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SAFETY | 10 out of 10
Good, frontal offset impact; Good, side impact; Top Safety Pick
Five stars, front impacts; five stars, side impacts
New front seat active head restraints
Honda continues its tradition of exceptionally safe vehicles with the 2009 Honda Ridgeline, a pickup that earns perfect crash-test scores and a 2009 Top Safety Pick award from the IIHS.
In the highly visible and easily comparable world of crash-test ratings, few vehicles manage to earn perfect scores in all categories from both of the major testing authorities. However, that is exactly what Honda manages to do with the 2009 Honda Ridgeline, which kicks things off with perfect five-star safety ratings in both of NHTSA's front impact tests, as well as both side impact categories. In the more demanding IIHS tests, the Honda Ridgeline once again earns the highest possible rating, Good, in both the frontal offset and side impact categories. In addition, this 2009 Honda pickup takes home a 2009 Top Safety Pick award from the IIHS, which credits the Honda Ridgeline's "good performance in front, side, and rear tests and standard electronic stability control" as the primary reasons for the award.
Aside from its exemplary crash-test ratings, TheCarConnection.com's research reveals the 2009 Honda Ridgeline offers a lengthy list of safety features that lead Cars.com reviewers to christen the Honda Ridgeline as "extremely safety-conscious." Motor Trend notes that the 2009 Honda Ridgeline now offers a set of "new front seat active head restraints that will instantly snap forward to reduce excessive head recoil from a rearend collision." Meanwhile, Cars.com reviewers point out that "Honda's forward-thinking on safety technology is evident throughout the Ridgeline, and it's standard in all trim lines." Some of this 2009 Honda's standard safety features include "side curtain airbags with a rollover sensor, electronic brake distribution," and an "electronic stability system with traction control," according to Cars.com.
The only serious safety criticism of the Honda Ridgeline concerns driver visibility, which is somewhat impeded in certain directions. ConsumerGuide reviewers report that "the rear-roof design hinders over-the-shoulder vision," while the "thick roof pillars are an obstruction to visibility all around, with [the] view directly aft especially compromised." Fortunately, the 2009 Honda Ridgeline can be equipped with a rearview camera to help mitigate some of those visibility problems.
The big, sturdy 2009 Honda Ridgeline delivers in nearly every regard on the safety front.