2023 Author: Eric Donovan | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-05-21 15:44
The appearance of the new Honda CR-V may surprise many. Unusually dynamic, unusually little off-road and an appealing design are supposed to steal customers from BMW X3, Opel Antara and Toyota RAV4.
By Stefan Grundhoff
Eleven years ago, Honda set trends with the first-generation CR-V. The family cyclist was one of the first of its kind and was extremely successful around the world. 50,000 cars were sold in Germany and a massive 2.5 million worldwide. The mid-range SUV seemed hardly conceivable without a Honda. But the new CR-V says goodbye to the SUV class in the Kombiliga. As successful as the unmanageable number of SUVs from Germany and abroad are on the road, Honda will take a different path from the beginning of 2007.
Instead of a robust appearance, powerful assemblies and high-tech all-wheel drive, the Asians simply turn in a different direction. “Classic SUVs,” explains Akio Fumiiri, Head of the Advanced Design Studio at Honda R&D, “are more or less angular boxes, the design language of which is still based on cast iron off-roaders. From our point of view, the time is ripe for a more modern, fresh design."
Apart from the raised seating position and a respectable amount of space, the CR-V has little in common with an SUV. The masculine but overly rugged front makes the 4.52 meter long CR-V unusually dynamic. The sideline is more elegant than its predecessor and shows clear parallels to the luxury-class SUV Audi Q7.
The lanky, long-legged appearances of the first two Honda generations are a thing of the past. The new CR-V is brawny on the road, not least thanks to 17 to 19-inch tires. It drives as dynamic as it looks. The suspension setup is sporty and tight.
You have the feeling of sitting in a dynamic station wagon. Especially in tight corners you can enjoy the unusually low pitching and rolling movements. But there are also disadvantages for the occupants. Bumps come into the interior particularly noticeably from the rear axle.
Memories of the BMW X3 would arise if the steering, gearshift and especially the newly developed petrol engine did not leave such great wishes unfulfilled. The steering is unusually imprecise and spongy for a Honda. The brakes could be much more powerful and the standard six-speed transmission seems just as carelessly tuned as the sluggish five-speed automatic.
In the USA, the CR-V is available with either front-wheel or all-wheel drive. The European version also drives like a pure front-wheel drive. The rear axle receives a maximum of 35 percent of the engine power via the hydraulic multi-plate clutch. However, they only flow when the front wheels are clearly spinning. With this 4x4 technology, it is hardly possible to do more than a light operation in loose fresh snow.
Diesel the better choice
The two-liter engine willingly hangs on the gas and convinces with a pleasant sound, but seems overwhelmed in the CR-V. You feel too little of the 110 kW / 150 PS and 192 Nm torque. So, despite the low consumption of just over eight liters of Super per 100 kilometers, you shouldn't think twice and grab the familiar 2.2 liter diesel engine. It's not easy with the empty weight of 1.6 tons, but it fits the CR-V much better.
The diesel engine creates a top speed of 187 km / h and is said to consume an average of just 6.5 liters of diesel per 100 liters. The Honda fan base will have to wait at least another year for the long-demanded combination of diesel and automatic and a more powerful diesel version. In the medium term, the CR-V should also be available with a hybrid engine.
Excellent security equipment
In the interior, the CR-V has made a big step forward. The dashboard is clearly laid out and, apart from some inexpensive-looking panels, is of high quality. The handy steering is easy to hold; however, it remains a Honda secret why only some of the steering wheel buttons are illuminated. The space was already good before and is now even better, especially in the rear. The rear bench can be moved and the backrest angle can be adjusted. The trunk, which is easy to load, has a capacity of 524 to 955 liters. The luggage compartment can be separated horizontally by a board.
The new Honda offers an excellent package, especially when it comes to safety equipment. Honda engineers no longer talk about ABS, various airbags and ESP. If you want, you can get xenon headlights with cornering lights, a radar distance control and the safety system CMBS (Collision Mitigation Brake System), which is available for the first time in the SUV class and works similarly to the well-known PRE-SAFE system from Mercedes. If the distance to a vehicle in front is drastically reduced, the system warns the driver acoustically and visually. If it gets particularly tight, CMBS tightens the front seat belts and automatically initiates emergency braking.
No seat height adjustment for front passenger
The base price for the Honda CR-V 2.0i Comfort is 26,950 euros. The best choice is the CR-V 2.2i-CTDi Executive for 34,900 euros. Except for the DVD navigation system (2,800 euros) and the driver assistance system CMBS (expensive 2,950 euros), it leaves nothing to be desired - apart from a seat height adjustment on the passenger side. There is not even an extra charge.