So, you want a truck, but you don’t live on a ranch or a farm and you don’t live way out yonder in the country. That’s just fine. Truck buyers come from all walks of life, but not every truck buyer wants something capable of towing a house right off its foundation.
Some people want the utility of a truck with the comfort of a sedan and they need to be able to get around in the city and the grocery store parking lot, not just the back forty. Take a look at the all-new 2017 Honda Ridgeline and you’ll see why this truck is different and, in a lot of ways, better than the rest.
Truck guys are likely balking at that last statement but hold up for a second. There are endless sedans and crossovers and SUVs to choose from because people want different things from their vehicles. It’s the same when it comes time to buy a truck, and the Honda Ridgeline fits nicely in a niche that’s rather ignored.
First, do not underestimate its capability. We had the opportunity to drive the Ridgeline at Texas Truck Rodeo where there were a variety of off-road courses with varying levels of difficulty. The Ridgeline tackled the toughest course available right alongside trucks like the Ford F-150 and Ram 1500. This was not a course for the faint of heart. It featured deep dips in the terrain that tested approach and departure angles along with uneven mounds of dirt designed to challenge each truck’s articulation. The Ridgeline handled it all, no problem.
Power comes from a 3.5-liter V6 engine with 280 horsepower and 262 lb-ft of torque paired to a 6-speed automatic transmission with a choice of two-wheel drive or all-wheel drive. Total payload is up to 1,580 pounds with a towing capacity up to 5,000 pounds. That’s on par with the competition like the Toyota Tacoma and Chevrolet Colorado.
Work is only one reason to buy a truck. Many truck buyers aren’t using their truck’s capability every day of the week. They may haul stuff around on the weekend or tow a trailer with that ATV, but the rest of the time their trucks are on the highway. This is where the Ridgeline shines.
The Ridgeline is a truck that doesn’t ride like a truck. That’s a good thing. It is a pleasure to drive on the highway and it’s easy to pilot through that grocery store parking lot. Tight parking spots aren’t a problem and you can see over the hood without feeling like you need a booster seat. Commuting to work in the Ridgeline won’t be uncomfortable.
There are six different trim levels, so you choose just how much luxury you want in your Ridgeline with a starting price of $29,475. The top trim Black Edition will run you $42,870 for a lush drive experience that will make your buddies in their fancy sedans a little jealous.
There are also key features in the Ridgeline that you won’t find in other trucks. If you’re familiar with the battle Chevy and Ford had over the aluminum truck bed in the Ford, then you’ll appreciate Honda’s composite bed. This isn’t an option or a spray-in liner. Every Ridgeline has a composite bed designed to stand up to wear and tear.
There’s a standard in-bed trunk to hold anything you want to protect from the elements or secure out of sight. It’s big enough to hold an 82-quart ice chest or fill it right up with ice and turn it into a cooler. Add the truck-bed audio system and you have the perfect truck for tailgating or hanging out with friends on a summer night.
The all-new 2017 Honda Ridgeline isn’t like every other truck. It has the capability to handle rough terrain and carry plenty of cargo. It has a comfortable ride and beautiful interior that makes long commutes less arduous. And it has convenience features like the truck-bed audio and in-bed trunk that make it versatile. Those who might want to write it off as something less than a “real” truck should reconsider and give it a closer look.