Seaside Mazda Dealers Compare The 2018 Mazda CX-9 vs 2018 Honda Pilot

The 2018 Mazda CX-9 is the largest and most powerful SUV in the automaker’s lineup. This three-row crossover is ideal for families on the go. When you visit a dealership like the Seaside Mazda dealer and see the CX-9, the first thing you’ll notice is its beautiful styling that rivals the competition. Climb inside and you’ll be treated to an interior that’s more attractive than some luxury SUVs. Like all Mazda vehicles, handling is one of the CX-9’s strong points, thanks to Mazda’s G-Vectoring technology.

The 2018 Honda Pilot is a popular three-row family crossover that competes in the crossover market. We’ll examine the two SUVs side by side and see how well the 2018 Honda Pilot holds up against the 2018 Mazda CX-9.


The 2018 Mazda CX-9 has a better engine than the 2018 Honda Pilot. The 2018 Mazda CX-9 is powered by a 2.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder powerplant that develops 250 horses and 310 lb.-ft. of torque. The 2018 Honda Pilot is equipped with a 3.5-liter V6 that makes 280 hp and 262 lb.-ft. While the Honda Pilot has a bit more horsepower, the Mazda CX-9 produces 48 lb.-ft. more torque. Since torque measures the power the engine sends to the wheels, this number is more important.

Fuel Efficiency

Owners of the 2018 Mazda CX-9 will make fewer trips to the gas pump than Pilot owners. The 2018 Mazda CX-9 gets EPA-estimated fuel economy of 22 mpg city/28 mpg highway with front-wheel drive, while all-wheel-drive models check in with 20 mpg city/26 mpg highway. The 2018 Honda Pilot can’t compete, with 19 mpg city/27 mpg highway for models with four-wheel drive and the six-speed automatic and 20 mpg city/27 mpg highway with the nine-speed automatic. All-wheel-drive models with the six-speed automatic gearbox are rated at 18 mpg city/26 mpg highway, and 19 mpg city/26 mpg highway with the nine-speed automatic transmission.


The CX-9 has long been known for its superior handling that bests the competition. The CX-9 can handle curves better than most vehicles in its class. The Pilot can take curves well enough, but with its conspicuous body lean, it’s not in the same league as the CX-9. And the CX-9’s smaller turning radius means it can get in and out of small spaces more easily than the Pilot.


The Mazda CX-9 has more than twice as much towing capability as the Honda Pilot. The CX-9 can tow up to 3,500 pounds, while the Pilot has a maximum towing capacity of 1,500 pounds.


When it comes to styling, you’d be hard-pressed to find an SUV that can compare with the Mazda CX-9. The automotive experts at Kelley Blue Book wrote: “The CX-9’s styling is more seductive than better-known rivals like the Honda Pilot ... We think it's beautiful.” The Pilot’s styling can be described as utilitarian at best.

Blind Spot Monitoring

Today’s drivers increasingly demand standard advanced safety features like blind spot monitoring. The 2018 Mazda CX-9 comes with blind spot monitoring, which sounds an alert if it detects an object is in the vehicle’s blind spot while you’re changing lanes. Unless Honda Pilot buyers choose the priciest Elite trim, they can only get blind spot monitoring as an expensive option.

In the End

Looking closely at the 2018 Mazda CX-9 and the 2018 Honda Pilot, we can easily see the CX-9 is the superior SUV. It handily beats the Pilot.