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Discussion Starter #1
For the past year or two, as I was contemplating my next vehicle purchase, I was pretty sure I was going to get my first SUV. The ol' sedan just wasn't serving my needs anymore.

For most of that time, I had an eye on the JGC. Just about the right size, [perceived] level of comfort, features, and great styling. Even though the current design is about 4 years old, it holds up well. I still think it's one of the best looking and distinctive SUVs out there.

Then I discovered the more recently available crossover vehicles like the Highlander and the Pilot, and even though I don't like to buy a vehicle in the first model year, I "thank the Lord" the Pilot came along just in time for me to buy.

I had already test driven the Pilot (twice) and had all but decided. But I wasn't going to go through the whole car shopping/buying experience without at least giving the JGC a test drive.

Sitting in the front seat in the showroom, I wasn't disappointed. The leather seats are comfortable, driving position good, and the dash is well laid out. The JGC had two features I wanted that wasn't on the Pilot: heated seats and separate rear opening glass. If those two things were more important to me, I probably would have gone with the Highlander, anyway.

There was one thing I noticed in the showroom that immediately eliminated the JGC from consideration. The back seat is literally a joke. I climbed in and closed the door. (I'm about 6'2".) My wife walked around, opened the door an started laughing almost uncontrollably at seeing my knees up near my chest. The vehicle is shorter than the Pilot and has about 2" more road clearance; the result, you get "compressed".

For the test drive, the salesman brought out one with a V6, which is what I would have considered. The V6 gets bad enough mileage as it is, I couldn't bear the V8 on top of premium gas. The problem is, the JGC needs the V8. The V6 kicks off the line, alright, with plenty of low-end torque. But then, it just slugs out. Without being able to time it, it felt like I went from 0-20 in about 2 seconds; then it seemed like another 10 seconds to get to 60.

The ride was distinctly truck-like with plenty of bounce over rough roads and lean around the turns. It was clear to me the JGC is a true off-road vehicle intended for things I generally don't do. Nice if you plan on towing, climbing mountains, bouncing over boulders, or tearing up a beach. But not for me. All I want to do is slog through some occasional mud, drive over the occasional curb and slice through the more commonly encountered 6-8 inches of snow. For that, the Pilot is perfect. Well, it would be with heated seats and separate rear opening glass. :)
 

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I tried to reply to you yesterday, but my son deleted my post-

My step dad has a JGC, and totally backs every point in your post.
What I'm wondering is, what struck you about the Pilot most?
When I sat behind the wheel for the first time, I was amazed at how it drove like a much smaller car, quiet and smooth, with a turning radius identical to the Civic (37ft). I also noticed that the roofline is really high inside, and when I put my kids in the 3rd row, they seemed SO FAR away. I could handle that!
The engine sounds beautiful when pushed hard, unlike the noisy unrefined moaning Jeep.
I sat in the 2nd row, and realized this car just keeps getting better. The view and space back there is incredible.
Since owning it, I've put a motorcycle behind the 2nd row, and a washer and dryer in the cargo area. I can't wait to test her in the snow next winter!
I picked up my Pilot back in January, and have never once regretted my decision.

krygny-It's always good to see someone "go Honda". Congrats!
 

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74PILOTMOM said:
What I'm wondering is, what struck you about the Pilot most?
When I sat behind the wheel for the first time, I was amazed at how it drove like a much smaller car, quiet and smooth, with a turning radius identical to the Civic (37ft). I also noticed that the roofline is really high inside, and when I put my kids in the 3rd row, they seemed SO FAR away. I could handle that!
The engine sounds beautiful when pushed hard, unlike the noisy unrefined moaning Jeep.
I sat in the 2nd row, and realized this car just keeps getting better. The view and space back there is incredible.
Since owning it, I've put a motorcycle behind the 2nd row, and a washer and dryer in the cargo area. I can't wait to test her in the snow next winter!
74PILOTMOM, I was struck by your comments about the Pilot, because the exact same points come out of my mouth whenever anyone asks me, Well, how do you like your new Pilot?

Just the other day, I took a friend home from work, and she asked me if I was ever uncomfortable driving "such a large vehicle." (She was aware how I used to hate the occasions I had to drive our Toyota 4x4 truck to work.) Her question once again reminded me how completely comfortable I felt in the Pilot from the start---just as you said, it drives "like a smaller car, with a turning radius identical to the Civic (37 feet)." (And yes, I, too, still own a Civic!)

Suffice to say, I've never had one regret about purchasing the Pilot. Each day I "saddle up" in it for the 20-mile trek to work, I look forward to the drive! :D :D :D
 

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Discussion Starter #4
74PILOTMOM said:
What I'm wondering is, what struck you about the Pilot most?
Well, I just wanted to talk a about the vehicle that was foremost in my mind when I first started looking. Most people know what car they want before they start shopping and, unfortunately, it never changes. I like to think I'm a bit more open-minded. If I were a slave to styling or other people's perceptions, I wouldn't have gotten a Pilot.

I don't have the time, space, or energy to enumerate all the things I like about the Pilot - besides, everybody here [who owns one] already knows.

But, I'd say, the central reason is 240 HP, on regular gas, and 22 MPG. That's such an enormous sweet spot on the performance/economy plot, I couldn't get away from it. There's not another vehicle that comes close. Another vehicle would have had to offer soooooooo much more of something else, and for much less, to overcome it and get me away from the Pilot. The few compromises are relatively minor. Even some of the things I thought I didn't like at first, have come to make sense.
 

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krygny said:


Well, I just wanted to talk a about the vehicle that was foremost in my mind when I first started looking. Most people know what car they want before they start shopping and, unfortunately, it never changes. I like to think I'm a bit more open-minded. If I were a slave to styling or other people's perceptions, I wouldn't have gotten a Pilot.

I don't have the time, space, or energy to enumerate all the things I like about the Pilot - besides, everybody here [who owns one] already knows.

But, I'd say, the central reason is 240 HP, on regular gas, and 22 MPG. That's such an enormous sweet spot on the performance/economy plot, I couldn't get away from it. There's not another vehicle that comes close. Another vehicle would have had to offer soooooooo much more of something else, and for much less, to overcome it and get me away from the Pilot. The few compromises are relatively minor. Even some of the things I thought I didn't like at first, have come to make sense.
Well put..My sentiment exactly..

Signed by that other Islander
 

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The Jeep Grand Cherokee is the WORST vehicle I have ever owned. PERIOD !!! Transmission died after 41,000 miles. Warranty was 3 yr/36,000 miles OF COURSE. I will never purchase another. EVER !! :mad:
 

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2 suvs now

OK, in a couple weeks when our Pilot comes in, but my RR Pilot will be sharing a garage with a 2002 Millenium Silver Highlander Limited.

As 1/02, we had the Civics we each bought coming out of college (94, 96) and a baby due in February. That wasn't going to cut it. I had seen all sorts of info about the new Pilot, but the Highlander was out, and it was pretty darn nice... especially in comparison to what we had. Got the HL (my company leases it), and have really liked it.

This summer comes around, and while no second baby (yet), the other Civic is just getting too small, even for weekend trips with the three of us. Wife doesn't much care for big cars (she was afraid I'd come home with a Sequoia last year), nor does she like minivans. Were it me driving the new car, it would have been a Pilot hands down, but it's going to be her daily driver. So, I gave her "my" HL for a week, and she liked driving it.

Now, the $1,000,000 question. Would she notice the increased size of the Pilot, and would it be a problem? Answer: not at all, in fact, with the extra muscle under a shorter hood, she thought it drove "smaller" than the HL. We ran home on our test drive to compare, and she was very surprised.

The Pilot is 6" wider and a couple inches taller and longer than the HL. And the interior room is, or seems bigger in every dimension. We probably looked pretty funny, jumping in and out of these two cars for 10 minutes, but oh well.

We were heading back to the dealer, and her exact quote "I'm getting it. Not WE'RE getting it, but I'M getting it. Get it?" So yeah, she liked it.

Kind of long, but I thought the third Civic to Pilot story was worth sharing.
 

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Love your story! We too, have a 94 Civic. She's about to retire. It's been great to us, so we knew our next family vehicle would be another Honda, and we have not regretted the "small driving-easy parking-huge inside-Pilot for a second. :D :D :D
 

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Re: 2 suvs now

mcardle said:

snip...

Now, the $1,000,000 question. Would she notice the increased size of the Pilot, and would it be a problem? Answer: not at all, in fact, with the extra muscle under a shorter hood, she thought it drove "smaller" than the HL. We ran home on our test drive to compare, and she was very surprised.

The Pilot is 6" wider and a couple inches taller and longer than the HL. And the interior room is, or seems bigger in every dimension. We probably looked pretty funny, jumping in and out of these two cars for 10 minutes, but oh well.

We were heading back to the dealer, and her exact quote "I'm getting it. Not WE'RE getting it, but I'M getting it. Get it?" So yeah, she liked it.

.....snip
I agree completely that the Pilot drives "smaller" than its exterior dimensions. I owned an '01 HL Limited that I traded after 11 months for my Pilot (owned one year and 13 days), and while both are great vehicles, the Pilot is much larger inside, yet drives like a smaller car. It's also noticeably faster 0-60 than the HL, and uses regular gas. I found the HL required premium for decent performance.
 

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oh, and one thing...

krygny said, "...heated seats and separate rear opening glass. If those two things were more important to me, I probably would have gone with the Highlander, anyway." The HL doesn't have the separate opening glass, but the 4Runner does.

Like I've told my friends, it's almost as if Honda took a year to study the HL, then did everything (size, engine, tranny, etc.) at somewhere between 100 - 125%. If we like our Pilot 100% to 125% as much as our HL, we'll be in good shape!
 

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krygny said:
The JGC had two features I wanted that wasn't on the Pilot: heated seats and separate rear opening glass. ... the Pilot is perfect. Well, it would be with heated seats and separate rear opening glass. :)
krygny, you really should have heated front seats ... you deserve them. Why don't you order a '04 Pilot with heated seats? It would be a hardship for me, but I would consider buying your '03 Sagebrush for the right price. I just want you to be happy.
 

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Re: Re: Jeep Grand Cherokee

robrecht said:

krygny, you really should have heated front seats ... you deserve them. Why don't you order a '04 Pilot with heated seats? It would be a hardship for me, but I would consider buying your '03 Sagebrush for the right price. I just want you to be happy.
Why does feature seem to be so important to so many people?
 

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Re: Re: Re: Jeep Grand Cherokee

florida_guy said:

Why does feature seem to be so important to so many people?
'cause its cold in the north. Leatehr gets specially cold...protests the booty from the cold seats:bootyshak
 

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Re: Re: Re: Jeep Grand Cherokee

florida_guy said:

Why does feature seem to be so important to so many people?
For the opposite reason you don't want to be "fiddling with the heater." Even here in Virginia, I missed the heated seats this winter.
 

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Re: Re: Re: Jeep Grand Cherokee

florida_guy said:

Why does feature seem to be so important to so many people?
I thought you were a cheesehead at heart...you know what a cold winter is like, don't you? Heated steering wheel would be nice too.
I guess in FL you could use AC seats eh?
Okay, so I'm inventing options.
 

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Re: Re: Re: Jeep Grand Cherokee

florida_guy said:

Why does feature seem to be so important to so many people?
I was just trying to get a used Sagebrush Pilot. I think it's still an unconfirmed rumor that the '04 Pilot EX-L will have heated seats. But if they do, I will get them on my new Pilot and the rest of you '03 drivers up north will be freezing your ***** off.

Thanks, Robrecht
 

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So, do we have some official word that heated seats are going to be an option for '04, or is that wishful thinking? Not that it matters to me, because I want air conditioned seats, just curious.
 

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tracy said:
So, do we have some official word that heated seats are going to be an option for '04, or is that wishful thinking? Not that it matters to me, because I want air conditioned seats, just curious.
What a hot topic--no bun intended! I think it's still an unconfirmed rumor that the '04 Pilot EX-L will have heated seats. I spoke with a dealer last night and he couldn't confirm it but he did say he wouldn't be surprised.

Thanks, Robrecht
 

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gotta go big for vented seats

I know the S class has them (and they're very nice), but an $80,000 car has a lot of things my $30,000 cars don't have.
 

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robrecht said:

What a hot topic--no bun intended! I think it's still an unconfirmed rumor that the '04 Pilot EX-L will have heated seats. I spoke with a dealer last night and he couldn't confirm it but he did say he wouldn't be surprised.
If heated seats are on the way, can a sunroof be far behind? No pun intended. :p What are the other unconfirmed rumors?
 
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