The all-new 2019 Honda Passport Crossover SUV is now available at Rock Honda! And, what you may not realize is that it’s actually a reboot.
The Passport was once, long ago, part of the Honda line-up and rugged, off-road capable, elements of its return remain part of the mid-size crossover SUVs DNA.
Our partners at Rock Honda have been keeping us abreast of the latest Honda Passport release developments. And as of 2/7/19 Rock Honda has eight 2019 Honda Passports in stock!
We’ll be reviewing the 2019 Passport and posting the report very soon. For our insider info-to-date click play below for our preview of the upcoming 2019 Honda Passport.
Recorded in Los Angeles, CA
Clinton Quan: It’ll be a true mid-sized crossover. It’ll be a two-row crossover. Think of it as a smaller version of the Pilot. Pretty much the same interior design. But instead of three rows, two rows. And they’re going to give it a more rugged look. For those who are interested in going off-roading
Tom Smith: Welcome to iDriveSoCal the podcast all about mobility from the automotive capital of the United States, Southern California. Tom Smith here with the good Professor, Mr. Clinton Quan say Hello Clinton.
Clinton Quan: Good Morning Tom.
Tom Smith: Good morning. This morning. Actually, you know, it’s a podcast it’s always like, you never know when somebody’s gonna listen. The time and place and everything where we’re recording is kind of like the relevance whatever.
But yes indeed it’s morning. This podcast is about, the Honda. They’re calling it 2019 or is going to be the 2020?
Clinton Quan: It’s going to be a 2019.
Tom Smith: It will be a ’19. Okay. The Honda Passport, and this is of course on behalf of our good friends out in the Los Angeles suburb of Fontana, California. Rock Honda for all of your Honda needs to go see David Latif, the general manager out there. And tell him that iDriveSoCal’s, Tom and Clinton sent you.
But, the 2019 Passport is a crossover SUV that was in Honda’s lineup a number of years back. It’s been, out of the lineup though for quite a while.
“For those who are interested in going off-roading.”
Clinton Quan: It’s been a long time. I think it’s probably been a good maybe 15 years, somewhere around a decade and a half.
Tom Smith: And if I remember right when the Passport was around back then, I think that was just the first generation, right? The first and only generation?
Honda Passport Reboot
Clinton Quan: I believe you are correct. And it was basically a rebadged version of the Isuzu Rodeo.
Tom Smith: Rodeo. Yup.
Clinton Quan: Yes.
Tom Smith: Okay. That’s the history of the Honda Passport, a crossover SUV. And back then, the … and by the way, this is a preview of the vehicle. We haven’t driven it yet.
“It’ll be a true mid-sized crossover…. a two-row crossover.”
But we just saw it at press days of the LA Auto Show, which is the press days or are called Automobility LA. And the LA Auto Show is going on now. And at the LA Auto Show, they had the 2019 Passport on display.
Now we didn’t drive it, but going back to the first iteration of the Passport, that again has being off the manufacturer’s blocks on the market. What not for, as the Professor said, about 15 years, we’re not exactly sure.
But when it was being produced, interestingly it was a pretty legit off-road vehicle. Since then the past decade, SUVs have been questionable. Well, they’ve been dubbed crossover slash SUVs there off-road ability has been kind of questionable.
The SUV kind of utility version has become… Hey, it’s a car or a truck for the road. It’s a crossover between a truck and a car for the road. But can it go off road? Cannot go off road?
Clinton Quan: Well, most people they liked the look of an SUV. But they don’t really need the off-road capability of an SUV. That’s why so many auto manufacturers have decided to use a car-based platform, instead of a truck-based platform.
So you get that smoother ride, but then you’re also getting the look of an SUV.
Tom Smith: The look of the SUV, the space of an SUV, the seating position of an SUV which gets you a little bit higher off the ground feeling a little bit-
Clinton Quan: That’s what people like about an SUV.
Tom Smith: Yeah. You’re, you’re sitting a little bit higher off the road so you have a little bit better feel of command for the road as well as better safety feel. And so back then the Passport was definitely off-road ready.
Clinton Quan: That sounds about right.
Tom Smith: They’re saying spring of 2019. But it’s interesting that they’re going to be calling it a 2019.
“For those who are interested in going off-roading…”
Clinton Quan: Yeah. They could call it a 2020 if they wanted too…
Tom Smith: Right things could change, right. Whether it’s building suspense or production, whatever, blah blah, blah. They come out when they come up. But it’s definitely coming.
Clinton Quan: Yes.
Tom Smith: And the Passport is going too… As I mentioned on a recent vehicle review, I did, I want to say of the Pilot, maybe the Passport is going to be under the Pilot, but above the CR-V in Honda’s lineup.
Clinton Quan: It’ll be a true mid-sized crossover. It’ll be a two-row crossover. Think of it as a smaller version of the Pilot. Pretty much the same interior design. But instead of three rows, two rows.
And they’re going to give it a more rugged look. For those who are interested in going off-roading as well, and they’re really targeting males in the mid-thirties to upper thirties as the target consumer.
Honda’s Crossover SUV Line-up
Tom Smith: So, this is in the… I think if I’m remembering right, at least they had one of them that they show, that they had dialed up with a roof rack and, the accessories to display it in such a way that, hey!
This is ready to go truly be an SUV of the crossover kind of SUV world.
And that was another thing that, they were explaining. That this… because some question, “hey, is this going to eat away sales of the Pilot or sales of the CR-V?”
“…this is going to enhance sales of the whole lineup… that off-road capability and readiness…”
And Honda’s theory is no, actually, this is going to enhance sales of the whole lineup, because this is going to be truly something that is, off-road capable, off-road ready. And add that off-road kind of capability and readiness to the Honda, crossover SUV lineup.
Clinton Quan: Yes. But also for a lot of people that they’re going to want something bigger than a CR-V. The CR-V is really a compact crossover. And then for the Pilot, even though I wouldn’t really call it a full-size SUV or a full-size crossover.
If you look at it, it looks pretty big from the outside, so they’re not going to want something that big. This fits right in between, and there’s a number of vehicles in the segment.
Tom Smith: Now the Pilot is three row?
Clinton Quan: Three row. Yes.
Tom Smith: And the Pilot is big inside.
Clinton Quan: It would… Yes, it is.
Tom Smith: And just talking about the Honda crossover SUV lineup. At the top of it, you have the Pilot. And then a step down currently is the CR-V. But as soon as the Passport comes out, the Passport will sit in between the Pilot and the CR-V.
True Midsized Crossover SUV
Tom Smith: Now, I believe we’ve reviewed all of them, haven’t we?
Clinton Quan: Yes, we have reviewed all of them.
Tom Smith: And I know I just recently drove the Pilot. They’re all very smooth running vehicles. Obviously, it’s a Honda, the resale value is going to be killer.
And I’m excited to see the Passport and get a chance to drive it. I know we talked with David over Rock Honda and what we’d like to do, hopefully, it works out, we can do this again. When their salespeople actually go to get the training from the manufacturer on the vehicle.
Hopefully, me and you Professor will be able to go and experience that training and really get our opportunity to roll up our sleeves and hear from the manufacturer’s representatives.
Which is the next best thing, hearing from the actual engineers and product people. As far as the ins and outs of the vehicle, and how it’s positioned. Not only in its lineup but how it’s positioned in the greater a marketplace of its competitors out there.
“…one of my favorite designs in that midsize segment.”
Clinton Quan: There’s going to be some stiff competition, but I think it’s one of the best ones. It’s definitely in terms of design. Obviously, I haven’t driven yet. It’s one of my favorite designs in that midsize segment.
Tom Smith: Speaking of design, I really like what Honda has done and that is if you look at the HR-V, the CR-V, the Passport, and the Pilot. They all have a very similar look. And it’s just getting bigger, right.
Now the trim levels…
Passport Engine & Trim Levels
Clinton Quan: There are four trim levels. The base trim will be Sport, moving up to that will be EX-L, then you’ll have Touring and then the very top of the line will beat the Elite trim. Correct.
Tom Smith: Okay. Interesting. So they’re starting with sport?
Clinton Quan: Yes.
“…3.5-Liter V6, normally aspirated producing 280 horsepower and 262 lb-ft of torque.”
Tom Smith: Okay. All right. And did you get any pricing?
Clinton Quan: Pricing has not been released, but if we’re going to guess it’s probably going to start in the low $30,000 price range to properly the mid to upper $30,000 price range.
Tom Smith: It’d be an exciting vehicle. It’ll be an exciting vehicle in as I want on my leases is about to come up here, probably right around the time that that vehicle is going to be released. Maybe we’ll have to see.
Anything else to add about the Passport before we, wrap this one up? Engines!
Clinton Quan: Other than. Yes, we didn’t bring up the engine. It’ll be the same engine that’s used in the Pilot. It’s going to be a 3.5-Liter V6, normally aspirated producing 280 horsepower and 262 lb-ft of torque.
Tom Smith: Men the stuff that you remembered. Folks, he has no notes in front of them. We’re just sitting here talking. I love that about you, Professor. I absolutely love it.
That same engine is going to be available across the board in all trims.
Clinton Quan: Yes. There’s going to only be one engine.
Tom Smith: Interesting. And then what about transmissions? We’re going to have front wheel drive across the board and then all-wheel drive optional.
All with the exception of maybe they’re going to do all-wheel drive standard on the Elite. I think is what they’re doing when the Pilot this year. I’m not sure if I’m remembering right.
2019 Honda Passport –
Coming Soon! Now @ Rock Honda!
Clinton Quan: I would be surprised if it’s not standard all-wheel drive on the Elite. That’s probably what they’re going to be doing.
Tom Smith: Okay.
Clinton Quan: Yes.
Tom Smith: Well, as I said, I’m excited for it. Anything else we’re missing before I wrap this one up?
Clinton Quan: I believe that’s it. We’ve covered the trim levels, the engine, we talked about the exterior. And also the interior. Very similar in design to the Pilot.
Tom Smith: And as far as the tech, I’m sure it’s going to have Honda sensing and all the autonomous/safety features that, Honda is putting out there-
Clinton Quan: The same technology and safety features you’ll find, in the Honda vehicles across the board.
Tom Smith: Will definitely going to be an exciting addition to the Honda lineup. And definitely, you want to go to our friends at Rock Honda in the Los Angeles suburb of Fontana, California. Just off the, 210 there or at rockhonda.com.
If you’re listening to this podcast through iDriveSoCal.com, you can just click the link right over to Rock Honda, and say hello to our friends out there.
Tom Smith: David Latif, the general manager, Hamid Javid the general sales manager, Veronica Orozco, one of the other sales managers. Ruben Serna, the service director. Love all you guys at Rock.
And a Professor thank you as always for helping me to spread the gospel of Honda by way of Rock Honda. And we’re excited to see what the Passports all about.
I’m really excited to get behind the wheel as I’m sure the Professor is. And hopefully, we’ll get that introduction by way of the manufacturer’s representatives.
For iDriveSoCal I am Tom Smith. Thank you, as always, for tuning in!