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Discussion Starter #1
Okay, I have been reading this forum for months now, enjoying it greatly. But I have yet to see any discussions on something I discovered during my window shopping & tire kicking. I love this truck so much I have adjusted large parts of my life in the last 6 months to get into a financial position to buy one. (RTL W/nav, Green, side moldings, fender flares, grille, Fog lites to start)

Back in March, I saw my first RL at the dealer near me. I looked her over for a while, and one thing I noticed was that the top surface of the fender dipped lower than the hood at a point about 4" from the wiper area. It was as though the fender bolt was tightened down too tight or something.

I discovered this exact same situation on more than a dozen RLs in PA, FL & AL. (I travel for a living). Those were models on lots back in the spring & summer, and I have not seen this since.

BUT, now I see something different. The paint on the top surface seems to have less depth and shine than is typical of earlier models. I have seen this often recently.

I haven't bought mine yet, (hoepefully by mid october) but now I find that this is the first thing I look at when I walk up to a RL.

I was wondering if anyone else hase seen either of these two issues, mainly the fit issue, as the paint issue is extremely minor. Or is it just me? I was not halucinating, the fender "dipped" at the same point on many different models, and mostly on the driveres side.

This is the best kept secret in automoblies. Not just trucks.....I can't wait to get mine. Anybody know anyone who is looking for a 2004 Taco Double cab? LOL

Man, I have been waiting for this truck so long.

fins


Fins
 

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Hmmmm, I haven't noticed anything on mine, but I'm still moonstruck. I'm going to look more carefully at her next bath.
 

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I have that exact issue on mine. Drivers side. I adjusted the rubber stop towards the front of the hood and that helped a bit. Not sure how they are going to fix "the dip" in the fender. I'm planning to have the dealer look at it(among other issues)when I get the time.
 

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I haven't noticed that on my truck. I will have to go and take a look later today.

Nice color choice for your future purchase. :D :D
 

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I haven't noticed any fit or finish issues either and mine's an early Ridge too. I'll double check my fender though.
 

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I checked my fenders and don't have the "fender dip" you mentioned. Maybe they started doing something different after the first couple of months of production?
 

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I took my RTS home about a month ago and thankfully many of the earlier reported major problems like wind noise and steering wheel creeks seemed to have been ironed out on the assembly line. However, I too was careful like you seem to be in looking over fit and finish as some sort of guide as to whether the vehicle was worth taking a chance on a newly offered model. Take a careful look at the interior and you will find other fit and finish issues that don't seem to live up to what you may expect, but as annoying as this may be to someone with a keen fit and finish eye, this too is a bit misguiding in determining value. I have been compensated in a positive way with a very clean driving experience in the way of mechanical performance as this truck is smooth and responsive and much more cultured than any American trucks have demonstrated to me. I have also felt very safe having my family with me on weekend drives with the safety features put into this truck that other manufacturers did not seem to care to put into theirs, and in the long run, these pleasures will outweigh the fit and finish issues.
 

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BillB said:
Take a careful look at the interior and you will find other fit and finish issues that don't seem to live up to what you may expect
Bill, if you have an issue with the interior and it's something the dealer can replace, Honda will most likely have them replace it. There was a minor flaw in the seat material on my backseat that I didn't notice until the day after purchase, and Honda replaced the whole back seat material on one side.

However, I also noticed some discoloration of the plastic door panels, light spots, that I didn't report. Almost didn't report the seats, but w/t/heck.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
:) I just get a kick out of seeing all these replies. Biker seems to be the only one so far to have seen this. On that note, I am relieved it's not just me.

And I have to admit, that while I am anal when it comes to examining every square inch of every major purchase I buy, it's usually because that's all I can afford to do in the beginning of the buying process, sometimes for months. Unlike most people, I am never in the market to buy something untill the moment I see something I didn't even know I wanted untill I see it! I always want it so bad, but usually can't afford it. So I dream. I shop. I inspect. I observe other buyers. (Now I read ROC forums!) I have Champagin taste on a tap water budget.

But I have owned 8 Hondas, 4 new, and went through the same process in each case....months and months of window shopping and dreaming before it became a reality. I have never regreted anything in my Hondas, including the 1st year models I bought:
'93 Del Sol
'93 Civic Coupe
'89 Civic Si (2nd model year)
'91 Civic W/RealTime 4wd (2nd model year?)

There is another post somwhere on here that quoted a Canadian Magazine as saying the RL is as good as some 60k cars. Couldn't be said better.

Just try finding a truck with Voice Activated Navigation, Leather, Climate Control, Car-like ride with 4wd and..........well those few things put the RL in a league all of it's own.

Just name ONE pick-up truck with Voice Activated Navi! Escalade maybe?

I love this truck!

Fins
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Just so you all know what I am talking about......I took some pictures of an early run RL (VIN 003525). You will notice that if look across the hood, rather than down on top of it, it is more noticable.

So, anyone seen this before?

fins
 

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Mine is one of the first 2000 off the line according to the vin. If I look really closely at my hood, the driver's side is not perfectly flush with the fender at about the same point as yours, but still doesn't look like yours, fins. Maybe some are worse than others. But the passenger's side looks perfect.

I never would've noticed.
 

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I made a critical mistake and knew in my gut before I did it in test driving a leather interior RTL instead of waiting until the dealer had the cloth RTS I wanted to buy in stock to do the test drive. I didn't notice the way the steering wheel was built differently and assumed that both RTL and RTS would have the same version of steering wheel. The RTS rubber wheel is a piece of junk that belongs on a $10,000 Hyundai. Rubber surface is uneven and rough to the touch and metal trim is sharp where it meets the rubber. The dealer offered me another rubber wheel for free as if the next one would be better made - fat chance. I ended up filing and sanding down the rough edges (the dealer explained the technique his service department uses to fix the extreme versions of my problem), but this only put a noticeable bandaid on the problem that a little extra care in the manufacturing process would have prevented. Moral to the story is that not everything can be fixed in a first edition of anything, and my complaints to the dealer will hopefully save the 2007 Ridgeline owner one little inconvenience. By the way, the truck runs beautifully and if this is my most major complaint over the next couple of years, than I will consider myself lucky.
 
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