Detroit LIVE: 2017 Honda Ridgeline

Honda\'s pickup continues to think outside the box.

Honda unveiled the long-anticipated successor to its Ridgeline pickup in Detroit Monday, showing its commitment to the unconventional, car-based truck that had soldiered on relatively unchanged for a decade.

Like its predecessor, the 2017 Ridgeline rides on a unibody chassis derived from Honda's new Global Light Truck platform, giving it more docile, comfort-oriented road manners than most conventional, body-on-frame midsize trucks.

While it may lack the rugged appeal of a body-on-frame truck, the Ridgeline's unconventional setup affords it additional advantages besides ride comfort. Honda says it boasts the segment's only four-foot-wide bed and its largest and "most versatile" cabin while still boasting enough payload capacity to compete with the rest of the segment.

As before, the Ridgeline will be powered by a 3.5L V6 engine. It will be mated to a six-speed automatic transmission and, for the first time, offered with either front- or i-VTM4 torque vectoring all-wheel-drive.

The bed is slightly larger than the old Ridgeline's at 5'4" long and 5' wide and, as mentioned above, offers 48" of bed space between the wheel arches. Honda expects the final payload capacity rating to be close to 1,600lbs.

Some of the Ridgeline's "hey, neat!" type features will return, including its in-bed trunk and dual-action tailgate. Honda is also debuting a four-speaker, in-bed audio system, which it claims is an industry first.

Expect full specifications and details a little closer to the new Ridgeline's launch, which Honda says will be in the first half of 2016.

Live Photos by Brian Williams.

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