Feds investigating Honda Pilot SUV engine failures

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The U.S. government’s road safety agency is investigating complaints that the fuel-saving stop-start system on some Honda Pilot SUVs can fail to restart.

Owners complained that the engine won’t restart on its own from a complete stop at a traffic light or intersection with the stop-start feature in use. 

Some complained that a jump start was needed to get the motor going again.

The probe covers nearly 195,000 Pilots from the 2016 through 2020 model years, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said.

The probe covers Honda Pilots built from 2916 to 2020.
(Honda)

According to a document posted Tuesday on the NHTSA website, there have been 221 complaints about the problem, but no reports of crashes or injuries.

The Pilot is powered by a 3.5-liter V6.

The Pilot is powered by a 3.5-liter V6.
(Honda)

The Pilots under investigation have 3.5-liter V6 engines and nine-speed automatic transmissions. Agency documents say Honda has indicated other models with the same engines and transmissions could have similar problems. Other models include the Honda Odyssey minivan, the Acura TLX sedan and the Acura MDX SUV.

The Pilot features a stop-start system that turns the engine off when it is not in motion.

The Pilot features a stop-start system that turns the engine off when it is not in motion.
(Honda)

Honda says it’s cooperating with NHTSA and is continuing its own internal review.

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NHTSA says it’s opening the investigation to assess the safety issues and determine how many models are affected.

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