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I am of firm belief that Ridgeline is a fire road and mild terrain (sand) at best vehicle.

No skids…and no reliable points to attach one either. No low range. Poor angles all around. Passenger tires. Poor wheel articulation. Lots of aluminum underneath. No full size spare. Poor gas pedal modulation (for off-road). No hill descent. Traction control not the greatest. Rear iVTM overheats with extensive use.

BUT, RL is simply the best truck out there for bad weather driving, practicality, comfort, and best bang for the buck in the features that you get. We love our RL!
 

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I know what you are saying but according to the net the Ridgeline would not be able to do what it did in the video which it did.
It is not just sheer capability. But the platforms that are designed for off-road allows for more flexibility and more protection. Sure, a good driver in a Honda Civic can probably out drive my LC off-road. But one “oops” moment can cause tremendous damage to a Ridgeline that would not to a proper off-road vehicle. A RL can sip and slide up a rock ledge while a proper off-road vehicle can just slowly crawl up with no drama nor stress on drivetrain.
 

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Sorry you got all butt hurt dude.
Butt hurt? I own a RL!! LOL

But we can discuss this more…what makes you think RL is so good? What secret sauce does RL have that others do not? Think it through. What i wrote is 100% true.

In the videos, have you ever asked what damage they have afterwards? Or long-term issues? Are these videos sponsored by some 3rd party Trying to advertised something?

For example, the skidplates that is so popular here…..are mounted to plastic support. Think about that.

To get RL any credible clearance, you need to lift. What happens when you lift an independent suspension? Your wheel travel suffers. And what happens when your wheel travel goes to nothing? You lift your tires on any obstacle. This creates what? Poor traction. Poor stability. Thus, you are now relying more on the VTM4 (rear axle) and traction control. What happens next? VTM4 overheats and shuts down and over time, wear out the clutches. You have no hill descent. So you ride the brakes down the hill. What happens then? Either your brakes gives out or over time, brake pads goes to crap. On and on.

But yeah, don’t listen to me (I have been off-roading for over 15 years)…go do your thing because the Net tells you that you can. Be safe…and don’t slow down the line of folks behind u.
 

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FYI…i started out off-roading with a 1997 Honda CR-V many moons ago. Yeah, i took it to many places…and suffered some bodily harm…but fun! So, i am not foreign to using a Honda off-road. It is just finding the proper tool for the job.
 

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Thanks to all of you in helping me understand the limits of this vehicle. Don't have one yet but I'm test driving an RL Friday. I think I now know now that are some serious limits to what this thing can handle but I'm OK with that. The many on-road positives outweigh the off-road stuff.
As I said, my only desire is to experience some of the 'seasonal/ timber' roads in northern Wisconsin and Michigan - I've had some fantastic experiences in my F150. As many of you know however, these roads can vary from perfectly graded to hellish conditions that an ATV would have problems with. And you don't know what you're getting yourself into at any time until you reach that limit. Bikes and hauling ATV's are fine, but sometimes you just want to do a 5-mile jaunt and get back to the highway.
It is sad that Honda can't offer anything more than worthless trim packages. Lift the damn thing 2" with protection and tires and the sales would skyrocket.
I think that Honda is gonna come out with some off-road version of Ridgeline in 2024??? The Pilot off-road version is coming out now
 

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I should add that I come from the sports car crowd so I'm familiar with

If the Pilot is any indication, don't hold your breath. Again, it's trim packs, not any more capability.
Look up 2023 Pilot TrailSport. I am sure / hoping that there will be Ridgeline TrailSport in 2024.
 

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The RL is a great vehicle, hobbled for me by its Camry-level ground clearance. Couldn't they have given us the "capability" of a Subaru Forester? (2" more clearance)

And the RL is actually lower than they claim (esp after a few miles) plus that silly plastic air dam lip that catches (but probably gives 0.000001 better MPG in the lab). I can't even get my floor jack under the front lip (6"?)

Great AWD - wasted... The Colorado is much simpler to mod for extra clearance, because it has trim levels with taller tires. I hope we all understand that for the most part, ground clearance comes from taller tires? Skid plates? They reduce your ground clearance. I've done tons of off-roading, and IMO the only need for skid plates is with bad drivers or the wrong vehicle (or serious rock-crawling, and even then build a rig for that). The CO is nowhere near as sophisticated, or comfortable as the RL though. Do you give up 90% for 10%? Depends on your needs. I see plenty of guys driving full-size pickups with ungodly noisy mud tires. I assume they never go very far because that drone would drive you nuts on the highway - but they either only care about the look, or have a very long and very muddy driveway

All Honda has to do is make space for taller tires. Ideally, they would offer it as a trim and then the speedo could be calibrated, but just space would be a start. I read about people jacking the RL up and ruining handling, then trying to squeeze bigger rubber in there, which rubs... Just go buy the truck you should have in the first place

RL is good in snow up to about 8" (I'm in Maine, have driven in snow for decades). It's great on gravel roads. Off-road, it's a "mistake"
Yeah, i agree with everything you said except skids only for bad driver…that’s not true at all. Off-roading is not on a known course nor under ideal conditions. Spotters help but sometimes, sh!t happens. So, skids are there to provide protection for the unknown or the unexpected. The same for rock sliders. And sometimes, knowing that you have these protections in place allows you to go a littler farther.

As for skids decreasing clearance…sure, it is is an afterthought. Properly designed vehicles (like my LC), the skids are at frame height. All the vital components are tucked nicely ABOVE the lower frame…thus, the skids are protective yet not intrusive below frame height.
 

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My guess is the CR-V is better off-road (than a RL) if you pick the right model year. Some of their "AWD" versions were almost useless. But short breakover and rear overhang
There is never a CRV that is “right” or better for off-road. Clearances were always not great. RT-4wd was never that good. No protection. Weak 4-banger...minimal to Torque at low RPMs.
 

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It depends. Define off-roading. Playing in the rocks? Then sure. I have driven for months and thousands of miles "off-road" - right across southern Africa a few times. In both Land Rovers (300tdi Defenders) and Land Cruisers (LC76). None of which had any extra skid plates (OK - the Defender had a front diff cover), because they were made for rough use, have decent ground clearance and also because the drivers had mechanical sympathy. We have done famous (van Zyl's) passes (towing bush trailers) in "stock" Defenders with no extra underbody protection. Never broke anything

I had rock sliders on my Discovery 2 - being sort of pretty, I did want to protect the sills. But it also had good clearance (and air suspension) so nothing else was needed.

I guess my point is, you don't need skid plates on an appropriate vehicle. If the driver is a foot-to-the-floor type they'd be a good idea. But if you are thinking that adding them makes a vehicle better for off-road use? Better to buy the right vehicle in the first place IMO
I don’t think that anyone will ever say that adding skids will make it more capable.

Protection of the sill is very important because damage to the sill is $$$$$. (And that is why frame mounted sliders are ideal vs. body mounted.)

I don’t understand what you meant…”extra skid plates”? You mean aftermarket ones or factory ones? A lot of the older SUVs (defender, LC, G-wagen) had only the front skid plate…some have under transfer case. But these old dinosaurs had vital parts tucked in above lower frame height…and some, like G-wagen used the crossmembers to protect vitals. So these designs were done right (but led to compromises inside the cabin and step-in height) for off-roading over any terrain, NOT because drivers were good or have sympathy back then.

But even these old designs suffered damage off-road because rocks / ledges / tree trunks sometimes rise unexpectedly and hit in the right spot where the frame cannot protect. This is why later versions of above dinosaurs added skids to the appropriate areas: transmission, transfer case and fuel tank.

And air/hydraulic suspension is just dumb in an off-roader...but that is another story.
 

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And don’t forget…Europeans off-road differently than USA. Euros / Aussies go on safari and sight-seeing. USA off-roads on rocks / ledges / boulders.

So, that is why there is such a HUGE market for skid plates for Defenders and other old dinosaurs because what you can escape with in Australia (without protection) will be a major weakness here in USA.

So yeah, i disagree with you that ONLY bad drivers need skids. That is pretty nonsense with the type of off-roading folks here do. But yeah, if you’re talking about Europeans/Australia, then yeah you are maybe right…but even over there, newer vehicles have skids all-around.
 
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