The most rugged Honda models could soon arrive.
The off-road vehicle space is heating up, with Jeep introducing a new "Desert Rated" badge on the Jeep Gladiator Mojave to complement its well-established "Trail Rated" one, and Ford launching not only the rugged body-on-frame Bronco SUV, but the off-road-oriented Bronco Sport crossover, as well.
Honda might be feeling a little left out, it seems, filing for a trademark application on the name "Trailsport" as it applies to "[a]utomobiles and automobile structural parts". It doesn't take much imagination to figure out that the moniker is clearly intended for off-road-trail-oriented vehicles, although which one - or ones - is a mystery.
The Honda Passport might make sense as a recipient of a "Trailsport" badge; Honda has taken to marketing the Passport as a "rugged midsize SUV" since the nameplate's reintroduction for 2019, and it has something of a reputation, having previously been employed on Honda's version of the body-on-frame Isuzu Rodeo.
The Passport is also closely related to Honda's Ridgeline pickup truck, which would certainly make sense as a recipient of a "Trailsport" badge as well; smaller, off-road-oriented pickups like the Jeep Gladiator, Ford Ranger FX4, and Colorado ZR2 have proven a hit with enthusiasts, and Honda might want in on the action.
Of course, it's also possible that a "Trailsport" badge could cast its net even further, landing in multiple vehicle model lines from the subcompact HR-V, to the CR-V, all the way up to the Pilot. All three of those models, along with the Passport and the Ridgeline, use transverse powertrain configurations with all-wheel drive available as an option. All it might take to appease budding off-road enthusiasts is introduce some underbody protection, bulging all-terrain tires, extra body cladding, and robust suspension bits with extra travel and ground clearance.
Needless to say, this is all conjecture at this point, but we can't wait to see what Honda ends up doing with the new "Trailsport" trademark.