Is the Honda Ridgeline a 4WD?

When you are looking for a vehicle, you are probably looking for a car or truck that is going to keep you safe, start reliably, provide good gas mileage, and offer an appropriate level of power to meet your needs. This is why the Honda Ridgeline has become so popular. As a reliable, durable, fuel-efficient vehicle, the Honda Ridgeline has become one of the most popular vehicles in its class. At the same time, many people are wondering if the Honda Ridgeline is a four-wheel drive.

A Honda Ridgeline trekking on a snowy terrain under heavy fog with low visibility, Is the Honda Ridgeline a 4WD?


Is the Honda Ridgeline a Four-Wheel Drive Vehicle (4WD)?

Some Honda Ridgeline models are 4WD while others possess all-wheel-drive capabilities (AWD). Therefore, even though not all Honda Ridgeline models are technically four-wheel-drive vehicles, it does possess an all-wheel-drive system that provides the same benefits of a four-wheel-drive vehicle with a few added features. The Honda Ridgeline’s all-wheel-drive ability provides it with the ability to direct power to each of its axles based on the needs of the driver. In contrast, a 4WD system provides the vehicle with the ability to direct power not only to each individual axle but the wheels as well. Therefore, it is important for anyone who is considering a Honda Ridgeline to understand the benefits of an all-wheel-drive system as well as those of a 4WD system.

What Is an All-Wheel Drive System?

Because all-wheel-drive vehicles such as older models of the Honda Ridgeline are becoming more common, it is important to understand what this means. When vehicles are all-wheel drive, this is a unique drivetrain configuration. Torque is taken from the engine and directed to the front and rear axles and then to each individual wheel via differentials. There are several different types of all-wheel-drive systems including full-time all-wheel drive and part-time all-wheel-drive.

With a full-time all-wheel-drive system, torque is sent to the front and we are axles at all times. On the other hand, part-time all-wheel-drive systems monitor the conditions of the road and the behavior of the driver to decide when it makes sense to divide its power between the front and rear axles. Both full-time all-wheel-drive systems and part-time all-wheel-drive systems can be effective.

How Is an All-Wheel Drive System Different from a Four-Wheel Drive System?

Even though an all-wheel-drive system is able to direct individual powers of each of the axles, it is not quite the same as a four-wheel-drive system. With a four-wheel-drive system, the vehicle is able to direct its power to the left and right wheels as well. In this manner, four-wheel-drive systems are usually designed for maximum power off the road. They are typically built into vehicles that have a truck-based platform.

Taking a Closer Look at the Capabilities of the Honda Ridgeline

In 2017, the Honda Ridgeline received a significant upgrade. It received a new, i-VMT 4 system. This is an acronym that stands for intelligent variable torque management. This is one of the major upgrades that arrived with the 2017 Honda Ridgeline that caused it to skyrocket in popularity. It provided the Honda Ridgeline with four-wheel drive capabilities, separating it from other vehicles, including its predecessors, that provided all-wheel-drive systems.

This torque management system provided the Honda Ridgeline with an added degree of flexibility. When someone is driving on normal pavement, there is usually plenty of traction. Therefore, a four-wheel-drive system is not necessarily required. In this situation, a torque management system is going to provide 100 percent of the power to the front wheels, helping the Honda Ridgeline maintain the fuel efficiency that has made it so famous.

How Does the Torque Management System Work?

On the other hand, if the vehicle detects slippery conditions such as snow or ice, the torque management system is going to alter its power distribution to improve its safety. Extra torque is going to be provided to the rear axle, as well as the rear wheels, providing extra grip and traction for the vehicle. That way, the driver has four wheels providing the car with traction instead of just two. Even though this uses slightly more gas, it ensures that the vehicle remained safe to drive even in wet conditions.

One of the major differences with this torque management system, when compared to prior Honda Ridgelines, is that it provides more safety and adaptability when compared to the older all-wheel-drive systems. With older all-wheel-drive systems, power is distributed between the front and rear axles only, not to each individual wheel. With the new torque management system that is available in the later models of the Honda Ridgeline, power is able to be divided not only between the axles but also between the wheels as well. In this manner, this advanced torque management platform is able to match the capabilities and customizability of a four-wheel-drive vehicle, which also provides power to each individual wheel.

What Are the Benefits of the Torque Management System

Therefore, later models of the Honda Ridgeline are considered to be four-wheel drive because of their adaptability. With this new system, it is possible for the torque management process to control the left and right wheels separately. As much as 100 percent of the torque provided to either axle can be sent to either wheel, depending on the conditions. For example, if a driver is going around a curve and only a single side is in danger of slipping, the Honda Ridgeline is able to compensate with its power distribution in less than a second, ensuring that the driver remains safe while operating the Ridgeline in hazardous conditions.

At the same time, this intelligence work management system also provides the driver with the benefits of an all-wheel-drive system. One of the major drawbacks of a vehicle that is four-wheel drive all the time is that it uses far more gas. When vehicles are only sending power to one of the axles, it is far more efficient. Therefore, when the Honda Ridgeline is driving in safe conditions with excellent grip and traction, an advanced four-wheel-drive system is not needed. This is simply going to burn extra gas, driving down the car’s gas mileage. This torque management system is only going to kick in when the conditions become hazardous. In this manner, the new torque management system in the later models of the Honda Ridgeline provides drivers with the benefits of both an all-wheel-drive system and a four-wheel-drive system.

Why Is the Honda Ridgeline More Gas Efficient Than Other Vehicles?

There are many people who were wondering why the Honda Ridgeline is so much more gas efficient than other vehicles in its class. Some of the biggest reasons include:

  • Even though the Honda Ridgeline does provide four-wheel drive capabilities, it is not in 4-wheel drive mode all the time, allowing the vehicle to adjust its power output when required.
  • The Honda Ridgeline also comes with an Eco Assist System standard, ensuring that drivers are operating their vehicles as efficiently as possible.
  • There is also an economy button that Honda Ridgeline drivers can push to ensure the vehicle makes automatic adjustments, improving their fuel economy as they drive their truck.

In addition, there are other adjustments that Honda Ridgeline drivers can make to improve their gas efficiency even further. Please include:

  • Make sure the Honda Ridgeline is properly maintained to ensure the engine is operating as efficiently as possible.
  • Try to drive at constant, moderate speeds, only using the brakes when required, as this will also reduce the frequency with which drivers have to hit the gas pedal.
  • Do not keep excess weight in the truck unnecessarily, as the vehicle will have to work harder to tow this load.
  • Limit the use of the air conditioner, as this requires gas as well.

Thanks to its advanced features, the Honda Ridgeline is one of the most popular vehicles in its class.

Why Are Drivers So Excited About the Capabilities of the Honda Ridgeline?

For drivers who have been looking for a smaller, midsize truck, the Honda Ridgeline has become incredibly popular. The Honda Ridgeline provides truck drivers exactly what they are looking for in a smaller, midsize pickup truck. It provides versatility and functionality that is not seen with other options.

With a Honda Ridgeline, drivers are able to enjoy the capability of a truck while enjoying the comfort, fun, and ride quality of a smaller crossover. With its intelligent variable torque management system, the Honda Ridgeline is taking a completely new approach to truck capabilities, providing multiple benefits in a single package.

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One comment

  1. We have a 2008 ridgeline and it is anything but fuel efficient. We barely touch 20 MPG on the highway and about 16-17 MPG around town. Full sized trucks can do the same or better today.
    We prefer the Ridgeline for its versatility, interior room, clever features, and decent tow rating but certainly not for its gas milage.

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