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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Around Jan or Feb I was itching to buy a new EXL and ditch my 2010 Odyssey. I was so fearful of the 9 speed and the stupid auto on off feature and then when I figured out that buying an EXL would avoid both of those, I was stoked.

Then Covid and I have just had this purchase in the back of my mind but wasn't doing anything. Just this morning I googled and see that back in June the 2021s came out and now I MUST get a 9 speed and stupid auto on off! Bahhhhhhhh. Really annoyed by this.

Maybe now if I buy a Pilot I am better off trying to buy a 2019 used or something. Or maybe I shouldn't be as scared of the 9spd and auto start as I am?
 

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Glorificatus Oleum Mutante
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I wouldn't be fearful of the 9-speed.
After I got the vehicle home, I'd hot wire the Auto start/stop feature.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Buy 3x 2008 Honda Pilot EX-Ls ,
Garage 2 of them, drive one until its dead, then go onto second vehicle, then onto third...
Those 3 Pilots will last you longer than your 2021 , with less problems, and save you $28,000.01
Haha yeah I think that is why I just keep stalling. My 2010 Odyssey is fine, I had the timing belt done a couple years ago, just did new control arms and tie rods myself last fall so the front end is tight....I am just getting tired of it but really it works fine. And it is free
 

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Can you use MaxLife ATF in it?
Well according to the label on the Maxlife jug you can use it, but I sure wouldn't in the 9 speed. Maxlife isn't LICENSED by Honda and warranty could be a problem if something happened. Maxlife RECOMMENDS it.

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You should get a 2020 while you can! You might not be able to get the exact specs you want, but it'll be cheaper than a 2021. If you somehow do end up with a 2021, you'll probably just have to get used to pressing the button every time you drive.
 

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Around Jan or Feb I was itching to buy a new EXL and ditch my 2010 Odyssey. I was so fearful of the 9 speed and the stupid auto on off feature and then when I figured out that buying an EXL would avoid both of those, I was stoked.

Then Covid and I have just had this purchase in the back of my mind but wasn't doing anything. Just this morning I googled and see that back in June the 2021s came out and now I MUST get a 9 speed and stupid auto on off! Bahhhhhhhh. Really annoyed by this.

Maybe now if I buy a Pilot I am better off trying to buy a 2019 used or something. Or maybe I shouldn't be as scared of the 9spd and auto start as I am?

Get the 20 or 21 and do this.... Permanently disable Auto Stop Start!
 

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no need to be afraid of the ZF9. I’ve got a ‘18 Pilot Elite and a ‘20 TL V6 SH-AWD and the ZF9 in both is perfect. So is the auto stop/start. There is no need to disable the auto stop/start. All you have to do is make sure you don’t push the brake pedal completely to the floor. It’s that easy. I control it that way all the time. Very simple and easy.

I wouldn't be fearful of the 9-speed.
After I got the vehicle home, I'd hot wire the Auto start/stop feature.
 

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The 9 speed is only going to get better. As far as the auto start/stop feature, most people simply don't mind it. It's not going to cause you to not be able to accelerate when you need to, and there isn't a ton of evidence showing it will wear out other parts. There are also people who just press the button every time they get in the car to disable the system and it becomes a habit like buckling your seatbelt.

These cars are really nice and have a lot of features. Believe it or not, car makers aren't banding together in some massive conspiracy to add technology to cars and make them break sooner. Technology is complicated and can have bugs. The 1st generation Pilots had plenty of issues too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
When you say the 9spd is only going to get better, you mean they will have more software updates or something?

I guess I would need to drive both 6spd and 9spd to see if I can tell the difference
 

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Well according to the label on the Maxlife jug you can use it, but I sure wouldn't in the 9 speed. Maxlife isn't LICENSED by Honda and warranty could be a problem if something happened. Maxlife RECOMMENDS it.

View attachment 139747
When I joined this forum a few months back with my warranty-less 19k mile rebuilt 2017 6-speed Pilot, it looked like I was one of the first to guinea pig MaxLife in it and talk about the results on this forum. If you like your engine rpms to raise a little more between shifts, then MaxLife is a great choice. I'd never put Dino oil based DW-1 back in any of my Honda vehicles.
If Valvoline says that their Full Synthetic MaxLife is specd for the 9-speed (3.1 ATF), I'd have no fears using it. Just know that changing fluids can sometimes change shifting characteristics. Whether that's the case for MaxLife in a 9-speed Pilot? I'm sure we will eventually know. Somebody will be first to change their non-full synthetic 3.1 ATF fluid to Full Synthetic Valvoline MaxLife.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
When you say the 9spd is only going to get better, you mean they will have more software updates or something?

I guess I would need to drive both 6spd and 9spd to see if I can tell the difference
So I answered my own question by reading some recent pages on the 9spd ZF thread. Seems Honda came out with a software update a few months back in a TSB and people with the problems reported that it fixed them. So that's good.

Then I remembered all the crackling radio issues....I thought those were on the Elites and Tourings only....so do we think Honda hopefully updated the wiring harness or maybe they still use harnesses on the EXL that are fine and they are just swapping in the engines and trannies.

As much as I am getting sick of the little cosmetic issues on my 2010 Odyssey, it is still a superbly functional vehicle and has more space than the Pilot I would be switching to. I really need to wetsand the headlights though and the clear coat on the wheels is looking like crap. I don't think I can easily refinish the wheels myself as it looks to be a lot of work according to YouTube.
 

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All Pilots use the same 3.5 engine, same engine as Ridgeline, Passport, Odyssey, MDX and TLX. The 9 speed is common to Pilot, 2021 Ridgeline, Passport, MDX and TLX. There were issues with the 2016 and a handful of 2017 models. Since then all have been resolved and the affected transmissions (a faulty cooling system to ATF heat exchanger which caused cross-contamination is the culprit) were replaced. Any subsequent transmission failures were due to improper maintenance and abuse.

The infotainment system problem is due to human error at the Alabama assembly line. Bubba and Goober screwed up the connection of the wiring to the infotainment system when Honda changed the units to a newer design.

Finally, the transmission control unit software has been improved for smoother operation.

So I answered my own question by reading some recent pages on the 9spd ZF thread. Seems Honda came out with a software update a few months back in a TSB and people with the problems reported that it fixed them. So that's good.

Then I remembered all the crackling radio issues....I thought those were on the Elites and Tourings only....so do we think Honda hopefully updated the wiring harness or maybe they still use harnesses on the EXL that are fine and they are just swapping in the engines and trannies.

As much as I am getting sick of the little cosmetic issues on my 2010 Odyssey, it is still a superbly functional vehicle and has more space than the Pilot I would be switching to. I really need to wetsand the headlights though and the clear coat on the wheels is looking like crap. I don't think I can easily refinish the wheels myself as it looks to be a lot of work according to YouTube.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
All Pilots use the same 3.5 engine, same engine as Ridgeline, Passport, Odyssey, MDX and TLX. The 9 speed is common to Pilot, 2021 Ridgeline, Passport, MDX and TLX. There were issues with the 2016 and a handful of 2017 models. Since then all have been resolved and the affected transmissions (a faulty cooling system to ATF heat exchanger which caused cross-contamination is the culprit) were replaced. Any subsequent transmission failures were due to improper maintenance and abuse.

The infotainment system problem is due to human error at the Alabama assembly line. Bubba and Goober screwed up the connection of the wiring to the infotainment system when Honda changed the units to a newer design.

Finally, the transmission control unit software has been improved for smoother operation.
I understand re: engines, that wasn't a question. Only thing I would say on the trannies is that it seems there are lots of complaints about odd shifting so I dont think that was just 2016 and a few 2017. Seems lots of recent complaints too. But hopefully fixed by recent TSB software update for those who can get the flash. Pretty crappy that a dealer would charge 60 bucks to reflash software. I think Honda should make that a free update and compensate dealers for their time need be
 

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This is exactly what spurred us to snatch up a '20 EX-L last month.
Fortunate thing is if you're flexible on colors, it's just a matter of finding the trim level and drivetrain desired.
☝same as this. I got the 2019 EXL model due to avooding CVT tranny.
The sales person was scratching his head since he wanted to sell me a Elite at 3K more and I declined.
 
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