2020 Honda CR-V Hybrid review: Like a nice night out

It really is fantastic that Honda has not fallen prey to the very same habit to massive grilles as the rest of the marketplace.

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The 2020 Honda CR-V Hybrid is like a good date night that does not go overboard, fiscally talking. Let us say you want to treat your self, but you are not heading all-out with a vacation to one particular of individuals stuffy, a few-figure-for every-plate steakhouses. Possibly you want to shell out just a smidge much more cash than normal and get down with some approachable, quasi-upscale delicacies, like a Cooper’s Hawk or a Wildfire, because you deserve a little something good each individual at the time in a although. Which is what Honda’s new electrified SUV feels like: a fulfilling dinner out that does not split the financial institution for the center class.


  • Effortless on the eyes
  • Effortless on the road
  • Effortless on the gasoline

You should not Like

  • Mediocre infotainment
  • No spare tire
  • Lags opponents in gasoline financial state

Fancy-lookin’ appointments

Whilst the entire Honda CR-V line been given a visual refresh for the 2020 product yr, the new-for-this-yr Hybrid trades paper napkins for cloth with a couple exclusive bits that make it truly feel a tiny much more upscale than any other variant. The new grille integrates properly with my tester’s LED headlights and the revised reduced fascia that provides in some flashy fog lights, arranged in a bar shape on the Hybrid compared to the standard CR-V’s round guys. There is also some particular badging, because who does not really like patting on their own on the back again, as nicely as a tailpipe that’s tucked bigger up into the entire body.

Slide by means of one particular of the CR-V’s doors, though, and that’s the place the bigger-end appreciation truly kicks in. Honda has done a great job revising the crossover’s cabin for 2020. On the aesthetics entrance, I’m specifically impressed with the matte-finish faux wood trim scattered about, a finish normally reserved for much more high priced vehicles (with actual wood). The dashboard, although mainly plastic, incorporates some appealing faux stitching, and there are lots of exciting angles that make the CR-V truly feel a tiny significantly less mass-market place than it is. Heck, even the “floating” infotainment display screen appears to be like quite great listed here. The healthy and finish feels a action previously mentioned CR-Vs past and opponents recent.

But purpose issues much more than kind when it will come to a loved ones auto. Thankfully, you will find lots of it listed here. A revised middle console incorporates an remarkable amount of money of junk-tucking home, and I like the sorta-open-air modularity of the sliding trays that cover the below-armrest cubby. The cup holders are voluminous, equally on the doorway panels and in the middle console, and Touring models like my tester get an Iphone-suitable Qi wi-fi cellphone charger tucked below the press-button transmission controls.

The second row has respectable storage, as nicely, but the genuine reward to being back again there is legroom, given that Honda offers a couple inches much more of it than the opposition can provide. I’m 6 ft tall, and I absolutely was not wanting for house, which indicates little ones ought to have even much more home to faff about. Whilst the additional hardware required for the CR-V Hybrid does not consume into cabin house, it does consider a smidge of cargo capability. At 33.two cubic ft, the hybrid crossover’s storage house is about four cubic ft smaller sized than the Toyota RAV4 Hybrid’s, and it is really about six cubes driving the common ol’ CR-V. The Honda is, on the other hand, forward of the Ford Escape Hybrid, which has just 30.seven cubic ft of stuff storage. If you are seeking for a spare tire, you will not likely obtain it, given that Honda ditched it in favor of the hybrid hardware — a difficulty the Toyota RAV4 Hybrid does not feel to have, given that it nonetheless rocks a backup.

Smooth operator

The crux of the CR-V Hybrid is concealed below the entire body. It relies on the very same two-motor hybrid method that’s in the Honda Accord: A two.-liter, Atkinson-cycle I4 gasoline motor mates to a one.four-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery and a pair of electric powered motors to create 212 horsepower and 232 pound-ft of torque, creating the Hybrid variant the most effective CR-V in the garage. All-wheel generate is standard, and power routes to all four corners by way of a little something Honda phone calls an eCVT, whilst it is really not truly a good pulley-centered consistently variable transmission, as it takes advantage of a clutch to permit immediate motor-to-drivetrain propulsion below mild hundreds only.

This indicates most of the time the CR-V Hybrid is running, the electric powered motors provide the propulsion although the motor sits in the qualifications, focusing on trying to keep the small battery topped off. This Honda does supply an EV-only method, but like most conventional gasoline-electric powered hybrids, it is really only usable for a mile or two at a time. This electric powered-ahead target indicates each individual begin is smooth and laden with torque, and that immediacy proceeds to aspect in at bigger speeds, creating for simple on-ramp hustle or slow-driver passing. When it will come time to juice up, the motor will kick on in the qualifications — the simple fact that the motor revs do not correlate to road speed can be a tiny discombobulating at first, but it is really simple to get used to, even if the motor does increase to a gentle clamor at moments when much more charging is essential. Nature of the beast, I suppose.

Pushing buttons is just not my favored way to shift gears, but packaging is essential when you are seeking to make the most of each individual location in the cabin.

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Various powertrain modes are on supply, which include the aforementioned EV method, but they are not extremely useful. Econ tamps down user inputs in the title of boosting efficiency, and although it will work, it leaves the CR-V Hybrid emotion a tiny pokey. There is a Activity method, which enhances throttle reaction and takes advantage of a audio synthesizer to raise its aural profile, but this tech just feels like a gimmick to me — that’s not the place of this SUV in any respect, and we all know it. There is, on the other hand, energetic audio cancellation, which feels significantly much more acceptable in this use case.

The remaining corners of the CR-V Hybrid’s driving knowledge return to the eating-out metaphor, furnishing an upscale knowledge with a palatable price tag tag. My Touring-trim tester rocks the most significant wheels on supply at 19 inches. They are wrapped in suitably meaty 235/fifty five Continental CrossContact LX Activity all-time tires, which do a great job of soaking up terrible road bits that the steel springs are unable to. The steering is properly weighted, and it turns the wheels — about all the praise wanted on a mass-market place crossover. The brakes are extremely nicely tuned, mixing friction and regeneration into smooth deceleration if you really like applying momentum to prime off the battery, the wheel-mounted shift paddles enable you boost or reduce the regenerative braking to match.

The EPA estimates the 2020 CR-V Hybrid at forty miles for every gallon city and 35 mpg highway — great numbers for an all-wheel-generate crossover that, in my knowledge, are simple to reach with out the lightest foot on the block. In context, though, this Honda’s food remains fantastic, just not as fantastic as what is actually accessible throughout the spectrum of eating places. The Toyota RAV4 Hybrid, by comparison, is much more successful at 41 mpg city and 38 mpg highway, although the Ford Escape Hybrid rings in at forty three highway and 37 city.

See all individuals orange bits? You should not contact individuals.

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Great protection tech, Alright infotainment

A single part of the Honda CR-V Hybrid’s technological complement that will definitely generate accolades with people is Honda Sensing, the automaker’s suite of energetic and passive protection programs. This selection is standard on each individual CR-V, incorporating automated crisis braking with pedestrian detection, lane-departure warning, lane-continue to keep guide and adaptive cruise command. The programs function great, with ACC offering smooth inputs although LKA does not wrestle for command of the wheel to continue to keep the vehicle centered in its lane. Honda’s LaneWatch digicam has last but not least fallen by the wayside in favor of good blind-location checking, which is a welcome alternative that’s way significantly less distracting in observe.

As the prime trim on supply, my Touring tester will come bedecked with each individual tech enhance accessible. The wi-fi gadget charger is positioned nicely and retains the cellphone from inadvertently sliding all over and losing its inductive relationship. Weirdly, though, the two USB-A ports in the entrance supply a paltry one and one.5 amps, the previous of which is just not even plenty of to preserve a internet optimistic charge if a cellphone is functioning processor-intense apps like Waze or Google Maps by means of Apple CarPlay or Android Automobile (the latter integrations are standard on all but the foundation trim). The rear seats, on the other hand, rock a pair of more quickly-charging two.5-amp USB-A ports, which ought to be the standard all all over.

This CR-V also packs a seven-inch touchscreen infotainment method. It really is not the most recent, finest model of Honda’s Display Audio hardware, so the graphics search like they are about a ten years aged, if not much more, specially in the experience of flashier getups from Ford or Toyota. Responsiveness is suitably quick, and the volume knob’s return is absolutely welcome, but it is really substantial time Honda updates its telematics listed here. The backup camera’s resolution could stand to be a tiny bigger, much too.

A single display screen that does not disappoint, though, is the one particular that replaces the gauge cluster. In addition to sporting a exclusive power meter that lets me know no matter if the CR-V Hybrid is manufacturing motive power or recuperating energy, the cluster displays all matter of pertinent info — from the hybrid system’s workings to whatever’s on the radio — entrance and middle to lessen distraction.

Honda’s Display Audio is in dire have to have of some current graphics. Almost each individual competitor leaves Honda in the dust in this arena.

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How I’d spec it

At $37,070 (which include $one,one hundred twenty for destination), the 2020 Honda CR-V Hybrid’s greatest trim is in fact significantly less than present day typical new-auto transaction price tag, meaning you are obtaining hooked up with an appreciably posh knowledge at a mass-market place price tag. Thus, the Touring is the CR-V Hybrid product I’d pick, given that it is really loaded with great options like Qi charging, parking sensors, a arms-free of charge tailgate and rain-sensing wipers. Budget-minded folks will nonetheless obtain lots to like on other trims, though. Pure worth-seekers can get a foundation CR-V Hybrid for just $28,870, with the EX and EX-L splitting the distinction in between the extremes.

Down to brass tacks

Honda’s two most significant opponents in this house are quite nicely packed in their individual rights. The Toyota RAV4 has blockier appears to be like, much more efficiency and a much more fashionable infotainment method, but it feels a tiny significantly less upscale than the Honda. The Ford Escape is quite a lot the very same, presenting much more miles for every gallon than the Honda, but its cargo house is smaller sized and its interior appointments do not truly feel as nicely bolted alongside one another as Japanese opponents.

The 2020 Honda CR-V Hybrid is a great way to treat your self and your loved ones on a funds. For a reasonable amount of money of cash, you get an interior and a experience that borders on luxurious, although the pragmatically minded amongst you will have lots to respect in conditions of storage, efficiency and standard tech.