Honda’s 2019 Passport – The “Just Right” SUV
Sweet spot? Goldilocks?
Honda’s new SUV, the 2019 Passport, is designed to occupy a niche between its smaller Honda CR-V and larger Pilot. It also fills a place between on-road and off-road vehicles that Colorado’s more adventurous drivers should especially appreciate. It’s the “just right” Goldilocks sport utility vehicle in Honda’s lineup.
Same Name – New Face
The Passport, which made its debut at the Los Angeles Auto Show in late November, is a five-passenger SUV available in front- or all-wheel drive that is specifically designed so that it can perform well and with refinement on city streets and highways or in rugged terrain. If the Passport name sounds familiar, it’s because 16 years ago Honda had another Passport, shared with Isuzu. But make no mistake, this 2019 Honda Passport is all new.
At 190.5 inches long, the Passport is 10 inches longer than the CR-V and six inches shorter than the Pilot, although it has the Pilot’s 111.0-inch wheelbase. With the back seats up, it has 41 cubic feet of cargo space. With those seats folded down, it has 78 cubic feet of cargo space – more than the average in its class. There’s substantial under-floor cargo space, too. As important, the space for five people is generous. It’s worth noting that the Passport’s clearance is almost an inch higher than the Pilot’s and that it comes standard with 20-inch tires.
The 2019 Honda Passport also has the same size engine as the Pilot: a 280-hp, 3.5-liter direct-injected V-6 mated to a nine-speed automatic transmission. It also shares the same towing ability: 3,500-lb. capacity on front-wheel drive, and 5,000-lb. capacity on all-wheel drive models, just in case you want to tow a boat, a trailer or something else.
Where the 2019 Honda Passport really crushes it is in the torque department, with 262 lb-ft of torque at 4,700 RPMs. Honda introduces the i-VTM4™ all-wheel drive system with active torque vectoring that sends as much as 70 percent of its available torque to its rear axle and can direct all of that to either its left or right wheels. That means it will handle well in whatever weather or terrain that Colorado drivers are likely to encounter (hint: mild-to-harsh and varied). Intelligent Traction Management works with the i-VTM4 so drivers can customize the performance for sand, snow or mud (AWD models) or normal and snow (front-wheel drive models).
The 2019 Honda Passport comes in four different trim levels: Sport, EX-L and Touring – available in either front-wheel or all-wheel drive – and the Elite, which is available only in all-wheel drive. Each trim level becomes progressively more luxurious and feature-rich. Sport models are still loaded, including remote engine start, eight-way Power Driver’s Seat and Lumbar Support, a six-speaker audio system, and USB ports. EX-L models include leather-trimmed seats, moonroof, power tailgate, heated front seats, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto integration, HD and XM Satellite Radio and more. Touring trim adds Navigation, 4G LTE WiFi Hotspot, heated rear seats, premium audio with 10 speakers, front/rear parking sensors, and more. Elite models ad ventilating front seats, auto-dimming side mirrors, heated steering wheel and a wireless phone charger.
Honda’s signature safety suite – Honda Sensing® – comes standard on all models. It includes the Collision Mitigation Braking System®, Forward Collision Warning, Road Departure Mitigation, Lane Departure Warning, Lane Keeping Assistance and Adaptive Cruise Control. It hasn’t been tested yet, but it is expected to join all other 2019 Honda vehicles in getting a 5-Star Overall Vehicle Score federal safety rating. Passport comes standard with a multi-angle rearview camera and more driver-assistive technology is available on higher trim levels, including blind-spot information system, rear cross-traffic detection and front and rear parking sensors.
The 2019 Honda Passport can be equipped to make it the cool vehicle you want it to be with a graphics package, roof box, roof rack, undercarriage welcome lights and lighted door sills. But you can also add accessories that will make it more useful, as well as cool. The Adventure Package will add on running boards, a trailer hitch and fender flares. The Urban Package adds front and rear underbody spoilers, cargo storage bins, roof rails and crossbars and unique 20-inch wheels.
You can see, drive and purchase the 2019 Honda Passport early next year at Schomp Honda in Highlands Ranch. Meanwhile, we have some excellent deals on other Honda models.