The rockin' Roadshow Ridgeline long-term test truck

We've been dying to get our hands on Honda's answer to the pickup truck for a while now. Color us very happy, indeed.

Emme Hall Former editor for CNET Cars
I love two-seater, RWD convertibles and own a 2004 Mazdaspeed Miata for pavement fun and a lifted 2001 Miata for pre-running. I race air-cooled Volkswagens in desert races like the Mint 400 and the Baja 1000. I have won the Rebelle Rally, seven-day navigational challenge, twice and I am the only driver to compete in an EV, the Rivian R1T.
Emme Hall
2 min read
2017 Honda Ridgeline

Please welcome our long-term tester, the 2017 Honda Ridgeline! We're excited to get this all-wheel drive truck into our garage, none more so than I.

At first glance, I hated the Ridgeline. "It's not a truck!" I exclaimed to anyone who would listen. "It's a Pilot with a bed. It's a fake truck!"


Yep, it's a Honda Pilot with a bed.

Antuan Goodwin/Roadshow

However, I came to realize that, while it might have the unibody of a crossover, it certainly meets the needs of many folks looking to get into a truck. And it has some advantages that other "real trucks" can't beat.


With a swap from street to more aggressive tires, the Honda Ridgeline won the crossover class at the 2016 Rebelle Rally.

Paolo Baraldi Fotografo

The first is the ride. With its independent suspension all the way around, the Ridgeline drives much easier than a truck with a solid rear axle. Sure, without a real 4x4 system you lose some off-road capability, but as much as I loathe admitting it, most buyers aren't looking to be desert warriors.

However, with the stock Firestone Destination LE2 all-season road tires swapped out for more aggressive Nitto Terra Grapplers, a Ridgeline took the podium in its class at the Rebelle Rally in 2016, conquering dirt tracks from Lake Tahoe, Nevada, to the dunes of Glamis, California.


The in-bed storage locker makes a great cooler.

Antuan Goodwin/Roadshow

The unibody of the Ridgeline gives it flexibility in bed configuration. Its in-bed cooler is genius and the multiway tailgate makes for easy loading. Add the in-bed speaker system and power outlet and you have the makings of a great tailgate party.

The Ridgeline gives drivers the utility and space of a truck while driving like a crossover and partying like a rockstar. Expect to see our Ridgeline in the dunes of Pismo Beach and adventuring out to remote camping destinations. We'll also put it through its payload and towing paces and report on our real-world fuel economy.

Stay tuned for monthly updates!