The redesigned 2021 Honda Ridgeline has struck a chord with midsize truck buyers as the automaker reports an unprecedented surge in sales for the unibody pickup over the past six months.
Year-to-date sales ending for June of this year came in at 24,370 units, a whopping 68% jump over that same time frame from the year prior.
Strong sales for the revamped Ridgeline go back to their first quarter earnings report at which time Honda pointed out that for the month of March sales for Ridgeline had “reached 6,081 units, setting a new March record with its best result since 2005.”
The 2021 Ridgeline, which rolled out to dealers in early February, is a stark departure from the prior iteration which resembled more of a demure Honda Pilot and less of a bold truck, a point that Honda repeatedly raises in a excerpted press release below with words like ‘power bulge,’ ‘tough’ and ‘aggressive.’
For the 2021 model year, Ridgeline features all-new sheet metal from the front roof pillars forward, including a new hood with a pronounced power bulge, a new squared off nose and upright grille, and new front fenders. Flanking the grille are new, brighter LED headlights bisected by the crossbar atop the grille, which is painted gloss black on Sport trims and Black Edition, and is chrome plated on RTL and RTL-E.
The body-color lower front bumper further accentuates the Ridgeline’s tough new look with a prominent skid plate and broad side vents that create air curtains to route air through the bumper and around the front tires and wheels to improve aerodynamic performance. A reshaped rear bumper exposes aggressive new twin exhaust outlets, and all Ridgeline trims feature tougher looking 18-inch wheels and an additional 20 mm of track width to give Ridgeline a broader, more planted stance.
For model year 2021, Ridgeline says goodbye to front-wheel drive and instead comes standard with VTMR torque-vectoring all-wheel drive. Power comes courtesy of a 280-hp 3.5-liter direct-injected VTEC V6 bolted to a 9-speed automatic. Max towing is rated at 5,000 lbs. while max payload comes in at 1,583 lbs. U.S. EPA-rated fuel economy is at 18 mpg city and 21 highway.
Honda’s U.S.-based racing company, Honda Performance Development, also got involved with the truck and offered up a package that includes “unique grille treatment, an HPD emblem, black fender flares and aggressive bronze-colored wheels.”
The truck comes standard with Honda’s collision mitigation braking system, forward collision warning, lane keeping assist system, road departure mitigation with lane departure warning and adaptive cruise control.
The truck’s unibody design also appears to be giving it an advantage as Honda reports having the widest bed in its class, the largest interior and bragging rights to having the only in-bed trunk in the pickup industry. That trunk, by the way, can double as a cooler.
The 2021 Ridgeline starts at $37,665 MSRP (includes $1,175 destination).