Today, I profile the Honda Pilot driver and write about the lengths they are willing to go in order to avoid the Odyssey, because have you ever met a Honda Pilot owner without kids?
Age Group: It doesn't matter, as long as they're solidly middle-class and old enough to be a parent. So let's say between 25 (if people still have kids at that age) and 55.
Occupation: Homemaker, middle manager, IT worker, basically any solidly middle-class occupation where an individual wants to mitigate looking definitely like a parent (a minivan to them being much more obvious, though everyone knows you're a parent even with a Pilot).
Residence: Any suburb of these United States of America. Or anyplace where a minivans are the norm in the driveway. There's really no place else that warrants a Pilot.
Leased or Bought: Bought, with a finance deal in place. It's a family vehicle, so it's a long-term investment. There's absolutely no reason to lease. If you were leasing it, you would get something that weighed (and cost) more so it could be written off as a commercial vehicle. And it certainly wouldn't be a Pilot.
Intended Use for Car: It's essentially a people mover for a growing family and you want a Japanese brand. You'll use it for what minivan owners use their vehicles for, but without knowing the significant less ease involved. Owners also tell themselves, "Well, with the Pilot I could get all-wheel-drive for our frequent trips to Tahoe."
Actual Use for Car: Using the Pilot for what Odysseys are made for, while complaining about the trunk space compared to your neighbor's Odyssey as well as the fuel mileage. But you get the satisfaction that you're not driving a minivan. And how often did you end up going to Tahoe? What did you think when you saw just as many Odysseys there?
Attitude Towards Maintenance: It's a Honda. Just send it to the dealer when the light comes on or if the service advisor calls me. It's a fairly reliable car. After all, they're raising a family so they have to make sure the family vehicle keeps on running.
Car They Wish They Had: Some big three-row expensive luxury SUV: Land Cruiser/LX570, Mercedes GL, X5, Q7, the usual suspects. Because they still need to look cool in the neighborhood.
Car They'll Recommend to Others: Odyssey. They'll come to this realization after riding in an Odyssey with two families and their stuff aboard, something they know could never be accomplished in the Pilot. It'll also come from asking to borrow the neighbor's Odyssey when you have to show visiting friends and family around town.
Car They'll Want at the Rental Counter: Anything that can fit a family of four or five and their luggage. They'll be offered a minivan at first, but then they'll upgrade to an SUV no matter the cost, because they'd rather be seen in anything else but a minivan, even on vacation.
Driver Profiles is a recurring feature on Clunkerture. Anyone is free to create their own Driver Profiles from this form, since I'm not qualified to write profiles on some car owners, like the people who run Pontiac Fieros and Alfa Romeo Breras. Feel free to e-mail me at email@example.com if you'd like your piece to be featured.
Photo Credit: Honda