2020 Highlander vs Pilot Comparison: Who Wins? [FULL Guide]

2020 Highlander vs Pilot Comparison

Are you considering between 2021 Highlander vs Pilot? Then you NEED to take a look at Colorfy’s following article.

On the lookout for a new car can be stressful; however, Toyota makes it simpler to compare significant features without scrolling through websites. The ideal location to begin your hunt involving the 2021 Toyota Highlander and Honda Pilot is your start.

In January 2001, the Highlander surfaced in North America in June. After four generations of manufacturing and improvements, this mid-size crossover aids provide premium quality on-road relaxation.

Just a year after, the Honda Pilot came out there in 2002 for the 2003 model year.

Now, both of these vehicles compete for the best place in the mid-size SUV class. If it comes to cost, the Highlander base trimming starts at $34,6001, whereas the Pilot foundation trimming is $31,650. Even though the ticket cost is more, the 2021 Highlander obtained a more excellent KBB84 Consumer Rating using a 3.9 out of 5 stars than Pilot’s 3.4 ratings.

You only get more using the foundation version Highlander L, such as better interior features, such as Android Auto™87 and Apple CarPlay®80 compatibility. The Pilot doesn’t provide both of them in their standard version.

Highlander comes with an EPA-estimated 21/29/24 (city/highway/combined) MPG rating33. Comparatively, the Pilot LX base trim has an EPA-estimated 19/27/22 (city/highway/combined).

In this 2021 Highlander vs. Pilot head to head comparison, We will continue to explore the differences between the Toyota Highlander vs. Honda Pilot from the sorts of reliability, interior, and performance.

Comparing Highlander vs Pilot

Comparing Highlander vs Pilot


Both the Highlander and Pilot follow a reasonably simple crossover layout formulation: moderate floor clearance, curved features, and tall greenhouses. The Pilot’s layout should be quite comfortable since the automobile was available in its existing creation because of the 2016 model year.

Some upgrades for the last-year-old revised trimming and more elaborate LED headlights. Accessible for 2021 is a brand new “Black Edition” that sits on the model range peak and comes in only one exterior shade. You can probably imagine what it is. The Highlander wears an all-new layout for 2021. Its front end comprises a winged trim element around the Toyota logo.

The A-pillars are black, and down the side of the entire body panels flare into a considerable level over the trunk. The new Highlander’s design stands out more than the Pilot, though the vehicle looks offensive. Watch the 2021 Toyota Highlander versions available near you or Watch the 2021 Honda Pilot versions available near you.


On the interior, the Pilot is quite a bit more minivan-like compared to the Highlander. Three tiers of storage have been incorporated into the Pilot’s door panels, even though a huge center console storage container resides between the front seats. The Highlander is an even mixture of function and form on the interior, with less storage at the doors along with a more compact center console storage box, even though a smart shelf incorporated into the dashboard underneath the center stack and facing the passenger seat signifies that the Highlander’s cabin nevertheless contains some intelligent places to place things.

Concerning distance, the Pilot is a bit larger than the Highlander. The second-row legroom at the Pilot comes at 38.4 inches, while its third-row provides 31.9 inches. The Highlander has slightly more space in its next row, with 41.0 inches of legroom, but considerably less from the next row, and this has only 27.7 inches, which makes it somewhat tight.

Considering the cargo place, the Highlander provides 48.4 cu ft. Behind its next row using the next row folded, 16.0 cu ft. Behind the next row, when it’s set up along with a max of 84.3 cu ft. With the third and second rows folded flat. The Pilot has 46.8 cu ft. With only the second row up, 16.5 cu ft. With all the third row up along with a max of 83.9 cu ft. With either row saved. Altogether, both vehicles are relatively evenly matched concerning the overall interior area. The Pilot provides a little bit of second-row legroom into the Highlander but then provides a roomier third row.

The Pilot feels larger in more abstract conditions, like a minivan within an SUV body, and it is a fantastic thing, although the Highlander feels like a typical SUV.

Driving Impressions

Driving dynamics aren’t as essential in three-row SUVs as in different sections. However, you still wish to be sure that the ride is pleasant and take advantage of that punchy engine if you want to.

Even though the Highlander will not surprise you with this rate, its disappointingly thrashy engine notice may. Whether you are merging on the freeway or seeking to maneuver, the motor’s noise is deafening, not in a fantastic way. The eight-speed transmission is tuned to continually search to find the maximum equipment and maybe partially blamed for this loud engine sound.

However, when you get up to speed, you will enjoy the suspension that provides a calm ride. “The journey is indeed flat; my wife asked me,’Can it is a minivan?'” editor-in-chief Mark Rechtin stated. If you go over bumps or ruts, the Highlander’s suspension will keep the cabin subtle. We all know sportiness is not this section’s raison d ‘être, but the Highlander’s steering is tender; it is almost without opinions.

Also, we expect Toyota refines the noise insulation from the Highlander. There is a severe quantity of flight and wind noise that enters the cottage on freeway drives, so you are going to have difficulty talking to your children in the rear seat.

What amazed us the most about the Pilot has been its 0-60-mph time. Although performance times do not matter too much in this section, the Pilot stood out just like a parrot among ravens. Its 6.2-second sprint is the fastest from the area, which excels on the street. “The Honda’s engine features a wide powerband and sufficient torque on tap to keep you out of trouble,” Seabaugh added. Though its nine-speed transmission isn’t the best, Honda made a few improvements to provide smoother shifts and quicker downshifts.

Suspension-wise, the Pilot’s ride is about the stiffer side, although not by far. In comparison with the Highlander’s, the Pilot’s suspension may feel more inflexible, but “the advantage is that body management is quite great for its course,” online partner editor Nick Yekikian explained. That has been particularly true on the twisty endings that operate throughout the Palos Verdes Peninsula in Southern California, in which our test drive happened. “The suspension is much more awake, and steering reaction is much more precise and direct,” Rechtin added.

Even though the Highlander delivers better fuel economy, according to the EPA (20/27/23 log at city/highway/combined driving versus the Pilot’s 19/26/22), the Pilot sipped less gas throughout our 25-mile loop. Whereas Toyota’s computer estimated a mean of 18.1 mpg, the Honda’s returned 21.2 later, being pushed on precisely the same day under precisely the same driving conditions.

Features & Technology

Both of those vehicles can be obtained with virtually anything that a buyer could want at a contemporary 3-row household crossover SUV. Both may be optioned with large sunroofs, heated and ventilated front seats, a heated steering wheel, sunshades incorporated into the second-row door panels, captain’s chairs, leather seats, etc.

Just the Highlander can be obtained with a hands-free rear power liftgate and a 360-degree camera program, while only the Pilot provides a heated next row. Both vehicles include an 8.0-in infotainment display in their mainstream cut levels, but the Highlander offers a huge 12.3-in collection in its own Limited and Platinum trims. The Highlander provides Android Auto and Apple CarPlay as regular, while the Pilot gives it all but its foundation LX trim.

Concerning security, the two vehicles are standard with active security features, even though the Highlander’s offering is significantly more complicated. The two vehicles get automatic emergency braking, radar cruise control, lane-keeping automatic, and assist high beams. Still, just the Highlander presents full-speed flexible cruise, lane-tracing help, and traffic signal recognition. Both vehicles make a Top Safety Pick award in the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety for their crash test operation.

Performance Highlights

The two SUVs arrive geared up using a 3.5L V6 engine, but the brand-new Highlander can be obtained with a hybrid powertrain. Let us begin with the Honda; it generates 280 horsepower and 262 lb-ft of torque. When from the 2WD arrangement, the Pilot can reunite around 22mpg combined (the ordinary city/highway mpg).

The brand-new Highlander V6 generates 290 horsepower and parrots the Pilot with 22 mph combined. The mph fun begins when we examine the hybrid version of this ’20 Highlander. It produces a combined 240 horsepower and provides best-in-class mpg having an estimated 34mpg combined.

Related: Toyota Highlander Accessories and Hacks


The Highlander utilizes a 3.5L V6 engine, which produces 295 hp and 263 lb-ft of torque. This is paired with an eight-speed automatic, and each version except that the foundation LE is trimming features an all-wheel driveway. It is a reasonably good powertrain, with a good response and smooth changes, which is inconsistent in several other recent Toyotas. The ideal option regarding the Highlander is that the hybrid vehicle employs a 2.5L four-cylinder plus a set of electrical motors for superior fuel efficiency. Although it’s rated less electricity at 243 hp, it feels responsive and includes enormous pump benefits.

The Honda Pilot packs a 3.5L V6, which can be rated for 280 hp and 262 lb-ft of torque. Even though LX, EX, and EX-L versions utilize a six-speed automatic transmission, the Touring grade and more significant attribute a nine-speed automatic. All versions include an all-wheel drive. Though the Pilot is slightly lighter than the Highlander, it feels as barbarous or reactive as the Toyota, and also, the nine-speed automatic may be somewhat rough with its shifts.

  • Toyota Highlander Powertrain: 8.5/10
  • Honda Pilot Powertrain: 7.5/10


Considering that the Toyota Highlander currently rides on the Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA) platform such as the RAV4 and C-HR, it handles nicely, with rapid reaction to steering inputs. It seems secure on the street, with a well-controlled body roster, though it rides a bit on the business side in comparison with the Pilot. The Pilot has a roll and dip that help it ride somewhat more comfortably on rocky streets, but there’s more noise from the cabin than from the Highlander, which restricts it from providing a calm atmosphere.

  • Toyota Highlander Comfort: 7.5/10
  • Honda Pilot Comfort: 8/10

Fuel Economy

The Highlander, with its 3.5L V6 and all-wheel drive, is ranked by Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) in 11.7 L/100 km from town, 8.6 around the street, and 10.3 L/100 km united. If you elect for the hybrid vehicle, you can anticipate 6.8 L/100 km united, which is a massive benefit.

The Pilot is not as fuel-efficient compared to petrol Highlander, in 12.4 L/100 km from town, 9.3 on the street, and 11.0 L/100 km united. This is a little odder, considering that Toyota is thicker, has more energy, and less equipment than the Honda so that it might return into the Highlander V6 is capable of conducting the efficient Atkinson cycle and comprising both port and direct injection.

  • Toyota Highlander Fuel Economy: 9/10
  • Honda Pilot Gas Economy: 7/10


The Highlander begins at $41,930 to get a foundation front-wheel-drive version. All-wheel drive comes standard on the LE, which starts at $45,430. The XLE version is an additional $2,500, bringing the cost to $47,930, and the Limited will put you back $53,630. This Limited is offered using a $2,300 Platinum Suite, which cements it as the very lavish Highlander available on the marketplace. Hybrid versions begin at $47,430 for LE versions with an all-wheel scale and drive around $55,630 for Restricted models, which may also be outfitted with a $2,300 Platinum Bundle.

On the other hand, the Pilot starts at $39,205 for an all-wheel-drive LX version and prices $45,505 for an EX. The EX-L will set buyers back $49,405, whereas the Touring version will set buyers back $55,205 at eight-passenger set up or $55,605 in seven-passenger installation. The range-topping Black Edition prices $57,105.

All prices include freight and AC taxation, and line up reasonably nicely. Considering that the Highlander has more features and energy while still being more effective, it is the worthy winner; however, the practicality and dimensions of this Pilot for the cost also creates a persuasive case.

  • Toyota Highlander Value: 8/10
  • Honda Pilot Worth: 7/10


The 2021 Honda Pilot and Toyota Highlander stay two of the very best family crossover available. Both provide excellent powertrains, fantastic reliability, room loads, and almost each of the family-friendly features buyers may desire.

If you are interested in conserving gas, the Highlander Hybrid is a clear choice, as it delivers a reasonably incredible value concerning cash spent cash saved. Your selection gets a bit more challenging when comparing V6 versions. The Highlander is the newer of both of these vehicles, supplying a more innovative standard of active security technology and a bigger touchscreen infotainment system as you move to its top cut levels.

Still, Honda’s storage alternatives and packaging efficacy are tough to dismiss. Even as its layout ages, there might not be a better minivan option out there than Pilot. Which of those vehicles makes the most sense to you comes to your and your loved ones’ needs. You honestly can not go wrong with either. Locate a Toyota Highlander available or Locate a Honda Pilot available.


Last update on 2023-12-09 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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