2017 Honda Ridgeline Full Review

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For some, the reimagined 2017 Honda Ridgeline midsize pickup will be an acquired taste. The Ridgeline still has a quirky look and this is the only midsize pickup with a sideways-mounted engine, all-wheel-drive powertrain, unibody chassis, dual-action tailgate and a monster trunk underneath the bed floor. But can it perform at the level most midsize truck buyers demand? To read our full review, click here.

Cars.com photo by Bruce Smith


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Nice looking little truck.

Honda is working on a 10 speed automatic. This truck needs it ASAP, for 2019 model year the latest.

Making a truck that serves a different market is really smart. This is a very cool vehicle for a lot of people. WAY more practical that a crossover or suv. I'm glad they brought it back.

I like everything that Honda did with this truck except the wait. They should have had this truck out four years ago!

I predict that it will not take much business from the Big 3, or even Nissan and Toyota. The people I know who own them are office workers and people with boutique retail businesses who don't really need or want a half ton, or don't have enough parking space for one.

You really don't see them on job sites, or driven by plumbers and carpenters. I don't see Honda taking a lot from the Colorado/Tacoma/Frontier crowd either.

So, who buys it? Let's talk about that a year from now. I like the product but I think Honda's timing is really lousy.

Since this is almost exclusively focused on the US market, and the US economy is crap (lousy job numbers and lousy consumer confidence) it's hard to see it having some huge rollout. Do you picture them advertising heavily on NFL this fall? Not me.

@papa jim

Right about the US market. Honda should also sell this in the Brazil/Latin American market as a competitor to the Fiat Toro.
I can't wait to see them in the dealerships and on the road.


From Bruce Smith's "Expert" Review (kinda makes me wonder what "expert" means...):

"...Honda has finally hit the mark with the 2017 Ridgeline."
Really? What "Mark" is that? Can't be Mark Williams...

"..but you don’t get beat up in a Ridgeline when you hit potholes or take roads less traveled."
Have never got "beaten up" in ANY pickup truck with a proper suspension when used off road. Jostled? Yes. Bounced? Yes. But that is the name of the game. It's called "fun". What beats you up is a wussy IRS suspension that bottoms out on, and slams into, bump stops because it's not up to the task.

"Honda still retains the six-speed..."
The six-speed manual? Or hasn't Mr. Smith ever even heard of those things? The convention has been that when referring to "speeds", it means "manual..."

"it performs in ways that make the four-wheel-drive systems in the Colorado and Tacoma look clunky and sluggish".
This is sheer nonsense and obvious prejudice. If Mr. Smith had ever driven a Tacoma TRD-Pro in real off-road, boulder-strewn uphill and down conditions, --- or towing 7000 lbs --- he would realize there is nothing "clunky" or "sluggish" about that vehicle at all.

"Honda was the first manufacturer to put a “trunk” in the bed of a pickup and remains the only one to do so with the 2017 Ridgeline."
The reason Honda can put "trunk" in the back is that it takes up the space where a decent, tough live-axle suspension should be! Oh, and how do you get at that "trunk" when hauling a bed full of lumber? Or what about tying to get at the spare tire to fix a flat when the bed is loaded with cow manure or even the very same rocks it used in its drop test? Yeah, some really great idea.
(BTW: people who care about their trucks put plywood in the bed for rock hauling.)

"Honda now has a true pickup in the stable that is capable and competitive in many other ways to its rivals."
Well, this shows Mr Smith's obvious bias again. A "true" pickup truck? Not even close:
Transverse engine?
No separate bed to take the strain of flex movement**?
No ladder frame for long-term strength and durability?
Poor ground clearance?
No real 4WD system?
No special off-road package?
No winch available?
Yup, sounds like a real pickup.... [sarcasm].

As fas as this "Expert Review" is concerned, where is the comparison table of all the facts and measurements of this Ridgeline versus other primary competitive offerings -- the real trucks?? Where are ALL the data? (Expert review, remember?)

Let's be honest: This Ridgeline is just a Honda Pilot with the back end missing. You'd be better off buying Honda Pilot with a decent trailer. At least you get a complete vehicle....


Seems to me that Mr. Smith would be happier joining the staff at "Consumer Reports", where he can review dish washers and CD players; and where he can join his friends for a tailgating party in his new Honda Ridgeline, given to him gratis by Honda of America for writing this piece of sales propaganda...(^_^).

** Can't wait to see how the slightest bit of corrosion in Salt States will affect the unibody's integrity , --- hauling and towing --- 12-15 years down the road!


Should not effect it at all. You said its nothing but a Honda Pilot and I believe they've been out for several years now. Salt states should not be a problem. Been there and done that.

I can just see the next Chevy Canyon commercial when they start losing sales to Honda Ridgeline.

" The Chevy TV ad will drop sharp heavy stones & a red toolbox into the bed...................." LOL

"I can just see the next Chevy Canyon commercial when they start losing sales to Honda Ridgeline"
Posted by: blueman | Jun 12, 2016 6:38:19 PM

You are right blueman, but the girls at Ford won't have to worry about losing sales to the Ridgeline, they ran away from the market like military grade Nine-dollar bills!


I think the Explorer Sport Track wasn't a great success, neither the previous Ridgeline. Honda should have made a viable competitor to the Taco, HiLux, Frontier/Navarra, L200/Toro, Amarok, Ranger, etc. to be sold worldwide. It may be a perfect pickup for some people, though. Time will tell how many.

@papa jim--This may be my next truck. I would choose this over a Silverado.

This truck gets my juices flowing. It'll be a great dump run truck.

@Jeff S

Got an extra $38K lying around?

You will not be seeing this truck on the lots in the base trim until they have maxed their capacity. Till then, finding a FWD with cloth seats will be like finding a unicorn.

@papa jim--It will be easy to find a cloth seat. We are talking about Honda here. Not Mercedes. There needs to be more love in this country. Your hate for Honda Ridgelines is exactly what is wrong with this country. I am calling for common sense trucks like those from Honda, common sense size. Remember when Bill Clinton said, it's the economy stupid. For trucks, it's the reliability, stupid. and most of all I am calling for common sense gunn control. That's what will solve the problem with trucks and our country. We are a nation of immigrants and a nation of immigrant trucks.

@gmsrgreat, theres nothing to defend for Ford, when you are number 1, only the numbers 2 and so on need to defend.

It's not going to take any business away from other truck manufacturers just like the previous model didn't. The only people who buy this thing are suburban "I'm smarter than you" type democrats who throw a bag of much in the bed every so often and parrot what Honda says in their ads to impress their friends. In reality they bought a less-capable truck with no gains except maybe ride quality for just the same or more money than a traditional truck with similar fuel economy and unknown reliability.

@gmsrgreat, theres nothing to defend for Ford, when you are number 1, only the numbers 2 and so on need to defend.

Posted by: Nitro | Jun 13, 2016 10:21:27 AM

# 1 aluminum truck bed.

I really want won to pull a small 5th wheel with. But I'm having a hard time finding a 5th hitch for it. I'm looking at a 24-26' 5th wheel that ways about 6500lbs.
The Ridge line up would b perfect as it could pull the 5th wheel and then be great as a family hauler for the DW and I and are 4 kids.

You are right blueman, but the girls at Ford won't have to worry about losing sales to the Ridgeline, they ran away from the market like military grade Nine-dollar bills!


Posted by: Ford orgullosa de ser mexicana

Hey genius. Unlike Ram/Dodge, Ford never ran away from the market. The North American Ford Ranger was a compact, not a Mid Size. You know, Mid Size as in the discontinued Dakota.

Well, since everyone is throwing out their opinions . . . here goes mine. I find absolutely nothing compelling about the Ridgeline. Its styling isn't just conservative, its borderline boring. I'd much rather have a Toyota Tacoma, GM -- Colorado or Canyon. For about the same price, you can get the GMC Canyon "true" 4x4 loaded with a diesel and have a far better looking, far more capable vehicle. That being said, there are a lot of people who like Honda and like trucks that drive and ride like a car. I'm not one of them. If Honda had made the Ridgeline RWD 4x4, better ground clearance, more aggressive styling, I would have considered buying one for my Son.

@NMGOM you are right on target nice text and comment but sadly I think we will see more trucklet like the Ridgeline in the future.

JoBlow - - -

Thanks. But maybe you just defined a new category:


At least that would be honest. And people would not be deceived into thinking it is an actual truck...


I had a look at one of these new Ridgeline's this morning and this is a Mall Queen truck with less ground clearance than my 05 XC70. GM, Nissan and Toyota have nothing to fear from this grocery getter, despite all the "bed" features.

Only if they've made it RWD based , I don't care about frame but wrong driving wheels , come on....!

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