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I've always needed something with a bed for those few inevitable occasions so when I got the RL, I thought it would be the do all vehicle, AWD, a .V6 and be a daily driver. Turns out that it doesn't have enough "car" or fun factor in it for my tastes to be a daily driver so when it's time to reset I would like to have something with a fun factor, preferably an SUV or sedan and a minimal vehicle with a bed that can haul sheet goods. I could see my now almost 4 year old RL becoming that vehicle but a stripped F-150 regular cab 2WD or Ranger 2WD could fit that bill and they are inexpensive. 4WD on these trucks is useless to me because most of the time you can't use it. Here the roads aren't always completely covered in snow and the 4 Auto on the Colorado is about as close as you can get to the AWD on a RL but it is centuries behind. Tha'ts why I think an SUV for the long winters is the answer for me. I also don't like the smaller bed and the lesser legroom in the RL. Yes, it's class leading because of the transverse mounted engine but still, I'm prepared to giving up the rear seat to have a 6 foot bed just like I did with my Ranger almost 30 year ago. I just don't know what's out there to replace my Accord. I want something stealthy, stiffly sprung, strong brake pedal feel, NA and sleeperish with average looking wheels and not the lowest profile tires. Basically everything my Accord has.. I do love the tailgate on the RL but am running into too many instances where the bed is too shallow with the tonneau and it's blocks which reduce the height even further.
 

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You mostly described a 3.6L V6 Chevy Blazer 2LT. ;)

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I've thought about that one a lot and my local Honda dealer just purchased the local Chevy dealer. I love the way it clicks off shifts, its size i don't know if it's stiffly sprung and it has zero safety nannies even in 2020 unless you go up the Premier level. Problem is it's tough to get something decent when the starting high price has a 50K ish. Leased Passport seems like a better option but it would have to drive different and not have the wallowy or mushy feel of the RL. which is unlikely for the brakes. Your evaluation of the CX-5 would be all I need to pull the trigger on one for either the bride or myself after my daughter graduates next May.
 

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Every new Honda is driven through a water spray booth at the factory that simulates a torrential downpour to check for interior leaks, so either the inspectors and/or repairers aren't doing their job or the vehicles develop leaks after they leave the factory.
Your window leaks and water leaks reported by other ROCers are probably the most concerning things to me about the G2 RL -- mostly because finding and fixing leaks can be so difficult and the required tearing down of the interior just feels like a violation of the vehicle's integrity.
 

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I've thought about that one a lot and my local Honda dealer just purchased the local Chevy dealer. I love the way it clicks off shifts, its size i don't know if it's stiffly sprung and it has zero safety nannies even in 2020 unless you go up the Premier level. Problem is it's tough to get something decent when the starting high price has a 50K ish. Leased Passport seems like a better option but it would have to drive different and not have the wallowy or mushy feel of the RL. which is unlikely for the brakes. Your evaluation of the CX-5 would be all I need to pull the trigger on one for either the bride or myself after my daughter graduates next May.
50K for mid-sized Chevy SUV? That said, I've read nothing about the Blazer except what you just wrote. Not sure if I'd trust GM reliability/durability, but then again never thought I'd see the issues some G2 RL owners have had.
 

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@Pleease if you start watching SMA be prepared to drop out of society for a few days. His work ethic and videos are excellent. As far as the Blazer goes I’m under the assumption now that all the brands suck but would rather have something that breaks and gets fixed instead of having an intermittent problem that a dealer dismisses as “normal.”
 

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Discussion Starter #48
I've thought about that one a lot and my local Honda dealer just purchased the local Chevy dealer. I love the way it clicks off shifts, its size i don't know if it's stiffly sprung and it has zero safety nannies even in 2020 unless you go up the Premier level. Problem is it's tough to get something decent when the starting high price has a 50K ish. Leased Passport seems like a better option but it would have to drive different and not have the wallowy or mushy feel of the RL. which is unlikely for the brakes. Your evaluation of the CX-5 would be all I need to pull the trigger on one for either the bride or myself after my daughter graduates next May.
A new V6 Blazer can be purchased for well under $30K.

I found the Passport isn't quite as relaxed as the Ridgeline which could be due to the shorter wheelbase.

Spoiler alert: I wouldn't wait on my review of the CX-5. I didn't recommend it because you mentioned NA instead of turbo. The CX-5's NA engine makes it slower than a CR-V. The turbo engine in the upper trims makes it faster than an RDX. If you can deal with a turbo and you like firm, the CX-5 Grand Touring Reserve or Signature is an answer.

zroger73, why didn't you go the lemon law route and hire an attorney?
Although the next repair attempt would have qualified me under the "30-day test" portion of Texas Lemon Law, cases can take several months to close and that's assuming a settlement is reached without going to trial. By the time I hired an attorney, deducted the reasonable use allowance, and lost the sales tax advantage of trading, there wouldn't have been any financial advantage in leveraging the lemon law.
 

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Hey zroger73, did you take off your BE wheels before trading? You may have to change your avatar.
 

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.... I plan to remain active here....
Thank goodness! We'd hate to lose you as a Mod (and you save me money on Service Express, LOL). Sorry to hear about your 2019's problems. I've had good luck with my 2017 RTL-E, but I can understand where you're coming from.

The older I get, the more dis-passionate about vehicles I get. The days where a visionary founder drove the company product/quality from top to bottom are gone (Steve Jobs - Apple, Soichiro Honda - Honda, etc). What's left are public corporations with varying degrees of vision: the best can still drive good things, the worst are faceless fiefdoms run by bean counters, selling crummy products, with poor or no post-sale support). So I try to pick the best product that meets my needs, realizing there will still be be shortcomings.

.... I never tow or go off-road and rarely haul anything. ....
The unfortunate part is that while the Pilot, Odyssey, Passport, and every other Honda model for that matter has direct competition, the Ridgeline does not - there is no other unibody midsize pickup with a trunk and dual-action tailgate...period. So, you either get a Ridgeline and deal with the quality issues or sacrifice the core features that make the Ridgeline what it is buy buying one of the other midsize pickups. :|
I do tow and haul, and don't have close friends with pickups. While not perfect (front end looks, some quirks), I did pick the Ridgeline over the Taco (rough riding, boy racer), Colorado (nice, but not as much as Ridgeline), Ranger (compromises), and Frontier (ancient). I'll hang on to my 2017 RTL-E, and see what the midsize market brings new in several years.

I've owned several Mazda products and all of them were excellent. I've always liked their driver focused engineering philosophy. Honda always marketed themselves as being practical and economical with a little more sportiness than Toyota. Mazda was unabashed in saying they wanted to make fun to drive cars. Lost in the shuffle was the fact that they have always made very good cars....
I agree - I owned a 1995 Mazda Miata, and a 1989 Ford Probe (build for Ford by Mazda). Both were great. I traded them after my needs shifted, but still remember them fondly (especially the Miata)
 
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Your window leaks and water leaks reported by other ROCers are probably the most concerning things to me about the G2 RL -- mostly because finding and fixing leaks can be so difficult and the required tearing down of the interior just feels like a violation of the vehicle's integrity.
Can't be any worse than when they were tearing apart G2s at launch to fix the first recall.
 

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Discussion Starter #52
I spent a couple hours giving the CX-5 a proper detail and inspection this evening and am happy to report that I can't find a single defect anywhere. Everything is attached properly. Panel gaps are tight and consistent. There are no scratches, dents, chips, rips, tears, or scuff marks anywhere. Everything operates as advertised. The paint has the lowest amount of orange peel this side of a custom paint job. I can't find any runs, dirt, fisheyes, or other defects. The wheels look nice, but their complicated, "twisted spoke" design is a nightmare to clean. This is the type of new vehicle experience that I used to enjoy with Honda.

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Hey zroger73, did you take off your BE wheels before trading? You may have to change your avatar.
You bet I did - they wouldn't have been worth beans to the dealer. I reinstalled the factory wheels and listed the Black Edition wheels for sale in the Trading Post forum.
 

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I spent a couple hours giving the CX-5 a proper detail and inspection this evening and am happy to report that I can't find a single defect anywhere. Everything is attached properly. Panel gaps are tight and consistent. There are no scratches, dents, chips, rips, tears, or scuff marks anywhere. Everything operates as advertised. The paint has the lowest amount of orange peel this side of a custom paint job. I can't find any runs, dirt, fisheyes, or other defects. The wheels look nice, but their complicated, "twisted spoke" design is a nightmare to clean. This is the type of new vehicle experience that I used to enjoy with Honda.

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You bet I did - they wouldn't have been worth beans to the dealer. I reinstalled the factory wheels and listed the Black Edition wheels for sale in the Trading Post forum.
Looks sharp....and so does the CX-5! Lol. Seriously, good-looking machines.
 

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Looks sharp....and so does the CX-5! Lol. Seriously, good-looking machines.
..... I owned a 1995 Mazda Miata, and a 1989 Ford Probe (build for Ford by Mazda). Both were great. I traded them after my needs shifted, but still remember them fondly (especially the Miata) ...
So @zroger73 - which Mazda forums do you participate and/or Moderate? I may bop over and them check them out (for my nostalgia for Mazda's sake)
 

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Discussion Starter #56 (Edited)
So @zroger73 - which Mazda forums do you participate and/or Moderate? I may bop over and them check them out (for my nostalgia for Mazda's sake)
I'm glad you asked and that's a great question.

I'm a member of Miata.net (forum.miata.net) and, most recently, Mazdas247.com. I don't moderate either one and I'm not nearly as active on those forums as I am here.

I've been a member of the Ridgeline Owners Club since the early years and have owned more Ridgelines than any other model, I have a lot of virtual friends here that I enjoy discussing Ridgeline and non-Ridgeline topics with. Even when I don't own a Ridgeline, I still come here.

The Ridgeline is a unique vehicle with no competition at this time, but I may have drank a little to much "Honda Kool-Aid" in the past. When I started dabbling in automotive writing a few years ago, I gained the opportunity to evaluate many different vehicles. It didn't take long to realize that Honda is NOT "the end-all" manufacturer I once thought.

I'm now much more receptive to and accepting of other brands and models and tend to lean more towards the "whatever works for you" attitude.
 

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I'm glad you asked and that's a great question.

I'm a member of Miata.net (forum.miata.net) and, most recently, Mazdas247.com. I don't moderate either one and I'm not nearly as active on those forums as I am here....
The first photo below was my 1995 Mazda Miata. I bought it new, my only mod was to put on the pictured MSW wheels and Eagle Aquatred tires (which improved handling and eliminated hydro-planing 100%). My wife and I later sold it, to make room in our garage for a growing family. I really miss that car.... Then in 2014 our neighbor sold us their 1985 Alfa Romeo Spider (second photo). The Alfa is actually quite reliable (for a vintage car) and sporty - just my Miata was but 10 years newer (chronologically) but "20 years newer" (in systems, engineering, safety, etc). I have several Alfa mods and fixes in process - but I'm dealing with 35 year old Italian service manuals and other vintage vagueness. So I really miss my Miata. We're thinking about selling the Alfa - and if we do, I'll into getting another Miata.

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1985 Alfa Romeo Spider
A lovely car, but for those darned vintage US federal bumpers (the Spider does manage them better than many others of the era).

Nice toy you've got there! :)

(and doubtless one of the many cars serving as inspiration for the original Miata development team)
 
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@zroger73 I look forward to your thoughts and review of the CX5. I remain impressed and a fan of Mazda. Hope they keep their focus and don't lose their way like Honda.
 

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@zroger73,
Good luck with the new ride! As we have shared with each other, it seems like you have a better chance to win the lottery these days than to get a well engineered AND a well built vehicle that meets the majority of ones needs/wants.
i really dread the thought of having to replace either my 2017 RTL-E or the wife’s 2019 RDX Tech and especially the RL as it uniquely suits my needs and lifestyle. Hauling gear, towing my Honda Pioneer, carrying a bed full of feed and a truck full of tools and equipment and all the while having a great handling highway cruiser is a winning combo for me and I still have not had any issues other than the airbag recall.
A lot more choices to consider in a medium sized SUV if our RDX become untenable and not really sure which direction we would go. Never had a Lexus so they would be in the running as a brand to consider.
I think it is going to be a very interesting landscape for the next couple years as the auto industry tries to come back from this world shutdown and consumers try to regain their standards of living and purchasing power and for many it may take a long time to come back to previous levels.
In the meantime, wifey is retiring in July and we will be enjoying traveling in our nice vehicles, spending time with the 2 grandsons and will try to live the dream we planned and saved for during our working years.
 
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