2011 Honda Ridgeline

The 2011 Honda Ridgeline remains unchanged from last year’s model. It carries on as a unique pickup, defying the usual body-on-frame rule for car-type unibody production. The 2011 Honda Ridgeline is conveniently strong, cleverly adaptable, amazingly comfortable and distastefully ugly.

2011 Ridgeline goes on with its sole crew-cab build and 5-foot long freight. It has also preserved its style, which make it look like a SUV mix strapped on a small cargo box. In fact, Ridgeline’s unibody construction makes a very stiff boxed framework This Honda is as hard as that of almost every body-on-frame competitor.

Performance

Its single engine-transmission combination is still the 250-horsepower 3.5-liter V-6 and five-speed auto, similar to the Pilot. Acceleration is dynamic and smooth. Likewise, Ridgeline is basically a front-wheel drive vehicle. Ridgeline in fact comes with a standard four-wheel drive system that generally runs on front-wheel drive but can divert power to the rear wheels while accelerating and in low-traction conditions.

Ridgeline provides additional traction using the instrument-panel button. This locks in power to the rear wheels at up to 18 mph. It can also engage automatically on any surface without requiring driver intervention. The Ridgeline’s 5,000-towing capacity is similar to that of any crew-cab V-6 compact pickup. Towing equipment includes an integrated tow hitch, heavy-duty brakes, transmission and oil coolers and dual radiator fans. Ridgeline also comes with four-wheel disc brakes with antilock capability and an antiskid system to lessen sideway slides.

Ridgeline’s free suspension provides the most accommodating and sharpest handling ride of almost every small truck. According to an old wisdom, another frame and a hard axle at the back are important for good cargo limit. Honda takes credit by providing load capacity of about 1,500 pounds to the Ridgeline.

Exterior

The extraordinarily high-walled box blends flawlessly with the metal of the cab. Nevertheless, the high walls provide strength as well as enhanced aerodynamics. The bed is only 5-feet long, among the smallest of all pickups. But that maintains Ridgeline’s total span shorter than that of almost every compact crew-cabs, making it easier to park in the garage. Ridgeline’s secured compartment conceals a useful 8.5 cubic feet of storage space. The Ridgeline also features a double-action tailgate that opens and hinges to the side.

Ridgeline’s greenhouse as well as low hood line goes against traditional pickup designs. This pickup also features full-sized seats at front as well as backseat accommodations that are unmatched by some compact pickup and into medium sized SUV area. And as the slanting hood line and nerdy grille wipe out any idea of fist-in-your face style, they pay off in excellent frontal visibility.

The 2011 Ridgeline comes in four trim levels: the basic RT, the RTS, the improved RTL and the RTL with navigation. You may not notice much difference on these trims, but the RTS features 17-inch alloy wheels and body-color trim to the RT’s 17-inch wheels and darkened trim. The RTLs, on the other hand, have an 18-inch wheels as well as fog lamps.

Interior

A satellite-linked GPS with voice recognition is available only on the RTL as well as Bluetooth cell phone linking and a backup camera. The RT’s audio system consists of a six-speaker, 100-watt unit with a single-disc CD player. Other models have a seven-speaker 160-watt system with subwoofer, steering wheel audio controls and an auxiliary input jack.

Safety

Each 2011 Ridgeline has head-protecting curtain side airbags that deploys during side collisions or when sensors identify an imminent rollover. All trim also come with a trip computer that estimates immediate and average fuel economy, tilt steering wheel, keyless entry, cruise control, power windows and locks, an air conditioning system, a power sliding rear window and a 60/40 split lift-up rear seat with under-seat storage.

Competition

Comparable vehicles to the Ridgeline are the Toyota Tacoma 4WD (MSRP $27,025; 16 city / 20 hwy) and the Nissan Frontier Crew Cab (MSRP $31,530; 14 city / 19 hwy).

Overall Rating
70 out of 100

What others say:

"If you need a better-driving truck that can haul the goods on occasion, the 2011 Honda Ridgeline might be a better choice than a true full-sizer."Car Connection

"Exemplary for a pickup. Comfortably controlled, spoiled only by minor thumping on washboard surfaces. Ridgeline's independent rear suspension cushions bumps better than nearly all solid-axle-equipped competitors."Consumer Guide

"Modest off-road and towing capabilities; lackluster power and fuel economy from V6; only one body style available; longish braking distances."Edmunds

"If you're looking for an open bed to occasionally haul stuff, but don't require significant towing capability (or the perceived baggage that comes with driving a pickup), the Ridgeline is - at this point - the only game in town."KBB

Specifications

General Info
Vehicle Type: Truck Base Price: $29,150.00
Fuel Tank Capacity: 22 gallons Miles Per Gallon: 15 city / 20 hwy
Dimensions
Length: 207 in. (525.7 cm) Width: 77.8 in. (197 cm)
Height: 70.3 in. (178.5 cm) Curb Weight: 4504 lbs (2043 kg)
Wheel Base: 122 in. (309 cm) Ground Clearance: 8.2 in. (20.8 cm)
Payload Capacity: 1546 lbs (701.2 kgs) Maximum Seating: 5 people
Performance
Engine: 24-Valve SOHC VTEC® V6 Displacement: 3471 cc
Horsepower: 250 HP Max RPM: 5700 RPM
Torque: 243 lb-ft @ 4300 rpm Transmission: 5-Speed Automatic
0-60 mph: 7.5 seconds Towing Capacity: 5000 lbs (2268 kgs)
Available Trims & Engine
Option:RTS MSRP: $31,855; MPG: 15 city / 20 hwy
Option:RTL MSRP: $34,730; MPG: 15 city / 20 hwy
Option:RTL w/ Leather & Nav. MSRP: $37,080; MPG: 15 city / 20 hwy