2009 Honda Ridgeline, Odyssey and Element Reviews

The Honda Ridgeline which was launched as a 2006 SUT (sport utility truck) model solidified Honda's presence in the truck market. Designed with what Honda describes as "the cool dad" in mind, Honda's truck will charm even the most loyal truck buyer.

Honda's truck market contender is equipped with a 3.5L 247hp V6 which provides loads of throaty acceleration and plenty of towing capability (5000lbs and 10085 GCWR) to keep you smiling on the weekend adventures. The standard four wheel drive system is more then adequate for either towing or rough terrain.

The five foot lined bed does not have the cumbersome wheel arches and also expands by another 19 inches when the tailgate is dropped (max weight approx 300lbs). The tailgate will both drop and swing open to access the in-bed weather resistant lockable trunk.

The Honda Ridgeline has a nicely appointed and driver-friendly interior with all controls easily accessed. The four doors make for ease of entry/exit and has room for five occupants. Trim levels range from a very well equipped four wheel drive entry level to the leather and navigation appointed EX-L.

Honda has designed an agile handling truck which offers a smooth comfortable ride with the ability to handle most off road conditions. Fuel economy is average by most four wheel drive truck standards (14.1/9.8 L/100kms city/hwy and 15/20 miles per US gal.) and does so on regular pump gas.

Safety ratings are top notch with thanks to standard ABS, Active head restraints, VSA with traction control, front, side and curtain airbags. Owner satisfaction is above average with many being previous non-Honda truck owners. Cost of ownership is higher then we would like to see with the Honda Ridgeline. To help with your cost of ownership we have acquired invoice pricing for all Hondas. Click here to see Honda Ridgeline and other Honda invoice prices

The 2009 Honda Odyssey has come from a sales dud when it was first launched as a glorified station wagon in 1995 to become the people mover of choice for many families since its redesign in 1999. It is a no brainer to see why it is the van of choice with its luxury ride and agile handling, easy in/out with its large dual side doors, comfort and convenience of its interior appointments and performance automobile acceleration.

The Odyssey's performance has been a top benefit since the redesign in 1999 and again has risen the bar in 2009 with a 244hp 3.5L V6 which still produces 13.3/8.5 L/100kms city/hwy and 16/23 miles per U.S. gal. for fuel economy without the advantage of Honda's VCM (available on some models). Aside from the decent fuel economy the Odyssey can also help you move your favorite toys with a 3500 lbs towing capacity without having the performance suffering past acceptable.

The interior is large and comfortable and also comes with a large list of standard equipment. Rear air conditioning and fold away third row seats with an impressive list of standard safety features including front, side and curtain airbags which are standard like the Honda Ridgeline and active head restraints. Some 2009 models also come equipped with a center seat in the second row and an in floor storage compartment. The Odyssey's interior produces a comfortable ride for all its passengers (eight in some models)with large supportive seating throughout and a large cargo area with or without the third row folded into the floor (2579L/91.1 cu.ft.). The only drawback we were able to find was that road noise can be a little too pronounced due to the large volume of space of the interior which Honda has acknowledged with its available Active Noise Cancellation system.

Safety ratings of the Odyssey like the Honda Ridgeline and Pilot are impressive. The Odyssey was awarded a best possible five star rating for both front and side impact collisions. Aside from its standard airbags and active head restraints the Odyssey is also equipped with ABS, VSA, and ACE body construction which all help to gain its noble safety track record.

The cost of ownership for the Odyssey is rated as average although most repairs can be done at any garage with parts having good availability and moderate prices. This will assist you in bringing the cost down. Resale value is strong on the Odyssey which also aid in its cost of ownership. Customer satisfaction ratings have remained above average with Honda extending the warranty level on earlier transmission problems (99-02). The only other major complaint was referring to the side auto-sliding doors (require frequent servicing).

The Honda Odyssey along side its cousins the Pilot and partially the Honda Ridgeline became the vehicle to own in its class and has not changed in a copious amount of opinions for the 2009 model year. Even with its redesign scheduled for the next model year the desire for the ownership of this van continues to rise.

The 2009 Honda Element has kept its quirky yet very utilitarian body style. This little SUV/crossover which Honda describes as an ALV (Active Lifestyle Vehicle) really needs to be used in order to gain an appreciation for it.

The Honda Element reviews came back saying the interior is quite bland aesthetically although its water resistant stadium style seating and floors come into use when dirty or wet occupants climb into it. There is no b-pillar between the side doors when opened which produces a gaping entry point to load and unload cargo. Cargo capacity is surprising for such a small exterior 74.6 cu.ft. or 2112L. With most of the interior functioning more on utility the components surprisingly come together to provide a very nice fit and finish and have a very user friendly feel.

The Element unlike the Honda Ridgeline and Pilot does not produce a quiet elegant ride. It has a choppy quality you would expect from a truck like this but it is still pleasant to drive long distances. The acceleration is comparable to the CR-V with sharing the 2.4L 4 cylinder powerplant. Fuel economy is also comparable with 10.5/8.1 L/100kms city/hwy and 20/25 miles per U.S. gal.

Safety ratings are good with standard equipment being front, side and curtain airbags, VSA,EBD and side impact door beams when the doors are closed. The cost of ownership is below average with most repairs able to be done by any garage with good availability of parts. Owner satisfaction is well above average with predicted reliability to be above average also. Aside from the ALV owners the Element has also gained favor with the baby boomers much like the Honda Ridgeline and Pilot and to Honda's surprise.