The Honda CR-V AWD e:HEV is one of the bestselling SUVs, it’s a family-friendly size, that sports attractive features, and it is really reliable.
For the latest model, Honda have revamped the cars exterior and interior layout, and dropped the petrol and diesel power trains to make way for its e:HEV hybrid system to deliver low exhaust emissions.
In a nod to this environmentally responsible approach Honda have badged it with “blue halo” tags to make it stand out and allow the buyer to spot the difference at a glance. Inside, silver trim highlights give it a fresh look, while outside a new alloy wheel design and wider rear light clusters further set the hybrid apart.
The CR-V has been stretched with a greater distance between the front and rear wheels, giving a better ride and giving the passengers have more leg room. The CR-V e-HEV hybrid has 5 seats which allows space for the battery to be fitted while still giving tons of space. The CR-V e:HEV features a stylish plush interior.
Kerb Appeal: Longer lines, new alloy wheels, redesigned light clusters, all make the CR-V AWD e:HEV a standout SUV
Inside: The passenger space has plenty of head and knee room for five occupants, lots of cubby spaces, while Honda has also made the central transmission tunnel that runs down the car as discreet as possible for better foot space, especially for the middle seat in the back.
There is a leather dashboard and tasteful wooden trim with the only plastic on show on the glove box, though this sports silver highlights giving it a classy feel.
Infotainment: The seven-inch infotainment display screen is neatly intergrated into the dashboard and takes pride of place in an attractive gloss-black housing that sits proud of the rest of the dashboard, there's a touch sensitive side bar for added convenience - however, it's not the easiest system and takes a while to get used to but once you are familiar it is a dream to use especially the radio with a well - placed rotary dial for the volume, with climite control also easy to operate. The silver interior trim highlights and lifts the interior ambiance. The Honda sat nav Garmin system is clear and easy to use with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto to complete the sytsem.
Boot space: To accommodate the hybrid powertrain the boot space has lost nearly 95 litres. More room can be achieved by folding down the rear seats allowing a huge 1,638-1,694 litres of space to open up – it’s easy to do thanks to a mechanism that makes the backseat fold with one tug.
Driving & Performance: The CR-V e-HEV driving experience is great, with an, all new steering system that responds quickly and precisely to the demands. Add to that a 25% reduction in turning the wheel from lock to lock it also becomes sharper and more positive, gone is any vague feeling when cornering. The upgraded suspension is well equipped to deal with British roads, smoothing out those potholes.
Thanks to the high driving position the CR-V motorway driving becomes a pleasure, there’s great visibility courtesy of the high driving position while the new design reduces any wind or engine noise at motorway speeds to a mere whisper.
The engine is a hybrid producing 181bhp, that’s reasonably fast - 0-62mph in as little as 8.6 seconds, efficiency figures 42.8mpg and 151g/km of CO2 for the front-wheel-drive hybrid model, these figures dropped to 39.8mpg with 161g/km for our four-wheel drive version. The only drawback as with all with hybrids, is that towing is somewhat restricted, the e-HEV can only tow up to 750kg.
Safety is also excellent with the Honda Sensing suite of active technology that includes autonomous emergency braking and lane-departure warning as standard across every trim level.
Equipment The CR-V is bristling with kit from smart entry parking sensors, a rear-view camera and the Honda Sensing suite of safety kit, which includes collision-mitigation braking, forward collision warning, lane-keeping assistance, lane-departure warning, road-departure mitigation, adaptive cruise control and traffic-sign recognition. All models get part-digital dials.
There’s leather interior, front heated seats, active cornering lights, blind-spot monitoring and cross traffic monitoring, heated steering wheel, head-up display, hands-free powered tailgate, heated rear seats, a panoramic sunroof and wireless smartphone charging.
The Female First Road Trip Test
We always judge a car on its practicality, how it handles in traffic and as such as we had a trip organised to take out Honda CR-V e:HEV on a road trip from our base in Manchester to Paris via Vic-sur-Aisne.
Passengers – five adults and one pet dog, all the luggage was loaded the night before ready for the journey south from Manchester to Felixstowe. Then on to the ‘La Shuttle’ to Calais and onward to our destination Vic-sur-Aisne.
With a start time of 4am we all packed into the e:HEV, the journey was pleasant and easy, even with five of us and our young puppy. It was surprising how much room there was inside when we set off.
The journey to the ‘La Shuttle’ took around five hours, with a stop off for a coffee and a toilet break, both for us and our puppy.
On the motorway the CR-V was a pleasure to drive and when we arrived at the Euro Tunnel loading point in time for breakfast no one complained about the fact that they had spent most of the previous five hours in the car, which was testament to the comfort levels of our transport.
Following breakfast and customs clearance we loaded on Euro Tunnels ‘Le Shuttle’ for our 35 minute journey across to Calais.
At Calais it was a 2 hours journey to our destination, this is where the satnav came into its own perfectly guiding us to our destination without any fuss or confusion.
The following day we travelled into the city of Paris and again our CR-V delivered - good on the busy roads, easy to park, and comfortably at home in the city and once again the satnav earned its keep.
The CR-V certainly passed all the tests and receives full five-star rating and using our favourite phrase: Honda CR-V e:HEV knows how to look after its passengers.
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