To mark its return to off-road truck racing, the Honda Ridgeline Baja Race Truck has been introduced. While it’s decked in conspicuous Honda Racing livery, the curves actually previews the styling direction of the next-gen Honda Ridgeline pick-up truck, according to the brand.

The vehicle you see here, is slated to compete in the SCORE Baja 1000 off-road race this year. In the front, the race truck is fitted with LED light bars and a single-tube bar. On the side, large fenders are used, while in the back, the tailgate has been removed so it can fit two competition off-road tyres.

Inside, a pair of Sparco racing seats and a roll cage has been fitted. The dash is also customised for the Baja off-road race. Beneath that shell is a tubular-frame chassis, while in the bonnet, lies a HR35TT twin-turbo 3.5 litre V6 engine developed by Honda Performance Development (HPD). Other additional items include a HPD-designed intake plenum and a custom ECU programming for the engine.

Interestingly, Honda says that the engine in this, will share the same block, cylinder head and crankshaft as the production engine in the upcoming Ridgeline. As for the design cues, in regards to the new truck, Honda hints that the 2016 Honda Ridgeline’s styling can be seen in the front fascia, hood, roof, bed and side profile of the Baja Race Truck.

The next-gen Ridgeline will make it into American showrooms by the first half of 2016. It’s designed and developed by Honda R&D America and will be produced by Honda Manufacturing of Alabama in Lincoln.

So folks, what do you think of a Honda pick-up truck? Previously, Honda said that it was considering a Hilux rival, as it could not ignore the high demand for pick-up trucks in markets such as Australia and Thailand. If it looks anything like this, would you have one over the Hilux?