2017 Honda Ridgeline: Better Than Pilot – Or Worse?

With many of its parts are originally from the Honda Pilot, including the design of its front half, the second-gen Honda Ridgeline can easily be mistaken as a ‘mom vehicle’ in the guise of a pickup.

That could be an explanation, albeit a poor one, for why the truck doesn’t look masculine enough.

The major parts that the Ridgeline takes from the Honda Pilot are the SUV’s engine and platform. There are many other components shared between both vehicles, but these two are the most significant, apart from the Pilot’s styling.

The engine is a 3.5L direct injection V6 that pushes out 280hp and 262lb-ft torque; underpinning both vehicles is the same Global Light Truck Platform that helps them both shed 300lbs, given that the first-gen Ridgeline also shared underpinnings with the Pilot of old.

But beyond that there are differences. It is difficult to say whether the pickup bed with integrated speaker walls is an improvement over the Pilot – it merely offers the Ridgeline a different form of utility compared to its SUV twin.

One Key Difference Found?

Their hardware and output may be the same, but the one difference found between the Ridgeline and Pilot is apparently fuel economy. Does the Ridgeline improve on the Pilot in this regard? Well, the numbers don’t say so.

2016 Honda Pilot

2016 Honda Pilot

For the Ridgeline, the EPA rates it at 19mpg city and 26mpg highway, which means it does an average of 23mpg combined. That’s the truck on FWD and a newly introduced nine-speed auto gearbox.

That’s inferior to the Pilot that does 20mpg city, 27mpg highway, and 24mpg combined. It should however be considered that the calculations for fuel economy for 2017 models have been changed by the EPA – they are now stricter.

What that means is that the mpg numbers of the Ridgeline which appear lower than those of the Pilot, if calculated using the EPA’s previous standards for 2016 models, would either be equal or higher than the Honda SUV’s.

What do you think about the fuel economy figures for the Ridgeline relative to the Pilot? Are they equal? Or is the truck more efficient than its SUV sibling?