|The Honda Ridgeline is Honda’s new pickup truck on the market. It uses Honda's unibody large vehicle platform, shared with the Acura MDX and Honda Odyssey. It is powered by an all aluminum 255 hp 3.5 L V6 coupled to a 5-speed automatic transmission with all wheel drive capable of towing 5000 lbs. The Ridgeline will be the first pickup truck with a fully-independent suspension.
Some of the more innovative features of the Ridgeline are its tailgate, which can fold down or hinge to the side, and an 8.5 cubic foot “In-Bed Trunk" below the truck bed. The bed is integrated with the body, similar to the Chevrolet Avalanche. The Ridgeline comes with anti-lock brakes and side-curtain airbags as standard equipment.
The bed is 49.5” x 60” with the tailgate up. With the tailgate down, you get 49.5” x 79”. And remember, the tailgate also swings to the side so you can easily access the in-bed trunk. The tailgate is designed to support 300 lbs. While driving. The steel reinforced composite bed resists dents and corrosion. Another neat feature were ample tie downs in the beds and several cargo lights.
Standard towing features include prewiring 4 pin and 7 pin, along with a brake controller. Heavy duty radiator, power steering cooler, and transmission cooler keep things cool when the work begins. Huge 4 wheel disk brakes help stop quicker with the aid of the Electronic Brake Distribution (EBD). All the dealer has to do is install the hitch and harness.
The 8” ground clearance works well with the 4 wheel independent suspension. Yes, all 4 wheels. Unheard of in a truck, but this is a Honda. They wanted their truck to instill confidence in the corners and a stable, responsive feel while maintaining ride quality. The closed box frame and unit body construction means this truck is tough and ready to work.
Traction control is standard along with a locking rear differential for extremely low traction conditions. It can stay locked with a push of a button up to 18 mph. Along with traction control, you get stability control called Vehicle Stability Assist. This corrects your cornering problems before they even become a problem.
The tires come with tire pressure monitoring systems which will be standard in all vehicles very soon (government mandate). Air bags are all around in front, side, and side curtain. It will only deploy what is necessary depending on the type of accident. These safety features along with ABS braking make this one of the safest trucks on the road.
There are three trim levels starting with the RT, RTS and the luxury RTL. You can get heated leather seats and a moonroof. These amenities were only thought to be available in cars. This truck also has available navigation system, homelink, and a hidden in dash cd changer.
The 22 gallon tank is ample for the 16 MPG city and 21 MPG highway EPA mileage estimates. The six color combinations come with 3 interior choices. Options include a bed extender, tail light “garnish”, chrome bumper trim, 17” wheels, body side protectors, roof rack, fender flares, running boards and a towing package mentioned above. I’ve also seen hard tonneau cover-locking for the bed, and in-bed trunk dividers. There’s a larger brush guard for the front bumper available for you off roaders.
All in all, looks to be a pretty good and well thought out truck from Honda. Check out my pictures of the Honda Ridgeline at the car show on my website.
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