I have owned practically everything over the last few years, not being able to be satisfied. I owned trucks (Frontier, Tacoma), cars (Forester, Matrix), and have finally settled on a Ridgeline. I chose the base model and is has plenty of equipment. I am one who likes vehicles loaded. This one is not loaded, but for a truck is equipped well enough for me. The ride is the best part. It rides like a car and is extremely quiet inside. My wife loves it in the snow. We had some snow in PA and she bragged about how she was in the passing lane while 4X4 full sized trucks were fishtailing in the slow lane. I chose the base model to try it. Now that I have one, the next time, I will go up.
V8 option should be available. I don't think it would hurt gas mileage because of the weight. I have a slight vibration in the passenger door. It doesn't do it all the time though, so you know what that means? I will have to put up with it I guess.