Hello and welcome to my NOW Pilot review.
In this review I will take a look at the Pilot as all-mountain snowboard bindings.
As per tradition here at SnowboardingProfiles.com I will give the Pilot a score out of 100 (based on several factors) and see how they compare with other all-mountain bindings.
NOTE: The 2023 model was the last model of the Lien AT.
Bindings: NOW Pilot
Price: $329 (USD recommended retail)
Flex Rating: Medium-Stiff (7/10)
Flex Feel: Medium (6/10)
Rating Score: 79.0/100
Compared to other Men’s All-Mountain Bindings
Out of the 25 men’s all-mountain bindings that I rated:
Overview of the Pilot’s Specs
Check out the tables for the Pilot’s specs and available sizes.
2 x 4 | 4 x 4
US BOOT SIZE
EURO BOOT SIZE
Who are the Pilot Most Suited To?
The Pilot are great for anyone looking for the most shock/chatter absorbing bindings they can find. And ones that are a nice mid-flex - not overly stiff but not overly soft.
Best matching to boards around a 5/10 or 6/10 flex and work for a 4/10 or 7/10 flex too.
Not for the beginner, IMO, but anything from intermediate.
The Pilot in More Detail
O.k. let’s take a more detailed look at what the Pilot are capable of.
Bindings: NOW Pilot 2020, Medium
Date: March 15, 2019
Overcast but good visibility.
Snow was quite cruddy and slushy/sticky in places. But was harder in other places. Started to harden up as it moved into evening, and got better for speed and response - but was quite sticky earlier in the day.
Bindings angles: +15/-15
Stance Width: 550mm (21.65”)
Board demoed with: Rossignol One LF 2018
Baseplate Length: 25.5cm (10.04”) – that’s measured on the top of the footbed - it angles down a little from the base.
Highback Height: 19.5cm (7.7”)*
* from bottom of heel cup to top of highback
Height from Bottom of Baseplate to top of Highback: 28.5cm (11.2")
Weight: 940 grams (2lbs, 1oz)*
*for one binding, including screws and disc. The average weight of a small sample size of 26 bindings (2019 & 2020 models) I weighed, was 894 grams. The lightest was 760 grams and the heaviest was 1,000grams.
NOW rate them at 7/10, but they feel pretty medium to me. I'd say 6/10.
A good balance between being relatively nimble at slower speeds, but strong enough for more aggressive carves.
Not great for board feel, as I've found with most NOW bindings. You sacrifice in this area to get that extra shock absorption.
Felt pretty normal in this respect. Didn't make my board any more or less poppy than normal.
Heel Cup: No
Stance Width: Can run disc horizontal or vertical, so good for stance width adjustments when running horizontal.
Highback Lean: Yes - tool-less
Ankle Strap Position: No
Toe Strap Position: No
Ankle and toe strap length: Yes, though I haven't seen a binding that doesn't
Gas pedal/toe ramp extension: No
Highback Rotation: No
Compatible with: 2 x 4 | 4 x 4 – need a separate disc for channel mounting
You can switch out the bushings, which is a bonus adjustment you can make, but in terms of everything else, not highly adjustable.
Let’s Break up this text with a Video
Really damp. They absorbed chatter and shock flat landings really well. A combination of a really cush footbed and the "Skate Tech" that NOW uses, make these awesome for shock absorption.
Decently smooth ratchets. No complaints here.
Overall the Pilot are decently comfortable. Some really good padding in the footbed helps. The ankle strap and toe strap are decently comfortable too but not amazing.
Decent ankle support and you can flip the straps to get more support or more freedom, depending on your preferences.
Score Breakdown and Final Verdict
Check out the breakdown of the score in the table below.
TOTAL after normalizing
The Pilot are a decent all round binding that really excel in terms of chatter/shock absorption, but lack a bit in terms of board feel.
More Info, Current Prices and Where to Buy Online
If you want to see how the Pilot compares to other men’s all-mountain bindings or want to check out some other options in that category, check out the next link.