2024 Honda Passport Review: A Simple Daily Warrior

Like the rest of the Honda SUV lineup, the Passport is a family vehicle through and through.

byJerry Perez|
Honda Reviews photo
Jerry Perez

The 2024 Honda Passport heads into the new year almost unchanged, carrying on as the same practical, comfortable, and capable crossover as before. Following a round of styling and functionality updates over the last two years, the 2024 Passport focuses heavily on improving its cabin's versatility, enhancing its off-road TrailSport trim, and remaining a value-packed candidate to buyers until an all-new model likely arrives in 2025.

The most considerable improvement for 2024 is the Passport's updated interior, which features a new center console that's bigger, wider, and features an integrated armrest. It now fits more stuff than before, including a large tablet, purse, or whatever else you need to keep out of prying eyes. The cubbies surrounding Honda's quirky push-button shifter have also been redesigned to offer more versatility, as now you can place two smartphones side by side, with one of them taking advantage of the wireless charging pad.

Jerry Perez

However, the most eye-catching improvement for 2024 has to do with the Passport's exterior. The rugged TrailSport trim now gets an off-road-tuned suspension and knobby all-terrain tires on trim-specific 18-inch wheels, which along with a slightly wider track enhance the crossover's looks more than anyone would expect. Like the Pilot TrailSport I drove earlier this year, it gives it more "trail cred" and allows owners to go off the beaten path while on camping, biking, kayaking, or hiking adventures. Should ruggedness not be your thing, the Passport is also available in a sleek Black Edition trim.

2024 Honda Passport Specs
Base Price (TrailSport as tested)$43,275 ($46,330)
Powertrain3.5-liter V6 | 9-speed automatic | all-wheel drive
Horsepower280 @ 6,000 rpm
Torque262 lb-ft @ 4,700 rpm
Seating Capacity5
Curb Weight4,229 pounds
Cargo Volume100.8 cubic feet behind first row | 50.5 cubic feet behind second row
Towing Capacity5,000 pounds
Ground Clearance8.1 inches
EPA Fuel Economy19 mpg city | 24 highway | 21 combined
Quick TakeThe Passport's overall package makes for decent and practical family transportation, though the TrailSport's off-road goodies deliver a lackluster driving experience.
Jerry Perez

The Basics

The Passport is a five-seat crossover that sits third from the bottom in Honda's utility vehicle hierarchy. It starts with the small HR-V, followed by the ideal all-arounder CR-V, then the Passport, and lastly, the big daddy Pilot. It's a versatile ride that caters to city dwellers, suburban families, as well as adventurous weekend warriors with its 5,000-pound maximum towing capacity.

Simplicity is key with the Passport, and this is evident with its design. It's a decent-looking vehicle that's bound to appeal to both the masses and no one in particular. My tester's TrailSport trim added a bit more pizzazz with its unique grille, chunky tires, and meaty wheels. But whether you dress it in plain white or the optional $455 Sonic Gray Pearl, its neutral persona can even be considered a plus in today's often-overstyled crossovers.

The cabin might look and feel austere, but the truth is that it's truly function over form. The controls are in the right place, the ergonomics are ideal, and you won't find a cubby or cupholder out of place. There are buttons for all basic controls, though Honda's infotainment system for the Passport feels outdated and somewhat clumsy compared to newer systems.

Under the hood sits a naturally aspirated V6 that puts out 280 horsepower and 262 lb-ft of torque that's paired to a nine-speed automatic transmission. The engine has a torquey and responsive feel to it that's not too common in today's mostly turbocharged crossovers. This comes at a price, as the EPA-rated 19 mpg in the city isn't exactly considered efficient nowadays. Honda's capable all-wheel-drive system is mostly to "blame" for that, though surely the added off-road goodies don't help that cause either.

Driving Honda Passport TrailSport

It's worth highlighting that the driving impressions shared here apply to the TrailSport model only. Its trim-specific suspension, tires, and other bits alter the ride enough to differentiate it from the non-TrailSport, which likely handles better.

While the Passport TrailSport offers a cushy ride due to the bigger tires, smaller wheels, and floaty off-road-tuned suspension, it adds an element of vagueness to the wheel. I found myself constantly adjusting the steering wheel because I couldn't get a good read on the direction of the tires. The wider track and bigger General Grabber A/T Sport 245/60R18 tires make the steering feel less precise and lead the driver to feel like they aren't in total control. Not to mention, it makes the crossover feel slightly wider, confused, and more aggro than necessary.

On the other hand, the cabin is extremely comfortable, and even with the all-terrain tires, it is relatively quiet. It's a solid place to spend all day running errands or traveling out of state. Despite its lack of feedback and the bigger tires, the steering feel isn't overly heavy and therefore isn't tiring. Acceleration is plenty adequate around town or on the highway, with the V6 quickly coming alive when you put your foot down.

The Highs and Lows

The Passport is all about simplicity. From its neutral look to its simple cabin and comfortable nature, it's the ideal crossover for someone who values practicality over character. Like the rest of the Honda SUV lineup, it's a family vehicle through and through. The TrailSport model offers a bit more personality and additional capability for those looking to explore the outdoors, while the heated windshield is a nice luxury at this price point.

On the flip side, off-road-tuned suspension and all-terrain tires make the Passport feel overly disconnected from the road. The steering wheel lacks precision, as I often had to adjust the wheel to stay on course.

Honda Passport Features, Options, and the Competition

At $46,330, my Passport TrailSport tester only featured one option: the $455 Sonic Gray Pearl paint color. Everything else was included as standard, including the i-VTM4 all-wheel-drive system, leather-trimmed seats, heated seats and steering wheel, push-button start, remote start, tri-zone climate control, LED headlights, and more. The Honda Sensing suite of advanced safety features is also standard, including adaptive cruise control, emergency braking, lane-keeping assist, and road departure mitigation.

On paper, the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Subaru Outback rank as some of the Passport's top competitors. It's hard to ignore that these models lean hard into their all-terrain personas and can easily surpass the Passport in terms of off-road capability. However, when it comes to everyday drivability, size, and general purpose, they are fairly matched. When it comes to dollars, the Subaru Outback stands out as the value star with a price of $43,500 similarly equipped as the Honda, while and Jeep comes in closer to the $49,000 mark when similarly equipped.

Fuel Economy

There's a price to pay for that V6 grunt, as the Passport only manages to deliver an EPA rating of 19 mpg city, 24 mpg highway, and 21 mpg combined, slightly lagging behind its Subaru and Jeep rivals.


Value and Verdict

After spending a week with the 2024 Honda Passport Trailsport, I walked away with a lingering feeling that one could do better for $46,330. While the aforementioned Subaru and Jeep are solid rivals, I found the answer to my dilemma within the Honda lineup: the 2024 Honda Pilot AWD EX-L.

The new Pilot offers more of everything for an out-the-door price of $45,875. Seating capacity jumps from five to eight courtesy of a whole extra row, while fuel economy actually improves(!) by a single highway mpg while city and combined efficiency remains the same. I know what you're thinking: the off-road goodies. Well, if that's what you're looking for, you could spend an additional $2,000 and spring for the Pilot TrailSport.

If anything, what this shows is that while the Passport is a fine commuter crossover on its own, it plays in an extremely competitive segment where consumers are spoilt for choice. The choice is yours.

Email the author at jerry@thedrive.com

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