• Apr 3, 2006


The Honda Ridgeline, the company’s first pickup truck, sold nearly 53,000 vehicles last year. Though the numbers were considered disappointing by Honda and much of the press, the total nevertheless concerns Ford Motor Co., since many of those sales were from its segment share.

Now Ford is striking back with the 2007 Ford Sport Trac. The latest version, which is based off the new Explorer, provides greater room, for both interior and cargo space. A V8 engine (which had not been available in previous years) is now an option... the Ridgeline makes do with a V6. Ford has improved the Sport Trac’s safety equipment and systems to earn the highest rating for frontal offset impact safety from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety as well as all government crash tests. To counter the Ridgeline’s lockable trunk built into its truck-bed, the Sport Trac comes with a lockable bed cover as an option.

But the best feature, Ford and analysts points out, is that many truck buyers still don’t consider the Ridgeline a ‘truck’ due to its unibody construction. Says Jim Sanfilippo, an AMCI analyst, "I'm not sure the domestic truck buyer has figured out what the Ridgeline is.”

Full details can be found at the link.

[Source: Detroit News, picture by Ford]



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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 28 Comments
      • 8 Years Ago
      • 8 Years Ago
      I would have to go with the sport track. For the same price as the ridgeline i could get something bigger, stronger and has the same gas milage.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Well regardless of what the sales target was, 50k 75k or 100k, the Ridgeline missed it. The Detnews guys messed up only 42359 Ridgelines were sold in 2005, not 53000, according to autonews.com
      • 8 Years Ago
      I was surprised by the new Sport Trac. I mean, I liked the old one but it did need a V8. I have seen a few test vehicles running around near here and it looks good.

      I hope it does well.
      • 8 Years Ago
      The sales numbers weren't a "dissapointment" for Honda. They predicted a target of 50,000.

      I wonder what the total market cap for these types of vehicles?

      And the lockable bed cover? Hmm... that's original.
      • 8 Years Ago
      So, for all the people who don't think the Ridgeline is a 'truck'. What the heck is it then?? I have two station wagons.. a Saab and BMW and they both haul a lot, have highly effecient modern engines, seat five, just like the Ridgeline, but somehow, I don't think they're trucks, but that Honda.. well it sure looks like a big, dorky truck to me, just like a Sport Trac, an Avalanche, a P'up, a Luv a Titan, whatever they all are, they're not cars. They're trucks.
      far jr
      • 8 Years Ago
      #15 Lee:
      Cannibalize (definition): To draw on as a major source.
      Honda is drawing sales from "potential Ford customers" in a segment with similar a type vehicle. These sales may very likely have gone to Ford otherwise. Forgive me if I offended you by not having the same grammatical superiority that you obviously have. I'd rather discuss cars than English 101.
      • 8 Years Ago
      *Waits for someone to mention aesthetics... which are purely a matter of opinions... and you know that whole deal with opinions and assholes*

      From the article:

      "For example, the Sport Trac uses the same body-on-frame construction found in larger trucks, while the Ridgeline is based on the sort of unibody architecture more typical of cars."

      Do people even know what kind of construction the Ridgeline is made of? It's not *just* unibody construction... it's unibody-ON-FRAME. It has a traditional car-like unibody that's welded onto a traditional truck style frame.

      My bet is on future SUVs and smaller pickups to start adapting the same type of construction.
      • 8 Years Ago
      "I like the looks of the new Sport Trac and the new V8, but I wish it had a Turbo Charged Diesel instead."

      Agreed. If they want to have "good" gas mileage a diesel option is a smart one.

      As for the new SportTrac "striking back" against the Ridgeline, the Ridgeline came to market last year. The New SportTrac/Explorer has been in development for a lot longer than that. You can't bring a vehicle to market in only a year, so the new SportTrac is hardly just a reaction to the Ridgeline.

      I'm looking forward to when they bring out a new Ranger on this chassis. The current Ranger is very long in the tooth and sales are declining. The new Ranger will still be a "compact" truck, unlike the midsize competition, but will be better able to hold its own.
      • 8 Years Ago
      How does Ford's optional $595 bed cover compensate for Honda's standard equipment lockable trunk?
      • 8 Years Ago
      Once again the American public fears change. "OH NO it's not a "real" truck." Honda, you are casting your pearls before swine. Now the rest of you stick your arms straight out in front of you at shoulder level and repeat "Fire Bad, Fire Bad."
      Go back to your F-150s with the deluxe Dale Earnhardt package and 25 yr old technology. Go on now, go. Soon enough Ford and GM will join the other dead dinosaurs. Move forward or die American automakers.
      • 8 Years Ago
      #2 - those sales from Feb '05 are the result of the truck being introduced at the end of that month, hardly worth noting compared to Feb '06.

      Besides, how can Ford be "striking back" by redesigning a vehicle that was on the market 5 YEARS before the Ridgeline ever came out? If anything, the Ridgeline was created in response to vehicles like the Sport Trac, not vice versa.
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