With new Ridgeline, Honda continues to follow path which doesn’t run for towing and hauling records yet it priorities comfort and driving quality but it also delivers enough of pickup truck utility to satisfy the needs of the most truck buyers. This model falls into the mid-size truck segment where models like Toyota Tacoma, GMC Canyon, Chevrolet Colorado, and Nissan Frontier are also found. But unlike its key rivals which are based on body-on-frame the rear wheel drive construction, the Ridgeline is sole truck version which uses front-wheel drive unibody construction that is related with Honda Pilot. This is one of the main reasons why this model can offer ride quality of SUV and other passenger friendly features.
For the 2017 model year, after two year of hiatus, the Ridgeline steps into the second generation and new model promises to overshadow its rivals in many aspects. It comes better composed with more traditional truck look, more comfortable and user friendly but also more efficient. The 2017 Honda Ridgeline will come with both front and all-wheel drive, in crew cab formation and in seven trims.
2017 Honda Ridgeline: Performance
When it comes to performance, with 2017 Honda Ridgeline you should not expect leading payload and towing capability but you will surely get the most refined ride and handling that are matched with more passenger friendly vehicles. That isn’t something strange when we know that it uses adapted structure from Pilot SUV model. Of course everything is enhanced to handle pickup’s duties and front portion of the structure is 17 percent sturdier than on Pilot’s version while rear area is 31 percent stronger. Not only that underpinnings is adapted from the Pilot yet the same case is with its engine. However, displacement found in the new Ridgeline delivers 30 HP and 15 lb-ft more compared to outgoing version and in total it is 280 HP and 262 pound-feet of torque. The power comes from a direct-injected 3.6 liter SOHC i-VTEC V-6 engine. It is accompanied with a six-speed automatic transmission which is also available on the Pilot but the Ridgeline doesn’t include 9-speed automatic which is alternative on Honda’s SUV. This is however good because six-speed option has proven itself to be smoother and more precise from the mentioned nine speed option. New powertrain, Honda says, will deliver class leading acceleration and fuel economy. In numbers, Honda needs around 8 seconds for 60 mph while fuel economy stands at 19 mpg city, 26 mpg freeway and 22 mpg combined with front-wheel drive while all-wheel drive Ridgeline earns 18/25/21 mpg. The new Honda’s truck in base formation comes with front-wheel drive which is unique for segment but for better performance, off-roading and towing it also offers all-wheel drive. This all-wheel drive system depending on traction needs can deliver power front to rear and between wheels side to side which improves traction and handling as well. It also includes selectable modes for sand, mud and snow. In terms of payload capacity it allows 1584 kg while towing capability is rated at 5,000 pounds with power on all wheels or 3,600 pounds in case of front–wheel drive.
As it is mentioned, this truck is based on the unibody architecture and independent suspension adapted from the Pilot help it deliver drive quality similar to cars. Suspension is reworked compared to one on the Pilot and it includes dual-action dampers and hydraulic bushings which all together helps this model to soak small and large bumps like and crossover and also to confidently cut corners. There also helps enhanced steering ratio and torque vectoring all-wheel drive.
2017 Honda Ridgeline: Design, Comfort
The new 2017 Honda Ridgeline has clear more truck like appearance which outline derives from Pilot SUV. The hood is nicely sculpted and the nose features Honda’s modern design language which is more car like than rugged like on other trucks. Form profile it looks balanced with door panels and fenders molded like on the Pilot. A tailgate features dual action mechanism and it can be opened like on the traditional trucks but it is also hinged on the side and can be opened like a door. The new truck is 3.1 inches longer than outgoing model which means 210 inches long, it is has 3.2 inches longer wheelbase (125.2 inch) and 70.2 inches in height. The model also features 5.5 inches longer bed at 64 inches long and 50 inches wide.
Inside, the Ridgeline is more comfortable and better composed than other rivals and quieter as well. The front seats are adjustable and supportive and there are enhanced knee and head room. The rear seats with 60/40 split folding functionality when are folded up open a flat floor for cargo. A large center console also offers good storage space. A dash board is nicely contoured and center stack houses touchscreen flaked by air vents. An instrument panel features analog gauges and between them is displayed digital information.
The new Ridgline is with crew cab style only and available in seven trims RT, RTS, Sport, RTL, RTL-T, RTL-E and Black Edition. The last two are standard with all-wheel drive while others are available with either front or all-wheel drive. The base RT grade offers 18 inch wheels, tilt and telescopic steering column, power windows, mirrors and locks, keyless start, seven speaker sound system, USB ports, Bluetooth streaming, rearview camera. Three-zone climate control, remote start, and keyless entry are added in the RTS models. The Sport version features black trim and ambient lighting. In RTL trim leather upholstery, heated front seats, 10-way power driver and 4-way passenger seat are available. More tech comes in RTL-T trim including 8-inch touchscreen with Apple Car Play and Android Auto, satellite radio, navigation, more USBs, blind spot system. In RTL-E we get Honda Sensing safety package, a heated steering wheel, a power sliding rear window, a sunroof, premium audio, bed speaker, and acoustic glass. The Black edition includes all equipment plus perforated leather seats, black trim and ambient lighting. In terms of safety all trucks come with hill start assist, and rearview camera. Side view camera is available on the RTL-T models. From the RTL-E, models include parking sensors, blind-spot monitoring, emergency braking, lane departure warning and adaptive cruise control.
2017 Honda Ridgeline: Conclusion, Price
The new 2017 Honda Ridgeline will go on sale this June and we will surely get great product which offers unmatched driving quality and comfort. The price will start from $30,375 for base model and top Black edition versions will cost $43,770.