really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
6,895 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 engine problems

engine problem

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2016 Honda Pilot Owner Comments

problem #9

Jan 112017


  • 23,000 miles


I was driving around town running errands. As I pulled out of a parking lot, my display panel showed emissions system problem and the engine light came on. Called dealer and they said it's not a big concern unless engine light was flashing and to bring it in after the weekend (was a Friday afternoon). Drove it 30 minutes home at 55-65 mph and noticed no problems. Drove it that distance and speed to take it to the dealer as well with no problems. Picked it up a few days later. Service notes indicate: Code P0328, knock sensor failure, replaced knock sensor and retested, ok at this time. After picking it up, was about 10 min away and trying to go from 60 to 68 and set cruise. Speed began to jump around, not staying at a speed for more than a second 70-60-65-68-63, etc. Engine light now flashing took off cruise and it continued. Turned around to head back to dealer. Car working fine for a bit, but then continued to jerk at different speeds (60, 40, 25). Was stopped at light and engine was still revving at 4 RPM. Stepped off brake and car accelerated on own to 25. Dealer notes: Code P2638, idle relearn, torque management feedback, performed relearn. Today, 6 days after picking it up, I was stopped at a stoplight. Eco button is on, engine idle is running, seat warmer and heater on. While I was still applying brake, the engine idle sounded like it was trying to kick off and the whole car shut off on me. All indicator lights came on, but the engine was off and nothing was running. Turned car off and back on, drove the 2 miles to the dealer, and left it with them.

- Blair, NE, USA

problem #8

Dec 252016


  • 12,300 miles
On 3 separate occasions, our 2016 Honda Pilot elite has completely shut down while we were driving - twice on the highway and once in busy traffic. When this happens, the engine, transmission, power steering, etc. All stop working and the car displays every error you can imagine. I have posted a video here: Https://www.youtube.com/watch?V=btebmywy-is this is very scary because there is nothing you can do to get the car working again - luckily, we have been able to coast to the side of the road. When it first happened, we called Honda emergency roadside assistance and we had a tow on the way when we tried restarting the car several times in a row and that cleared the errors. Since then, we have used the same trick to get the car running again but it has happened twice in the last week - very scary! I have found other similar complaints online so it's clear that there's some kind of computer or electric problem with this model - it's just not obvious what triggers it. We are going to try to trade in our car for a different model because Honda has not been able to provide any help in spite of the fact that we have taken it to the dealer 3 times - I am very disappointed with their service on this.

- Glenview, IL, USA

problem #7

Dec 122016


  • 4,046 miles
Car is throwing fault codes for transmission, check engine, electrical. The car suddenly goes to "engine limp mode". hard shifting, shuttering and loss of power. Random occurrences. Has been to dealer 3 times for same issue. Issue occurs from a start or at low speeds 20-35mph while in motion. The hard shifting is causing long term damage to the drive train.

- Incline Village, NV, USA

problem #6

Aug 182016


  • 9,200 miles


Two separate incidents in sacramento, ca where we experienced engine failure with our 2016 Honda pilate elite. The first incident occurred in May 2016 on a busy city street with our three young children in the car. While in motion, the car essentially shut down with the display screen showing a series of warnings indicating numerous system failures. There was no engine power but luckily I was able to coast the vehicle to a nearby parking lot. The dealer indicated there was no problem, just a computer glitch, and the only repair necessary was to reset the computer/software. The second incident occurred last week, only this time while driving on the freeway. We completely lost all engine power but luckily I was in the right lane and I was able to coast to the side and pull over on the shoulder. If I had been in the fast or middle lane with little opportunity to move over, there could have been a serious collision. Similar to the first incident, we were unable to start the car with the warning lights showing various system failures. We had the car towed to the same dealer who initially indicated they would just reboot the software again. So we pressed upon them to do a more thorough diagnosis since this is the second time its happened. They agreed to keep the vehicle and seek to identify the root cause of the problem. At this point no diagnosis has been made. We would have never expected this from a near brand new (purchased in December 2015 and currently has only 9,200 miles) Pilot elite loaded with safety and technology features. Again we experienced two separate incidents where the car immediately shut down while in motion with the most recent occurring on the freeway. And both times our three young children were in the vehicle. This is a huge safety risk and I certainly hope Honda does its due diligence in diagnosing and addressing this issue.

- Sacramento, CA, USA

problem #5

Jun 092016


  • 7,812 miles
Hi, I got a strange problem in my car as per the attached image. Thanks,

- Plainsboro, NJ, USA

problem #4

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 #3

Nov 292015


  • 1,400 miles


The contact owns a 2016 Honda Pilot. The contact stated that an abnormal sound was heard, after the vehicle was started and the vehicle temperature warm. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where the technician confirmed that there was an abnormal noise coming from the engine. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 1,400.

- Miami, FL, USA

problem #2

Nov 102015


  • 1,000 miles
On November 10, 2015, at approximately 5:30pm, my wife and I were traveling on North I-75 in southwest Ohio. Besides ourselves, we had our two young grandchildren in the car. The car's computer started displaying a changing series of warnings generally indicating various system failures. The car basically started to shut down. Since we were in the far right lane, my wife was able to coast over to the shoulder. If we had been traveling in the middle or left lane of traffic, there would have been little if any chance of moving over to the curb. The car, with two young children in the back seat, would have shut down leaving us in the path of very fast moving cars and trucks. The only outcome was a potentially deadly high-speed rear end collision. We had to have the car towed to our Honda dealer approximately 40 miles away. On November 27, the day after thanksgiving, the same failure occurred at approximately 2:30pm. This time we were 400 miles from home traveling East on highway 11-E, between greeneville and johnson city, Tennessee. I caught the failure early enough before the engine shut down and was able to coast the car to a parking lot of an out-of-business store. This time instead of two young children, we had two elderly great grandparents. The dealer that handled the first incident diagnosed the problem as a software issue. However, the second dealer diagnosed it as a fuel pump relay not properly connected. This relay requires a special tool to install it. See attached letter with attachments for all details including service invoices.

- Beavercreek, OH, USA

problem #1

Jul 262015


  • 1,600 miles
The contact owns a 2016 Honda Pilot. While driving at 55 mph, the engine shut off and the entire instrument panel illuminated. The contact noticed smoke emitting from the front driver side. After lifting the hood, flames emitted from the passenger side near the engine. The contact was able to extinguish the fire. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 1,600.

- Snellville , GA, USA

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