The Honda Passport is a solid SUV that hits the sweet spot between comfort and ruggedness, but the bad news is that the price just climbed by over $5,000 for the 2022 model year. Yikes, that's a huge increase, especially considering that it's not marked by a total redesign, which won't come for at least few years. Hell, the Passport hasn't even been refreshed yet, as Honda typically does after a few years.
The 2021 Honda Passport base MSRP was pretty much on par with the rest of the mainstream midsized SUV/Crossover segment, but all that has changed with this rather significant price increase. Typically, you'll see automakers hike prices by a few hundred dollars (or not even change them at all), so this huge jump comes as a bit of a shock. Let's take a closer look at why Honda made the decision.
Trim Levels Change
For 2021, there were four trim levels: Sport, EX-L, Touring, and Elite. The base price for the Passport for the lowest Sport trim was $32,790. For 2022, Honda is dropping the Sport trim, so the EX-L will be the new base trim. They're also dropping the Touring trim, which is slotted just below the top Elite trim level. The EX-L was priced at $36,810 for 2021, and that price rises to $37,870 (front-wheel drive), which is a $2,285 price increase, which is significant enough. When you consider that the least expensive Passport was $32,790 in 2021 and the lowest price for 2022 is $37,870, that's a $5,080 price difference. Keep in mind that Honda didn't even throw in standard all-wheel drive with that price increase.
For 2022, there are only three trim levels instead of four: EX-L ($37,870), TrailSport ($42,470), and Elite ($45,430). Also, keep in mind that the Elite is now pricier, too. It used to cost $44,180 for 2021, and that price has climbed by $1,250. On the oh-so-slightly brighter side is the fact that the all-wheel drive option for the EX-L trim is now $100 less at $2,000 for 2022 instead of the 2021 asking price of $2,100. Ya gotta clamber after the silver lining at this point.
More good news comes in the form of added standard features for the new EX-L base trim compared to the 2021 Sport trim. The EX-L comes with leather seats, heated front seats, 20-inch wheels, a sunroof, a power tailgate, and blind-spot monitoring. The mid-pack TrailSport is more off-road leaning with a wider track and black wheels and more rugged tires. The TrailSport also gets orange trim inside, special logos, and tougher-looking black trim bits. It also adds a navigation system and a roof rack. The top-tier Elite adds ventilated front seats, a heated steering wheel, and heated rear seats.
Why the Huge Price Increase?
Although this is pure speculation, we're guessing the Passport's price is skyrocketing due to the ongoing supply chain delays and inflation. Whether or not Honda will increase prices elsewhere in its lineup is unclear. We just checked the price of the 2022 CR-V crossover (the brand's best-selling vehicle), and it only jumped by $400 ($25,350 to $25,750), so any other dramatic price increases are unlikely.
The crazy thing is that the Passport doesn't actually sell all that well compared to other Honda models (CR-V, Accord, Civic, Pilot, HR-V, and even the Odyssey minivan), so the logic behind the huge price increase escapes us. There are more affordable choices like the Hyundai Santa Fe ($27,400 base MSRP), the much larger Volkswagen Atlas ($33,475 base MSRP), and the upcoming 2023 Mazda CX-50 (the price should be a tad more than $26,000), which will also come with standard all-wheel drive. To us, the Passport has priced itself out of contention by quite a bit. The good news is that you can try ti find a 2021 Honda Passport Sport while supplies last.
The Honda Passport is a great vehicle, and we enjoyed driving it. Maybe a good used model is in your future. Read our review below.