Being the first one in the pool takes guts; you don’t know how cold the water will be until you jump in. The same can be said for an automaker looking to make a splash in the industry. Take for example, the first-gen Honda Ridgeline. In spite of it being a respectable mashup of automotive engineering, sales were less than record-breaking and growth for the Ridgeline has languished in the ballpark of about 1,200 units sold a month.
We wouldn’t go so far as to say that the market has lost all interest in the Ridgeline, but let’s be honest, you can’t really argue with those sales figures. Far from letting the Ridgeline “go quietly into that good night”, Honda has revealed the first sketches of the 2017 Honda Ridgeline at the Chicago Auto Show, which seem to feature a more traditional profile and a separate bed, but because we’re talking about teased sketches, nothing at this point is definitive.
Looking at the vertical line that divides the tailgate, we could be looking at a two-piece swing-out tailgate, but again, we need to take these design elements with a grain of salt.
There is speculation among those in the know that a great deal of the mechanics of the 2017 Ridgeline will be derived from the Acura MDX and the new Honda Pilot, the safe money being on the 3.5L Earth Dreams direct-injected V-6 will be the engine of choice.
Expect to see more teasers and details emerge in the coming months, but it’s likely we’ll have to wait until the 2015 Los Angeles Auto Show or the 2016 Detroit Auto Show to see the production Ridgeline take the stage.