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The Acadia Denali’s optional pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The Passport doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.
For enhanced safety, the GMC Acadia’s middle seat shoulder belts have child comfort guides to move the belt to properly fit children. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages children to buckle up. The Honda Passport doesn’t offer comfort guides on its middle seat belts.
In the past twenty years hundreds of infants and young children have died after being left in vehicles, usually by accident. When turning the vehicle off, drivers of the Acadia are reminded to check the back seat if they opened the rear door before starting out. The Passport doesn’t offer a back seat reminder.
The Acadia has a standard front seat center airbag, which deploys between the driver and front passenger, protecting them from injuries caused by striking each other in serious side impacts. The Passport doesn’t offer front seat center airbags.
The Acadia Denali offers an optional Surround Vision System to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Passport only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.
Both the Acadia and the Passport have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, side-impact head airbags, front-wheel drive, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all-wheel drive, crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.
For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, and with its optional front crash prevention system, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Acadia the rating of “Top Pick” for 2017, a rating granted to only 154 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Passport has not been tested, yet.
The Acadia’s corrosion warranty is 1 year longer than the Passport’s (6 vs. 5 years).
GMC pays for scheduled maintenance on the Acadia for 2 years and 24,000 miles. GMC will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance (up to 2 oil changes). Honda doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the Passport.
There are over 64 percent more GMC dealers than there are Honda dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Acadia’s warranty.
A hardened steel chain, with no maintenance needs, drives the camshafts in the Acadia’s engine. A rubber cam drive belt that needs periodic replacement drives the Passport’s camshafts. If the Passport’s belt breaks, the engine could be severely damaged when the pistons hit the opened valves.
To reliably power the ignition and other systems and to recharge the battery, the Acadia has a standard 150-amp alternator (155-amp - Acadia V6 and 170 V6). The Passport’s 130-amp alternator isn’t as powerful.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that GMC vehicles are better in initial quality than Honda vehicles. J.D. Power ranks GMC 20th in initial quality. With 3 more problems per 100 vehicles, Honda is ranked 23rd.
The Acadia’s optional 3.6 DOHC V6 produces 30 more horsepower (310 vs. 280) and 9 lbs.-ft. more torque (271 vs. 262) than the Passport’s 3.5 SOHC V6.
The Acadia AWD’s standard fuel tank has 2.2 gallons more fuel capacity than the Passport (21.7 vs. 19.5 gallons).
The Acadia’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the Passport are solid, not vented.
The GMC Acadia’s wheels have 6 lugs for longer wheel bearing life, less chance of rotor warping and greater strength. The Honda Passport only has 5 wheel lugs per wheel.
The Acadia offers an available driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads or off-road. The Passport’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.
For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Acadia’s wheelbase is 1.6 inches longer than on the Passport (112.5 inches vs. 110.9 inches).
For better maneuverability, the Acadia’s turning circle is .6 feet tighter than the Passport AWD’s (38.7 feet vs. 39.3 feet). The Acadia’s turning circle is .8 feet tighter than the Passport’s (38.7 feet vs. 39.5 feet).
The front grille of the Acadia FWD 4 cyl. uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Passport doesn’t offer active grille shutters.
The Acadia has standard seating for 7 passengers; the Passport can only carry 5.
The Acadia has 27.9 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Passport (143.8 vs. 115.9).
The Acadia has .2 inches more front headroom, .1 inches more front legroom and .1 inches more rear legroom than the Passport.
The Acadia’s cargo area provides more volume than the Passport.
Third Seat Folded
41.7 cubic feet
Third Seat Removed
41.2 cubic feet
Second Seat Folded
79 cubic feet
77.9 cubic feet
The Acadia uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The Passport uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.
The power windows standard on both the Acadia and the Passport have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the Acadia is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The Passport prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.
The Acadia’s optional front and rear power windows all lower with one touch of the switches. The Passport’s rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to lower them fully.
The Acadia’s speed-sensitive wipers speed up when the vehicle does, so that the driver doesn’t have to continually adjust the speed of the wipers. The Passport’s standard manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.
The Acadia’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Honda only offers heated mirrors on the Passport EX-L/Touring/Elite.
The Acadia’s power mirror controls are mounted on the armrest for easy access. The Passport’s power mirror controls are on the dash, hidden behind the steering wheel, where they are awkward to manipulate.
© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.
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