Passport SUV returns rounding out the light truck line for Honda
Honda introduced their all-new 2019 Honda Passport 5-passenger V6- powered SUV at the Los Angeles Auto Show last week. The Passport rounds out the Honda (light truck) lineup – slotting between the award-winning compact CR-V SUV, three-row Pilot SUV and including the Ridgeline mid-size pickup truck.
If the Passport name sounds familiar to you, it should – but then again you have to old like us to know what it was. From 1994 to 2002, the Passport SUV served as Honda’s entry in the developing North American market. We remember it, in particular, because of Passport’s popularity in the West and Northwest where we grew up
Going on sale early next year, the 2019 Passport provides a unique combination of on-road driving refinement and off-road adventure capability, along with best-in-class interior space, technology and safety – says Honda.
It features a reinforced unibody frame, direct-injected 280 horsepower V6 engine, 9-speed automatic transmission, torque-vectoring all-wheel drive, four-mode traction management, fully independent suspension and standard 20-inch alloy wheels.
Inside, Passport offers comfortable room for five (and their gear) with best-in-class passenger and cargo space. Interior volume is 157.1 cu.-ft. with cargo capacity – second row folded down – of 77.9 cubic feet. An innovative underfloor (think Ridgeline) cargo compartment adds another 2.5 cubic feet.
Depending on drivetrain, the Passport can tow up to 5,000 pounds and features an expanded suite of Honda Sensing safety and driver- assistance technologies.
Four Grades Available
Passport will be offered in four trims: Sport, EX-L, Touring and Elite. All models are FWD except Elite which comes standard with all- wheel drive. All trims feature LED headlights, fog lights, taillights and DRLs, Smart Start and Smart Entry and three-zone automatic climate control. EX-L and higher trims utilize Honda’s latest Display Audio interface with an 8- inch touchscreen, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration.
Depending on trim, exterior upgrades include a power tailgate with available hands-free operation, a one-touch tilt/slide moonroof and heated auto- dimming and power folding side mirrors.
Available premium features include second-row sunshades, wireless phone charging, embedded Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation System, 4G LTE in-vehicle Wi-Fi, premium audio, and HondaLink cloud-based services, including remote unlocking, concierge services, stolen vehicle tracking and more.
Power and Drivetrain
All 2019 Honda Passports are powered by the Honda i-VTEC 3.5-liter V6 engine that delivers 280 horsepower and 262 lb.-ft. of torque. It is mated to Honda’s latest-generation 9-speed automatic transmission.
Honda’s i-VTM4 all-wheel drive system is available on all models (standard on Elite). It features active torque vectoring that sends up to 70 percent of engine torque to the rear axle and 100 percent of that torque to either the left or right rear wheels.
In addition, their Intelligent Traction Management (ITM) is standard on both the front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive Passport. In all-wheel drive applications, the four-mode ITM systems works in conjunction with i-VTM4, allowing drivers to customize powertrain performance for different weather and terrain, including sand, snow and mud. In front-wheel drive models, the system has two modes for normal and snow conditions.
Passport Tows Too
Passport is well equipped for towing too, with 3,500-pound capacity on front-wheel drive models and 5,000 pounds all-wheel drive when equipped with the optional towing package. The standard multi-view (all-around) rear-view camera makes connecting to a trailer easier when using the “bird’s eye” view of the hitch and trailer.
Exterior Design and Platform
Honda says Passport is the most rugged looking of their light trucks. It features a higher ride height, wider stance, standard 20-inch wheels, wider 245/50R (265/45R optional) all-weather tires, and sporty styling cues that include scratch-resistant matte black grille and bumper, blackout headlights and black wheels. LED headlight accents, gloss black trim, and chrome exhaust finishers.
Passport is said to be functionally rugged also. Compared to the larger pilot, Passport is 6-inches shorter with a shortened rear overhang offering improved approach, departure and breakover angles, better suited for more rugged terrain.
Based on Honda’s Global Light Truck platform, Passport shares much of its underlying structure with the three-row Pilot SUV and Ridgeline pickup, including its highly rigid unibody with fully-boxed floor construction. Passport has a four-wheel independent suspension, with MacPherson struts in front and a multilink independent at the rear.
Interior Design and Utility
Inside, Passport features high- quality interior appointments including attractive and durable cloth on Sport or perforated leather on EX-L, Touring and Elite trims, a blackout headliner, and generous use of soft-touch surfaces on the dash and doors.
Passport’s class-leading utility features 41.2 cu. ft. of space behind the second row of seats, expandable to 77.9 cu. ft. with the second row folded flat. The second-row seats are powered with the main cargo floor reversible between carpeted and easy-to-clean hard plastic surfaces.
Similar to the ‘trunk’ in the bed of the Ridgeline, Passport features 2.5 cubic feet of underfloor storage which can be accessorized with removable washable bins, including a custom bin for storing the available accessory trailer hitch receiver.
Infotainment and Technology
Honda says the Passport delivers all the modern technology that today’s SUV buyers demand.
Passport Sport trim comes standard with a 215-watt audio system with a 5-inch display monitor and 6 speakers, plus a subwoofer. Passport EX-L, Touring and Elite trims feature Honda’s 8-inch Display audio touchscreen system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration and manual power/volume knob. Passport Touring and Elite trims come with a 590-watt 10-speaker premium audio system.
Passport’s instrument cluster uses a 7-inch Thin Film Transistor (TFT) full color screen that is customizable to include typical vehicle information plus audio system information, and turn-by-turn route guidance on Passport models equipped with navigation.
Touring and Elite trims of Passport provide 4G LTE in-vehicle Wi-Fi TCU – supporting up to seven devices – and accessing the suite of HondaLink cloud-based services.
Driver Assistance Technology
All Passport trims come equipped with a Multi-Angle Rearview Camera with overhead “bird’s eye” view, ideal for trailer hookups.
Additional available driver-assistive technologies include dynamic guidelines for the rearview camera, blind spot Information system (EX-L, Touring and Elite) with Rear Cross-Traffic Detection, and front and rear parking sensors (Touring and Elite).
The Honda Sensing suite of advanced safety technologies is standard on all 2019 Passport trims.
It includes Collision Mitigation Braking System (CMBS), Forward Collison Warning (FCW), Road Departure Mitigation (RDM), Lane Departure Warning (LDW), Lane Keeping Assistance System (LKAS) and Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC).
Passport initially will be available with two accessory packages:
- Adventure Package with running boards, a trailer hitch, fender flares and more
- Urban Package includes front and rear underbody spoilers, unique 20-inch wheels, cargo storage bins and roof rails and crossbars
Other Honda designed accessories for Passport include roof boxes and baskets, roof-mounted bike, kayak and ski or snowboard racks, colored graphics package, undercarriage welcome lights, and lighted door sills.
The 2019 Honda Passport was designed and developed by Honda’s North America R&D teams in Torrance, California, and Raymond, Ohio. The Passport, and its V6 engine, will be manufactured at the company’s Lincoln, Alabama plant.
Interesting Fact: The original Passport was US built also, at the Subaru Isuzu plant in Lafayette, Indiana where it had a sibling, the Isuzu Rodeo. Maybe you remember that one too.
Pricing, fuel economy and final safety ratings for the 2019 Honda Passport lineup will be made available closer to launch.
The team at inwheeltime.com will report drive impressions as soon as we get some time behind the wheel of a new 2019 Honda Passport.
Learn more about the2019 Honda Passport here: https://automobiles.honda.com/future-cars/passport