Our long-term Honda Passport is proving to be an accomplished and frequent traveler in the few months that it’s been with us, sailing past the 10,000-mile mark on the back of a number of journeys around North America. More impressively, it has done so while generating only a few nits for us to pick.
Production designer Jeff Xu piloted the Passport on its longest trips. These included separate treks from our Ann Arbor, Michigan, home base to both Denver and New Orleans. After both, Xu praised the Passport’s cargo space, generous interior cubbies, and numerous USB ports for charging multiple devices at once. His chief gripe? “I did discover that all the cupholders were too small to fit larger bottles, like Gatorades or Nalgenes,” he wrote in the Honda‘s logbook.
A trip to Toronto generated a more significant complaint regarding the Passport’s lane-departure-warning feature, which flashes an alert in the gauge cluster and jiggles the steering wheel before the SUV’s tire even crosses the center line. While that level of hypersensitivity certainly is the result of Honda’s proactive stance on safety, it quickly gets annoying when cruising the highway through construction zones with narrowed lanes and closely clumped orange barrels.
We’ve logged similar complaints with Honda’s collision-avoidance technology in some of its other models, including our long-term 2018 Honda Accord. But our Passport will also occasionally read the open road as a potential obstacle and activate the vehicle’s automated emergency braking system for no obvious reason—much to its driver’s surprise. And discomfort.
At just over 10,000 miles, the Passport visited the dealer for its first scheduled service, which included an oil change, tire rotation, and the changing of its rear-differential fluid for $134. (The dealer changed the engine oil without replacing the filter, as per Honda’s unusual service recommendations.) Our only other expenditure thus far has been the patching of a rock chip in the windshield ($50). While we’ll likely have to replace the windshield before the Honda’s time with us is up, $50 is far easier to stomach now than the $1000 or so that new glass will cost.
The rest of the comments in the Passport’s logbook mostly have been about the OE-size Yokohama IceGuard G075 winter tires we installed at around 11,000 miles. Several staffers noted that the road noise they generate in the cabin is far greater than what we noticed with the stock Continental CrossContact LX Sport all-seasons. This is often the case with winter tires and it’s generally not a significant issue, but the Yokohamas seem to be particularly loud. “They’re noisy at highway speeds and yet the traction on snow and ice is only so-so,” wrote director of vehicle testing Dave VanderWerp.
Unfortunately, the Passport’s fuel economy has not benefited as much as we’d hoped from all its highway running. Thanks to both the knobby winter tires and plenty of (heavy-footed) commuting between trips, the Passport’s average is down 2 mpg to 20, or 1 mpg less than its EPA combined estimate. However, with 25,000 miles left in its stint, our already well-traveled Honda definitely will hit the open road again.