By on October 3, 2006

07honda_cr-v046.jpgI’m a suburban husband, father of two who owns a large dog. I commute 19.5 miles to work five days a week and spend my weekends shuttling between home and Home Depot. I take the family on a road trip twice a year. And even with gas back to two bucks and change per gallon, I’m tired of pouring my hard-earned money into my SUV’s jumbo-sized gas tank. Honda made the all-new 2007 Honda CR-V for me. Whether I want it or not is another question.

At first glance, Honda’s cute ute has donned a German suit. Honda’s ditched the boxy shapes and hard angles that defined the CR-V in favor of Bimmeresque curved sheetmetal and an Audi-like rear sloping triangular back window. Dark under-cladding adds pseudo-macho appeal to the Germanic pastiche, while the spare-tireless rear door (which now swings upwards hatchback style) takes it away. Although the Chrysler Aspen has a lock on the worst snout of the year, the CR-V’s squashed dual grills and square plastic warts offer stiff competition. Aside from the nose, the CR-V’s design is a deeply, suitably, fashionably bland.

07honda_cr-v045.jpgFortunately, Honda has resisted the urge to super-size the CR-V. Thanks to the subversion of the aforementioned spare tire, the new model is actually some three inches shorter than its predecessor and, even better, only 70 pounds heavier (despite improved crash protection). The CR-V also sits three-quarters of an inch lower to the ground, eliminating any remaining illusions that Honda’s baby SUV is anything more than a tall hatchback that’s either good or very good in the snow– depending on your tires and whether or not you stump-up the extra grand or so for full-time four-wheel drive.

Enter the CR-V and experience the joys of ergonomic correctness. All the trucklette’s switchgear and controls are intuitive enough for the cognitively challenged, with dials that are more legible than the top line of a DMV eye chart. Washable plastics cover all major surfaces and buttons– except the leather wrapped gear selector, steering wheel and cruise compatible seats. The center stack is a vast improvement over the previous effort (file under faint praise), with the rich-sounding MP3-ready radio finally assuming its rightful place below the air vents.

07honda_cr-v047.jpgDespite being butched-up with a touch of chrome, there’s no escaping the minivan/bread van stigma engendered by the gear selector’s dashboard placement. At least passengers can snigger in comfort. While putting three abreast in the back is almost as kinky (and kink inducing) as it sounds, four full-size adults enjoy plenty of head, leg and elbow room. The CR-V’s cargo capacity is more than merely adequate, with a new, removable shelf forming a “trunk.” But the tumble forward rear seats can’t quite get out of the way for serious schlepping. If Honda had found a way to stow them under the floor a la Odyssey, they would have had a killer ap.

The CR-V’s main advantage over a “proper” SUV is fuel efficiency. The front-wheel drive base version gets 23 EPA miles per gallon in the city, 30 on the open, unimpeded road. That’s because the 3389 pound machine is motivated by a normally aspirated 2.4-liter i-VTEC four cylinder engine– a derivative of the Acura RDX’ turbocharged 2.3-liter engine. While the CR-V’s erstwhile powerplant is free from the turbo lag bedeviling its big brother, the CR-V’s engine is also free from turbo boost. Is it slow? In a race between the CR-V and North America, my money’s on continental drift. Zero to sixty takes ten seconds.

07honda_cr-v055.jpgThe CR-V’s fully independent front strut/rear multilink suspension and quicker turning steering rack are tuned for stop-and-go traffic, strip mall parking lots, speed bumps, grade school drop-off lanes and moderate highway cruising. In other words, the CR-V puts the soft into soft roader. Sure it’s quiet, refined and comfortable; with safe, progressive body lean and seriously capable brakes. But you’d never mistake the CR-V for anything other than a fuel efficient people carrier. 

How exciting is that? Not very. But both Honda and I know that no one in their right mind ever bought a CR-V for its dynamic brilliance. Honda created the cute ute or “crossover” genre because its customers want to sit tall, look butch (in an inoffensive kinda way) and not waste any money at any stage of the ownership arc. Mission accomplished.

The CR-V offers its loyal fan base more of everything they want for not much more money (the CR-V is still hanging out in its twenties). While pistonheads like me might hanker for something with a little more oomph like, say, a V6 RAV4, the truth is Honda's cute ute buyers have their eyes firmly focused on the bottom line. And the bottom line here is that the CR-V is still the best buy bar none.   

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71 Comments on “2007 Honda CR-V Review...”


  • avatar

    It’s refreshing to read a piston-head review a car they’d never own, but give it its fair rating. It does what it does the best. It doesn’t do what I’d want a vehicle to do, but that’s not the point. Nice review.

  • avatar
    Jonny Lieberman

    My ex had the last gen CRV. I was shocked by how much I enjoyed driving it. 

    Though, wasn’t the gear-selector on the last-gen dash mounted?

  • avatar
    shabster

    Quality, informative review.

    It’s great that Honda didn’t grow this vehicle in size.

  • avatar
    Robert Schwartz

    2.4-liter i-VTEC four cylinder engine– a derivative of the Acura RDX’ turbocharged 2.3-liter engine.

    I think that it is more likely the same motor used in the base Accord sedan.

    Was it more pleasant to drive than the RDX. is the price difference between the 2 vehicles worth it?

  • avatar
    Martin Albright

    The new CRV seems to have been inflicted with a design feature I find particularly annoying: The truncated rear window which leads to an enormous D-pillar. Not only does it seriously cut into rear vision (leading to a greater likelihood of backing over little Timmy’s bike in the driveway) it’s also ugly. But the Nissan Murano, Subaru Tribeca, Toyota RAV-4, and now the CRV are adopting this feature. Why? Is there some unwritten rule that every CUV/Crossover/Macho Wagon is required to have it? What’s so bad about having a bigger rear window? This is a utility vehicle, after all.

    My second gripe would be with the liftgate. Another follow-the-leader feature that has been on virtually every minivan/CUV/SUV/Wagon since the 80’s. I understand the concept (a 5’1″ suburban mom doesn’t want to have to lean over a 2′ tailgate to put groceries in) but it’s dismaying that as near as I can tell there’s only one CUV/Crossover/Wagon that has a true tailgate, and that’s the Honda Element. True, the side-opening door of the previous generation opened the wrong way (due to the CRV’s wrong-side-of-the-road Japanese heritage) but it had two huge advantages: 1.) It allowed for an honest-to-god full sized spare, and 2.) it meant that you could change your tire on a fully loaded vehicle without having to unload all your possessions by the roadside, which seems to me a great advantage especially for a vehicle that has mild off-road pretensions.

    I haven’t seen any of the new ones up close, but I can’t help but think that this new CRV has lost most of the distinctive features that set it apart from the other CUV/Crossover vehicles. Now it just blends in with the crowd.

  • avatar
    Jonny Lieberman

    The D-Pillar is an unfortunate side-effect of the “German Suit.”

    Hofmeister Kink, of course, but also take a look at most VWs, especially the GTI/Rabbit.

    Check that — especially the new IROC concept (Scirocco) which sports the only blind spot that can compete with Toyota’s FJ.

  • avatar
    a_d_y_a

    Honda is becoming Toyota and Toyota is becoming Honda.
    Although both are good value for money.

    One ismoving to utility and other is moving to performance.
    Didnt see that one coming.

  • avatar
    qfrog

    Tail lamps look like they are from a volvo…. roof line from a mercedes R class minicrossovervan.

  • avatar
    Martin Albright

    The D-Pillar is an unfortunate side-effect of the “German Suit.”

    Oh, yeah – how could I forget that hideous Audi SUV.

    Is it an attempt to make the rear of a wagon/SUV look more rakish and svelte? ‘Cause to me it just looks bulky and wierd.

    As for the FJ, that’s got to be one of the most bizzare design features I’ve ever seen – a deliberate blind spot that serves no apparent purpose. Maybe they thought people would put a mural on that part like a 1970’s custom van?

  • avatar
    taxman100

    My 82 year old father has a 2003 CRV – I have to be honest, I don’t understand the appeal of the vehicle. The ride is choppy, the engine is noisy, and the steering is very, very stiff. It is also kind of tipsy when cornering, and the center driver’s console has broken twice since he bought it.

    He bought it because he had bad knees, and the seat height was correct for him, plus the closest dealer to where he lives is the Honda dealership, and when you are 82, driving outside your neighborhood can be confusing.

    Every time I drive his car, I cannot wait to get back into my Grand Marquis – much more comfortable, quieter, and smoother.

    Ironically, he is the old guy and owns a Honda, and I’m the younger guy (40 yrs old) who loves my Grand Marquis – go figure.

  • avatar

    While I agree with the first comment that it’s a fair review from a true pistonhead, I do have to call one thing into question – the contradictory nature of the final 3 paragraphs. So you herald the efficiency and middle-of-the-road, ‘best buy’ nature of the vehicle, but railroad it on the power and 0-60 times? 0-60 on an efficiency compact SUV? I don’t quite understand.

    Otherwise, good write-up…

  • avatar
    FunkyD

    Honda neither offers a small V6 nor a manual transmission in the CRV. 2 strikes there.

    At least the previous one had some distinction in the styling department. This one inspires neither offense nor enthusiasm, just apathy. Strike 3, you’re out!

  • avatar

    I want to join the chorus criticizing the D pillar. Driver vision should be paramount in the design of any personal vehicle. And it looks ugly, too.

  • avatar
    William C Montgomery

    Robert Schwartz:

    I think that it is more likely the same motor used in the base Accord sedan.

    The current Accord’s, CR-V’s and Acura RDX all use Honda’s excellent K-series engines, which are DOHC, 16-valve, i-VTEC variable valve I-4 engines. The ‘06/’07 Accord’s and ’07 CR-V’s share the naturally aspirated K24A8 variant and the RDX gets the K23A1 that is turbocharged and 1mm narrower bore diameter.

    Was it more pleasant to drive than the RDX. is the price difference between the 2 vehicles worth it?

    Well, that depends on how you define “pleasant” and how much money you have. The CR-V is more pleasant over potholes at low speeds. The RDX give more pleasure to the sporting driver carving turns through a winding canyon. Is it worth it? If you don’t mind parting with an extra $8-10K (plus the cost of extra speeding tickets) the RDX offers decisively greater performance (i.e. not even close). All I can say for certain is that you will mind much less if your kid pukes in the CR-V.

  • avatar

    From Safe Speed [UK]

    news: for immediate release

    Research findings published today by Autoglass warn drivers of 4×4 vehicles about the dangers of A pillar blind spots.

    The Safe Speed campaign has been highlighting this very real danger for years, but warns drivers that it isn’t only 4×4 vehicles that suffer these problems.

    ‘A pillar’ blind spots are believed to be a common cause of ‘Sorry Mate, I didn’t See You’ (SMIDSY) crashes, and are especially dangerous to bikers.

    Following our work on the issue with Bike magazine, published in September 2004, Department for Transport commissioned urgent research. We believe that
    the research was completed in March 2004, but it remains unpublished. We’d like to know why.

  • avatar
    Jonny Lieberman

    re: Farago.

    the problem is that with vehicles so high up, you cannot see the road in the side mirrors.

    Less than an hour ago, I had to lower both rearviews in a CX-7 to fit it into a tight spot, clearning an acura by inches.

  • avatar
    FunkyD

    Jonny:

    You would think that in this day and age of computer controlled everything, it wouldn’t be that difficult to add a feature (or option) to rachet the side mirrors down when the transmission is put into R (or have a button near the mirror adjustment that does the same thing).

    Just little touches like that would do wonders for customer impressions of even an Aspen ;-).

  • avatar
    William C Montgomery

    Ronin317:

    While I agree with the first comment that it’s a fair review from a true pistonhead, I do have to call one thing into question – the contradictory nature of the final 3 paragraphs. So you herald the efficiency and middle-of-the-road, ‘best buy’ nature of the vehicle, but railroad it on the power and 0-60 times? 0-60 on an efficiency compact SUV? I don’t quite understand.

    It’s a right-brain / left-brain thing. On the one hand it is a great pragmatic value. On the other, its lack of vigor fails to excite. Toyota upped the standard for this class with the V6 RAV4, albeit at greater cost. Others are sure to follow. But not Honda. If you want the excitement factor in a small Honda SUV you must upgrade to the luxury-badged Acura RDX (which is still slower than the RAV4 although it handles far better). I don’t think it is contradictory to praise practicality while observing that the CR-V has been outclassed in the acceleration department by its foremost competitor.

  • avatar
    DrVali

    Tailgate/liftgate – the vehicle that got it right is the Volvo X70. 70/30 liftgate/tailgate.

    The tailgate is squat enough not to be a problem when loading and since it is a tailgate, you can lower it and actually sit on it while tailgating. Best of both worlds, and I can’t figure out for the life of me why it isn’t duplicated on other vehicles.

  • avatar
    maxo

    Re: Ronin

    There is a difference between “railroading” and “colorfully mentioning” the vehicle’s 0-60 times. Just because this is an SUV review we can’t find out about its performance? I appreciate knowing performance numbers for all cars reviewed here so I can put them all in perspective.

    Of course on the flipside, Consumer Report reviews like this make me want to stab my knees with forks:

    -2006 Infiniti G35 Coupe
    High: Acceleration, conering, looks
    Lows: Cupholder placement, rear seat legroom

    Of course the cupholders in my 3000GT are actually inside of the center console :) I bet some CR writer got a shiny gold star from his editor for rippin up the cupholder placement on that one.

  • avatar
    Joe C.

    DrVali – Exactly!

    The 30% tailgate keeps stuff from flopping out – like items toppling from plastic grocery bags. A short tailgate makes much more sense as a seat when you need one, and the 70% liftgate gives you more room to load than the window space on a full-sized liftgate.

    Seems like a no-brainer. Must cost more than an additional dollar to manufacture: There’s our answer.

  • avatar
    Joe C.

    One more advantage – if you need a flat load floor for an item longer than the interior, just leave the taligate open and the liftgate closed.

  • avatar
    Hutton

    Did a quick PhotoChop to see how this would look with a “normal” D-pillar… much less horrible, I think… have a look

    http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y182/jayRC81/crv_fix-1.jpg

    and another view…

    http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y182/jayRC81/crvfix2.jpg

  • avatar
    MW

    Honda seems to be on a mission to punish people who want actual utility from their small wagon-type vehicle … first they killed the Accord and Civic Wagons, now they produce this vehicle with no stick shift and seats that don’t fold flat? I think I’ll stick with my Element, despite its shortcomings (relatively poor mileage due to bad aerodynamics, no third seatbelt in the back, awkward doors in parking lot situations).

  • avatar
    kablamo

    I think that’s a very good review, in the sense that it’s a fair assessment of a purely functional (not enjoyable) product. Another recent Honda disapointment =(

    I don’t know if i’m the only one, but I actually like the 2-tiered front bumper – it’s not too extreme and differentiates it. I do agree with the others though, that D-pillar is just plain wrong. It doesn’t suit this vehicle, rarely suits *any* vehicle, and on top of that impedes vision. Seriously, what the hell? I can’t think of a single “pro”.

  • avatar
    Joe ShpoilShport

    I thought the old Ford wagons got the tailgate right. Pull down for loading, and opening from the right (showing it’s American heritage) when accessing.

  • avatar
    Joe ShpoilShport

    Oops!….not to mention the power-down window.

  • avatar
    rheath2

    In this ugly front end contest, why did we forget the show pony, the B9-Tribeca?

    Ex girlfriend of mine’s mother had a loaded CRV and I rode shotgun in it a few times. The engine was a little noisy and the ride a little choppy, but nothing extreme. However it’s that blandness that was it’s downfall for me.

    I’m a Jeep sorta guy (Cherokees, Wranglers, etc), so I’m used to noisy engines and choppy rides. I guess I was expecting something ride-wise more like a larger Civic and less like a very gussied-up Wrangler. I don’t care if a vehicle is loud or rides roughly, as long as it has a purpose served by those aspects. Seeing as how no CRV is ever going to be trekking into the Sahara or going mudding, I wish it was a little more refined like many of Honda’s other products.

    Maybe the gussied up Wrangler wasn’t the best analogy. Maybe more like a Wrangler sized Liberty.

  • avatar
    dhathewa

    What’s wrong with a 10 sec 0-60 time? When I was a kid, I think 10 secs 0-60 was considered pretty sporty. It’s not as though 10 seconds is dangerously slow – it’s just not a rocket ship.

  • avatar
    JimHinCO

    Definately not my cup of tea…but it does appear Honda is right on with their target market. I too don’t like the D-pillar window…thank you for the “photo-chop” of what it could look like (see above by Hutton).

    Maybe most of society isn’t into the “fun” of driving a car any longer? I know lots of folks who just see it as a chore to drive anywhere…I see it as an opportunity to have fun (while staying a bit safe of course…deer are very disrespectful of the rules of the road!).

  • avatar
    Martin Albright

    I thought the old Ford wagons got the tailgate right. Pull down for loading, and opening from the right (showing it’s American heritage) when accessing.

    It wasn’t just the Fords. My family’s ’69 Nomad Wagon had the same setup: The tailgate had two handles, one on the outside right side and one inside the tailgate, in the center. Pull on the outer right-side gate and it opened like a door (complete with a little “step.”) pull the center handle (which, because it was on the inside, you could only do with the window rolled down) and it dropped flat like a tailgate. Perfect!

    I didn’t realize the XC-70 had a tailgate. My dad’s V-70 wagon has the basic one-piece liftgate that all wagons and SUVs now seem to have.

  • avatar
    Lesley Wimbush

    Oy Jonny, you would hate parking what I’m driving this week! Fortunately, the Escalade pickemup truck has a camera… in its ass.

    I’d hazard a guess that anyone who buys the Honda SUV isn’t really concerned with peformance. Whenever I come up behind one, it’s usually with a groan, or sigh of resignation, since typically, they are the slowest damn drivers on the planet. Especially if they’ve got one of those “baby on board” signs in the rear window. In which case, watch out, because chances are pretty good that they’ll wander over into your lane… usually without signalling.

    “while putting three abreast in the back is almost as kinky (and kink inducing) as it sounds, four full-size adults enjoy plenty of head…”
    (works soooo much better edited like this, no?) ;)

  • avatar
    Seth

    Author has missed the point completely Just as they always do (expected better from TTAC but…)

    Not all suburban fathers with two kids and a dog will find CRV the best fit. Why? Simple.. first off the dog has problem jumping up and down SUV… Car based wagon is a better kinder choice. Next up.. dog wants to look out the window and stuff but SUV’s high derriere doesnt let even large dogs do that.

    Second off the kids.. while the narrow rear seat (kinky for 3 as put by author) is okay but what if you have visitors (even occasionally?)

    At this point, people will jump in and say “Oh you need a mini van” Duh.. that doesnt cut it for non-soccer moms who may find CRV 80% satisfactory…

    Nah.. Carmakers have gotten sloppy and lazy. They cant wean themselves off the fat profits off SUVs.

    Honda should build a large station wagon like a Volvo V70 with option of rear facing third row seat for half the price. Same goes for Toyoda which can build a more efficient station wagon and replace both Rav4 and Highlander at the same time.

    Europeans are smart with their estate wagons… Americans are dumbasses as usual…

  • avatar

    Honda does build a lovely Accord wagon for the JDM, its just a matter of convincing America its cool even if it doesn’t have a Hemi.

  • avatar
    Rakinyo1

    You guys at TTAC are never satisfied. I mean do you guys have anything nice to say about 1 vehicle and leaving it at that?

  • avatar
    Terry Parkhurst

    Every SUV should have cameras, not only in the tail-end, but also the sides, since as Jonny noted, they are so high up, you don’t see cars a half-car length up on you. And God help the poor motorcyclists trying to get around these things, especially if the driver is on a cell phone (which is usually the case in technologically-rampant places such as Seattle or the SF Bay area).
    That said, the Honda CR-V has always been easier to take, as a driver, due to the independent rear-suspension in the first models, and now, the fully independent suspension. Thing is, these rigs are only going to be used to haul children and groceries. So why not get a station wagon?
    To my mind, Honda should bring back the Accord station wagon.

  • avatar
    dhathewa

    “So why not get a station wagon?” – Terry Parkhurst

    Good idea. One minor problem – what station wagon? There are so few available.

    The Focus? Exactly what I was looking for but the user reviews on Edmunds are downright scary.
    The various Volvos? Kinda spendy and, personally, I don’t think Volvo’s reliability matches the legend.
    The Toyota Matrix/Pontiac Vibe? OK, maybe.
    Audi or Bimmer? Out of my price range.
    One of the smaller Mazda’s probably qualifies.
    Maybe the Elantra’s available as a wagon?

    Did I miss any? I think that’s about it. That’s why we bought a Rav4.

    And I don’t know if it’s because of the height but I’m quite sure my ’00 Rav4 has more interior room than an old Cavalier wagon but the Cavalier was about a foot longer.

    If you want a wagon-y thing, a CR-V or a Rav4 is not a bad choice. A true small wagon would offer better fuel economy and I’d consider it but, except for the Matrix/Vibe, I just don’t see many worth buying.

  • avatar
    Martin Albright

    Did I miss any? I think that’s about it. That’s why we bought a Rav4.

    You missed Subaru which, at least at one time in the 90’s, had the best selling wagon in the country. AWD, lots of standard features, good reliability record, and on the lower end of the price range (you can get a decent Outback Wagon for well under $25k if you don’t need a turbocharged engine or 6-cylinders, and if you do need those bits, you can still find one for under $30k.)

  • avatar

    I drive and ’05 CR-V. My take on the new styling is that Honda has tried to make the new one look more “crossover” and less “SUV.” Unfortunately with those proporions that also means, “looks more like a minivan.”

    It’s a shame, really. The old one was just masculine enough for me to get away with it. The new one… I’m not so sure.

  • avatar
    HawaiiJim

    One of the modest pleasures of my 2003 Subaru Forester is the sweeping field of vision, no blind spots. I still remember the first days of ownership when I learned lane changes can be so easy. Of course, I still cringe at times at the exterior design, but once inside, all is well. BTW, I also drive BMW 3-series so don’t write me off as a car nerd.

  • avatar
    ghillie

    I can’t believe how much better the CRV looks with Hutton’s simple photo shop adjustment. IMO Honda’s effort is a good example of stylistic signature for its own sake, (seemingly) without stopping to think about whether it looks stupid.

  • avatar
    tyoung9

    “You would think that in this day and age of computer controlled everything, it wouldn’t be that difficult to add a feature (or option) to rachet the side mirrors down when the transmission is put into R (or have a button near the mirror adjustment that does the same thing).”

    So that would be like the Lexus RX types, BMW X5, etc.
    As for “Every SUV should have cameras”, at least the Lexus and Murano do have them at the rear. I think side cameras are only necessary if the driver is unable to turn their head!

    Regarding the D-pillar styling, the Mazda CX7 gets it right in my book.

  • avatar
    Zarba

    My wife has a 1997 CR-V, and loves it. Perfect size for her and the kids. Hedr only copmplaints are weak A/C and that it’s SLLLLLLLOOOOOOOOWWWWWWWWW.

    Darn thing has 125K miles and shows no signs of quitting. Incredible build quality, interior materials, and mechanicals. I’d like to get her a Pilot, but she won’t get rid of it till it dies…

  • avatar
    David Guerini

    Zarba,

    Funny you mentioned a Pilot….my wife and I are coming from the opposite direction: have a Pilot, but looking at the new CR-V. Why?

    Better mileage: when you drive 1500 to 2000 miles a month, the extra 6 mpg (sticking with 4wd) adds up. A car would be better, sure, but *sigh* she likes sitting up higher and (rationalization coming…..) we do have to haul sports stuff and kids around in the summer.

    Style: regardless of your feelings regarding the D-pillar, the styling of the new CR-V is far less utilitarian than the old. It looks like the old CR-V was cross-bred with an Audi.

    Availability of heated seats: What she wants, she wants. And with the heated leather seats you can add the nav system and the back-up camera I’ve read so much about in the comments above.

    All told, the new CR-V is going to get a strong look from us.

  • avatar
    Hutton

    What is all this “sittiing up high” business that seems to be the latest obsession among car buyers… I don’t think that it significantly improves your view of anything. When you drive, you look ahead at the road, not down at it.

  • avatar
    tyoung9

    Re: sitting up high
    go measure an SUV.
    Sitting up high, relative to most cars gives a driver a feeling of security, better visibility and greater seating comfort (relative to a car) because of the driving position and posture.

    Generally you climb (clamber?) up into an SUV and climb into a car, a subtle but significant difference.

  • avatar
    Hutton

    Posture is generally adjustable, via some levers and cranks on the seats both in cars and SUVs.

    And regarding visability, tell me what, on the open road, can you see better from 2 feet higher in the air? The dashboard and beltline are higher too, so it’s not like you’re getting more glass.

    The poor rearward visablity while parking and poor location of mirrors on taller vehicles has been mentioned a few times here… I think that the idea of a taller vehicle equalling better visability is a falicy.

  • avatar
    dhathewa

    In re, “Buy a wagon? What wagon?”

    “You missed Subaru which, at least at one time in the 90’s, had the best selling wagon in the country. AWD, lots of standard features, good reliability record, and on the lower end of the price range…” – Martin Albright

    Well, no, I didn’t miss Subaru, I considered it and rejected it as a traditional wagon. Subaru makes nice vehicles but the entire product line is AWD. A traditional wagon gives me the fuel economy of 2WD. If I ever want an AWD vehicle, I will happily consider Subaru.

  • avatar
    dhathewa

    In re mirrors and rear/side visibility…

    The VW EuroVan had asymnetrical mirrors. The one on the driver’s side was short and wide and optically flat. The one on the passenger side was much taller, a little narrower and convex. In tight parking, you can put your head out the drivers’ side window, so you don’t need a tall mirror but the tall mirror on the other side meant you could see the ground from behind the wheel.

    They were ideal outside mirrors for a mini/midi van.

    VW managed to get a few things in the vehicle absolutely perfect, including the road feel, drivers’ seat ergonomics and cargo capacity. Everything else was poor, unreliable or weirdj or a combination of all three.

  • avatar
    JJ

    Concerning the D-pillar. IMO this new CRV does not sport the hofmeister kink. Look at any given BMW of the last 20+ years, that’s the real hofmeister kink.

  • avatar
    crackity jones

    All you station wagon lovers are, pardon the force here, freaks. Just freaks. Post the link to the garage with your family hearse parked inside. And btw, we’re not here looking for advice on what we really should be buying, we’re here to talk about the SUV in question. Station wagons are the death of masculinity. They’re as bad as mini-vans. If you disagree, then you go Clark Griswold, go on to Wally World. Trumpet your Subaru wagon’s boxer engine. Convince yourself you’re cool. It’s shocking that purported enthusiasts like Claude bring up station wagons, like some cure for someone else, not him mind you. But something you should get if you’re looking at an SUV. Note: this is the reason Ralph Nader is annoying. Telling people who are minding their own business what they should be doing, what they should be buying, and how dumb they are for not listening to him. The reality is, SUVs will continue to be better engineered and get better mileage. Another reality, wagons will never “catch on” in America, no more than navy blue socks and sandals will. Some things are best left to the Europeans. You’re right to continue to review SUVs, not to bash them but to follow an auto trend that is growing from the dumb-doggery of the H2 to the feline econo of the CR-V. Thanks for doing so.

  • avatar
    Hutton

    Crackity,
    Station Wagon as the death of masculinity? You my friend are sorely mistaken. The scale of vehicular masculinity goes as follows:

    (in descending order)

    Rocket-Cars
    Tanks
    Fire Trucks
    Pick Ups
    Muscle Cars
    Real SUVs (Wranglers, Defenders, FJ-40’s)
    Totally sweet wagons, AKA the WRX or Magnum
    Sports Cars
    Sedan
    1996 VW Cabrio
    Horse Drawn Carriage
    Parade Float
    Pink Bicycle with Basket
    Minivan
    Whatever Ralph Nader drives
    Roller Skates
    Whatever you drive
    This Honda CR-V and other Cute-Utes

  • avatar
    dean

    Hutton: regarding visibility. When the SUV craze was in its nascent stages, the added height of SUVs gave you a better view over the cars in front of you. Now that there are so many SUVs out there that argument is moot, but like anything repeated often enough it becomes “fact”.

    Now you hear that argument mostly from women (like my wife, who ruled out an Outback because she didn’t like sitting so low), but personally I believe it is more about feeling intimidated by all the SUVs towering over you than about visibility on the road.

  • avatar
    SherbornSean

    Hutton,
    Just so we’re clear, does the pink bicycle have flowers in the basket, or bottles of Zima?

    In defense of the CR-V, Honda said upfront that it was targeting stylish moms with the new design. Given this (very good by the way) review and the comments lately, it would appear Honda has hit another bulls-eye.

    Or is it a cow-eye?

  • avatar
    blautens

    I had a 2003 CRV until last year – it did everything pretty well (except for the awful plastic trim that finally got paint in the last couple of model years in typical Honda fashion). It just didn’t have much excitement or character. But I really appreciated the engineering behind it. Now I drive a Chevy TBSS – which has more than enough character, and is relatively exciting (in straight lines on smooth roads). As for the engineering behind it, I’d like to meet some GM engineers who worked on the GMT-360 platform in person. Just once…please, God.

    I miss my old CRV…*sigh*

    The new V looks a little less utilitarian, and is missing some cool features of the old one (while picking up some new ones), but otherwise looks okay. It’s one of those cars that you *have* to shop if you’re in that segment, and is probably a smart financial choice, to boot (my old one had tremendous resale value). I’m sorry to see the manual transmission go away, but those were so rare, I’m not surprised. Kudos to Honda for sticking with a 4 cylinder and not crowding the Honda Pilot segment or any of the Acura models. Witness the awkward relationship of the new RAV4 and the Highlander – why would anyone buy the Highlander now?

  • avatar
    crackity jones

    Hutton, that is hilarious. You are right. The CR-V. It’s not exactly masculine. The Honda product planners went female there.

  • avatar
    JimHinCO

    Humorous about the masculinity thing.

    Do so many people really rate their masculinity on their car/truck/suv/van…or is this something someone said in passing that has become fact with very little to no credible, scientific evidence?

    I thought we left these behind in highschool. It reminds me a bit of the Burger King commercial to “reclaim our masculinity”. Who’d of thought it’s masculine to have a 40+ inch waist to match your 40+% body fat to sync up with your 190+ LDL cholesteral count!

  • avatar
    Hutton

    Basing your car buying decision on what others might consider to be manly or girly is obviously silly, so I was kind of poking fun at that. Though I do think it’s good to have some manly indulgences now and then, and cars a good outlet for that. Men should be men sometimes. But I dig the Mini Cooper, so what do I know….

    But my point was, to anyone who goes for the SUV/CUV (instead of a wagon or minivan) because they think it will preserve their image… it won’t. The SUV is the surrogate mommy-mobile, and everyone knows it.

  • avatar
    HawaiiJim

    It’s a scary world out there on the road. If you’re not convinced of that, spend a few minutes standing by the roadside in any busy area, experiencing the full effect of tons of metal zooming by at breakneck speed, barely missing each other at intersections. It’s not surprising that many folks, women and men alike, feel safer in larger SUVs that at least seem above the fray and that have some heft to fight back with. Choice of cars is largely a matter of feel.

    As far as some cars being unmasculine, get real!

  • avatar
    blautens

    Hutton –

    Some of us drive SUVs because a chronic back injury (certainly not helped by a 6’5″ frame and 250 lbs) or some similar malady doesn’t allow them to get in and out of a car without pain.

    And then when I’m in it, some idiot engineer feels the need to add another inch to the center console every year (what gives? There’s no tranny hump, so what the hell are they thinking???), and a sharp crease to the driver’s door panel where my knee will be sharply pressed into it.

    I drove a 2007 Camry all last week – and while I thought it to be a superior driving appliance that could satisfy 90% of all commuting needs, I couldn’t get over the pain getting in and out and the enduring aches from the compressed area available for legs.

    And I had a Chrysler Grand Caravan the week before that, and while it wasn’t awful to get in and out of, the molded surface on the driver’s door they angled to mount the power window switches dug into my leg very painfully.

    Only SUVs seem to get driver’s cabin space correct for me, and sometimes not even then – why my RX330 doesn’t have enough headroom when a similarly platformed ES330 does is beyond me…the RX is many inches taller! But the seat is less adjustable. Why?

    I just got out of a Dodge 1500 Quad Cab, though – and oh, my! The luxury of space! And they’re whoring these trucks out this month. I can’t believe how cheap they are.

    But even I thought it was pretty bad to have to buy that truck just for the driver’s space. But I did think about it…

  • avatar
    crackity jones

    Guys, the comment about the station wagon being un-masculine was my personal thing. Call me ego-bruised if you will. I stand behind it as an opinion.

    The CR-V being feminine came straight from Honda product planners. They targeted the mom-to-be or mom with 1 child. They gave the car feminine lines. They left out a healthy powerplant but gave the car a nav system.

    In the world of design there are masculine and feminine cues. It’s not a head-case thing. It’s something created on purpose for a more elegant or more strong presentation. Look at a F-150 and then an Audi TT. There is a difference.

    If you’ve bought the Phil Donahue line that women and men are basicallly the same except for gender schooling, then I guess you’ll laugh at the idea that a car can be designed to appeal to a woman more than a man. The CR-V is that car. Their ad campaign, CRa-Ve… is a less-than-subtle hint.

  • avatar
    SherbornSean

    Crackity,
    You’re OK, but if BMW puts that twin turbo in the 3 series wagon, I’m buying one whether you like it or not.

    Well, I’ll buy one if I can order it without xDrive, iDrive and a slushbox. Don’t really want leather either.

    If that makes me a freak, so be it.

  • avatar
    crackity jones

    At 300 horsepower, all reason breaks down. I’ll be right behind you.

  • avatar
    aldon

    I don’t know about the ‘best buy’ stuff. A Saturn VUE 4cyl is competative in regards to features and goes for less…

    and IMHO the VUE 6cyl is a better car and you can get it for around the same price.

  • avatar
    johnnycam

    Volvo V70R 300 HP AWD wagon and voted best car to have sex in – nuff said –

    http://uk.news.yahoo.com/05102006/140/best-car-sex.html

    and estate is so much more continental than station wagon – much classier than cute SUV.

  • avatar
    Toxie2725

    [quote]Although the Chrysler Aspen has a lock on the worst snout of the year, the CR-V’s squashed dual grills and square plastic warts offer stiff competition. Aside from the nose, the CR-V’s design is a deeply, suitably, fashionably bland.[/quote]

    No, CR-v wins the ugly-fest. BLand meets ugly in the rear most windows.

  • avatar
    macarthur2

    As Forrest Gump would say (if he saw the new CRV) Ugly is as ugly looks. Lets see begining with the ugly bot dot black trim around the bottom of the body, progressing to a “whazat” grill and a rear side view that is uhm “distracting” to say the least. Climb inside and you will find each door has an ugly silver plastic (cheap) door pull, dash board covering that looks pin holed, leather seats with no power to them (EX-L–26K). I rode in this thing for 10 days with my brother in law and came away really unimpressed–give me the older model, side opening rear door and all. The new CRV is not quiet and the interior quality look around the dash/shifter spells cheap/chintzy. Honda Fumbled and I believe it will cost them. For the same coin the Hyundai Santa Fe is much nicer–don’t take my words go compare them before you comment.

  • avatar
    Dynamic88

    We have the previous generation CR-V, and we too join the chorus against the enlarged D pillar and the swing up gate.

    We love our current CR-V, but we won’t be in the market for a new one. Maybe the next generation CR-V will correct these mistakes.

    One thing not reported on was the spedometer. Our CR-V has a spedo graduated in increments of 10mph, which I find annoying as most speed limits (other than the interstate, and some 50mph roads) end in 5s – 25, 35, 45. I’d like a 5mph increment line for the needle to rest on. Makes for a quick visual check of speed w/o strain on my old eyes.

    Also, there really is no need for a 150mph spedo in a CRV. It’s not a Corvette.

  • avatar
    Moiz

    Ok, well first time I looked at the new CR-V I knew they had made a terrible mistake. It is ugly, it does look like a minivan, and I miss the tire in the back. I don’t know, maybe it improves visability not having it, but I like it, it added that rugged appeal to it. I have a 2001 CR-V, and I bought it because I attend college and realize what a hassle parking is. But the most important reason I bought it, and the one that was given the most consideration by myself was that of comfort in getting in and out of the car. Im 6’1″, not exactly a giant among men these days, but I still have the worst time getting in and out of my brothers sedans, A 05 Mazda6 and a 07 Toyota Corrola, and that is why I went with the CR-V, not to mention the great resale value and storage for all those moves between apartments. But the most disappointing feature of the car, which I didn’t realize until it was too late is that a 2.0 L engine is just not enough when you drive the highway as often as I do and have to switch lanes at some very inopportune times as I have had to do. I don’t understand why there is soo much support for Honda in sticking with the 4 cylinder design. The only reason that seemed to make any sense was that of another poster, to not crowed the marked on its own v6 SUVs. But if I wanted or was in the market for a Pilot and they offered a v6 CR-V, I would still take the Pilot because thats a whole different car in my mind. I like the CR-V because it feels like your driving a normal car but still has the storage and the requisite height to be comfortable in getting in and out of the car.

  • avatar
    lro930

    I like this car. I had a Pilot, but it was not as good on gas as I needed, so the CR-V fit the bill. My only problem, after a year, is that in very cold weather, the tire pressure light comes on. I’ve added air and taken it in for service where they kept it for 2 days, but every time the weather dips below freezing, the light is on again. Then, when it gets milder, the light goes out. Anyone else have this problem?

  • avatar

    my crv is okay.  it rides rough.  yes it lacks power but i struggle to get 24mpg between a mix of city and highway.  it’s shifting is slow to respond, for fuel economy reasons.  yet honda offers a software update to fix this and the dealer refuses to install it because “they can’t recreate the symptoms”.  i carried a person up front, 2 four year olds and another adult in the 2nd row, as well as another adult in the back and it felt like I was doing wheelies.  The sharp tight steering was completely gone, as well as the suspension had lost it’s tightness as well.  When you attempt to test out it’s 4wd prowess, the traction control sometimes brings the vehicle to a halt when you hit deep snow and spin begins.  Then there was the incident with the curb where the stability control failed to engage and the wheel was turned right and made close friends with the curb.  And the feeling that you have no control over the 4wd.  It would be nice to be able to turn it on at will so that when driving on those unsure surfaces, you don’t catch the system “asleep” and you are already in the ditch by the time it wakes up.
    2010 crv 4wd.


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