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Honda Ridgeline 2022 Review: Reimagining the Midsize Truck

Image Source: Steve Lagreca / Shutterstock

The market is witnessing a surge in unibody-based pickups, exemplified by models like the Ford Maverick and Hyundai Santa Cruz. However, amidst these newcomers, the 2022 Honda Ridgeline remains a trailblazer as the sole truck built on a crossover platform. This midsize truck captures attention with its polished driving performance, spacious interior, and innovative bed features.

2022 Honda Ridgeline Review

Built on the same platform as the Passport and Pilot SUVs, the Ridgeline initially faced criticism for lacking the rugged appearance preferred by truck enthusiasts. In response, Honda gave the Ridgeline a significant facelift last year, enhancing its truck-like aesthetics. While these styling updates were a positive step, enthusiasts are eager for a potentially more rugged variant like the Ridgeline TrailSport.

The interior of the Ridgeline closely mirrors that of the Passport and Pilot, offering a car-like ambiance distinct from competitors such as the Nissan Frontier and Toyota Tacoma. This emphasis on comfort sets the Ridgeline apart, especially in its spacious second row and wider cabin dimensions compared to the Ford Ranger. Notable features include a rear seat that can be folded up to accommodate items like a full-size bicycle.

One drawback is the dated 8.0-inch infotainment system of the Ridgeline, characterized by obsolete graphics and sluggish responsiveness. Similarly, the gauge cluster’s small digital display contributes to an overall outdated interior impression, highlighting the need for a modernization overhaul.2022 Honda Ridgeline Review

The Ridgeline’s bed measures 5 feet 3 inches in length, aligning with standard dimensions for midsize crew cab pickups. However, its standout features include an in-bed trunk with 7.9 cubic feet of storage below the floor and a Dual Action Tailgate that offers traditional drop-down and door-swinging functions. Additionally, the top-tier Ridgeline offers a Truck-Bed Audio System for tailgating, transforming the bed into a sizable speaker system for entertainment on the go.

The Ridgeline houses a single powertrain option: a 3.5-liter V6 engine producing 280 horsepower and 262 pound-feet of torque, paired with a nine-speed automatic transmission and torque-vectoring all-wheel-drive system. While a front-wheel-drive variant was previously available, it has since been discontinued. Notably, the V6 engine offers smoother performance compared to rivals like the Toyota Tacoma.

Fuel efficiency ratings for the Ridgeline stand at 18 mpg city, 24 mpg highway, and 21 mpg combined, slightly surpassing the Toyota Tacoma. 2022 Honda Ridgeline Review

The Ridgeline excels in handling among midsize pickups, delivering a smooth ride and controlled body movements akin to a crossover. As a result of its shared platform with the Passport and Pilot, the Ridgeline offers a driving experience more reminiscent of a crossover than a traditional body-on-frame pickup, enhancing its agility and refinement over competitors like the Tacoma and Ranger.

However, the Ridgeline’s unibody platform introduces limitations, such as reduced ground clearance of 7.6 inches and a towing capacity capped at 5,000 pounds, trailing behind rivals capable of towing over 7,000 pounds. While the all-wheel-drive system performs well, it falls short compared to traditional four-wheel drive systems in challenging off-road conditions. Additionally, the absence of skid plates or underbody protection exposes the Ridgeline to potential damage in rugged terrains.

In terms of safety features, the Ridgeline includes standard amenities like automatic emergency braking, lane-departure warning, lane-keeping assist, and adaptive cruise control.

The 2022 Honda Ridgeline is available in four trim levels: Sport, RTL, REL-E, and Black Edition, with pricing for the base Sport model starting at $39,435, inclusive of destination fees. The top-tier Black Edition begins at $46,865.

In conclusion, the Honda Ridgeline caters to the preferences of truck enthusiasts while offering unparalleled refinement in the competitive midsize truck market.

Image Source: Steve Lagreca / Shutterstock

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