Notes: The 2012-2013 Honda Pilot have a small complaint trend of owners reporting the engine hesitates sometimes when accelerating.

While it's not a widespread trend with the Pilot, it's a little concerning because of the possibly safety ramifications. While it's certainly something to keep in mind, most Pilot owners are not experiencing this problem.


pretty bad
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
3,017 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.

2013 Honda Pilot engine problems

engine problem

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2013 Honda Pilot Owner Comments

problem #5

Oct 262012


  • 15,000 miles


Vehicle hesitates/ and shakes at 45 and 60 mph, very scary. Took car to dealership in bluffton SC March 2014 and May 2014. Dealership could not reproduce problem.

- Bluffton, SC, USA

problem #4

Dec 012012


  • 25 miles
The vcm (variable cylinder management) system causes jerking and vibrations, periodically, during the change from "eco" mode to full cylinder operation. I had the service manager drive with me and on that trip, the problem could not be duplicated. The sales and service manager said that they had never heard of that being a problem. I now see that Honda has had this problem for several years. The company refuses to acknowledge and fix the obvious problem.

- Cantonment, FL, USA

problem #3

Jun 202013

Pilot 6-cyl

  • 42 miles
When the eco turns on start to vibrate the whole car. The car vibrates and rattle noise comes in the engine compartment. Very disturbing ofr a new car but they say is how the eco works, concerned can cause engine damage due to vibration.

- El Paso, TX, USA

problem #2

Jun 032013

Pilot 6-cyl

  • miles
2013 Honda Pilot. Consumer writes in regards to severe vibration when eco drive engages. The dealer informed the consumer there was no fix for the problem, as it was a normal characteristic.

- Mars, PA, USA

problem #1

Apr 012013

Pilot 6-cyl

  • 20 miles
The problem is a noticeable rumble appearing to come from the rearend but affecting every part of the vehicle. It can be felt on the steering wheel, seats, dash, etc. At first we thought it occurred at only 62 and 40 mph but the more we drive the vehicle it can be felt at any speed. We had leased a touring Pilot but brought it back after 1400 miles and traded it for a ex-L Pilot hoping the rumble would be less. At first it didn't occur as much, but the more miles it has the worse it gets. The dealership was not very forthcoming with any information on this problem and has no solution or any hope for a solution. The comment was that someone had complained about a vibration but on their test drive they didn't notice it. Any passengers we have immediately notice the rumble and ask what the problem is. On a new car this is embarrassing to say the least. If there were any way possible to get out of this lease without getting upside down on leasing another vehicle I would do it in a minute. This our fourth Pilot and we have had few problems with them. They are very stable on ice and get through the snow very well. Up until 2013 the Pilot seemed to have a very good ride on the highway and we have taken many long trips with our Pilot. Now any trip we take we our preoccupied with this rumble and are constantly asking each other "can you feel that". I am very disappointed with this vehicle and if a fix can't be found for this it will be the last Pilot we lease. I don't know of any safety related incidents to this problem but I can't believe that throughout the life of a vehicle there can be a rumble like this and not cause a problem in the rearend, possibly even locking up.

- Bismarck, ND, USA

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