Honda Ridgeline (Other Things Beside) Luggage Test

Honda Ridgeline (Other Things Beside) Luggage Test

I've now done so many luggage tests, in three different locations in two states, that you'll forgive me if I sometimes forget which cars I've tested and which ones I haven't. I already retested the Subaru Ascent without realizing it and I just did it again. So if you're wondering how many of my bags fits in the nifty under-bed trunk of the Honda Ridgeline, I hereby refer you to myself back in May of 2021.

Now, although such duplicated results would leave me with nothing to report this week, this is luckily a 2024 Honda Ridgeline we're talking about. And I was still able to take full advantage of its distinctive and unique talents.

As you can see above, the under-bed trunk has quite handy when I discovered the local gardening center was selling the exact tree I was looking for at half price. Serendipity! There's no way a tree like that would fit in a large SUV, and if I put it in the bed of the truck, it would be blown around significantly. That's bad news for the tree and its needles, but I'd also have to secure it with ropes or bungies or something using the bed hooks. But the Ridgeline? Nope, I could just pop the trunk lid, plop the tree down into the 7.9-cubic-foot cavity, and have it be joined by a smaller tree buddy. The Ridgeline kept warning me that the trunk was open, as if I was in an Accord, but it was hardly "put your seatbelt on!" levels of warning.

Accessing the trunk is really only possible because of the Ridgeline's unique Dual Action tailgate that swings out and drops down. There's no way you could reach all the way down into the trunk or access the spare tire without using the swing-out functionality. But, swinging it out also makes it easier to access the bed while leaning in, along with making it possible to use the license plate bumper cut out as a step to climb aboard.

Or, you know, when loading up the bed with 12 bags of mulch. There's a lot of sliding and plastic bag scraping I didn't have to do since I could stand so close to the bed while loading.


Here's one tailgate downside, though: those bags serve as a pretty good illustration of how shallow the bed is. The walls just aren't that tall, meaning midsize trucks with comparably long 5-plus-foot beds will be more functional. On the other hand, the shallow depth and low bed sides did make it easy to lift bags up and over the sides.

Here's another downside: the traditional downward tailgate function is not damped. It just slams abruptly down. I'm guessing it's not possible to sandwich a shock on the left side in addition to the swing-out hinge?