2020 Honda CR-V review: Simply better

    There’s nothing fancy right here, simply healthful automotive goodness.
    Craig Cole/Roadshow
    Honda merely does it higher. No different mass-market automaker builds as many all-around wonderful autos. With unnerving consistency, this firm’s merchandise are usually nicer to drive, extra fuel-efficient, spacious inside and of upper high quality than fashions fielded by rivals. The CR-V crossover embodies that ethos of excellence. A gross sales chief in America for greater than 20 years, this perennially well-liked nameplate competes within the coronary heart of the crossover market, battling opponents just like the Nissan Rogue, Kia Sportage and Volkswagen Tiguan.

    LikeComfortable accommodationsExcellent crash-test scoresCavernous cargo maintainHigh-quality cabin

    Don’t LikeAntiquated infotainment systemWeak CVT performanceGrumbly engine

    To preserve the CR-V contemporary and assist it fend off opponents which were redesigned extra lately, fashions just like the Toyota RAV4 and Ford Escape, Honda has made quite a few enhancements for 2020. Plenty of latest expertise and options have been added, however the worth of a base LX mannequin solely creeps up by $600. What’s new for 2020? Headline information for the most recent mannequin yr is the inclusion of Honda Sensing, which is now customary throughout the CR-V’s mannequin vary. This is the automaker’s helpful suite of superior driver-assistance expertise. Among different issues, it consists of lane-keeping help, ahead collision warning, street departure mitigation and adaptive cruise management.

    Another essential change was made underneath the CR-V’s hood, the place the bottom, 2.4-liter I4 engine has been dropped. A turbocharged, 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine is now customary gear in each mannequin, delivering 190 horsepower and 179 pound-feet of torque. Maximizing that output is an unremarkable repeatedly variable transmission. Providing drivers with loads of selection, front- and all-wheel drive is obtainable on each mannequin, from LX, EX and EX-L to the range-topping Touring trim. For 2020, the CR-V is obtainable with only one engine, a 1.5-liter turbo-four.
    Craig Cole/Roadshow
    For 2020, just a few much less important alterations have been additionally made. The CR-V is fitted with new headlights, the entrance and rear bumpers have been reworked, contemporary wheel designs are supplied and three new exterior paint colours be part of the palette, together with Aegean Blue. This shiny metallic hue is what my take a look at automobile is slathered in and man, does it look good. Even on a depressingly overcast winter day in Detroit, this paint pops.

    If it matches, it ships Thanks to intelligent engineering, Honda autos usually present extra cargo house than rival fashions, and the CR-V is not any exception. Behind its second-row seat, there’s greater than 39 cubic toes of room. This cargo house is broader and deeper than you would possibly count on, because of its low ground. Fold the backrests down and that determine grows to almost 76 cubic toes. That’s extra in each measures than you get in an Escape, Tiguan or RAV4 — not leaps and bounds extra, however extra all the identical. 

    For added comfort, the 60/40-split rear seat can both be dropped by pulling handles on one of many backrests or through a pair of levers within the cargo space. This is a considerate contact that makes residing with this automobile just a bit simpler, and it is one other instance of how Honda does it higher. 
    Not solely does the CR-V excel at transporting cargo, it is adept at shifting individuals, too. The seats in my Touring-trim tester are coated in leather-based that is nicer than you would possibly count on on this automobile phase, although it’s blacker than the Mariana Trench at midnight, which makes the cabin look a tad on the extreme aspect. Unfortunately, that is the one hue supplied with that “Aegean blue” paint, however a light-gray inside theme is accessible with different exterior colours. I’m normally not a significant fan of Honda seats, however this automobile’s entrance buckets are extra snug than I anticipated. The again bench has ample house for all however the lankiest of passengers, even when the underside cushion is only a whisker too low. Cabin fever Outpacing many opponents, the CR-V’s inside is fabricated from properly grained plastics and the construct high quality is unsurpassed. Everything matches collectively because it ought to, and nothing is free or in any other case frail-feeling, except for the mechanical shifter sprouting from the dashboard. It’s fairly sloppy in its gate and unsatisfying to make use of. Plenty of sentimental plastics are employed on frequent contact areas like the center armrest and the higher sections of the entrance door panels. Portions of this attractively textured materials have pretend stitching molded in. I can not resolve if that is flagrantly low-cost or a pleasant complement to the contrast-color stitching used elsewhere.  High-quality supplies and an ergonomic format are hallmarks of this Honda’s inside.
    Craig Cole/Roadshow
    One factor I’m not so divided on is the simulated wooden trim. As injection-molded timber goes, it is fairly convincing, resembling lumber harvested from an olive tree. Thanks to its creamy-tan background and contracting streaks, it helps brighten up the in any other case inky-black cabin. Improving the CR-V’s versatility, its heart console was additionally redesigned for 2020. With a sliding and flipping divider, it will possibly carry a wider array of things than earlier than. Another good contact is the array of roof-mounted seize handles this automobile is fitted with. There’s one for every outboard seat. This Honda’s inside is straightforward to love, however one factor could possibly be improved and it is proper in entrance of the driving force. The CR-V’s instrument cluster appears to be like bizarre, an odd mixture of analog gauges and a digital show. Yes, it reveals loads of info and, no, it isn’t exhausting to learn, however the format and colours used are simply unattractive.  Technology and options Making Honda Sensing customary gear for 2020 is a big profit to customers. Aside from this assemblage of driver aids, the CR-V provides loads of different expertise.   All CR-Vs however essentially the most fundamental mannequin include a 7-inch touchscreen entrance and heart on the dashboard. This show is slightly smaller than I’d wish to see, however it’s simple to succeed in, being mounted up excessive, plus there is a quantity knob, which was not all the time the case with Hondas in latest mannequin years. Unfortunately, a tuning dial is nowhere to be discovered, for those who nonetheless use that type of factor.  There’s no scarcity of house within the CR-V’s second-row seat.
    Craig Cole/Roadshow
    That show is house to an egregiously outdated infotainment system. On the plus aspect, its efficiency is passable, however the consumer interface is a multitude and there is sufficient gloss and shade gradient on its numerous menus to make it really feel such as you simply time-traveled again to 2005. Fortunately, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are each supported, plus Touring fashions include an embedded navigation system. My top-shelf tester can be dressed up with issues like distant engine begin, rain-sensing wipers, dual-zone local weather management, an digital parking brake and heated entrance seats. Ensuring everybody’s cell units are totally juiced, it even comes with 4 USB type-A ports and a wi-fi charging pad. Keyless entry with push-button begin is included as effectively. Sprightly efficiency Even with direct gasoline injection and a turbocharger pumping additional air into its quartet of cylinders, the CR-V’s small-displacement engine solely delivers 190 hp. On paper, that is a quite unimpressive determine, however in apply there’s nothing to fret about. This crossover’s efficiency is greater than sufficient, with loads of squirt for tackling freeway on-ramps, overtaking slower-moving site visitors or simply plain outrunning the man one lane over. The CR-V handles effectively, it has a lightweight, virtually tossable really feel to it and the meaty steering wheel makes it simple to drive.  This automobile’s repeatedly variable transmission makes essentially the most of that steady of ponies, however I can not assist however really feel its efficiency could possibly be even higher. During mild acceleration, that stepless gearbox appears to stop the engine from revving as freely because it ought to, wanting to carry it round 2,000 rpm. It’s simple to dig slightly deeper and push previous this wall, however in regular driving the transmission is not a very prepared associate. Perhaps it is attempting to restrict inside noise. Even underneath average masses, that 1.5-liter engine is about as pleasant-sounding as a perturbed toddler two rows behind you on transcontinental flight. I do not keep in mind it ever sounding so disagreeable within the Accord or Civic.  Aside from a grumbling engine, this crossover is usually nice to drive.
    Craig Cole/Roadshow
    At least this powerplant is fuel-efficient. With all-wheel drive onboard, my CR-V tester is rated at 27 miles per gallon metropolis and 32 freeway. These figures end in a mixed rating of 29 mpg. You guessed it, Honda is healthier than most at doing extra with much less. It’s nothing new, however one factor I really like is the automated brake-hold function this Honda provides. It’s customary on each mannequin. Plenty of different luxurious and even mainstream autos have this, however I all the time welcome it. Basically, it makes ready in site visitors slightly simpler as a result of the automobile can maintain itself stationary with out you placing any stress on the brake pedal. When the sunshine turns inexperienced or site visitors forward clears, simply roll on the throttle and away you go. Best of all, for those who do not like this helpful driver support, simply go away it off.   Excellence at an inexpensive worth There’s a lot to love in regards to the Honda CR-V, from its spacious, well-built inside to the spectacular gasoline financial system it returns. Pricing is one other laudable attribute of this crossover. Including $1,120 in vacation spot costs, you possibly can drive house in a base LX mannequin for $26,170. There’s not a lot to gripe about with the 2020 Honda CR-V.
    Craig Cole/Roadshow
    Naturally, my loaded Touring mannequin prices rather more than that, however it’s nonetheless extremely affordable. Remember, we stay in an age the place you possibly can simply possibility a pickup truck previous the $75,000 mark. With extra fixings than a Thanksgiving desk, my tester checked out for simply $35,845. In this case, pricing is simply one other factor Honda does higher.

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