Honda Alabama workers welcome the first 2017 Ridgeline off the line

Honda Alabama workers welcome the first 2017 Ridgeline off the line

Honda Manufacturing of Alabama (HMA) has marked the start of production of the redesigned 2017 Ridgeline pickup truck, on-sale soon at North American dealerships.

Alabama is Honda's only plant making the innovative Ridgeline that the automaker claims will once again challenge conventional thinking in the pickup truck market and set new benchmarks for versatility, capability and comfort in the midsize segment.

Designed and developed by Honda R&D Americas, the new Ridgeline will launch with what is claimed to be the segment's best handling, ride quality, cabin quietness and all-weather traction capabilities courtesy of unibody construction, sophisticated chassis, and optional i-VTM4 torque-vectoring AWD.

Honda also claims class-leading interior space with the largest and most versatile cabin and the only four-foot-wide flat bed in the segment, along with payload capacity at the top of the class.

Innovative and claimed class-exclusive features, include an in-bed trunk, dual action tailgate and the industry's first truck bed audio system making the Ridgeline "the ultimate tailgating vehicle".

Connectivity includes and eight-inch display audio with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto) compatibility.

Alabama also builds the Pilot SUV, Odyssey minivan and Acura MDX luxury SUV.

The plant employs 4,500 workers at its 3.7m square foot facility which has capacity to produce 340,000 vehicles and engines each year. Over the past three years, HMA has spent $510m and added 450 jobs in expansion to enhance flexibility and increase annual production. Alabama plant is in its its 15th year of production.