I’ve had my M5 for about seven months now, but I have only driven it 2500 miles. That is plenty of time to get familiar with my vehicle, but not enough to determine it’s reliability. For example, when I went to top off the tank before putting my M5 back into storage, it threw an SES code on the cluster. I plugged in my cheap-o generic OBDII scanner, and it came up with a P1526 and P0022 code, “A” Camshaft Position Actuator Control Open Circuit Bank 2 and “A” Camshaft Position – Timing over-retarded (Bank 2) respectively. I had the same two related codes over the summer when I first got my car, and that was when I opened up my bank 2 VANOS solenoids to check their operation. I have now confirmed that I need an intake CPS (Camshaft Position Sensor), which I plan on doing in late May.
The title of this post is called Compromise for a reason. I realized that my M5 was not suited for a trip to St. Louis, where I currently attend school, and that another rear-wheel drive, manual transmission car wasn’t ideal, when I already had one. The family quickly chimed in, after two weeks of test driving new and used manual transmission cars with no luck. The idea was to get a pickup, the kind that you can beat on and not worry about. It was the kind of truck that only required oil changes, and nothing more, unlike any of the used cars and BMWs that I looked at, which would be considered another project car like the M5.
Choices were limited, as we were looking for a brand-new mid-size pickup for under $30k. It was still easy-peesy lemon-squeezy… the top choices were automatically the Nissan Frontier, and the Honda Ridgeline. A Tacoma is the class leader, and it showed, as the MSRP and invoice pricing were insane for a ‘work’ truck. The American alternatives were dated, and Suzuki had done so badly in the US market, we couldn’t even find a dealer, or their Frontier twin for sale anywhere near us. Time to go price shopping then.
For $1k less, the Frontier Pro-4x CC 4×4 was much better equipped than a Ridgeline Sport. It was the obvious choice, and it had a 6MT option that the family decided against. We placed the order for the Frontier, and were supposed to get it delivered next day. That’s when it went wrong; the next day. We got a call from the salesperson saying that the Frontier that we reserved, 60 miles away, was unavailable and that the next available one was over 100 miles away. To buy a new vehicle with 100+ miles on the ODO before delivery sounds pretty sketchy, and we decided to walk away from the deal, and what a good deal that was. I also wasted $8 on a ClubFrontier sticker… but I might put it on the new pickup for shits ‘n gigs.
After exhausting the internet looking for all Frontier Pro-4x CC 4×4 models, there were none to be found within 120 miles of our zip code. However, 2013 Honda Ridgeline Sport’s were plentiful, as this truck just doesn’t sell. It has basically been the same design since 2006 when it was introduced, only with little tweaks to get it to be the most refined pickup that I have ever driven. It is definitely more car-like, and easy for the family to get accustomed to. Being a Honda, reliability was synonymous with the name, and there is a great support forum called RidgelineOwnersClub for it. I now drive a slush-box pickup truck with IFS, IRS and AWD; that is one confused vehicle!
This is the end to my first update to E39Source. Keep in mind that you don’t always have to drive an engaging vehicle to get a smile on your face. There is no sport behind the Ridgeline, although the model designation tends to differ, yet I still get a smile every time I shift that column shifter into Drive. In the end, just drive your vehicle the way it was designed to be, and enjoy the experience you have behind the wheel, because it is always a new experience every time you turn that key!
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