Car Buyer Labs

Car Buying Advice, Tips, and Reviews

A grey 2021 Honda Ridgeline is shown from the side while driving through snow.

3 Reasons You Are Going to Want the Honda Ridgeline

Buying a truck is an exciting prospect until you look at the price tag. Of course, we can complain as much as we want, but at the end of the day, they are expensive vehicles to make which means they are expensive vehicles to buy. Car manufacturers have to make a living, too, so it’s only fair. A lot of dealers and drivers will encourage you to buy a used truck which will drive the price down a bit, but a lot of the premiere brands are still extremely expensive unless you’re looking at a real fixer-upper made a decade ago or more. Most people looking for a truck don’t have the time, money, or skill needed for fixer-uppers and are better off putting that money toward buying a functional vehicle. Still, looking at the price tag of a popular truck, like an F-150, may have you feeling financially insecure, even when said truck is used. Question: have you considered looking into a used Honda Ridgeline for sale?

Let’s pause and be real for a moment. The Honda Ridgeline is probably not anyone’s dream truck. When you think of top-quality trucks, they tend to be domestic, for example, the F-150, Silverado, Ram 1500, and maybe even the Gladiator in more recent years. Honda isn’t necessarily thought of as a rough-and-tumble brand. However, if what you’re actually looking for is a well-functioning truck, then who cares who makes it? A used Honda Ridgeline is likely to be cheaper—sometimes by $10,000-$20,000 or more—than some of the other leading trucks. And yes, we’re still talking about used trucks! The Ridgeline may not be your dream truck but, once you come to understand its value, your mind might just be changed.

A grey 2020 Honda Ridgeline is shown from the rear at an angle.

#1: All Work and No Play? No Way

So, why the Ridgeline? First of all, the Ridgeline is a midsize pickup truck. Going for a full-size truck significantly raises the price and it can also be an unnecessary hassle unless you’re using it for work purposes and I mean truly work purposes. The Ridgeline can certainly still hold its own for your household projects, and fitting a big, full-size pickup into your garage is probably going to be difficult. A midsize truck, however, is very conducive to family life while still giving you all of the benefits of having a truck.
Even better for family life, though, is the fact that midsize pickup trucks tend to have a greater emphasis on fun than full-size trucks do because they have a more holistic approach to trucking within the context of family life, rather than being focused on work alone. With this in mind, the 2020 Ridgeline, for example, was designed to tackle things like tailgate parties instead of worksite laboring. You may object and say, “I can tailgate with any pickup truck. What makes the Ridgeline so special?”

That’s a fair question. You’re correct, you can tailgate with any pickup truck but, not all trucks have Truck Bed Audio System. In fact, no other truck has a Truck Bed Audio System, at least not as of 2020 when the Ridgeline introduced the world’s first! So, you can use your tailgate out in the yard for hauling cargo, doing house repairs, yard work, or any other project you may find your way into. When you’re done, you can have the neighbors over to grill out, relax, and crack open a cold one.

#2: Tremendous Tailgating

Whether you’re doing a home project or hosting a tailgate party, the Ridgeline’s bed and tailgate are more advanced than you may think. It certainly holds its own amongst its competitors. With an available in-bed power outlet providing 115V AC, you can plug in a power tool for a project or an electric cooler for your party. What’s more, the bed finds innovative ways of offering storage, like through its weather-sealed and lockable In-Bed Trunk. Having a pickup bed is helpful in and of itself because it provides so much open storage space without a roof to cap it off; it’s especially helpful for cargo that might leave more debris (like wood) or any stuff you don’t want dirtying up the back of a vehicle with in-cabin cargo space, like an SUV.

When you’ve got precious cargo in there you want to keep it safe. Even if it’s not precious, nobody wants their stuff getting stolen. It’s important to make sure that your stuff is protected. That is a big question when it comes to truck beds. Let’s say you are hauling some cargo and you need to make a pit stop at the store, or you just have to leave the truck unattended for a couple of minutes while you’re working. What about your cargo? Well, first and foremost, don’t leave unattended super expensive items. Cover it up, take it with you, or find another place for it. That’s always helpful.

The Honda Ridgeline has a unique solution to dealing with cargo: the lockable In-Bed Trunk. This space will fit large items like golf bags or an 82-quart cooler, and you can seal them in and lock the truck to prevent damage from the elements or unsavory hands. That way, if you’re out in the yard working on a Saturday and you need to run to the store to grab more supplies, you can lock up your tools in your truck. Or, if you are out on the town shopping, you have a safe place to put everything so it won’t get wet or roll around in the bed while you drive home.

A grey 2021 Honda Ridgeline HPD is shown from the front at an angle.

A Performer

As a midsize pickup, the Ridgeline won’t necessarily have the crazy specs of the biggest and baddest trucks on the market, but for its class, it certainly holds its own. First of all, before we get to the trailering and towing part, the 2020 Ridgeline offers a class-leading payload capacity of 1,580 pounds. Even though the Ridgeline may not be on many people’s dream truck list, it’s actually leading its class in terms of strength.

If you want to hook up a trailer, you can tow up to 5,000 pounds in the 2020 Ridgeline. That’s a lot of stuff, especially for home projects. Just because heavy-duty trucks are towing upwards of 16,000 pounds doesn’t mean the Ridgeline is weak. If you were on the worksite hauling tractors around, then maybe 16,000 pounds towing capacity would be necessary, but if you’re handling more domestic projects, or hauling your fishing boat for a weekend getaway, you’ll have what you need in the Ridgeline. Sometimes the underdog is the best performer in the group. Maybe, just maybe, that’s the case here with the Ridgeline.

An Over Performing Underdog

Like I said before, chances are the Ridgeline isn’t the first truck to come to mind when you think of your dream truck. However, it leads its class in many ways, offers a very strong pickup bed with high towing capacity, and has an equal focus on work and fun. Smaller features like the in-bed outlet and in-bed audio system may seem unnecessary at first, but those will pay off over time. The more you truck, the more you’ll find that the little things really do make a big difference. I think we’ve established here that the Ridgeline is a very worthwhile truck. For an affordable pickup that can get the job done, look no further than the underdog from Honda.