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Honda Ridgeline SUT



  • rrbhokiesrrbhokies Posts: 108
    Just took delivery of my Steel Blue RTS this weekend. Since the Ridgeline doesn't have a cassette deck like my old car, I couldn't use my iPOD through the stereo like I used to.

    So, the first thing I did was picked up a Griffin Roadtrip for my iPOD. This is a really sweet unit. It's a combination DC Adaptor, Charger and FM transmitter all in one. It plugs into the power ports on the dash, and holds the iPOD. You set the FM Transmitter anywhere between 88.1 and 107.9 and it plays back through the stereo. Plus, it's a charger for the iPOD so you don't have to worry about draining batteries. I can even leave the backlight on the whole time, making it really easy for me to see what's playing. I have the iPOD photo, so it has a really nice color screen. Best of all, there are no dangling wires anywheres, no batteries to change, and it doesn't interfere with any of the other controls on the dash because the power ports are nice and low on the unit. It's also really easy to transport and I can just yank it out and put in our Odyssey and it works and fits great in there too!

    For about $60 on sale, I am finding this to be a great fit for using my iPOD in the Ridgeline and just wanted to share my experience. :shades:
  • jh6jh6 Posts: 1
    I would like to clarify something. I find it very disturbing the false information that is posted on the internet by know-it-alls whom have no knowledge! First, I am a mechanical engineer specializing in fluid dynamics. I am not going to bore you with any great knowledge I may have learned "a number of years ago"! I would recommend that everyone (especially the author of the previous post) to perform the following experiment and determine for themselves the effect of a tailgate on aerodynamics. Hold your hand out of the window of a moving car (approximately 40-60mph for the best test). With your fingers facing toward the front of the vehicle and hand horizontal with the ground, make a mental note of the drag you experience (the amount force the air puts on your hand). Now, rotate your hand skyward (fingers pointing up), and the palm of your hand toward the front of the car. Notice the drag on your hand now. Obviously, the drag on a horizontal hand is much less then a vertical hand. This will correlate to the difference between a covered bed and a bed with a tailgate. You can decide which would provide better gas mileage. Also, another interesting improvement with a bed cover is the elimination of the turbulent air in the bed. This turbulence causes a truck to experience a "jerkyness" at higher speeds. With a bed cover it is eliminated providing a much smoother ride.
  • jerrywimerjerrywimer Posts: 588
    I guess the post you're referring to was removed because I see none in this topic on the subject of the tailgate being up or down, and post 1432 is missing.

    On the other hand jh6, you should do some more research. In the first place with your example, the cab isn't in front of your hand.. There have been actual wind tunnel test studies of this, both by GM and independently. One example follows:

    Aerodynamic Characteristics of General Motors Truck

    Motor Magazine also had an article with similar information and conclusions-
    Motor Magazine Eye on Electronics article .pdf
  • gearhead1gearhead1 Posts: 408
    I would like to clarify something. I find it very disturbing the false information that is posted on the internet by know-it-alls whom have no knowledge!

    There is no turbulence in the RL bed. The wind does not hit the back of tailgate. there is no benefit to a cover or leaving the tailgate down. Trust me on that one, that's straight from Gary Flint the RL engineer. He would know. The RL is designed so that wouldn't happen. It's kind of ironic that your the one posting false info. You should be certain of what your saying before posting, instead of just posting your assumptions.
  • whaleyawhaleya Posts: 28
    I don't quite understand the concern the some have over scratches in the bed??

    The bed is NOT steel. The bed will not rust.

    On a different subject... The example of drag on a human's hand outside the window would only be revelent as an example if my truck were shaped like a giant, hairy hand!
  • Glad you are enjoying your Ridgeline with the Griffin Roadtrip. I had been using the Griffin iTrip (not as good as the Roadtrip but works).

    To avoid the potential RF interference of the FM modulator, I was hoping to use the Auxillary port located above the glovebox. Are you aware of any cables that will work for this purpose?

    Thanks in advance.
  • 4wdave4wdave Posts: 16
    Be careful with the Roadtrip! I blew out two IPODs with mine, and the manufacturer doesn't even reply when I ask about a replacement...
  • gearhead1gearhead1 Posts: 408
    Posted by a guy that knows the RL inside and out I would say.

    Wow – there are so many issues at play here it is difficult to know where to start. Let’s go through each of the arguments in play and separate the myths from the facts. The overall discussion seems to be centered first on drive train and engine type so let’s start there and then cover some of the other peripheral issues:

    V8 vs. V6
    Honda is first and foremost and engineering company - NOT a marketing organization staffed with spin doctors. That transcends to everything that is done from the design to the overall company philosophy. Specifically, the Ridgeline is equipped with a 3.5L high performance V6 engine. It is true it lacks a low tech valve-in-head V8 engine designed in 1954. However, let’s focus on the engineering results and performance: Unloaded, the Ridgeline out-accelerates the two highest volume full size competitors: Ford F150 and Chevrolet Silverado/Avalanche. It is also within several tenths of a second acceleration when coupled to a 5,000 pound trailer compared to F150 with the optional 5.4L V8 and optional axle ratio. It also out accelerates an Avalanche in the same test with a trailer. As far as fuel economy is concerned, it achieves 21 mpg real world fuel economy. NONE of the competition actually achieves the label fuel economy in the real world. The full size V8 competitors achieve approximately 14-16mpg depending on the driving mode and speed. Based on the facts, I would say the Ridgeline accomplishes better performance in a more efficient package: A successful engineering solution.
    Ridgeline 1- Full Size Trucks 0

    4wd Drive train
    It is true; the Ridgeline is a transverse mounted drive train. This is why it is able to pack the equivalent package interior volume and bed length in an overall length that is 18 inches shorter than a Ford F150 Crew cab. This results in package that is fits in a garage and is maneuverable in the real world. Additionally, there seems to be some misconception about the 4wd launch philosophy of the Ridgeline. The Ridgeline 4wd drivetrain is a predictive (rather than reactive) system unlike the competitors. It ALWAYS launches in 4WD mode. It removes power from the rear wheels when the conditions permit (i.e. cruise & no-slip condition). In fact, whenever throttle is being applied, the system begins to apply torque to the rear wheels. This strategy results in a more fuel efficient solution and is more functional in the real world (particularly when towing in the rain – a mode where the competitor’s demonstrate dismal performance).
    Ridgeline 3 – Full size Trucks 0)

    Body Construction
    The Ridgeline incorporates a Unibody construction with an integrated frame with 7 high strength steel cross members. The primary frame section is 70% deeper than conventional SUV construction. Contrary to popular opinion, this is not shared with the Pilot or MDX. The body is 93% exclusive and was specifically designed to meet the severe demands of the intended truck vocation. During the early design process, unibody construction was benchmarked against conventional Body-on-Frame architecture. The ultimate strength in the overloaded condition was also chosen as a design target for the Ridgeline. The final body design is more weight efficient and achieves equivalent performance in terms of the failure point in overloaded mode. It is 20 times stiffer in torsion, 2.5 times stiffer in bending, achieves SUPERIOR crash performance (the only truck to EVER achieve 5 Star front AND 5 Star side impact performance. Additionally, in the dynamic rollover test, it achieves the BEST EVER performance in the dynamic roll-over test (4 star in the NTSA dynamic test with no wheel tip-up) If you look at some of the videos contained on this site: when the body is twisted with one wheel 5 feet in the air, all the doors can be opened and closed, the tailgate is fully functional. The competition can not achieve this level of performance. Additionally, the cab and box contact each other during this maneuver in the competition. What the conventional (old world) body on frame construction is superior at achieving is low-cost construction with an ability to spin many different body and cab configurations. The Ridgeline targets the core volume segment of the market: personal transportation 4 door trucks.
    Ridgeline 4 – Full Size Trucks 0

    The Ridgeline benefits from the basic architecture of the platform: stiff, efficient Unibody construction with an integrated truck frame that utilizes independent rear suspension. If we look at either slalom speed or max lateral G’s pulled in a corner, the Ridgeline simply blows the competition away. In fact, it is so good, it outperforms the Honda 2 door Accord on both fronts. If we look at aftershake or head toss as two additional measures of ride quality: again the Ridgeline simply blows the competition away. It is simply in a class by itself in terms of ride and handling. No other truck can come close. In the real world where these vehicles are used for commuting and transporting the family – the vehicle really excels. Now let’s talk about loaded handling. Again even when loaded, there is no comparison. The Ridgeline maintains its composure when carrying the max payload. I have driven it both on the track and over a real world road course with the rated payload. I would never attempt any high speed handling maneuvers in any of the competition at rated payload. This was demonstrated to the press during the launch event. Some of the competitors are so poor during this type of vocation, during the media events an EMS crew was standing by in case someone driving the competitors went outside the friction circle.
    Ridgeline 5 – Full Size Trucks 0

    The Ridgeline rated payload in the bed is a genuine 1100 pounds on every grade. The Ridgeline has more rated payload than a Ford F150 crew cab. In fact a Chevrolet Avalanche can not haul a half ton with 2 passengers. Neither can the Chevrolet Colorado, Toyota Tacoma, nor Ford Sport Trac. This is also the ONLY truck in the compact or so called mid-size category that can fit a 48 inch wide module flat on the floor of the bed.
    Ridgeline 6– Full Size Trucks 0

    Snow/Ice Performance
    The Ridgeline is equipped with the most advanced drivetrain available on any truck in the market. It is a full time, fully automatic 4wd system. Vehicle Stability Assist (VSA) is standard on every grade and fully functional even in 4wd mode. It is also equipped with standard brake assist to provide the shortest possible stopping distance in real world panic situations. It is the most stable system in the snow while providing an extremely intuitive automatic system. The driver simply needs to apply throttle and steer to navigate difficult split mu hills (one side ice/ the other asphalt): stomp and steer!!
    Ridgeline 6 – Full Size Trucks 0

    Off-Road Performance
    The Ridgeline is not equipped with a low ra
  • gearhead1gearhead1 Posts: 408

    Off-Road Performance
    The Ridgeline is not equipped with a low range 4wd transmission which permits more throttle modulation over severe hills or rocks. It also does not posses as good of approach or departure angle as the compact trucks. However, it is competitive with Full Size trucks. The Ridgeline does lack the capability conventional systems offer in limited circumstances. Based on extensive research, 99% of the customers that own trucks do not operate them in extreme environments where a low-tech, cheap and heavy system excels. If you are one of the 1% of the customers in the market that needs this kind of performance, I would recommend you buy a Tacoma as mentioned several times in this forum. It is the ONLY competitor that offers packaging or performance that is competitive to the Ridgeline. Let’s give the good old boys a chance and toss them a bone.
    Ridgeline 6 – Full Size Trucks 1

    As previously mentioned, the Ridgeline body and powertrain were designed to perform honestly and safely in the real world at the stated towing rating. Again, extensive research was done in the towing arena. Over 40,000 truck customers received surveys to inquire about their towing needs. It was learned over 85% of the market needs were covered by a 5000 pound towing specification. Again, like payload, it is an honest rating. Even the heaviest grade Navi model can tow the stated payload with passengers and luggage. Again – I’ll graciously give this to the good old boys in terms of max rated towing. However, the Ridgeline is more stable at the rated payload. Further, it can ACTUALLY tow its rated payload with the tongue load required to maintain stable handling. If your needs require frequent towing with a trailer over 5000 pounds, you are better off with a HD truck with a Diesel. By the way – that is not a Ford F150 which is inherently unstable. Stick with the Silverado (not an Avalanche) and order a Diesel and be prepared for the associated compromises (cost, noise, acceleration, fuel availability).
    Ridgeline 6 – Full Size Trucks 2

    The Ridgeline is the only vehicle on the market with an in-bed truck and dual mode tailgate. The tailgate is the strongest tailgate in the industry in terms of rated payload or ultimate strength. It excels at both providing unprecedented flexibility and capability unique in the market. This is the first example of groundbreaking innovation in the segment in 30 years. The Ridgeline delivers on addressing an unmet need in the market by providing a method to provide integrated secure storage in a truck. The ultimate strength of the tailgate is so great it is strong enough to actually park two Ridgelines up next to each other end-to-end and park another Ridgeline on the horizontal surface of both tailgates. The bed tie downs are strong enough to pick the entire truck up from the 4 lower points. The tow hooks are strong enough to pick two Ridgelines up end-to-end and pick up an F150 behind the 2nd (3 vehicles in total- end-to-end) It is both innovative and tough.

    Making an automotive purchase is complex decision matrix involving many emotional issues. Everyone has their own opinions and taste. You may knock the Ridgeline due to your individual opinion about styling, or your specific needs for severe off-road use (0.5% of the market) or extreme towing needs (15% of the towing truck segment). However, do not knock it due to its actual capabilities as general purpose light duty truck. In that arena (which is 90% of the market – and 100% of the growth area of the market), the Ridgeline is vastly superior. Keep your opinions and misinformation to your self. Stick to the facts. This issue has been validated by both extremes in the automotive press: Car and Driver and Consumers Reports. When stacked up against the competition, the Ridgeline came out on top.

    If you are seeking low cost minimalist transportation, this is not the vehicle for you. If you are seeking the most advanced, best handling, most innovative, and best value truck on the market, the Ridgeline is the solution. If your needs require severe off-road duty, severe towing use, or you are not confident with certain aspects of your anatomy (hmm - there are many surgical solutions), you should probably shop elsewhere. Everyone is entitled to an opinion – step up to the plate and reinforce yours with facts.

    Happy Shopping!!
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 4,098
    "I guess the post you're referring to was removed because I see none in this topic on the subject of the tailgate being up or down, and post 1432 is missing.

    On the other hand jh6, you should do some more research. In the first place with your example, the cab isn't in front of your hand.. There have been actual wind tunnel test studies of this, both by GM and independently. One example follows:

    Aerodynamic Characteristics of General Motors Truck

    Motor Magazine also had an article with similar information and conclusions-
    Motor Magazine Eye on Electronics article .pdf"

    Well, the links support buying a tonneau cover. Each of them said that the pickup is more airflow efficient with the tonneau cover. One link said 11%, I think the other was over 20%.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 4,098
    "I don't quite understand the concern the some have over scratches in the bed??

    The bed is NOT steel. The bed will not rust. "

    The scratches are white, which looks bad. If they had only used a black interior material, it wouldn't make any difference.
  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,788
    Excellent and very informative post. This person who knows the Ridgeline inside and out, what are his qualifications? Is he a Honda engineer?

    I think it would behoove Honda to be a bit more specific in terms of how the 4WD operates (as per this post), as there seems to be a lot of misinformation out there because Honda hasn't been as thorough as they could have been. For example, I was not aware that the Ridgeline starts from a stop with power being sent to all 4 wheels, or that any time you give it gas, power is sent rearward. That's important info—that has not been clearly delineated by Honda. It should be thoroughly explained in great detail their marketing brochures, which it isn't. It's just glossed over.

  • mbrady1mbrady1 Posts: 13
    I just returned the factory tonneau cover to the dealership for a refund. It was the worst accesory I have ever purchased. There are much better options available such as one from retrax. I think it runs about $900.00 and is much more functional than the factory cover. I was surprised they took it back as I had close to 5000 miles on the truck and it certainly did not look new.
  • cr vcr v Posts: 23
    Thanks great Post.
    Some more Ridgeline Technical Specs.
  • gearhead1gearhead1 Posts: 408
    Excellent and very informative post. This person who knows the Ridgeline inside and out, what are his qualifications? Is he a Honda engineer?

    You can take his word as gospel. If Honda has a question about the RL, they probably ask him.
  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,788
    From the following "Tech Spec" link:

    Variable Torque Management 4-Wheel Drive (VTM-4)

    * Fully automatic operation provides confidence in all driving conditions
    * Lock feature for getting unstuck in slippery conditions

    That's as detailed as Honda gets—which is about useless. That tells me virtually nothing! :mad:

  • jerrywimerjerrywimer Posts: 588
    The only falsehood I know of (without doing additional research) concerns the engine. This person attempts to make the argument that the "valve-in-head" engine design is OLD and LOW-TECH. Both are false. Pushrod technology has continued to evolve too, not just overhead cam designs. Which btw (OHC, I mean), is the OLDER engine design. Read up a bit on it around the web to see for yourself. :P

    I can't argue too much with the other "facts" he's stating, other than that he seems to undervalue many of the actual strengths of other trucks, as well as uses quite a bit of spin when he mentions things that "all" levels of Ridgeline can do (that "all" levels of other trucks can't). By spin, basically the fact that Honda really only HAS one truck platform style (trim levels aside- as most other trucks also have various trim levels available for any given style) pretty much means you're LIMITED to 5000 pounds towing, for example. With something like the F150, Silverado, or Avalanche, you can pick the "level" that fits your needs.

    Still, lots of good technical information there, even if highly biased. ;)
  • jerrywimerjerrywimer Posts: 588
    No argument about the tonneau cover either. (I bought one)

    But the articles both also clearly state that tailgate up (with OR without tonneau) was always better than tailgate down or off. ;)
  • gearhead1gearhead1 Posts: 408
    Still, lots of good technical information there, even if highly biased.

    I imagine his bias comes from his extensive experience with this truck and all the competitors trucks (experience I'm sure we all wish we had). Probably, In his mind "valve-in-head" engine design is OLD and LOW-TECH" compared to the Honda SOHC VTEC technology at least in comparison.
  • jerrywimerjerrywimer Posts: 588
    I don't really want to debate what is new / high tech here. But I do agree to the "In his mind" part. That's where the obvious bias exists regardless of why we think he has it or whether you feel it's justified. In my opinion, attempting to connote OLD / LOW-TECH or NEW / HIGH-TECH tags to either technology is simply attempting to market a product and has nothing to do with being "better" or working better for a given vehicle. ;)
  • jay_24jay_24 Posts: 536
    Some good info... however some misleading marketing info too. First off all remember this....I don't own a pickup of anytype. I'm just trying to point out you can spin info lots of different ways. (and have a little fun)

    Are you in Marketing too?

    One of the items I question is the accleration compare. Sure the Ford used the 5.4 with optional rear end gear. But would the standard gear have provided better acceleration times? I'm guessing the optional (and higher ratio) gear allowed for much higher tow ratings, but might also hurt accelration speed. How did it do against a Chevy, Dodge, Nisan or Toyota?

    Also other trucks do achieve their specified fuel mileage. Some even do better than the sticker.

    According to Edmunds an Avalanche can have a max payload of 2100 pounds and tow 12000. You happened to pick the minimum numbers.

    Handeling. last I checked they all handle posted speed limits fairly well. I haven't tried any of my cars or SUVs on a test course with cones. 99.9% of the time I don't mind a little more body roll.

    "when the body is twisted with one wheel 5 feet in the air, all the doors can be opened and closed, the tailgate is fully functional." Wow. It must not handle very well to get one wheel 5 feet off the ground. :)

    towing...add 4 people and gear to the Honda, F150 and Silverado. What is the tow rating now? Many (most?) campers and boats with gear and accesories weigh in at 3000lbs. Would the Honda will be near or over its limit 100% of the time? What's the mpg when towing this heavy load?

    From honda's web site: "The Steel-Reinforced Composite (SRC) Cargo Bed has twice the strength of steel and eliminates the need for a bed liner. The non-slip surface provides excellent impact, scratch and corrosion resistance."

    Well its well known not to be scratch resistant. How much else is true?

    Anyone know why big swing open tailgates are gone? All the station wagons of the 60's and 70's had them. They are hard to close or swing closed when not on level ground. They also take lots of room to open (about a 5 foot swing radius.) Try to open it with the gargage door down... I guess just flip it down then...but can you still reach in the trunk then?

    ""The Ridgeline targets the core volume segment of the market: personal transportation 4 door trucks."" Did engineers figure this out or did marketing? Personally I see many more extended cab versions of trucks with only one person in them.

    Marketing is such a fun thing.
  • jay_24jay_24 Posts: 536
    one more....

    a Chevy Silverado has more thatn a 10 foot smaller turning circle than a Ridgeline.

    37.4 turning radius compared to 42.6 on the Ridgeline. That would make the Chevy much easier to handle in parking lots and any other tight space.
  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,788
    The only Silverado that might (?) stand a chance of turning around in 37.4 feet would be one with 4-wheel steering, which they no longer make.

  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,788
    According to this link, the Ridgeline does indeed turn around in 42.6 feet.

    That's the turning "diameter," not the turning "radius." Isn't the turning radius half that of the turning diameter? If so then the Silverado's turning circle is much larger than that of the Ridgeline.

    Also, which Silverado? Regular cab with short bed? Crew cab? Long bed or short bed? They all have different turning diameters depending on the wheelbase.

  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 4,098
    "That's the turning "diameter," not the turning "radius." Isn't the turning radius half that of the turning diameter"

    Whatever the verbage, the figure is the amount of space required to turn 180 degrees. One of the reasons I haven't been able to talk myself into a rigline is the handling. Nothing wrong with 42 feet, but my CR-V does a 180 in 34 feet, and I'm used to that when parking.

    That, and the 30 big ones I'd need to get the RL...

    Nice vehicle though.
  • jay_24jay_24 Posts: 536
    Bob, I believe they still make the quadrasteer. At least its all over the GMC and Chevy web page. I took numbers from an extended cab.

    it is diameter. Edmunds terms it turning circle. my oops. Most pickups are 42+ with some over 50. 37 feet is outstanding for a pickup.

    Out of curiosity I did a very informal survey of trucks on my 30 mile commute home. I proabably saw close to 60 pickups. 9 were quad cabs with 4 true doors. Of those 9, three had dual rear wheels (and pulling huge trailers) and two others where 3500 or F350 class. A majority were single cab basic trucks closely followed be extended cab models.
  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,788
    GM stopped making the Quadrasteer sometime this year. It was a $4K+ option, and not enough people were buying them. They may not have updated their web site. Any found on dealer lots are the last (leftovers) and there won't be any more forthcoming. Quadrasteer significantly cut down on the turning diameter from that of a conventional pickup.

    The Ridgeline's turning circle is in line with other comparable trucks.

  • i first wrote 2 weeks ago when i had just purchased the Ridge with the moonroof, leather/ heated seats, no navigation... I was nervous about the gas milage, along with a few other things.
    Im happy to say that i could not be happier with this truck I have no beefs at all. I think this truck is excellent in so many ways. It has everything i need, just perfect.
    if i had to nitpic i would say i wish the time clock was in a different place or maybe bigger. but i think i will survive :)
  • varmintvarmint Posts: 6,326
    The post he was referring to is number 1357 from a few months back.

    The example of using your hand out the window is, as mentioned before, deeply flawed. The bed of the truck is preceded by the cab, which changes the air flow. Last time I checked my hand did not come equipped with a cab. ;) The air flow coming over the cab will typically hit right about where the tailgate stands. On a properly designed truck, it does not hit the face of the tailgate. It hits the top edge of the gate. That's why the Avalanche and Ridgeline (plus others) have a broad, flat surface acting like a "spoiler" on the top of the gate.

    In the videos at the following link, Gary Flint talks a bit about the aerodynamic considerations they addressed during the development of the Ridgeline. While he does not specifically address the issue of a bed cover, his comments do include some discussion of the overall air flow patterns caused by the cab and I believe the "spoiler" as well.

    My comments in post 1357 are based on a study not unlike the one conducted by GM (Jerry's link). Though I admit the study was much older and was focused on the use of those nets people used to install in place of the upright tail gate. As confirmed in the GM study, having the tail gate up was better than having it down. And also better than using a net.

    That same study also concluded that using a bed cover was not significantly better than simply leaving the tailgate up. The GM link seems to contradict those findings. I cannot explain why. Perhaps it has something do with the specific trucks used in the studies or the type of cover used on the bed.

    Frankly, if the covers make such a difference in aerodynamics (and thus fuel economy), GM would be offering them standard on all trucks, so they could avoid paying CAFE fines and/or put bigger, less efficient engines in more of their trucks.
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