Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
7,457 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2016 Honda Pilot drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2016 Honda Pilot Owner Comments

problem #12

Sep 112016


  • 839 miles


While merging onto the highway going approximately 20mph, the car seized up, brought the car to a near stop and would not accelerate. It did this 3 times. No warning lights on the dash, no notice of something malfunctioning. This car was built on August 19,2016. I purchased it on August 25 only 839 miles on it when incident occurred.

- Purvis, MS, USA

problem #11

Sep 022016


  • 22,500 miles
On September 2, 2016 while ascending up a winding 2-lane highway (highway 18) to lake arrowhead, our year old 2016 Honda Pilot touring (with a zf 9-speed transmission) began decelerating rapidly from 55 mph to 20 mph. My wife was driving with our 4 children and was able to pull to the side of the road. She pulled over, turned the car off and a sheriff stopped. The sheriff recommended she try to continue to drive to get the car off the highway since they were in a very dangerous area. My wife started the car and proceeded to ascend to the nearest off ramp and when numerous warning lights came on and the car rapidly decelerated once again. This is the second time something like this has occurred. In December 2015, a similar issue occurred while driving straight up a hill on a 4 to 5 lane freeway from san diego to los angeles. In that case, the 2016 Honda Pilot jerked violently before decelerating. My wife immediately pulled the car to the side of the freeway and had the car towed to pacific Honda. Honda determined that our Pilot was unsafe to drive and needed an entirely new transmission and replaced the transmission in the 4-month old vehicle. Honda reassured us the car was now safe. It is now 8 months later (our car is just 1 year old), and our car is now sitting at rock Honda in fontana, California. Honda is now determining the next course of action. We have the name and badge number of the sheriff who assisted my wife if helpful. This is a very dangerous situation and should be rectified immediately.

- Los Angeles, CA, USA

problem #10

Sep 022016


  • 5 miles
Vehicle has a lurching jolt when at a stop and go into 1st/2nd gear. Very noticeable downshift when breaking as well, with more lurching jolts.

- Copperas Cove, TX, USA

problem #9

Jul 282016


  • 20,055 miles


Transmission was making a beeping, whistling noise when shifting gears on city street. My car was not a year old and transmission was replaced with re-manufactured. It is still not running as before problem. I am hearing noise such as sounding like rake being drug on concrete and whistling noise. Dealership says there is nothing that they can do. No lights are on, nor were they on before. Only 12,000 additional miles given with part.(not exceptable to me).

- Cumming, GA, USA

problem #8

Jul 012016


  • 1,750 miles
The vehicle started making noises when shifting gears and the local dealer asked me to stop by a week later for diagnosis. This made me believe that it may not be a big issue as the dealership did not find it alarming after knowing about the symptoms the car was displaying. When I was driving the next day, the dashboard started displaying error messages like emission error and transmission error, started jerking and slowed down abruptly coming almost to a halt. While on the highway with 70 mph as max speed, I managed to take the vehicle to the side and on the shoulder. I was traveling with family, including children, and it was a very agonizing experience. A few days later, the Honda dealership where I left the vehicle fixed the issue by replacing a cap which was causing leak from the transmission. Part number 06233-5J4-000 was replaced.

- Bloomington, IL, USA

problem #7

Apr 222016


  • 132 miles
I have a 2016 Honda Pilot touring auto with the 9 speed transmission. When coasting downhill or when down shifting using the paddle shifters the car abruptly accelerates. This is a serious safety issue as acceleration should not be the result of downshifting when approaching a curve or going downhill.

- Poncha Springs, CO, USA

problem #6

Feb 042016


  • 1,700 miles


2/4/16: Backed out of garage, put car in park, lowered garage door. Was about to exit vehicle to adjust passenger side mirror, car surged forward, crashing through garage door. Brakes would not stop vehicle as it was crashing through the garage; immediately applied emergency brakes, car finally stopped against shelving in garage and wten became wedged in garage. Car experienced severe damage to front, hood, top, sides and could not be removed from garage until garage doors were removed by garage door company the next day. On 2/5/16 took car to Honda dealer. Said they needed time to investigate, would need until Monday, 2/15 when manufactuere's rep could be there; gave loaner vehicle to use in interim. Car still had dealer tag, one month old. On 2/17, received a call from service manager stating that Honda rep's investigation found nothing wrong with vehicle and that I would need to look to my insurance company to repair vehicle. I was told to return loaner vehicle that day, which we did. There was over $2,000 damage to home; and $8,836 damage to vehicle. I find it amazing that Honda could find nothing wrong with vehicle. I know for a fact that the car was in park and nothing would make it stop. The car is brand new - Honda knows that something is wrong; there are other vehicles that have had the same problem. I will not feel safe in the car for one minute when the repairs are completed (taking 24 days to repair). And, it is a damaged vehicle with the dealer tag still on it!

- Lilburn, GA, USA

problem #5

Feb 032016


  • 600 miles
2016 Honda Pilot surge while trying to stop on a city street and 2 times ended up part way in the intersection. No warning lights on dash. Had Pilot about a month. Only drove about 500 miles. Concerned, so keep longer distances in traffic. Setup an appointment today with local dealer to inspect per his schedule in 4 days.

- Frankfort, KY, USA

problem #4

Jan 312016


  • 19,000 miles
9-speed transmission in the "touring" trim level of 2016 Honda Pilot has an electronic push-button shifter. This shifter intermittently fails to respond to firm button pushes. This is especially problematic when shifting from forward to reverse or vice versa in parking situations. On several occasions, after coming to a complete stop and firmly depressing the shifter button to reverse direction, the vehicle has accelerated in the original direction upon release of the brake. This has necessitated emergency braking to avoid collision. No warning message or chime is generated during these failures, the vehicle simply fails to acknowledge or respond to the button press. Dealer service has been unable to replicate or repair the problem.

- Verona, WI, USA

problem #3

Jan 312016


  • 19,000 miles
Vehicle surges forward when 9-speed automatic transmission shifts during coasting or light braking. Surging routinely occurs at moderate speeds ( 35-45mph ) when coasting downhill on a secondary highway. Surging has also occurred at parking lot speeds, and has necessitated emergency braking to avoid collision. Honda motor company has acknowledged similar behavior in another model that shares identical engine and transmission with this vehicle ( aside from differences in tuning ), the 2016 Acura MDX, and a software repair campaign is underway for that vehicle. At this time, no software repair has been announced for the 2016 Honda Pilot touring. Several repair attempts have been made by a local Honda service department, with no improvement.

- Verona, WI, USA

problem #2

Nov 012015


  • 900 miles
The contact owns a 2016 Honda Pilot. The contact stated that the vehicle would not start. The vehicle had to be towed to a Honda dealer where the failure could not be diagnosed. The vehicle was taken back to the dealer and the failure recurred six days later. When the failure recurred, the transmission failure warning indicator illuminated. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it could not be diagnosed or repaired. The vehicle was given back to the contact, but the vehicle stalled a few days later and all the warning indicators illuminated. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 900.

- Bronx, NY, USA

problem #1

Nov 042015


  • 3,000 miles
I write to you to convey my safety concerns regarding a new Honda 2016 Pilot. My attempts to resolve my concerns with american Honda motor co., Inc. Were met with tepid reluctance and a cavalier neglectful attitude. high speeds (55-75 mph) the vehicle oversteers and during emergency avoidance maneuvers becomes unstable. Twice while avoiding dear on interstate highways, I have almost lost control and was seriously concerned about rolling the vehicle over. I own and have driven a 2003 Pilot for over 180,000 miles and never experienced this sort of issue. I believe the suspension is incorrectly designed and that unexpected and unnecessary rollovers are imminent. 2.the ┐auto idle off┐ feature turns the engine completely off at certain times and under certain circumstances. It takes between 900 and 1,300 milliseconds to recover power to the wheels when this happens. Unlike hybrid vehicles (from which this feature was taken), there is no alternative electrical motor to provide torque to the drivetrain while the engine restarts and as a result, there is delay in accelerating. In the vast majority of times, this is of no consequence however in a small fraction this delay increases the risk of collision. About once per week, I experience a delay in entering dense traffic within short interstate merge lanes. This delay of about one second is enough to remove my margin of error and increases the risk of collision during a merging maneuver. While there is a switch to defeat this feature, it resets every time the vehicle is turned off and remembering to override it every time is inconsistent with human memory and performance.

- Pittsburgh, PA, USA

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