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Discussion Starter #1
I'm thinking of buying the Pilot but have some more research to do. Does the Pilot share the same motor and does it sit the same in the engine bay as the Odyssey and MDX? I've been also considering the Odyssey and MDX. I noticed on the Odyssey and MDX forum a couple members have custom performance mods. There is even a member on the Odyssey forum with nitros and a member on the MDX forum selling intakes. I ask because if I decide to go with the Pilot I may decide to tinker with it a bit. I currently drive a Honda Passport and it has a couple mods and my dealer either doesn't care or is oblivious to my aftermarket radiator, exaust, and intake. I bring my Passport in for oil changes and whatnot and the dealer never says a word about it, he is really cool.
 

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With a few exceptions the '03 Pilot is a mechanical twin to the '02 MDX, and a very close cousin to the Odyssey.
 

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03 MDX changes...

N_Jay is correct, the 03 Pilot is pretty much a twin to the 02 MDX from a powertrain standpoint.

To increase the 03 MDX to 260 HP (from 240) the Honda/Acura engineers had to make MANY significant changes to the hard parts of the motor & transmission.

I mention for several reasons-

__a) DO NOT expect bolt-on to be a popular option for the motor, volume is too small, it is different enough from Oddy motor that additional work is needed, and finally the changes to the 03 MDX mean it probably will change in 04

__b) bolt-on will give only VERY SMALL power gains -- the factory had to change TONS of parts to get a power gain of less than 10%, aftermarket parts will do less

__c) VTM & transmission stress -- you mention you have a Passport, engineeered & built by Isuzu, the Passport/Rodeo has a much more conventional drive system. The 03 MDX has an ALL NEW transmission & revised VTM, speculation is that the older pieces were pretty much at their operational limits -- additional power could be a disaster. The radiator in your Passport probably does nothing but help reliability, and with the stock Passport barely registering 205 Hp & 215 lb/ft of torque is simply not putting out nearly as much oomph as the Pilot even in stock form.

__d) Warranty -- you PAY for oil changes, don't you? I imagine if you were to get TOWED in to the dealership with a blown head gasket or an inoperative tranny they would VERY MUCH notice your exhuast & intake. Don't kid yourself, they take your money for the oil changes, but when it comes down to money they'd need to collect from AHMC for warranty work, there is an EXCELLENT chance they'd just shrug and say "Sorry you modified it, you have to pay for any repairs..." I suspect that this is even more true for the Pilot, as there are more of them & Honda engineered all the powertrain components as opposed to Isuzu, which does have heavy truck experience.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I called up the honda service department and asked if my mods would void the warranty. I was told only mods that effect the engine before combustion can make the warranty void. Thus, my exaust cannot void the warranty. My intake and to a smaller extent, radiator can void the warranty. So if I were to blow my transmission, before I get towed in I'll take out half-an-hour to put my stock intake and radiator back in and I'll be fine. :D
 

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what if

You were stranded far from home and you have to tow to the nearest Honda dealer?
Would you go home and get your old radiator and stuff and bring it back to the car and replace them and then tow it?
Questions, questions...
In my opinion, don't do anything until warranty expires, and then tinker with it...
 

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Unless you are racing, today's cars do not get much (if anything) from, intake and exhaust work.

Not sure what the whole radiator issue is. If the engine is making a lot more heat and not making a lot more power, then you have real problems. Was the original radiator underdesigned? Are you mods producing more heat than power?

Also, one dealers comments on the phone are hardly a good way to negotiate warrenty rights.

When push come to shove, it will depend on just what broke, what mods could have caused it, and how good you are at negotiating verses the Honda Rep.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I needed a heavy duty radiator because I tow my boat around. The intake has defineatly increased my acceleration.
 

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Re: 03 MDX changes...

renov8r said:

__d) Warranty -- Don't kid yourself, they take your money for the oil changes, but when it comes down to money they'd need to collect from AHMC for warranty work, there is an EXCELLENT chance they'd just shrug and say "Sorry you modified it, you have to pay for any repairs..."
What ever they collect from AHC for warranty work is at the wholesale not the retail rate that we pay directly to the dealers.
 

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Re: Warranty claims & intake changes

Unless I'm missing something, that is ALL THE MORE reason they'd try to say the warranty was voided, no?

If the dealer had to choose between getting "full boat' from a retail customer, vs wholesale from the mothership, wouldn' t they be motivated to look VERY closely at anything that would result in them being compensated at the wholesale rate?

BTW I recall a comparo that one of the tuner magazines did of intakes for non-turbo motors. As I recall, the testers we pretty shocked that none of the intakes gave even a half second improvement in 0-60 times. They THOUGHT some did better based on throttle response, sound effects & butt-o-meter, but when they but the timed test equipment the light showed 'em it just wasn't so... As I recall they were comparing three or four Altima intakes, and perhaps the stock unit is significantly better breathing than the intake on the Isuzu mill...

pilot03 said:


What ever they collect from AHC for warranty work is at the wholesale not the retail rate that we pay directly to the dealers.
 

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If the engine designer does his job well it is hard to improve on factory.
Since like every engineered part, the intake is a set of compramises.
You are not going to get more in one place without loseing something somewhere else.
The designer also has a bigger computer, more time and a better database of parameters than you, I or some aftermarket company.
 
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