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A good truck is hard to beat in terms of both looks and functionality. Whether you’re driving for fun or doing serious work, a truck will get you where you need to go. Getting you there in one piece is just as important, though, making safety something all potential truck owners must consider. If you’re in the market for a used pickup, you’re in luck on that front, as a certain truck just so happens to be the safest of its time.

The Honda Ridgeline was 2018’s safest pickup

A dark blue 2018 Honda Ridgeline model on a trail near a river was the safest pickup truck.
2018 Honda Ridgeline | Honda USA

In the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s review of 2018’s vehicles, they named the Honda Ridgeline as the safest pickup of the year. It earned this award because of its excellent safety features, as reviewed by the IIHS’ team. For starters, it scored a G rating (the highest possible) in all areas of crashworthiness, save for the small overlap front area on the passenger’s side, which earned an A rating (the second highest). However, upon a closer look, this A only comes from some less-than-stellar aspects of this area, specifically the lower leg and foot area features and the restraints. Everything else is still flawless.

In terms of crash avoidance and mitigation, the Ridgeline also earns good marks. In terms of the front crash prevention systems (for vehicle-to-vehicle crashes), the truck earned the superior designation, marking it as one of the best possible. The headlights also earned a G, though with a caveat: this only applies to the RTL-E and Black Edition trims. These trims both have good visibility in both the low- and high-power settings. Other trims, though earned a P (the lowest rating) due to having poor visibility in low-power and good visibility only on the right side in high-power.

The pickup also earned an A rating for its seat belts and child restraint features. While not the best they could possibly be, they’re still quite sturdy and offer the option to securely add child seats into the vehicle. Overall, it more than earned its award.

The Ridgeline has tons of great features beyond safety

There is a lot to love about the Ridgeline beyond just its safety features. All-wheel-drive is standard, giving you great control over most terrain. The truck bed, while a bit short, has an impressive amount of extra storage space down below it. The six-speed automatic transmission makes driving a breeze.

In terms of the fully loaded options, you’ll get heated and powered leather seats, a heated steering wheel, keyless entry and start, a moon roof, a truck bed speaker, and plenty more.

Even with some shortcomings, it’s a reliable used truck

For as good as the Ridgeline is, no car is without its problems. To start, the Ridgeline gets somewhat poor gas mileage relative to its smaller size. At 18 in the city and 25 on the highway, you’ll be stopping for gas a bit more frequently than you might like.

If you’re expecting a mean machine that can tow a whole house behind it without issue, you might need to look elsewhere. The Ridgeline has a 3.5L V6 engine with 280 HP, so you might need something more powerful if you primarily use your truck for hauling or other big jobs. The 2018 Honda Ridgeline tows up to 5,000 pounds.

All in all, however, the Ridgeline is still one of the safest used pickup trucks on the market with tons of great features. If its small list of shortcomings aren’t enough to turn you off, it might be worth considering if you’re in need of a new vehicle.


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