The Honda Ridgeline was introduced by Honda as a 2006 model. It was never a smash hit for the brand like others in its class such as the Subaru Baja, Chevrolet EL Camino or Ford Ranchero. However, The Ridgeline was name the 2006 North American Truck of the year. Its strange design may have been attributed to sail panels at the front of the bed with the objective of providing strength. As time went by, styling updated were mostly limited to a new grille in the 2010 model year that borrowed from the Honda Pilot Crossover. Even though Honda always explained that this truck is not intended to be a full-size one, the Ridgeline’s unusual pickup bed limited its utility. With only 5-Feet long, the bed wasn’t really big, but it could still hold a 4-by-8 sheet of plywood with the tailgate pulled down. Buyers were given the option of a bed extender that could handle mounting accessories for ATV’s so heavy duty towing components were included. The Ridgeline could tow up to 5K lbs or haul a 1550 lbs payload. The Ridgeline's tailgate both flipped down and swung to the side on a hinge, making it more flexible to access the under-bed cargo bin, than any other pickup. Very unusual for pickup trucks, the 1st generation of Ridgelines was only offered in one single engine and transmission. It was a 3.5liter V6 engine that generated 250hp paired to a 5-Speed automatic transmission. The Ridgeline was well-suited for slippery snow-covered roads than most 4WD trucks because of its variable torque management 4WD system. This also accounted for better feel in ride and steering than most full-size and mid-size trucks. Honda's truck was named a Top Safety Pick by the IIHS, as it received "Good" rankings across the board. It also offered a slew of airbags: front side, rollover-sensing side curtains for both rows, as well as stability control and anti-lock brakes on all models. After a 2 year hiatus, Honda is releasing a 2017 year model in its second generation.