While many people questioned whether the original Ridgeline was truly a pickup truck at heart or an SUV in disguise, the second generation released last year seems to pull the design in a more conventional direction than its predecessor.
With news of the 2018 Honda Ridgeline still relatively under wraps, we piece together what we already know to speculate what will be next for the award-winning pickup truck.
2018 Honda Ridgeline Redesign, Exterior
While the Type R has just received a massive update two years on from its previous refresh, Honda has a history of overhauling their vehicle design every four years. Due to the Ridgeline being renewed for the 2017 model, all things point towards only a few minor tweaks and alterations with the new rollout for the 2018 version.
This means that it almost certainly keep the same chassis and build which keeps it within similar dimensions to rival crew-cab, short-box, mid-size pickups although it does carry a lowly ground clearance of 7.8 inches which, somehow, Honda seem to make work during off-road scenarios. With a cargo bed of 64×50 inches, the Ridgeline will continue to offer unparalleled load-carrying capabilities compared to other similar sized vehicles.
Where Honda are likely to make some amendments will be in superficial areas such as the trim and grille which could well be modernized into the New Look which Honda are painting across their current range. This will see bigger vents to accentuate the nose of the vehicle and hopefully include the new LED headlights which are both stylish and effective in casting the shadows away from your path.
Other than new color alternatives becoming available, we have heard of little else which is expected to reshape this model and although Honda has managed to pull the wool over everyone’s eyes in the past. This seems unlikely this time around with the Odyssey seemingly receiving much of their design teams attention over the last few months.
Ridgeline towing capabilities are 1,584-pound or 718.5 kg payload capacity and 5,000-pound or 2,268 kg of towing (diferent from trim to trim).
Honda Ridgeline 2018 Interior
Inside the spacious surroundings of the interior is where many of the new upgrades are likely to be found although much of the soft furnishings are expected to remain as they currently are.
One hope for the new Honda Ridgeline 2018 is that it will come installed with yet more features from the range of Honda’s sensing safety suite which provides various driver assistance tools from Blind Spot Indicators and assistance in remaining within traffic lanes to collision prevention equipment.
Another likely new feature will be the 7” fingerprint-resistant display which is already installed in the 2017 Pilot. This will be used to navigate through the infotainment package that will also add updated GSM support for both Apple Carplay and Android Auto. While this again leaves the Ridgeline open for attack as more of an SUV than a pickup truck, a little convenience is a luxury which is fine by us.
The present 3.5-liter 6-valve i-VTEC engine is likely to continue in production as major changes will be both costly and unnecessary after only one year since the introduction. Featuring automatic start/stop technology and variable cylinder management which are both designed to conserve petrol.
While the current figures of 280 hp and 262 lb·ft of torque are not criminally underpowered, this will again highlight the Honda’s biggest weakness which is its overall pulling power. Registering a measly rating of 5,000 pounds (3,500 pounds for the two-wheel drive version) it is feasible and hoped that Honda may switch around their gear ratios to enhance this aspect of their vehicles performance.
Fuel consumption goes for 2WD 19/26/22 (city/highway/combined) and for AWD 18/25/21 (city/highway/combined).
With fuel consumption also slightly trailing the competition at an average of 21 mpg, the Ridgeline more than makes up for any shortcomings in the performance and sheer stability in the body design which complements the rapid acceleration that this vehicle possesses, comfortably outstripping anything that its rivals can get close to.
Price and release date
While no official announcement has yet been made from Honda regarding the rollout of the 2018 Ridgeline, a limited release is expected during December of this year with an official release coming mid-January 2018.
Again the price is still unconfirmed but with the minor changes that are expected in this version, a price which doesn’t match the current valuation ranging between $30,000 for the two-wheel drive and $43,000 for the tricked out AWD version(2018 Honda Ridgeline Black Edition), will be a major surprise.
Honda seems to have taken the old adage of, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, quite seriously with the update on their Ridgeline series. But as a vehicle which is already topping its class in many people’s opinions, the Ridgeline has far more to lose than it stands to gain which maybe explains the cautious approach Honda have decided to take until the launch of Ford’s new light-duty Ranger which is expected in 2019.
1. RT – $29,630
2. Sport – $33,170
3. RTL – $33,930
4. RTL-T – $36,080
1. Sport – $35,070
2. RTL – $35,830
3. RTL-T – 37,980
4. RTL-E – $41,620
5. Black Edition – $43,120
2018 Honda Ridgeline pictures