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2019 Honda Passport enters production

by Drew Johnson

The Honda Passport will go on sale early next year.

Honda has officially kicked off production of its all-new Passport SUV at the company's Lincoln, Alabama, assembly plant. The Passport made its world debut last month at the Los Angeles auto show.

More than 1,500 associates are now assembling the new Passport in Alabama. Honda will soon begin shipping the Passport to dealers, with the mid-size SUV expected to officially go on sale early next year.

"Today, we celebrate the dedication of our Honda team in Alabama in delivering this new, adventure-ready sport utility vehicle to our customers," said Mike Oatridge, vice president of Honda Manufacturing of Alabama. "I congratulate all of our associates for their commitment to our customers as we begin production of the new Passport, which is Honda's most rugged light truck model with features that deliver more of what today's adventurous customers want and need."

The Passport is set to slot between the compact CR-V and the three-row Pilot in Honda's SUV lineup. The Passport is largely based on the family-oriented Pilot, but the mid-sizer is about 6-inches shorter than its three-row counterpart. The Passport's suspension has also been raised by about an inch compared to the Pilot, which should help the SUV's off-road-ability.

All Passport models will be powered by a 280 horsepower 3.5L V6. Front-wheel drive will come standard, but a torque-vectoring all-wheel drive system will be on offer.

Pricing for the 2019 Honda Passport will be announced closer to the vehicle's on sale date.