A midsize SUV is great for accommodating families while still appealing to the side of you that seeks thrills in the unknown. With ample interior room, top-notch technology, and a performance that was engineered to keep up with your lifestyle, an SUV is sure to be perfect. Plus, with two that top the charts-the Ford Explorer and Honda Pilot-you'll have your choice, as well.

At Fred Beans Ford of West Chester, we want you to drive an SUV that's as adventurous as you are. So, we put together this 2020 Ford Explorer vs. Honda Pilot comparison to help drivers in the West Chester, Glen Mills, and Malvern areas find the right vehicle for their needs. Read ahead to learn more!

2020 Ford Escape

2020 Honda Pilot

Engine Choices



Max Horsepower



Max Cargo Space

87.8 cubic feet

83.9 cubic feet

Standard Transmission

10-speed automatic

6-speed automatic

Hybrid Option



2020 Explorer vs 2020 Pilot: Cargo Space

No matter where you're headed, be it dropping the kids off at school or going on a special weekend getaway, these two SUVs offer ample space for what you have in the back.

The Explorer and Pilot sport a roomy cargo area, perfect for everyday adventures or hitting the open road. Both feature a 40/60 split, flat-folding second row for versatile cargo space. The Honda Pilot also offers a manual 40/60 split function in the third row. The Ford Explorer, however, automates the experience with the available PowerFold® third-row seat.

With this feature, the third row folds down flat (or at a 50/50 split) at the touch of a button for increased cargo space without any increased effort. Unfortunately, you won't find a feature like this in the Pilot.

When loading the cargo area, both the Pilot and Explorer have power liftgate tailgates. However, this feature comes standard in the Ford while it's available in the Pilot. Though they both offer hands-free power liftgates. It opens with a foot sensor, so you can easily load up even if your hands are full.

Additionally, the overall cargo space in the 2020 Explorer is more expansive than the 2020 Pilot, no matter which configuration you have it in.


2020 Ford Escape

2020 Honda Pilot

Behind 3rd Row

18.2 cu. ft.

16.5 cu. ft.          

Behind 2nd Row

47.9 cu. ft

46.8 cu. ft

Behind 1st Row

87.8 cu. ft

83.9 cu. ft

Ford Explorer vs Honda Pilot: Safety Features

The 2020 Ford Explorer and 2020 Honda Pilot employ features that aim to keep drivers safe in all weather and traffic conditions. The recently redesigned Explorer exterior features front and rear LED lights, as does the Pilot. These lights improve vision while driving at night and in the fog.

The Ford Explorer, however, steps up its all-weather game with available auto high-beam headlamps and rain-sensing wipers. These available high-tech wipers sense the amount of rain on the windshield and adjust the speed of the blades to combat the weather conditions.

When sharing the road, the Explorer and Pilot utilize available blind-spot detection systems to monitor moving vehicles in the driver's blind spots. They also both include lane-assist features to keep drivers on their intended path of travel.

The standard rearview cameras and available cross-traffic monitors in the Ford Explorer and Honda Pilot make backing out of parking spaces easy. However, the available Active Park Assist 2.0 feature in the 2020 Ford Explorer makes getting into the space even easier.

Active Park Assist 2.0 utilizes 12 ultrasonic sensors to scan for parking and helps drivers back into perpendicular spots or parallel park. All you have to do is shift, accelerate, and brake. The vehicle does the rest.

The rearview camera in the 2020 Honda Pilot allows for improved visibility when reversing, but this feature does not provide drivers with any automatic assistance when locating or entering a parking spot.

You May Also Like: Ford Explorer Safety Review

Explorer vs Pilot: Performance

One of the biggest differences between the 2020 Ford Explorer and 2020 Honda Pilot is what you'll find under the hood. Though both models offer a robust performance for your drives, the differences may help you seal the deal when choosing which one is right for you.

The Honda Pilot offers one engine across all of its trim levels: a 3.5L V6. This generates up to 280 horsepower and 262 lb-ft of torque. Though powerful, when compared to the standard engine in the Ford Explorer, it falls short.

The base powertrain for the Explorer, a 2.3L EcoBoost®, revs up to 300 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of torque. Plus, its base engine is paired with an advanced 10-speed automatic transmission. The Pilot comes standard with a 6-speed automatic transmission and offers a 9-speed automatic transmission. Unfortunately, they still offer fewer shifting opportunities than the Ford SUV.

Additionally, the Explorer offers a chance to elevate your performance with an upgraded engine, which is not found in the Pilot. Available for the Explorer is a hearty 3.0L EcoBoost® V6, which offers up to 400 horsepower and 415 lb-ft of torque. This allows the model to tow up to 5,600 pounds, whereas the Pilot's towing capacity maxes out at 5,000 pounds.

That isn't all! The 2020 Ford Explorer offers a hybrid engine in its lineup, as well. This powertrain elevates fuel economy and allows you to go farther on one tank of gas.  

2020 Ford Explorer vs Honda Pilot: Which SUV Is for You?

As you can see, the 2020 Ford Explorer comes out on top in performance, interior space, and safety. Now that you've had a taste of what this top-of-the-line SUV has to offer, it's time to get behind the wheel for a test drive.

Shoppers in the West Chester, Glen Mills, and Malvern areas can schedule a test drive today by giving us a call at Fred Beans Ford of West Chester. We'll see you on the lot soon!

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Fred Beans Ford of West Chester

1155 West Chester Pike
Directions West Chester, PA 19382

  • Sales: 8555825335
  • Service: (610) 696-4700
  • Parts: (610) 696-4700

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