The 2014 Honda Pilots were just like the other model years made it around that time and in fact, shared a lot of the same ratings when it came to overall towing capacity. It was pretty impressive to see that these SUVs were capable a pulling up to 4,500 lbs., but I was surprised to see that in certain circumstances, you also had no capacity whatsoever!
In this article, I break down everything you need to know and how to get the most out of your 2014 pilot. I hope somebody out there finds this article helpful.
Always read through your owner's manual to get familiar with your vehicle and to make sure you adhere to Honda's recommendations when it comes to towing or anything else regarding your vehicle.
2014 Pilot Overview
Overall Towing Capacity: The overall towing capacity for the 2014 Honda Pilots ranged from 0-4,500 lbs. And was dependent upon three main variables which were: the number of occupants in the vehicle, if you had a four-wheel drive or two-wheel drive model and if you have the optional ATF cooler installed.
Engine Options: Only one engine was available for the 2014 models and this was the 3.5 L engine, that was also used on many other model year Pilots and is the main reason why the charts are so simple, with little in the way to distract from the trailer weight ratings.
Trim Levels: Four Different trim levels were available for these model year SUVs, but it had no impact on the maximum trailer weight ratings whatsoever, other factors came into play that determined how much you could pull with your vehicle.
Assumed Weight: If we look at the chart that I have posted below, at the very bottom, we can see that Honda specifies that each occupant weighs 150 lbs. and that each occupant will have approximately 15 lbs. of cargo, which gives us a total of 165 lbs. per occupant.
The chart for the 2014 Honda Pilots, looked similar to the 2015 model years and in fact shared the same data because of lot of these vehicles were built the same and didn't really change much over the years.
If we look at the chart below, we can see that Honda lists the number of occupants in the vehicle on the left-hand side of the chart, followed by the appropriate maximum trailer weight rating, based on the drivetrain configuration.
Four-wheel drive models had the ATF cooler installed as a standard option and this is where you see the highest capacity numbers, followed by two-wheel drive models that had the ATF cooler installed and finally the lowest ratings on the chart were reserved for two-wheel drive models that did not have the cooler installed. You can also notice that if the vehicle had a specific number of occupants in it, then you lost all ability to pull any sort of weight.
Tongue Weight Rating:
The tongue weight ratings for these model year SUVs were also provided in a chart form and the maximum tongue weight ratings were listed as 10% of the maximum trailer weight ratings, as they follow the same pattern that the chart did above.
We can also see in the text at the top of the chart that Honda specifies different tongue weight ratings for boat trailers and then all other types of trailers. For boat trailers, Honda recommends a 5-10% tongue weight rating on your vehicle's hitch and that amount is increased to 8-15% for all other types of trailers.
Trailer brakes are also a requirement when pulling additional weight behind your vehicle and Honda specifies that if your trailer weighs 1,000 lbs. or more that you need to have brakes installed on your trailer. This is pretty typical of all model year Pilots, from what my research has told me.
One other thing I want to mention is that you will need to check with your local law enforcement vehicle codes to see if the 1,000 pound rating complies with their requirements, as they may have stricter requirements or more lenient requirements, so you will need to know what those are and abide by those laws as well.
There were four different trim levels listed for the 2014 pilots and these can be found in the brochure and were labeled as the: LX, EX, EX-L and Touring editions.
There were no separate trailer weight ratings for each trim level, instead each trim level had the ability to achieve the weight rating in the chart that I have posted, it was just a matter of whether you had a four-wheel drive or two-wheel drive vehicle and if you had the optional ATF cooler installed.
GVWR, GCWR and GAWR Figures:
The gross vehicle weight ratings, along with the gross combined weight rating and gross axle weight rating figures were also listed in the owner's manual and were available via a chart that I have posted below.
GVWR: The gross vehicle weight rating was listed as gross vehicle in the chart and if we look at the data we can see that the two-wheel drive models had a maximum weight rating of 5,952 lbs. and the four-wheel drive models had a 6,096 pound rating.
GCWR: The gross combined weight rating was also shortened in the chart and listed as gross combined, but if we look at the data we can see that the two-wheel drive models had a maximum weight limit of 8,466 pounds, while 4WD models were listed at 9,579 pounds.
GAWRs: The gross axle weight ratings were listed as 2,921 lbs. for both two-wheel drive and four-wheel drive models and the rear axle was listed at 3,196 lbs. for 2WD models and two separate ratings were listed for the four-wheel drive models, which were 3,362 pounds for all models except for the LX model, which was listed at 3,252 lbs.
Do I Have An ATF Cooler?
In the chart, it specifies that two-wheel drive models can have an optional ATF cooler installed and if we compare the metrics, we can see that there was a great benefit to having one installed, almost double the capacity.
I do want to note that the automatic transmission cooler was a standard option on all of the four-wheel drive models and is why they have those higher capacity ratings, but it was an optional accessory for the two-wheel drive models, so you will need to verify whether you have one of these installed on your vehicle.
There are two ways to go about this, the first way would be to climb under the vehicle and to visually inspect to see if you have transmission lines that go to the radiator or somewhere around the radiator to an auxiliary cooler. If you're not comfortable with this method or confident in your ability to recognize whether you have one installed, then my next recommendation would be to take it into a dealership to see if they can verify for you.
Other Info I Found:
There were a couple of other little nuggets of information I was able to find in the owner's manual while continuing my research, which I posted screenshots of what I found below.
The first bit of information talks about two different things, the first one talks a little bit about how Honda recommends 91 octane or higher gasoline if you're planning on pulling more than 3,500 lbs. behind your vehicle. We can also see that your vehicle's performance can be affected by certain elements like higher altitude areas, steep uphill grade and higher outside temperature, especially when these three variables are combined or present at the same time.
The other bit of information talks about how using weight distribution hitches is not recommended for the 2014 Pilots and if you do put one on your vehicle and it is not properly adjusted it can cause problems with handling, stability and braking performance issues.
The two main resources I use for the research in this article came from the owner's manual and the 2014 brochure, which I link to both assets below. I gathered most of the information from the owner's manual, including all the images, in order to keep the information as accurate as possible and I do recommend that you read through your owner's manual to get familiar with your vehicle.
The brochure also came in handy and I like the way it laid out some of the trim level models, as it had different information that I was also able to find useful.