New Cars

2016 Honda Ridgeline Will Need More Than Design Tweaks To Succeed

New Cars
@meisejohn

John is a full-time automotive blogger who digs cars, but also spends a disturbing amount of time watching and reading about movies. His first car was a maroon 1993 Buick Skylark which, after a solid seven-year run, was laid to rest in August of 2013.

Last year Honda announced plans to redesign the reprehensible Ridgeline, and while they originally planned to proceed with production of the wannabe pickup during the design phase, low sales numbers forced the automaker to pull the model from the line prematurely.

Unfortunately, we only have “less than two years” to enjoy its absence.

In December of 2013, a press release from Honda announced that a new generation of the Ridgeline would be arriving within two years, and based on that information, we expect the hopelessly redesigned Ridgeline to hit the market late in 2015 as a 2016 model. As expected, Honda is keeping unnecessarily quiet about the sure-to-be unimpressive features, but we do have a few ideas about what can be expected of the all-new Ridgeline.

Read More: Honda Teases New Ridgeline Design In Chicago

Honda’s claim to fame for the Ridgeline has always been that it’s “the first truck of its kind to be built on a closed-box unibody platform.” Makes it sound pretty damn revolutionary—until you realize it’s the first of its kind simply because other automakers actually research their demographics and are smart enough to know that their customers don’t want to buy a pickup that shares a platform with a goddamn minivan.

That isn’t likely to stop them from repurposing the frame of the Honda Odyssey once again for the upcoming Ridgeline, however. I mean come on, it would be a damn shame to have to get rid of such a revolutionary, industry-first feature. While they’re at it they might as well go all in and stick the high-maintenance HondaVAC of the Odyssey in the back of the Ridgeline. As if it could suck any more than it already does.

If the underpinnings of the Odyssey return for the redesign, you can expect the all-new sport utility truck (SUT) to fall behind in the towing and hauling department. Through the standard 250-hp, 3.5-liter V6 engine found in the past, earlier generation models have been able to achieve a 5,000-pound capacity, which is just 500 pounds more than the Pilot, the automaker’s largest SUV. Needless to say, when your SUVs are pulling the same ratings as your truck, you know you’re doing something wrong.

The Deceiving Honda Ridgeline

2016-honda-ridgeline-towing-capacity-release-date

The back axle snapped off moments after this photo was taken.

Despite the fact that the Ridgeline is built on the same platform as the Odyssey and offers nearly the same towing capacity of the Pilot, when it comes to fuel economy, the pickup has always been Honda’s biggest failure. The Odyssey is capable of returning up to 28 mpg on the highway and the Pilot tops out at 25 mpg, but past models of the Ridgeline have only been able to return a shameful 21 mpg, which Honda touts as “one of the highest-mileage and lowest-emissions ratings in its class.”

That claim is technically true as the Ridgeline is actually classified as a sport utility truck and not a full on pickup, but as the automaker tends to pit the SUT against the half-ton offerings from both Ford and Chevy, the best-in-class economy declaration is severely misleading. Both the F-150 and the Silverado are able to sip fuel at about 23 mpg on the highway, and they’re able to tow and haul a hell of a lot more than the Ridgeline. Even the 360-hp 5.0-liter V8 of the 2014 Ford F-150—which is able to tow up to 8,300 pounds, mind you—has the ability to return the exact same efficiency ratings as the Ridgeline.

With such a disadvantage in terms of power and fuel economy, you would expect that Honda would price the Ridgeline far below it’s more attractively-equipped competitors, but once again that is not the case. With a starting price of $29,575 for the 2014 model, the Ridgeline sets buyers back about $4,000 more than those who opt for the F-150 or the Silverado. Thankfully, Honda has only been able to scam just over a quarter of a million people over the last nine years. It could be much worse.

2016 Honda Ridgeline Rumors

As mentioned before, in typical Honda fashion, details about the 2016 model of the Ridgeline are being suppressed. All that has been released is the artwork that we have provided above. As you can see, it’s no more than a couple of lines, but it gives us a few hints about what to expect for the upcoming model. For one, it appears that Honda is finally giving in and scrapping those god-awful sloped truck bed sides to give the Ridgeline a more conventional look, but still, there’s no arguing that if the automaker really expects the all-new Ridgeline to compete, they’re going to have to do more than alter the design.

For one, the price for the 2016 Honda Ridgeline is going to have to come down significantly. It may sound like a tall order considering the redesign is likely to come with a slew of new features, a more efficient engine and a potentially brand-new platform, but even with every feature in the book included, it’s going to be hard to convince buyers who are loyal to more established pickup brands such as Ford and Chevy to make the switch when they have to shell out 30 grand—especially if the output and fuel economy numbers don’t improve.

To be honest, I don’t see Honda pulling it off. The Ridgeline needs more than just a facelift, and although the automaker is taking their sweet time to get the all-new model on the road, based on its rough history, I have a difficult time believing that the Ridgeline will stand the test of time.

We will find out when the 2016 Honda Ridgeline release date arrives late next year.

View Comments (39)

39 Comments

  1. Brooks Betts

    Sep 15, 2014 at 7:01 pm

    Hey John,
    Good article from a technical standpoint, but I have to respectfully disagree with your assessment. I have a 2006 Ridgeline RTS and I honestly could not be more pleased with the overall performance. I had a Chevy Silverado Z71 prior to my Ridgeline and could not be happier with the change. My Ridgeline handles the Maine annual driving conditions so much better than my Silverado. The ride, comfort, and reliability are far superior to the Chevy. I have a close friend who bought a 2007 Ford F150 and he already has moved on from that truck. I don’t dispute that payload and tow specs are lower than a full-size pickup, but then 9 out of 10 people who buy full-size pickups don’t use them as such. All things considered…I am waiting for the 2016 as I plan to give my current Ridgeline to my daughter and get the new one for myself. If you have not driven one…I suggest you do, it might change your perspective. Thanks again for taking the time to write the article…I just had to share my perspective. 😉

    • Dave

      Jan 12, 2015 at 10:16 am

      Agree. I have a 2006 Ridgeline after owning three crappy ass silverados. No problems with maintenance at all after 10 years with the Ridgeline. The frame you diss is great. It drives like a car and I can actually park it easily and fit it into my garage. No so with the Chevy’s of yore. Could not love this truck more. I would call it an SUV with a bed. Its not a “work truck” but then again, I work in an office and not on a job site. So, its great for me and that’s what counts. Maybe a niche, but a great truck for purposes. And, no repairs for 10 years… did I mention that? Thanks Honda!

    • Joey

      Mar 27, 2015 at 5:47 pm

      John,
      I’ve had a brand new Ford and a GMC/Chevy. They both fell to pieces. The Ford had all kinds of overall quality and drive train issues. The transmission blew out on it at about 28K. I never towed anything it didn’t have a hitch. The door handles literally cracked apart and there were all kinds of issues with the electronics. The Chevy had a great and powerful 5.3L engine that had crap for a transmission transfer case and axles behind it. They all failed. Chevy also could not keep the front end aligned. I was in there monthly for almost a year before the found the defective part. I had to fight them to honor their warranty on the wiper motor that went out. Honda, on the other hand. I don’t even know how well they honor their warranty. I’ve never had to use it. My 2006 Ridgeline has 120,000 Miles on it. Two things have broken. A small hose that cools the throttle body. About $10 and a 10 min repair and the clip that holds the top of the washer fluid. I had one in my garage and it was about a 60 second repair. I didn’t by the truck to do extreme off roading, tow a horse trailer or anything like that. I wanted to get the best of both worlds and I got it quite well. I can go to the beach and not get stuck. I can get a pallet of muclh for the house. Carry firewood. All the things that those other trucks do. But I also have a great ride and most importantly great reliability.

  2. Matt C

    Sep 16, 2014 at 10:40 pm

    John,
    Just like brooks said, you need to drive one. I grew up in a rural farming community and had the same mind set. I always thought a truck had to be a ladder frame rear wheel drive fire breathing log wagon with a divorced transfer case and a stick shift with a throw so long than you had to smash your knuckles on the dash in 1st or granny gear before you slammed the bottom of your wrist into the bench seat going into 2nd and so on. That’s just not the case anymore. I just bought a 2006 Ridgeline and couldn’t love it more. Back in my younger dumber days I bought a brand spanking new F-150 with cash. Now that I have the ridgeline I wish I could go back 8 years and buy it new instead, its that nice. The ridgeline has a fully boxed frame with a separate built unibody that’s just as strong, then mated together. It just makes for one nice solid piece. Then you throw in a fully independent heavier suspension with a strong running V-6 and auto diff locks for the DUH moments. The cab has plenty of room with ample storage and is extremely quiet and well thought out. The ride and handling is silky smooth. I cant say enough about all the bed lighting and the huge under the bed trunk. Its SSSSOOOO much better than trying to reach into a toolbox that’s already chest high. If you want to climb Mount Everest with a camper then by all means buy a 1-ton something. If you want to haul grain to the local elevator then use a tractor. If you want to tow a boat, small camper or go cut a trailer load of firewood then its the ridgeline hands down. They are made to do what we all do. Go from point A to B and haul something along the way if needed, even in a level 3 snow emergency. Im sure with Hondas engineering and quality the next ridgeline will be another home run no brainer like the first one. I hope they just offer an optional true 5 speed manual trans for guys like me that still like to shift. I would also like to know what the big deal is about the fuel mileage. Ive got nothing but 25mpg since ive owned mine. Guess I don’t have my foot stuck up under the hood as far as some people. The Honda ridgeline was made for guys like me and others that have been there and done that in the truck world. They are truly the best all around truck to own. Sadly for Honda, they have to wait on the young, beer can smashing on forehead, my truck can pull more than yours, tug-a-truck screaming kids to grow up, just like I did.

    • Mildmanneredman

      Oct 2, 2014 at 5:46 pm

      Bravo, John! The Ridgeline is a great vehicle and a great truck! I am so sorry that I waited so long to get my first Ridge, a 2014 RTS. You and I and everybody know what the problem is and that is gas mileage. But, aside from that, it is a wonderful vehicle for retirees and their spouses. Clean and comfortable to drive. And, I can see all the way back in every direction 360 degrees (well, just about). I will be happy to see what Honda comes out with in 2016 and I truly hope it is a great vehicle. I’ll still keep mine for another 3-4 years and then we’ll see where we go on a Gen II upgrade, if any. Remember that I am a retiree and I don’t want to spend anymore money on a truck, if I already have good one in my Ridgeline RTS. But, that shouldn’t keep others from considering and then buying one of the new Gen II vehicles.

  3. Sean H

    Sep 21, 2014 at 7:24 am

    John, I am a general contractor. I’ve been a general contractor since 1998, long before the Ridgeline was ever even a possible thought. Translation: I’ve owned a lot of trucks. In 2007 I leased my first Honda Ridgeline for work and have been on cloud 9 ever since. As soon as the first lease ended I got another Ridgeline just because I wanted a new one. The 2007 was scratched, dented, painted, dirty, stinky and beat up looking all together, but it never let me down……EVER. I made dump runs with the bed and trailer packed full of tile, wood and drywall on a monthly basis with no problems at all. The payload is more that whats stated; Believe me! Yes, the back was quite squatted while loaded but there was plenty of power still. Aside from a great work truck it’s fun to drive. Swallow some pride and get into the drivers seat; You will change your blog. I keep all of my hand and cordless tools in the trunk all of the time which adds about 200 pounds directly behind the rear wheels. The added weight lets me drive like a wild man. I can drift corners at 30mph and jump creek bridges going 60+. In fact, It’s just how I drive now. Why? Because I can. You’re correct when saying the Ridgeline is ugly, but I’ll take ugly like this any day.

  4. Jim H

    Sep 22, 2014 at 2:04 pm

    I have never personally owned a Ridgeline, I have a Tacoma, but a friend of mine used to have one and he claims it’s the best driving truck out there. The only reason he sold it was he needed a larger bed. I too think it’s ugly, so I don’t care how great it drives I wouldn’t buy one. I might buy one if the new body style looks better.

  5. Rob B

    Oct 1, 2014 at 7:26 pm

    John:
    I downsized to my 2007 Ridgeline after owning four Ford 4x4s. A 1988 F150, 93 Ranger, 96 F350 Powerstroke and a 03 F350 Powerstroke. I didn’t need my work trucks anymore, but still needed something that would seat five, be reliable, have a comfortable ride, get decent fuel mileage and still be able to haul a dirt bike, plywood or mulch. The honda does all that and more. No it’s not a plow truck, nor would it compete off road with the four wheel drive toyota SR5s of my youth, but it’s a honda, so it’s super reliable, and gets 15 to 21 mpg depending on driving conditions and throttle input. Like everyone above said, try one, you might like it.

    P.S. Not that i need a new truck, but I want to see what 2016 has to offer, will I choose a new Ridgeline or a diesel Tundra.

  6. John S.

    Oct 4, 2014 at 9:31 am

    I must agree with the above posters. I have owned pickup trucks since I was a teenager, driven them in the worst conditions and am nearly 60 now. This is by far the best truck I have ever owned. It is also one my wife is comfortable driving and we can take friends along with us if the need arises. I don’t need to haul space shuttles, trac-hoes or mega-yachts. It comfortably drags my son’s 23′ Searay, either my 14’enclosed or 12’flatbed trailers and I have racks for my kayaks bolted in the bed. On a recent trip to NC towing a 10′ U-haul I averaged 14.8mpg loaded and 23.4mpg coming back without the trailer. “Reprehensible”?…..hardly…Honda has designed a pickup that meets the needs of the average guy. I will not hesitate to buy another and am eagerly waiting for the re-design.

  7. Eric

    Oct 7, 2014 at 2:29 pm

    I own a 2009 RTL and i LOVE it. There is no other pickup like it. It rides GREAT and has WAY more storage and room inside then my friends 4 door 1500 Ram. Not a MEGA cab. The trunk storage is one reason I would choose the ridge over ALL else. I live in the NYC, and it’s nimble and easy to park. It blasts through a foot of snow better then anything else( not just acceleration, but turning and braking also). I can put a full sheet of plywood in the bed…. Can’t do that with a similar sized Tacoma or compact truck, haul two dirtbikes or pull my double jet ski trailer, and throw my salty gear in the composite bed. Obiviously if I had to tow 9000 pounds over the Rockies, this wouldn’t be the ideal truck, but in the real world for 99% of what pick ups do, the Ridgeline is the best.

  8. loyalridgelineowner

    Oct 10, 2014 at 12:18 pm

    John,

    Not sure what the purpose of your article was other than to provide a platform to highlight your unexperienced/uneducated opinions about the Ridgeline to prove you know absolutely nothing about this vehicle. Your caption to the photo showing the quad in the bed and then the axle snapped is laughable. I have documented proof of weigh tickets from the gravel quarry of hauling over 2000 lbs of gravel/rock/dirt in the bed of my Ridgeline on numerous occasions without any problems whatsoever. I purchased my Ridgeline new in 2005, 80,000 miles later Iv’e had $0.00 dollars in repairs and I do my own routine maintenance. What a great ownership experience. I could go on and on disproving your amateur attempt of discrediting this vehicle, but why waste my time. The tone of you’re article shows you really aren’t that interested in the truth anyhow. This has been the best vehicle I’ve owned on 40 years of driving. Can’t wait for the 2016 to come out!

  9. Nick

    Oct 10, 2014 at 2:44 pm

    I absolutely love my 07 Ridge line! While you may have “some” facts and a ton of opinion, you obviously have little experience with a Ridge line.
    Just turned 170K miles and have yet to experience a breakdown of any mechanicals. Roomy and the “trunk” in the bed is genius!

  10. Kyle v

    Oct 14, 2014 at 8:15 am

    Just sold my first ridgeline with 282k miles. On the original timing belt. Mean while my in laws New ford truck can’t make it to 50k miles before 5 dealerships visits. Bought a new ridgeline sport, it is the best handling smoothest ride truck I’ve driven. Former gmc Sierra owner… Ps my 04 civic has 253000 miles, neither the ridgeline nor the civic have ever left me stranded

  11. Rally

    Oct 17, 2014 at 4:11 am

    Your comments about the ridgeline reflect your immaturity level and what every other truck owning “expert” says about this vehicle. The “we’re number 1” attitudes of those like you clearly shows that you and they have never ever even driven one. To which I say, good. We Honda owners (and Acura) used to be domestic owners at one time….and will never go back. Keep fixing your Ford , GM, Ram tanks while Ridgeline owners who have more than enough truck for 99% of Everyone , will drive past you with your four-way hazard lights blinking away.

  12. Rally

    Oct 17, 2014 at 4:14 am

    You ignorance is showing.

    • John Meise

      Nov 10, 2014 at 2:26 pm

      *Your

  13. Randy Meagher

    Oct 26, 2014 at 9:51 pm

    Aside from a soapbox to prove your an idiot and hate Hondas in general your article was nothing more than 11 seconds of my life i will never get back. Im not a honda lover myself but I admire their durability and will acknowledge quality when I see it. Unlike your journalism skills

  14. DrLou

    Oct 27, 2014 at 4:03 pm

    I tend to agree with the author when he says Honda will have to do more than restyle the 2016 Ridgeline to be successful. While I do agree the old Ridgeline products are great to drive and are very reliable, they also are too expensive for what you get. The new 2016 Ridgeline will have to get much better MPGs, and if Honda continues to use a unibody frame for its pickup, it should be a compact pickup and not a mid-size or full-size pickup. Honda has a great history of making good hybrid vehicles so why not make a RWD/AWD light-duty Ridgeline hybrid lifestyle pickup. Even better, why not build a diesel hybrid like the Mitsubishi GR-HEV concept pickup?

  15. Brian Christopher

    Nov 3, 2014 at 10:44 pm

    So I’ve grew up In an area of South Texas where size is everything. My first 5 vehicles were chevy/gmc suburbans. Among many other trucks ford, Dodge, nissan, mitsubishi, and Toyota. Yes the engines were bigger and more powerful, larger tow capacity, bigger beds… But that was also before gas went up past 99 cents for premium fuel. And after of course. In 05 I bought my first 2006 model Ridgeline RTL and traded in my Honda S2000. Best move ever! This wasn’t a truck but it looked like a truck… And then it was clear that it actually was a truck. Living just an hour away from the beach I had to test out the AWD system. It worked great! I was at the top of the dunes with all the other jeeps. I got quite a bit of smug confused looks as I made my way to the top but the fact that it made it with ease was a bit shocking even for me. I soon traded it in for a 2008 Ridgeline RTL and had even more adventures. Camping, fishing, mudding, offroading in Colorado (even if the AWD isn’t rated to be considered a serious off roader) it still did an excellent job. Had full control with steering, throttle and brake input. And this truck laughs at snow. Best handling truck I’ve ever taken off road and exposed to the elements of mother nature. And if you think that’s great, it drives even better once your on the road again. Far superior to that of any other truck I’ve driven. It’s a truck with accord like agility. Completely comfortable at 6’2″ with nice touches like heated leather seats, duel zone climate control (cause I always love to be freezing) , sunroof, power windows that op with the touch of a button on my key/remote (all one piece) , vehicle stability system that corrects over and understeer by applying ABS to individual wheels that it has detected wheel spin, traction control that pairs up with the rear differential (AWD is automatically engaged at take off with all 4 wheels and reverts to front wheel drive only at cruising speeds)…. So if your gonna bash the ridgeline at least know your facts… The only other vehicle that I have felt this safe in, and driving aspect, would be the first generation Mercedes Benz ML320. the feel of the drive and the way the traction control and stability control kept it safe and on the road, and it’s just a Honda… That drives like a car, feels as safe and in control as a Mercedes Benz. But only has a 5000lbs of Max towing…. THAT’S FINE WITH ME. I’ve towed a swim spa which was bigger in size to my truck with my Ridgeline among many other things that could have been over the limit… No problems at 100,000 miles. But super excited to see the new design. Might have to get my current Ridgeline a shiny new baby brother!

  16. Rob

    Nov 5, 2014 at 5:08 pm

    I owned 2013 RTL. Best news vehicle I ever bought every time I test drove a full size Ford or GM, I was dissapointed. I fell in love with the Honda. Leather, sunroof, heated seats MSRP OF 36k paid 31500. Great engine, sounded like a racecar at 6k rpm. Rode like a luxury car. Ugly.. Yep, till I fell in love. Then it was beautiful.

  17. Ridge Owner

    Nov 6, 2014 at 9:13 pm

    I’m on my 2nd Ridgeline after owning F150, Z71, S10, and Dakota. This is the best of them. Fuel economy is the only disappointment. American made, fits my atv in the back and pulls the other 3 atv’s via trailer with ease. Been offroading many times and comfortably fits 5 adults. For most of the population, this is all the truck you will ever need with the room and comfort to go with it. I wouldn’t expect a wannabe writer to get it.

  18. CJ. Ridgeline Owner

    Nov 14, 2014 at 10:20 am

    I think the author of this article is a hater.
    The ONLY thing I see as being correct in this is that the Fuel Efficiency, which is pretty crappy by today’s standards.
    I bought at 2006 Ridgeline new, and I’m at 200,000 miles. Zero repairs. Normal maintenance, but Zero down time… I love the way it handles, and with good tires, I was able to get out in over 2 feet of snow. I drove past a Hummer H2 stuck in the snow. I had the right tires for it tho.. It works great for me, doing weekend jobs around the house, and taking my sons to football practice. I keep tools, and equipment for work that needs to stay dry.

    I’m excited about the 2016 Ridgeline. IF they could get the Fuel Usage up to in the high 20’s I’ll be getting a new one.

  19. MontanaFred

    Nov 14, 2014 at 11:53 am

    Strange you call it reprehensible. I bought my Ridgeline on Christmas 2005 and have 150,000 miles on it. I love it. I have had no problems with it and today I was reminded how well it does in snow. I car pool to work and the other three adults say they love my vehicle too. I’m building my house so I haul building materials many weekends.

  20. james padilla

    Nov 15, 2014 at 11:50 pm

    I owned a 2007 rts and it is the best riding pick-up I have ever driven period It was crashed into and instead of waiting to have it repaired, I bought a Silverado, what a mistake, it the (chevy) is noisy constantly realigning the front end and rotating tires. I will buy another ridgeline very soon. I pulled a trailer full of sand gravel cement etc and no problems. the Silverado can haul more but it sucks more gas. the ridgeline was a 2007 my Silverado is a 2011 and the ridgeline was quiet smooth riding more interior room better sound system, I see the Hondas passing by and I can only wish I had waited>

  21. BostonRidgeline

    Nov 21, 2014 at 8:09 pm

    I suspect many posters stumbled on this article searching for info on new redesigned Ridgeline. If an existing Ridgeline owner is looking for a new one then that says a lot about owner satisfaction. My 06 has 140,000. It will go to my son. The author is correct about one thing: the mileage should the same as the Pilot. If it doesn’t get better, then I may pass.

  22. pizzaking8

    Dec 22, 2014 at 10:19 pm

    geez john, do you hate all hondas? have you checked the msrp on the new colorado and canyon? I’ve got 250,000 on my 2007 Ridgeline, and it’s still running strong! The one negative has been the gas mileage, hopefully Honda addresses that!

  23. Mr Mister

    Jan 5, 2015 at 8:42 pm

    John, have you ever driven a Ridgeline or are you just making uninformed remarks ? It drives like a car and does 95% of what most normal people need. If your job is to haul tractors then by a full size truck. If you are the typical homeowner./weekend warrior, it doesn’t get any better than a Ridgeline.

  24. Jack WW

    Jan 18, 2015 at 8:36 pm

    It’s pretty obvious John you have never owned a Ridgeline.
    I have owned 2 Ridgelines, first one was a 06 purchased in 3-05 & put 186K before donating it to a youth camp I volunteer at who is still using it. Don’t know the current mileage but they have told me they have had little maintenance issues.
    My current 09 purchased in 1-10 has 213K, I own a construction company in MN, the trunk is a savior, I can get most of my cordless and had tools I need on a daily basis with leaving the bed and back seats available for truck/peple hauling. I haul trailer with it frequently with no problems. It has enough power to haul what we need and I can’t say enough about it’s durability. Beside tires (75K miles per set) brakes (at 120K then just had them done a second time 2 weeks ago) battery at 150K last winter, recommended fluid changes to drive train, oil changes every 6-7K on average and headlights/interior lights and that is the only maintenance I have done. Everything works, not what I experienced with all my fords & chevy’s I used to own.
    Then there is the traction control, the only thing I can say is it’s like a Honda AVT on steroids, I drive it to the edge and the traction control catches you aims you straight down the road and resume pushing it to it’s limits. I drive to the Canadian boarder and UP of Michigan to go snowmobiling and if I could put tracks on it, it would go everywhere, I wouldn’t need my snowmobile.
    Mileage, yes they need to make that a whole lot better. There is no reason it can’t be a hibred or diesel (I don’t do the diesels in MN anymore) because most people who use vehicles will only be one person hauling nothing. When I remove all tools from the vehicle it does increase my highway mileage about 2 MPG.
    Side note, if hauling trailers, always use D3, you will get 1-2 mpg better than if left in OD and your transmission will appreciate it. I didn’t know this on my 06, it was getting tired but it is still hanging in there with no repairs.

  25. Edgar

    Apr 20, 2015 at 1:08 pm

    Just to add a few thoughts, I have had a 2006 Ridgeline and could not be happier in most respects, reliability, easiness to drive, and use of the box when required for hauling items, has been great. As well, we have pulled too small travel trailers with our Ridgeline, the first a light weight 3300 lb trailer and most recently a 3900 lb 24′ travel trailer…the Ridgeline does a great job of hauling, mileage is not great, about 12 mpg, but that is fairly normal for most pickups unless one has an expensive new Dodge Ram. If one does not need a heavy duty pick up truck, the Ridgeline is a great choice.

  26. T Allen

    Apr 21, 2015 at 2:47 pm

    If you want an extremely capable SUT that can handle dirty loads unlike an SUV with car like manners than the Ridgeline is the truck for you. My 2006 is a joy to drive and is as tight as the day it was new. On the rare occasion I need a full size hauler for large loads I pay Home Depot $20 to rent their flatbed.

  27. matt dievendorf

    May 10, 2015 at 12:16 am

    This may cause a a few hurt feelings. The Honda ridgeline is a cool SUT, has a ton of cool features, but what it lacks is tradional body on frame. Sure you can get by with towing small things, which is great for the most part, but what if you needed to pull something a little heavier? with that in mind, I might as well go over to GMC and purchase the Canyon.

  28. B D Quijote

    Jun 4, 2015 at 11:36 am

    John – Interesting material but you suck as a journalist.

  29. AtlantaRidge

    Jun 11, 2015 at 9:09 pm

    Without reiterating too many previous comments- anyone who publishes comments about a vehicle they have never spent any time with is ignorant at best, at worst just an instigator.
    I’ve owned all brands of trucks in all sizes over 40 years. My ’13 Ridgeline is by far the best truck I’ve ever had for what I need from a truck. And that’s the key. If you need to tow heavy equipment or horse trailers, this isn’t the truck. Wasn’t meant to be. If you want to go stump jumping, this isn’t the truck. Wasn’t meant to be. If you’re intelligent enough to understand and appreciate what this vehicle was engineered for, you’ll enjoy it day in and day out. Bigger wheels/tires without exceeding the capability of the VTM-4 does wonders for the looks. Hondas are always ‘under-tired’. Efficiency at the expense of looks. Marketing was this trucks biggest problem. Nothing else. Problem was, Honda’s cost to build these was too high so there was no profit. The market wouldn’t sustain a higher costing Ridgeline, so it ran it’s course. Biggest business mistake they made was not branding this an Acura and clearing a better margin. Too late now.
    If you were to really dissect it’s engineering- you’d be pretty impressed with what they’ve accomplished. Assuming you’d even understand it. It is much more than a minivan with a bed. And any actual owner knows that. Hey John, try writing about things that guys who dig cars might actually understand, like the latest Ford Raptor or Mustang GT350. Guys who dig cars will never understand the Ridgeline, because both testicles have to drop for that to happen.

  30. Adam Smith

    Jun 28, 2015 at 7:36 pm

    After reading post after post from actual Ridgeline owners, any responsible writer would pull this article. Sounds like a great truck, terrible article.I look foward to the next generation.

  31. Scott

    Jun 30, 2015 at 10:49 am

    HONDA PLEASE DONT LET US DOWN WITH NEW RIDGELINE!!

  32. Bill

    Jul 10, 2015 at 4:39 pm

    Some comments are correct — MPG is correct but that is about it. Quality compared to others is way above the others. And yes we have only 5,000 towing limit but makes up a little with 1500 lb carrying — I’ve loaded way more than a 1/2 ton and came away fine. Picture of an ATV on it is fine as i carry one many times — Broken axel??? Come on! And yes we hope Honda does it better on this new one but lots more inovations than most of the market!

  33. Eric

    Aug 4, 2015 at 10:15 am

    I used to be a Ridgeline owner for a year and I sold it for down payment of my house. I owned 2011 RTL and never been happier. I agree with everyone about dual action gate, in bed trunk, unibody benefit for city dwellers who want the ability to bring stuff from Home Depot without having to fold the backseat down and tear the box open. However, I also agree with the cons of 1st gen Ridgeline. The MPG was horrendous for the power returned by it. Additionally, my RTL didn’t come with Nav, hence no backup camera. Those two cons and my need to have down payment for my house nailed the coffin of my Ridgeline owner membership.

    I do look forward to get another Ridgeline in the future, though. I am not sure what the 2nd gen will offer, but if they took away either the dual action gate, in bed trunk, or unibody, I have to say I would go back to 1st gen instead of the 2nd gen.

  34. Dan

    Sep 21, 2015 at 3:27 pm

    I bought my 06 RTL in 08 with 27K on the clock and it now has over 100K. It has been a great truck super comfortable and never stops. I guess you could call it the timex of trucks. Running empty I have achieved 24 MPG and 17 to 19 full. I have only pulled small trailers/loads with it. The only area it lacks is its ability to tow up to say 6500 lbs. Say a 3 ltr diesel with 300+ hp and 475+ lbs of torque on an 8 speed trans would very much enhance the ability of this truck. I could see it easily reaching the 25 to 30 MPG range running empty.

  35. Robert

    Oct 15, 2015 at 10:30 pm

    Have a 2010 came from a 06 Frontier Gas milage is a little better on Honda No problems has never been back to Dealer has been to southern Baja 5 times from Canada I drive on rough gravel roads a lot handles very well. drives like a car compared to other pickups I have driven which I will take any time

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