Adding low end torque on 2008 Ridgeline

Jax20J

Newbie
Points
1
From
Atlanta, GA
Car
Ridgeline RTL 2008
I have a 2008 Honda Ridgeline RTL with a 3.5L V6. I LOVE this truck and it’s a fantastic vehicle. It is versatile, has all-time 4-wheel drive, a trunk under the bed and a large, comfortable interior. It is near completely stock. The towing capacity is 5000 lbs and I recently picked up a 4000 lb. 24’ travel trailer and drove it home from South Dakota to Atlanta. The drive was smooth without sway, the truck pulled fairly easily, braked well and felt easy to drive. However, the wind resistance at highway speeds kept me at lower speeds and higher fuel consumption than I would like. I averaged 2500-3000 rpm around 60-65 MPH. On flat or downhill stretches I got similar or higher speeds and could drop RPMs down to about 1900. When heading uphills, it would jump to about 4000 RPMs to sustain about the same speed.

I’d like to find recommendations for improving the lower RPM torque to help keep the pulling strong and from shifting as often. I want to keep this truck running and serving my family well and for it to run stronger for the occasions when we pull the trailer. Fuel consumption reduction would be a nice byproduct, but I understand that usually requires removing my foot from the skinny pedal. I’m good to keep it slow and low on drives with the trailer since I really shouldn’t be in a rush and want to keep the drive safe.

Hoping to find recommendations for bolt-on modifications, but open to other changes proven to be reliable and safe for the engine.

Thanks!
 

obi_waynne

Administrator
Staff member
Moderator
Points
1,137
From
Deal, Kent UK
Car
A3 1.4 TFSI 150 COD
Hello and a very warm, welcome to TorqueCars from me the admin! Glad you're enjoying the site, it's taken many years of work to get it to this point, and we keep trying to improve it.

An automatic shouldn't hold you back although it will limit the upper power gains for some mods. I think with a set of coilovers, uprated cam and remap you'll have plenty extra to play with. I don't actually know where the power limits are on the auto transmissions but generally speaking you can push out another 20% without worrying and even then you can raise the low end and keep the top about the same if there was a limit.

Keep reading the articles on our site and this forum... you'll pick up loads of good common sense tips and don't be afraid to post questions, were all here to share our knowledge and experience.

We run a really fun and interesting car community and many have said we're the friendliest around, always ready to help out where we can.

Enjoy your time with us, post loads and feel free to ask any questions or begin new threads and discussions. We're always interested to hear your comments and views on our existing topics and in the hot polls.

What is your budget?

I would suggest a 3 or 5 angle valve job to improve fuel atomisation and swirl into the cylinders.

What about a low boost supercharger or revised camshaft?
 

Fabia12

Tuner
Points
52
From
Lincoln
Car
Fabia Monte Carlo
Hi there, adding to the above, I know the states is a bit like Australia and performance stuff is so much more accessible, you might find a specialist low rpm tourqe cam kit, or a grinding shop. Do some scraping about online, also a set of vernier pulleys/sprockets for the cams, and a decent exhaust system, one that will breath properly, with a set of headers. Once all this is together get it on a rolling road dyno and splash the cash to get the cam timing set for max torque at your desired RPM. You will not recognise the beast. Another thing worth investing in would be trailer air dam, which will flow the air from your truck over and around the trailer. This will take some researching, design and manufacturing but the result will be great for fuel economy, efficiency and handling. Good luck.
 

TCJBOLDIE

Torque King
Staff member
Moderator
Points
667
From
Brisbane
Car
JB Starion
Realistically forced induction is the answer to your need for more pulling power and to my way of thinking a smallish turbo that spools fast is the answer.

My 2nd choice would be a belt driven supercharger but that wouldn't be as responsive at low revs as a good turbo combination.

You would need to do some research as to the strength of the factory rods and pistons before deciding which way to go and how much boost you need to achieve your desired performance improvement.
 

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