2013 Honda Ridgeline Overview
A little while ago, the compact truck class underwent an exodus by auto manufacturers growing tired of pumping money towards R&D for a product that American car-buyers gave little margin for profit. Honda, on the other hand, stuck with their unconventional midsize truck and aim to continue in 2013 with the success it has found in this downsized segment.
Coming off a mid-cycle update in 2012, the 2013 Honda Ridgeline arrives without many new features, the most notable being the addition of a standard backup camera. The only powertrain available is a 3.5L V6 equipped to a five-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive. Though this engine is great for daily driving, it can struggle when towing heavy loads including those within the 5,000 lb capacity.
Due to the unibody construction, the Ridgeline exhibits an almost car-like ride yet will still let you know if your bed is empty or not when going over bumps. Just debuting the Sport trim in 2012, Honda offers Ridgeline customers four trim levels to choose from, including the RT, RTS and RTL. With the RT as the base model, the Sport trim adds an aggressive appearance while the RTS equips more interior features. Not to be forgotten, the top-of-the-line RTL is available with Honda’s satellite-linked navigation system. Yet on every model drivers can utilize the Ridgeline-exclusive dual-action tailgate and in-bed lockable trunk that are a big reason for this Honda truck’s cult-like following. Moving inside, shoppers will find a cabin almost as functional as the exterior that carries it along. Though interior materials are quite hard, the Ridgeline’s front seats are supportive and soft. As is common in crew cab trucks, the comfort enjoyed up front is lost on the rear, which does its’ best by means of a 60/40 lift-up bench seat with storage underneath.
As previously mentioned, this segment including trucks less than a half-ton has suffered in the recent past; but with the market’s shift towards efficiency and utility, the demand for midsize trucks has risen again. This cannot be more evident than in the recent investment made by GM into producing an all-new GMC Canyon/Chevrolet Colorado for 2013. Another option, the Toyota Tacoma is available with a crew cab plus a long bed for fitting lengthier cargo items. If you aren’t planning on towing significant weight, the Tacoma’s base 4-cylinder engine will save on gas. For buyers not completely turned off by a full-size truck, the new 2013 Ram 1500 is available with a fuel-efficient V6 and the Chevrolet Silverado's V8 shares identical MPG-numbers with the Ridgeline's V6.
Offering a truck’s utility with car-like handling, the Honda Ridgeline’s unique capabilities should attract many types of shoppers.
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