DETROIT, Michigan (WKBN) – The Honda Ridgeline is the pickup for people who don’t like pickups.
That’s the spin that Honda executives put on their new unibody Ridgeline pickup unveiled at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.
Most pickups are called “body on frame” – that is, the pickup has a frame (usually steel) that the rest of the pickup is bolted to. It makes them very sturdy, but can also result in a rough ride if you are just using it for errands around town.
The original Ridgeline, which debuted in 2005, was built on a car chassis – a unibody chassis where the pieces of the car provide structural rigidity instead of a frame. Unibody trucks offer a smoother ride, but don’t have all the towing and cargo capacity as a full-frame truck.
But Honda thinks there is a nice market for people who don’t want a “truck-like” pickup truck. The new mid-size Ridgeline is for them.
“We are bringing our unique technology and original thinking to the market in a new and challenging concept for a Honda pickup,” said John Mendel, executive vice president of American Honda Motor Co., Inc. “We think we’ve got a better idea, a truck that uses its unibody construction and Honda packaging magic to deliver more of the things that many of today’s truck customers want and need with none of the things they don’t.”
That Honda packaging means Honda’s “In-Bed Trunk®” – essentially a trunk under the floor of the bed, dual-action tailgate and the industry’s first in-bed audio system. It is powered by a 3.5 liter V-6, and comes in all-wheel or front-wheel drive – something not found in other pickups.
The new Ridgeline comes to showrooms in the first half of this year.