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I have 2017 Sport FWD and I rarely see a G2 Ridgeline that is not AWD. I have no regrets not buying the AWD. In 3 years of owning mine I have never needed it. The one thing that does irritate about the FWD models is no trailer wiring harness. Really Honda? I put the E-Trailer 4 pin harness on mine soon after buying the truck. Last weekend I rented U-Haul enclosed trailer and if I had not put the harness on mine they would not have let me leave there with a trailer. I also wonder if the FWD models have had transmission issues as often as the AWD trucks?
 

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@YetiXing and at least a few others on this forum have FWD Ridgelines.

I don't recall seeing any FWD transmission issues reported on this forum, but that may have a lot to do with how rare FWD models are and I suspect FWD Ridgelines are used less frequently to tow than AWD Ridgelines due to the lower towing limit and lack of wiring from the factory.

As of a few weeks ago, only about 5% of used and 3% of new Ridgelines were FWD.

It's very important to use the genuine Honda trailer harness accessory or an equivalent. Most aftermarket trailer lighting adapters simply tap into existing lighting circuits which are not designed to withstand the additional power required by trailer lighting. You could end up with blown fuses, melted wiring, or other damage if you don't connect the trailer lighting properly.
 

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I have 2018 RTL-T FWD and haven't had any transmission issues. I don't tow so can't comment on that. I only have 16k miles on it .
 

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I have a 2019 with FWD and 27K miles. I don’t tow with it and have never felt the need for FWD and have had no issues. I went with the FWD because we rarely have snow here anymore and I didn’t want the extra maintenance of AWD. I’ve been very happy with my Ridgeline.
 

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Have a 2019 FWD RTL. No need for AWD - no snow, no towing, no donuts in the desert, little to no rain. Use primarily to carry all my construction tools. Trunk full of tools, back seat area full of tools (seat up) and front passenger side with tools. More than happy with FWD. My previous vehicle (bought new) high end 1998 F150 also used for construction purposes and two trips coast to coast loaded down. F150 finally gave up at 21 years with tranny issues. Bought the RTL because it fit in my garage - new full size pickups no longer fit in garage and I really don't need a full size pickup anymore.
 

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I've had a 2018 FWD RTL-T for just over 3 years now with no transmission issues. I was a staunch believer that AWD was not important, although we do get a decent snow every other year or so. As luck would have it, we got about 10" of snow a couple months after buying the ridgeline, and I got stuck trying to get out of the neighborhood. I was not happy at the time, but have not had a snowflake since. I have noticed it is very easy to break traction when pulling out from a dead stop on wet pavement, and have wondered if the engine/transmission is configured for AWD and sending too much power to a single wheel. I am planning on putting on new tires this fall and will try to find same that are a little stickier.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
@YetiXing and at least a few others on this forum have FWD Ridgelines.

I don't recall seeing any FWD transmission issues reported on this forum, but that may have a lot to do with how rare FWD models are and I suspect FWD Ridgelines are used less frequently to tow than AWD Ridgelines due to the lower towing limit and lack of wiring from the factory.

As of a few weeks ago, only about 5% of used and 3% of new Ridgelines were FWD.

It's very important to use the genuine Honda trailer harness accessory or an equivalent. Most aftermarket trailer lighting adapters simply tap into existing lighting circuits which are not designed to withstand the additional power required by trailer lighting. You could end up with blown fuses, melted wiring, or other damage if you don't connect the trailer lighting properly.
The E-trailer harness plugs into the factory harness that Honda stops behind the rear bumper. It comes with fuses that go in the fuse box under the hood and a relay that plugs in behind the rear seat. It was a bit of a chore to do but the instructions were pretty good. I would recommend it for and FWD people that tow.
 

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I'm the owner of a 2019 RTL-T FWD. It can and has snowed here in the Sooner state, but never hangs around for months on end. Also didn't want to pay the extra money for 1500 lbs. Weekend DIYer, fisherman, cyclist. Sixteen months into my first ever new Honda purchase, and everything's peachy.
 

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2017 RTL-T FWD ... I live in Florida... no snow no mountains just hurricanes and jet skis
Same here. Didn’t see the need in Florida and as someone else alluded to. I just need a bed to carry crap from Lowe’s and HD and a surfboard here and there. Actual towing is not in its future.


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I have 2017 Sport FWD and I rarely see a G2 Ridgeline that is not AWD. I have no regrets not buying the AWD. In 3 years of owning mine I have never needed it. The one thing that does irritate about the FWD models is no trailer wiring harness. Really Honda? I put the E-Trailer 4 pin harness on mine soon after buying the truck. Last weekend I rented U-Haul enclosed trailer and if I had not put the harness on mine they would not have let me leave there with a trailer. I also wonder if the FWD models have had transmission issues as often as the AWD trucks?
So the FWD doesn't come with the wiring harness, but it does come with a hitch, or did you add that?
 

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All 2017 and up ridges get a hitch. FWD too. Why its not wired, got to ask the BEAN counters.
 

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^^^^Thank you for your service.^^^^

One more FWDer here. Tekonsha trailer wiring adapter (that was fun) and a BATC added. Not much snow here, 4“-5” a couple of times a year maybe. Just push the “SNOW” button, I guess. Very satisfied.
 

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The hitch is there just no connector for trailer wiring.
Got ya - thanks for the info.

Makes no sense for them not to run a wire back there, given the hitch. Even seems like a potential safety-deficiency liability for Honda, providing the towing hardware but not the taillight hookup.
 

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Kinda makes you wonder if it's more of a structural cross member that finishes off the a__ end. Then the bean counters say Oh, and while we're at it, we'll weld in a 2" receiver tube and call it a day. If you want everything to safely/properly tow, it'll cost you another 2 grand. :eek:
 

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What I find interesting is that the trailer wiring is actually mostly there. There is a wiring harness that runs from the front to behind the back seat, and a wiring harness from there to behind the bumper. They just didn't put in the relay to connect the two, or the socket to plug in the trailer plug. I payed $150 for the OEM kit, which is easy to install except for removing and replacing the back seat.
 

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When Honda updated the 2009 GenI Ridgelines they changed the the rear crossbeam so that it had a built in receiver hitch. Prior to that you had to bolt on a separate hitch receiver. From a sales standpoint, I think the update allowed Honda to advertise that the truck comes with a builit in hitch receiver. From a practical standpoint, it's an excellent combined use of the structurally necessary cross piece and is most certainly lighter than the previous cross member / receiver hitch combination.
When the GenII rolled around, thankfully Honda continued the practice of using the crosspiece for two purposes.
 

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I got the Tekonsha harness at Amazon for <$30. After saying a few choice words I got the module plugged in without removing the back seat. 👌
 
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