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In my quest to find the missing 20HP in the Pilot that the MDX has, I have come up with a couple findings. First, the intake manifold. I read in an Edmund's review that the MDX has a more sophisticated intake manifold which helps it achieve more hp and torque. If so, would it be possible to swap in this manifold? Also, both engines run on a compression ratio of 10:1, yet it is suggested that one of them run on regular, and the other premium. This may be where some of the high end horsepower is lost. Take for example my Civic Si, which has a compression ratio of around 11:1. It is recommended that it run on premium, and there actually is a noticable difference if I run on anything less than 92 octane. Has anyone tried filling up their Pilot with premium to note any differences? This would make sense since Honda suggests using premium for towing purposes.

So, in conclusion, my two thoughts on the missing 20hp are the intake manifold, and the use of regular unleaded gas. Please feel free to add/comment.

Oh, by the way, this is my first post. I find this board to be extremely informative and I plan to purchase my Pilot this spring.

Ben
 

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The cam profile differs in the 2 cars, as does the ECU and VTEC programming. The pilot's cam has 2 lobes and the X's has 3. That and the different intake manifold you mention.

Welcome to the site.
 

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I've always run premium so couldn't tell u.

ETA: Oh, sorry, I see I don't even have a sig line...shame on me. I have an X, not a Pilot. You might try a search for "premium" without the quotes to see if there's been prior discussion.
 

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I was told a car "expert" that putting premium into today's vehicles is a waste because the modern computer adjust for the octane of the fuel to eliminate the pings, etc. I don't know how it effects the performance however.
 

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The differences are extensive...

The 03 MDX differs significantly from the 01&02 MDX, which shares the engine with the 03 Pilot.

In addition to the changes to the intake manifold the 03 MDX has an exhaust system similar to the "integratedl catalyts" design of the 03 Accord. This allows for improvements in emmissions that allow for significant changes to the PCM.

Similarly, the VTEC system is quite different.

In addition to these engine differnces, the VTM-4 unit and transmission are different.

Basically you should not consider the HP 'missing'. The vehicles have diverged. Whether they "re-converge' in 04 (or beyond) is yet to be known...
 

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4603pba said:
I was told a car "expert" that putting premium into today's vehicles is a waste because the modern computer adjust for the octane of the fuel to eliminate the pings, etc. I don't know how it effects the performance however.
I use Shell mid grade -local station matches the mid-grade price to the regular from fiday through Sunday every week - also get a 5% discount with Shell card.

bakerlar:)
 
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