A silver 2023 Honda HR-V is shown driving leaving a Honda dealer.

Unlocking the Details About Honda’s Best Trim Levels

What’s in a name? As you pass by your local Honda dealer, you may notice several variations of popular favorites, like the Civic, the Accord, the Ridgeline, the CR-V, and so on. From EX to Touring, Elite to Sport, what do all these names even mean? Well, there is a method to the madness. When delving through all of the trim levels of an esteemed brand’s inventory, like that of Honda, it’ll be immediately apparent that these trims dictate the quality of the drive. From adventure hounds to sophistication seekers, Honda’s showcase rewards its inquisitors with one of the best lineups in the business—so, without further adieu, let’s uncover the details of some of this brand’s most popular trims.

TrailSport: Built for the Fearless

An adventurous lifestyle warrants a vehicle that can keep up with its owner. Both the Pilot and the Passport SUVs can be equipped with TrailSport capabilities, which push them past the brink of excitement anywhere they dare to travel. TrailSport models are built for rugged terrain, featuring impeccable all-wheel drive abilities and the Intelligent Traction Management system, which allows these models to traverse snowy, muddy, and uneven environments with equal parts power and finesse. 18-inch alloy wheels, a power tailgate, and roof rails engineered to carry all types of gear make TrailSport models ready for anything.

Leather-trimmed seating greets all on board, accentuated with orange stitching for an aura of ferocity, instilling courage in the adventuring party it harbors. Hill Descent Control assists with navigating steep terrain while a powerful V6 engine propels these models with gusto, providing its occupants with a one-of-a-kind ride in any environment. All-terrain tires, recovery points, skid plates, and more durable off-road-ready elements are available on TrailSport models, making them a top choice for those with a thirst for thrills.

A 2022 Honda Pilot is shown driving on a mountain.

Elite: Focused on Luxury

Some drivers demand the ultimate luxury in their vehicles, and Honda offers its most extravagant trim level, the Elite, for such travelers. The Elite is only available in a handful of Honda models, including the Pilot, Passport, and Odyssey, featuring upscale vibes and a high-class ambiance that quickly appeals to sophisticated drivers. Leather trimmings throughout, heated second-row captain’s chairs, heated and ventilated front seats, and a smorgasbord of tech dons the interiors of these show-stopping vehicles. Outside, brilliant LED lighting elements and distinctive wheel designs allow these models to quickly capture the attention of all who glance their way.

Models like the Odyssey amp up the convenience factor inside, with Magic Slide second-row seats to easily accommodate additional passengers and gear, with the ability to stow an extra seat in the floor to handle more cargo. CabinWatch and CabinTalk are also offered in these models, allowing the driver to communicate with and keep a close eye on everyone inside without taking their attention off the roadway. The level of refinement and innovation in the Elite models make them the obvious choice for drivers who crave irrefutable opulence.

Touring: Ready to Cruise

For those whose lives belong to the highway, Honda’s Touring models deliver the comfort and agility needed to get the most enjoyment from their travels. Honda models that can be outfitted with Touring capabilities include the fan-favorite Civic sedan, family-oriented Pilot SUV, kid-toting Odyssey minivan, and classy Accord Hybrid sedan. Touring models feature upscale appointments inside to heighten the feel of the ride, including leather-trimmed and heated seats, a one-touch power moonroof, a premium audio system, and more.

Acoustic glass provides a quiet, tranquil experience, even during bustling traffic. At the same time, multi-zone climate control makes it easy for all occupants to sit back and relax in ultimate comfort. Wireless Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and wireless charging keep you effortlessly connected while on the go, and the Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation System will have you feeling like a starship captain, giving commands to an unseen, omniscient copilot. Parking sensors, advanced safety tech, and more like elements make it easy to see why many highway cruisers opt for the Touring models.

Sport: Geared Up for Excitement

Honda is known for engineering vehicles that perform above and beyond the competition. For drivers on a budget, who want nevertheless to experience such heightened capabilities, the Sport models will do more than satisfy. The Sport trim can be found in the subcompact HR-V SUV, the seriously-popular CR-V Hybrid, and the Odyssey, Pilot, Civic, and Accord Hybrid models, making it one of the most versatile trim levels in the Honda arsenal. The right blend of ruggedness and comfort exemplifies the Sport treatment, indicative in vehicles like the HR-V, which offers Real Time All-Wheel Drive capabilities, heated seats, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel, among other enjoyable elements. The CR-V Hybrid ups the ante with slick styling, roof rails, and durable cloth seats with orange stitched accents for a further eau de athleticism.

The Civic sedan takes ‘drive appeal’ to a new level with the addition of paddle shifters, a chrome exhaust finisher, and a 3-Mode Drive System to navigate the elements with confidence. A multi-link rear suspension and MacPherson struts can be found in the Accord Hybrid to enhance its performance, delivering on the promise of excitement in tricky terrain. There’s no doubt about it: the Sport models are fine-tuned for an all-around better, more engaging ride—and, at an affordable price, these models allow drivers on a budget to harness a better performance on the roadway.


Black Edition: Delivering Sleek Energy

The Honda Ridgeline is a one-of-a-kind pickup truck, built on a unibody platform, allowing it to handle like a much smaller vehicle yet with truck-like capabilities. The Black Edition is only available on this midsize pickup, making this crowd-pleaser even more stylish than ever. From sleek black accents inside and out to vibrant red ambient lighting, the Black Edition sets the tone for any drive. Leather-trimmed seats with red accent stitching give this truck a bold appeal, while paddle shifters provide a sportier feel to this trusted Honda favorite. From a dual-action tailgate—which can either open like a traditional tailgate or swing out to accommodate more cumbersome gear—to a class-exclusive In-Bed Trunk compartment for locking-up chests and tools, the Ridgeline covers all the bases for your hauling and on-site needs.

The Black Edition adds an aura of mystery to this popular pickup, designed for those who desire more style in their dedicated workmate. Dazzling LED lighting elements, black trim, and further exclusive accents quickly captivate onlookers. Designed for bold travelers, the Black Edition pulls out all the stops to amplify the style factor in this show-stopping Honda favorite.

A silver 2022 Ridgeline is shown off-roading.

The Full Gamut

Honda is unique in that it’s one of the few top brands to offer such a comprehensive array of trim levels to such a broad audience of drivers. From adventurous types to posh travelers—those who yearn for thrills and those who seek style—Honda has designed a trim level to match every driver’s needs.

Other automakers claim to have a wide selection of trims to choose from, yet, under closer inspection, these tend to comprise virtually the same features. This isn’t the case with Honda, so the next time you pass your local Honda dealer and notice a row of Civics displayed along the road, pay attention to the trim level. You’ll quickly realize that Honda offers more options than you ever imagined, which is why this brand remains at the top of the list as one of the world’s most iconic automakers.