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Honda is marketing its new Ridgeline pickup primarily to current customers rather than to buyers of Big 3 pickups.

"Our first aim is not to put up a fight against the Big 3," says Tom Peyton, senior manager of national advertising for American Honda Motor Co. Inc. "Our first aim is to keep in-house current Honda owners who have needs for pickups."

Peyton declined to say what Honda is spending to launch its first pickup or how that expense compares with the cost of previous launches.

3-page ad

Honda will promote the pickup with a three-page foldout ad in more than 30 national consumer magazines, Peyton says. Typically Honda markets a new vehicle with a single-page ad in fewer than 10 magazines, he says.

The campaign for the Ridgeline also will include broadcast, Internet and outdoor ads.

During the Feb. 6 Super Bowl Honda teased the campaign with a TV spot.

The Ridgeline went on sale at the end of February. Honda says some dealers have a waiting list.

Honda projects U.S. sales of 50,000 Ridgelines this year.

The pickup's base price is $28,215, including destination charges.

Honda is marketing the Ridgeline to men between the ages of 25 and 49 in "better-income" households, Peyton says.

The pickup's primary competition will be the Toyota Tacoma, Dodge Dakota and Nissan Frontier, he adds.

Honda estimates that 18 percent of all its U.S. owners - and 23 percent of owners of its CR-V sport wagon - also own pickups.

"It's a significant number of customers who we think will purchase" the Ridgeline, Peyton says.

The Ridgeline print ad will run in magazines such as Field & Stream, Dirt Rider and Motorcyclist.

Jim Sanfilippo, executive vice president of AMCI, an auto consulting firm in Bloomfield Hills, Mich., says the ad is a smart marketing device.

"Honda wants to put a lot of information on this vehicle out there, and print is a great way to do that," Sanfilippo says. "If they're going after their own buyers, those people are educated and upmarket."

Sports viewers

The Ridgeline's TV campaign includes three spots that will run on broadcast networks and 40 cable networks, including ESPN, MSNBC, Fox Sports Net, Bravo and TNT. Honda will advertise the truck during telecasts of the NCAA men's basketball tournament, NBA playoffs and Tour de France bicycle race, Peyton says.

Honda is advertising the pickup with pop-up ads on 17 popular Web sites, he says. The ads provide links to sites where Web visitors can get more information about the Ridgeline.

The marketing campaign also includes billboards in 25 major markets, Peyton says.

Sanfilippo says Honda needs to establish itself as a credible truck builder because its car sales are shrinking.

In the first two months of 2005, Honda Division car sales declined by 20.7 percent from the year-ago period.

"Honda's not going to miss on this one in terms of marketing," Sanfilippo says. "They're going to make sure it works."

autoweek
 

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hm.. very honda their marketing strategy is to aknowledge competitor they know where they are standing so doesnt do a direct
 

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since honda already basically threw the accord v6 motor in there anyways.... why didnt they go ahead and make it hybrid like the av6 hyb. wouldve had more power, more torque and better fuel mileage.....
they'll probably just add the hybrid motor later so that ridgeline owners trade up to the hybrid version.
blah to honda
 

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divinewisdom said:
Honda is marketing its new Ridgeline pickup primarily to current customers rather than to buyers of Big 3 pickups.

"Our first aim is not to put up a fight against the Big 3," says Tom Peyton, senior manager of national advertising for American Honda Motor Co. Inc. "Our first aim is to keep in-house current Honda owners who have needs for pickups."

Peyton declined to say what Honda is spending to launch its first pickup or how that expense compares with the cost of previous launches.

3-page ad

Honda will promote the pickup with a three-page foldout ad in more than 30 national consumer magazines, Peyton says. Typically Honda markets a new vehicle with a single-page ad in fewer than 10 magazines, he says.

The campaign for the Ridgeline also will include broadcast, Internet and outdoor ads.

During the Feb. 6 Super Bowl Honda teased the campaign with a TV spot.

The Ridgeline went on sale at the end of February. Honda says some dealers have a waiting list.

Honda projects U.S. sales of 50,000 Ridgelines this year.

The pickup's base price is $28,215, including destination charges.

Honda is marketing the Ridgeline to men between the ages of 25 and 49 in "better-income" households, Peyton says.

The pickup's primary competition will be the Toyota Tacoma, Dodge Dakota and Nissan Frontier, he adds.

Honda estimates that 18 percent of all its U.S. owners - and 23 percent of owners of its CR-V sport wagon - also own pickups.

"It's a significant number of customers who we think will purchase" the Ridgeline, Peyton says.

The Ridgeline print ad will run in magazines such as Field & Stream, Dirt Rider and Motorcyclist.

Jim Sanfilippo, executive vice president of AMCI, an auto consulting firm in Bloomfield Hills, Mich., says the ad is a smart marketing device.

"Honda wants to put a lot of information on this vehicle out there, and print is a great way to do that," Sanfilippo says. "If they're going after their own buyers, those people are educated and upmarket."

Sports viewers

The Ridgeline's TV campaign includes three spots that will run on broadcast networks and 40 cable networks, including ESPN, MSNBC, Fox Sports Net, Bravo and TNT. Honda will advertise the truck during telecasts of the NCAA men's basketball tournament, NBA playoffs and Tour de France bicycle race, Peyton says.

Honda is advertising the pickup with pop-up ads on 17 popular Web sites, he says. The ads provide links to sites where Web visitors can get more information about the Ridgeline.

The marketing campaign also includes billboards in 25 major markets, Peyton says.

Sanfilippo says Honda needs to establish itself as a credible truck builder because its car sales are shrinking.

In the first two months of 2005, Honda Division car sales declined by 20.7 percent from the year-ago period.

"Honda's not going to miss on this one in terms of marketing," Sanfilippo says. "They're going to make sure it works."

autoweek

well yeah...but not THAT UGLY!!
 

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LevelSevenCivic said:
since honda already basically threw the accord v6 motor in there anyways.... why didnt they go ahead and make it hybrid like the av6 hyb. wouldve had more power, more torque and better fuel mileage.....
they'll probably just add the hybrid motor later so that ridgeline owners trade up to the hybrid version.
blah to honda
Besides the price thing...i don't think that specific hybrid was designed to take the added stress on engine and transmission to tow a 5000lb trailer.
 

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5.0 said:
No surprise. Ford guys buy F-series, chevy guys buy Silverado's, Mopar guys buy Ram's, and Honda guys will buy Ridgelines.

as a chevy truck guy... i wont go outside my chevy truck family... my truck has gotten me out of a lot of shit... works like a champ... and i'm not going to bother trying something else... if it aint broke, why fix it????

anyways... the ridgeline does not have true 4wd, is not ready for work... no 8ft bed=cant stack plywood/drywall in the bed... no v8...

its a sorry excuse for a pickup... its an suv with no roof over the trunk
 

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njn63 said:
because there are better things out there. It's kinda like saying "my 500mhz computer works fine on this 56k internet. Why do i need a new computer and dsl?"


who cares? You don't take Rangers or s10 off road much do you? What about chevy avalanches and ford expeditions (or whatever that thing is called).

it's not a work truck for the 23092830921 time. Who would spend 28-35k on a work truck that can't tow over 5k pounds?

funny part is, you can stack plywood and drywall in the bed just like any other regular bed truck, you just have to put the tailgate down. By those standards, my dad's RAM is a half assed truck.

it also weighs 1,000 pounds less than an f150.



Just because you're not in the market that this truck was designed for does not make it a bad pickup. It was designed mainly as a suburbanite friendly grocery getter. The person shopping for a Honda pickup truck are the same people that buy CRV's and Pilots. The people that want a well refined, good driving, well thought out machine.
Well put! It's a light truck with features for a family, not a contractors tool.
 

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I finally saw a Ridgeline yesterday while I was at the dealership picking up parts for the Accord. The truck is far smaller than I initially thought. As for looks, its still ugly IMO even after seeing in person. I didn't look at the interior. If it's like every other Honda, I'm sure the interior is pretty decent.
 

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I totally agree with njn63. not many trucks allow you to just stack shit in the bed. most people who have pickups don't even use them for work or for towing. i know a lot of people who have pickups just because they like the concept of it, not for work.
 

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njn63 said:
actually, how off road worthy are most stock trucks? I know most of the guys that i know with 4x4's can't do crap stock. Then they put a lift kit and bigger tires. Then they have to replace the gears. Then they're happy for a while, but if they're serious at all they will break an axle or want more power so they swap axles/motor. If you put that much work into a truck anyways, why isn't the Honda offroad worthy? No one to my knowledge has modded one and the fact remains that every magazine that has driven one offroad hasn't said it was bad.
The fact that the basis for the Ridgeline platform came from the Oddssey minivan probably has people doubting it's capability off-road.

I think it'll do decently. It doesn't have a low-gear like most 4x4 system's and so that's a strike against it, but that doesn't mean that it can't do fine in most non-extreme conditions.
 

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divinewisdom said:
go look at one up close.
i have seen three on the road. its looks pretty good.
Yes, that's even after I had seen in person. I can't stand it. I like it in any other angle other than the front end. I don't know what those Japanese designer were thinking. Obviously it was conceive before Fukui got there.
 
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