standard anti-lock brakes; Vehicle Stability Assist™ (VSA®), also known as electronic stability control; brake assist; advanced dual-stage, dual-threshold driver's and front passenger's SRS airbags; front side airbags with passenger-side Occupant Position Detection System (OPDS); and three-row side-curtain airbags with rollover sensor. A tire pressure monitoring system is also standard.

Standard comfort and convenience features on all Pilots include air conditioning, tilt steering wheel, power windows and door locks, cruise control, keyless entry, 60/40 split three-passenger second row seat and a 60/40 split three-passenger third row seat. For child seats, the second row has two outboard Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children (LATCH) attachment points and second and third row seats have child seat anchor tethers.

Available premium features include the Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation System™ with voice recognition and a 7-inch screen, and a Honda DVD Entertainment System with a 9-inch screen. A rear-view camera is standard on vehicles with the navigation system to aid rear visibility.

An independent front and rear suspension and a rigid unit body structure help provide a comfortable and refined ride. Additional premium chassis components include power-assisted 4-wheel disc brakes, variable power-assisted rack-and-pinion steering and 16-inch alloy wheels with all-season P235/70 R16 tires.

Two-wheel-drive Pilots achieve an EPA-rated city/highway fuel economy of 16/22 mpg2. Vehicles equipped with VCM use both an audio system-based Active Noise Cancellation (ANC) system and a chassis-based Active Control Engine Mount (ACM) system to cancel noise and vibration that can occur during cylinder deactivation. The 3.5-liter all-aluminum SOHC i-VTEC engine produces 244 horsepower at 5750 rpm and 240 lb-ft. of torque at 4500 rpm.

Four-wheel drive Pilots receive a 3.5-liter all-aluminum, SOHC, VTEC engine (no VCM) and produce 244 horsepower at 5600 rpm and 240 lb-ft. of torque at 4500 rpm. The EPA-rated city/highway fuel economy is 15/20 mpg2 for 4WD models.

The fully-automatic VTM-4 system provides confident, decision-free operation in rain, snow, ice, sand and mud, while also improving on-road and towing performance by distributing torque to all four wheels as needed. The system provides front-wheel drive for dry-pavement cruising conditions and engages all-wheel drive when needed. The VSA system can apply braking force to a wheel with low traction and direct driving force to the wheel with more traction. For the rear differential, a "VTM-4" lock button located on the instrument panel allows the driver to temporarily hold engagement of both rear wheels to aid traction while in gears "1" and "2."

Photos: Honda

(Sept. 5, 2007)

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