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I have a confession to make. I've owned my '07 RL for 3 years, it's never given me a problem. But I'm one of those car people that's always looking around for something better. So as much as I like my RL, a few months ago I got it in my head that I wanted to get a different truck. I'm also one of those car people that really likes driving stick, I've been driving sticks off and on for 20 years.
So I test drove a used Tacoma. Yes, I know that's heresy around here, but it was a crew cab stick shift, and I had to know how it stacked up. I had high hopes for it. They wanted almost $30K for it with 40K miles on it. I bought my RL with 40K miles for $17K 3+ years ago.
Driving the Taco put it all in perspective. For those of you who don't know, it drives ROUGH. As in, like a real truck, which since I'm not a contractor and don't use my RL to work, is not a good thing. The Toyota bucks around on the road, the stick did not make it particularly more fun to drive, it was not particularly fast, and the interior quality looked like cheap plastic garbage compared to the RL. It felt stripped down and cheap.
So I learned something that day. As much as I liked my RL before, I know now just how special, how well made, how great it is to drive compared to the competition.
I guess Tacomas are great if they fit what you want, but I think they're super overhyped and incredibly overpriced for what they actually deliver. Just my two cents.

Ridgelines, ROLL OUT!
 

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Your test drive of a Taco mirrors my experience test driving one also.

I went to a Toyota dealer with the intention of test driving a Taco 4x4 with a V6, extended cap, and automatic. I talked to a sales dude, told him what I wanted, and he told me they didn't have any available at that time...but I was welcome to drive a 4 cylinder 2x4 stick.

I took the 4 cylinder out, drove it for about 10 minutes, and drove it right back. The salesman asked me what I thought and I told him, "I hope the 4x4, V6, crew cab drives better than that...that thing is a POS". Seriously...it rode like a buck-board, the steering was all over the place...felt like I was driving an old tractor...the engine sounded horrible and had no get up and go.

About that time a 4x4 Taco pulled into the lot, somebody else was test driving it, so I was able to take it out. I thought it was a decent vehicle...but I do not like the seating position...as you are laying down more than sitting up...it definitely rode like a truck, very stiff and "truck like"...and I was not impressed with the engine. Just seemed loud, rough, and didn't have as much power as I thought it should.

Plus, when I talked to the salesman about price...I think they had some sort of emotional connection to the vehicles they sell...because they would not budge at all on the price. Then, to make matters worse, they insulted me on the value my trade in.

I would think the Taco would be the better vehicle if you spent a lot of time in construction zones or out in the woods. For me, my RL fits me much better than a Taco would. It rides/handles better, is more "sophisticated" for lack of a better term, and does everything I want it to. I do medium duty off roading every once in a while and my RL does just fine.

For me...I don't need to sacrafice comfort/ride/handling for off-road capability...especially when I spend %99 of my time on pavement or graveled roads. The RL is just a better fit for me and what I use a truck for.
 

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I traded in 2 1/2 years ago for a Mazda CX5 and while its a great little car, I'm trying to overhaul my front and back yard and realizing really fast that a car just can't equal a truck when it comes to home renovations and runs to Home Depot and the Landscape yard. No way am I getting a 10' 4x6 in my Mazda.

Even on ride quality and creature comforts, the RL has the Mazda beat. I just couldn't afford almost $1000 a month in payments, insurance and gas. So unfortunately the RL had to go. I am however looking with great anticipation to the next gen (psst. Don't tell my wife!)
 

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but I do not like the seating position...as you are laying down more than sitting up
This is why I didn't even bother looking at a Toyota. Taco's ergonomics feel like a lawnmower seat bolted to the floor.

I got a 2013 Nissan Frontier extended cab as a loaner (enterprise Rental) while my RL was in the Honda dealership for a couple of days getting an oil leak fixed. Frontier's peppy V6, RWD with traction control turned off was fun (hey, it's a rental), but otherwise it made me really appreciate how awesome my 2012 RL is. :)
 

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These buggies are intended to serve different audiences. My son in law uses his near Industrial strength Taco to splash thru the mud, mire, streams, woods, etc. He has no cares about highway use or comfort. It's a great buggy to him.

Whereas my RL stays on the open/paved highways, safe, smooth and quiet - the things I demand.

We shant fault them ... different strokes for different folks.
 

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These buggies are intended to serve different audiences. My son in law uses his near Industrial strength Taco to splash thru the mud, mire, streams, woods, etc. He has no cares about highway use or comfort. It's a great buggy to him.

Whereas my RL stays on the open/paved highways, safe, smooth and quiet - the things I demand.

We shant fault them ... different strokes for different folks.
Well said.
 

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My brother in law has an 07 Tacoma double cab. It's comparable to my truck only in that it has a short bed, four doors, a V6, an automatic and it happens to have four wheels. It's smaller on the inside with terrible ergo, not nearly as smooth with power delivery or shifting and the ride is pretty terrible. They're great trucks for reliability and all that, but they just simply don't match up with the RL for almost everything except towing and reliability. Plus, we bought our trucks used at around the same time in late 2009/early 2010. He paid $26k for his that had 45k miles on it. I paid $17k for mine that had 75k miles on it. Plus, mine has leather, heated seats, moon roof and a host of other things his truck doesn't. There's nothing wrong with trying out a Tacoma. It makes you appreciate your RL much more than you already do!
 

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All depends on what you want. I would never bash the Tacoma. Its all in what you want or are going to use it for. They both have their good points. If you want to do more off road it does blow the RL away anything else its not close.
 

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i TRADED my 09 ridgeline RT with 46k miles to a 2015 GMC Canyon 4 x 4 SLT Package, leather heated seats and mirrors loaded up back in January, love the new canyon, love the grille, 4 x 4 works seamless and flawless, now at 8500 miles on it, mileage coming up to 22 mpg in and around town, 305 h.p V6 plenty of pep. Kept the ridge 3 years no problems with it, just wanted something new. VERY HAPPY with the Premium GMC CANYON.
 

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I drove Tacomas for 8.5 years before I got my 2012 RTL. I had a 2006 double cab 4x4 SR5 automatic, and then a 2010 TRD Off Road 4x4 6-speed. Both were fantastic trucks and I could have easily went with another, except for the fact that as I get older, I want different things, like a smoother ride, power rear sliding window and heated seats. I love my RTL, but those Tacomas did well for me too. No plans to trade mine in anytime soon though...
 

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The big difference here is very few people who do not own an RL are comparing it against other trucks. Instead, it is either domestic, or Toyota, and sometimes Nissan.

That's their loss, because I think a fair number might be surprised to find the Ridgeline would be a good choice also.
It pays to keep an open mind especially when you are getting ready to spend upwards of $30K.
 

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Jimmyglendale - I have a 2008 with 110k miles and am liking the new Colorado. The benefits over the Ridge are more legroom (on paper), torque of the diesel option so it doesn't downshift all the time on the highway, and probably a quieter interior. I feel like I would be giving up Honda reliability, quick acceleration to 60mph, the 49" bed and trunk.

I know you have the 3.6 but how is it on the highway with the downshifting? What about front legroom? Quieter inside? Thanks-
 

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Jimmyglendale - I have a 2008 with 110k miles and am liking the new Colorado. The benefits over the Ridge are more legroom (on paper), torque of the diesel option so it doesn't downshift all the time on the highway, and probably a quieter interior. I feel like I would be giving up Honda reliability, quick acceleration to 60mph, the 49" bed and trunk.

I know you have the 3.6 but how is it on the highway with the downshifting? What about front legroom? Quieter inside? Thanks-
Canyon SLT is a nice truck. My hunting buddy got one in Oct of this year. He's put around 17K miles on it. I've ridden with him on hunting trips & it's more quite than my RL on the road. Suspension feels better to, especially off-road. He drives it like an ATV off-road. I can not keep up with him in the woods when we are hunting.

The most noticeable difference is interior size, it's smaller. At first I didn't like it but after riding in it a lot this hunting season I've gotten used to the size & it's not that bad to me anymore.

As far as MPG's he's the last person to use as an example unless you want to know what's the worst possible MPG's a vehicle is capable of.
 
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