We compare the 2021 Chevy Blazer with the 2021 Honda Passport and decide if the new kid can topple the establishment.
It has been four solid years of sensible, reliable, and comfortable work for the Honda Passport. The 2021 Honda Passport Elite, or any Honda SUV, is the tried-and-true khakis or sensible black pumps of the crossover world. New models from Hyundai with innovative interior and exterior designs make the Passport look dated, but people buy it because of Honda’s reliability.
In 2019, Chevrolet reintroduced a nostalgic name to their lineup, the Blazer. You may remember the Blazer being a boxy trim package of the old S-10 or, better yet, when it was based on the full-sized Chevy pickup before its name changed to Tahoe. Rather than make people nostalgic, Chevy turned the once boxy Blazer into an SUV version of the Camaro. And it’s not hateful. Can flash beat sensible? Let’s see who wins out between these SUVs.
The 2021 Blazer gives you a few powertrain options, but only one that matches the looks. The base engine is a 193hp 2.5L four-cylinder engine paired with a nine-speed automatic. A 230hp turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder does a better job and moving the hefty Blazer down the road, but you’ll want the 308hp 3.6L V6. If you want a four-wheel-drive powertrain, your only options are the turbocharged I4 or the V6.
The Blazer RS looks like it has lots of promise and delivers a 0-60 in 6.2 seconds. It’s also easy on gas with 20 mpg in the city and 27 mpg on the highway coupled with that speed. It seems Chevy spent their money on looks and athletics.
Of course, Honda has kept things simple with their 280-hp SOHC 24-valve V6 and nine-speed automatic transmission. We commend Honda for having paddle shifters since the sporty Blazer doesn’t even come with those. Honda’s Passport isn’t slow with its surprising 5.8 seconds 0-60. The smooth-sounding V6 does well with fuel at 20 mpg in the city and 25 mpg on the highway. The 2021 Honda Passport might look old, but it’s speedy.
The 2021 Chevy Blazer and 2021 Honda Passport are within an inch of each other in length. The Blazer’s wheelbase, at 112.7, is 1.7 inches longer, but the width is 2-inches narrower than the Passport, and they’re about the same height.
What about interior space? The Passport’s passenger volume is bigger at 115.9 cu ft to the Blazers 107.8 cu ft. That extra space comes from having a more conservative roofline on the Passport. There’s also extra rear cargo room in the Passport. The Passport’s cargo space is 77.9 cu ft to the Blazers 64.2 cu ft. What model you decide to go with might depend on looks or space here.
As the perceived sportier of the two, the Blazer should live up to its design and, in some ways, it does. The sport tweaked front struts and rear multi-link suspension does an excellent job keeping things tight and controlled. Although the steering wasn’t sloppy, there wasn’t any road feel through it. Oh well, at least it has a little sport in it. Overall, the cabin was also a peaceful place for running errands.
Others may complain about how light the steering is, but we feel that it transforms the Passport while driving. You can forget the conservative look of the exterior when experiencing the precise turn into a corner. The steering feels the same as in any other Honda and so does the suspension. We didn’t think we would say this, but the Passport drives better than the Blazer.
The 2021 Chevy Blazer has six trim levels available for your consumption.
You get a rearview camera, keyless entry, push-button start, cruise control, power accessories, and dual-zone climate control.
Adds an eight-way driver’s seat and provides you more options to choose from.
The advanced safety features become standard from here on up, like forward collision mitigation, lane keep assist and lane departure warning.
Adds remote start, a six-way power passenger seat, front seat heating, leather-wrapped steering wheel, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, and more safety features: blind-spot monitoring, lane change alert, rear park assist, and rear cross-traffic alert.
Adds an eight-inch driver-information center, 120-volt power outlet, and more options to choose from.
$42,500 – Includes ventilated front seats and heated rear outboard seats and power tilt-and-telescoping steering column.
The 2021 Honda Passport has four trim levels. Every Passport has collision mitigation braking, road departure assist, adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping assist, forward collision warning, and lane departure warning. EX-L models and up add blind-spot monitoring and all models get auto high beam headlights.
Nicely equipped with Intelligent Traction Management, Honda Sensing safety suite and Apple CarPlay integration.
Adds leather-trimmed seats, one-touch power moonroof and heated front seats
Honda-Free power tailgate, a navigation system, premium audio system and parking sensors.
Equipped with a wireless phone charger, ventilated front seats, heated steering wheel and rain-sensing wipers.
The big difference between the 2021 Honda Passport and 2021 Chevrolet Blazer has to do with how they look. The Blazer looks modern and sporty, and the Honda is frumpy and blocky. On the inside is the same story. For our eyes, though, we like the sporty elegance of the Blazer. It has the raw curb appeal that the Honda’s missing. With the Passport due for an update sometime soon, we hope that Honda builds a stunner. They’ve done well with their cars, but SUV owners need love too. If Honda doesn’t give it to them, buyers will go somewhere else regardless of the resale values.
If you want what’s next, you should go with the Blazer RS. It’s an excellent combination of utility and sport for a reasonable price. The quality of materials inside rivals more expensive SUVs and the Camaro inspired exterior wins us over. The Honda Passport is a reliable, quick, and trouble-free SUV, yet it’s styled like the SUV version of a minivan and carries that same boring nature. Once Honda updates the design for their Passport, then we’ll have a real race.