The Honda Ridgeline is a pickup truck based on the Pilot crossover, which means it also shares DNA with the Odyssey minivan — not something owners probably want to brag about. To show that the Ridgeline is the real deal, Honda turned one into a plus-sized version of a side-by-side ATV for SEMA 2018.
Honda describes the Rugged Open Air Vehicle (or “ROAV,” get it?) concept as a cross between a Ridgeline and a Pioneer 1000 side-by-side. It’s essentially a Ridgeline with most of the bodywork stripped away. The styling of the front end and pickup bed ape the Pioneer, while the doors actually came straight off the ATV.
It may not look like a Ridgeline anymore, but underneath the radically modified bodywork, the Rugged Open Air Vehicle concept maintains the truck’s stock suspension. Honda didn’t mention any mechanical changes, the concept vehicle is likely powered by the same 3.5-liter V6 used in the stock Ridgeline. That engine produces 280 horsepower and 262 pound-feet of torque, and is mated to a six-speed automatic transmission.
Like the exterior, the interior is a mix of stock Ridgeline and ATV-inspired styling cues. The dashboard is the same as a stock Ridgeline’s, but the steering wheel comes from a Pioneer 1000. Honda added smartphone holders, and painted the dashboard to protect it from the elements.
The seats are from a Honda Civic Type R, but they were re-covered in the same waterproof material used for Pioneer 1000 seats. That’s probably a good idea, given how the interior is completely exposed to the elements. The open-air setup probably isn’t ideal for securing valuables, but wouldn’t it be cool if Honda actually sold a truck like this?
That probably won’t ever happen, but the Ridgeline remains a sensible option for buyers who want a pickup truck, but don’t want to deal with typical truck drawbacks like an unrefined driving experience. The stock Ridgeline is the polar opposite of this crazy concept vehicle. But turning ordinary vehicles into something crazy is what SEMA is all about. The Honda Rugged Open Air Vehicle concept has plenty of competition this year for the title of most epic SEMA show vehicle.