A Refined Improvement Over the Old One

If you’ve manufactured your brain up to purchase a moderately priced, not-so-huge crossover, the 2023 Honda HR-V could be a quite persuasive selection. Right after about 200 miles of driving just one all around Stevenson, Washington, I can confidently say it’s a completely good machine even if it is really not for me. If you like it, then I appreciate it.

The wild accomplishment of the subcompact crossover has begotten automakers crafting exceptional variations of cars in this general sizing and shape, precisely for the North American marketplace. The previous generation HR-V was essentially a tweaked model of the Honda Vezel a Honda Healthy-centered SUV that experienced been on sale in Japan for a 12 months or two before making its way in this article. Now, almost a 10 years due to the fact the Vezel (HR-V) was introduced in Japan, it is time for a new design. Honda disunited the HR-V line, with the United States finding its very own, larger design. 

In idea, the Honda HR-V competes specifically from cars like the Jeep Renegade, Toyota Corolla Cross, Chevrolet Trailblazer, Mazda CX-30, and Subaru Crosstrek. In follow, its reduced selling price, unintimidating demeanor, and right-sized dimensions could possibly be the matter to get sedan potential buyers into a crossover, or massive SUV potential buyers into something lesser and thriftier. An HR-V consumer could possibly also be considering sedan versions like the Nissan Sentra or Honda Civic.

2023 Honda HR-V Specs

  • Base price tag (AWD EX-L as tested): $24,895 ($30,590 which include $1,245 spot charge and $395 optional paint)
  • Powertrain: 2.-liter four-cylinder | CVT computerized | entrance-wheel-push or all-wheel-travel
  • Horsepower: 158 @ 6,500 rpm
  • Torque: 138 @ 4,200 rpm
  • Suppress bodyweight: 3,159 to 3,333 lbs ., relying on trim
  • Seating capability: 5
  • Cargo volume: 24.4 cu ft (seats up) / 55.1 cu ft (seats down)
  • Gasoline overall economy (AWD EX-L): 25 mpg metropolis | 30 freeway | 27 mixed
  • Rapid get: Car-like, affordable, capable, but probably a small tedious.
  • Score: 8/10

The 2023 Honda HR-V now sits at the extremely base of Honda’s crossover lineup, cheaper than the compact CR-V by a few pounds. It is an all-new style, shifting from the previous In good shape-based mostly chassis to Honda’s newest world wide platform that the Civic works by using. So, the HR-V has developed very a bit, extra than 8 inches in duration. Even now, only 1.7 inches of that went to the vehicle’s wheelbase, with the relaxation probably likely to the car’s prolonged-ass hood. 

Now, I have a vendetta in opposition to designers who insist on supplying small cars with tiny engines big, extensive, hoods, (ahem, Mazda), and the HR-V doesn’t escape that ire. However, the HR-V manages to search a good deal greater in individual than it does in pics. The further duration in contrast to the outdated car provides a much more substantial—and it’s possible a bit a lot more station-wagon-like—silhouette, in contrast to the rollerskate-from-Focus on-search of the outdated car. The styling is less fussy, with fewer random traces and surfaces on the aspect, and even larger home windows that improve visibility over the old car. From the front, nevertheless, the HR-V wasn’t everyone’s cup of tea, as some remarked that it appeared to be a bizarro-earth Ford Escape. Personally, I have no solid views, both way I imagine the car’s most effective angles are its rear a few-quarter watch, and beneath particular circumstances, I imagine the front of the vehicle can be flattering, far too. I signify, if you like it, then I like it.

Inside of, a Civic-like super clean up dashboard is flanked by an infotainment monitor that sits on top. The dashboard is coated in gentle-touch plastic replete with stitching, and the honeycomb element, if it wasn’t true metal, however felt rather damn great. The smooth-contact plastic enshrouds the standard PRNDSL shifter, and slips down towards your hip, hiding USB-A charging ports on both aspect of the heart console. Sadly, I didn’t locate a one USB-C port in the HR-V. Oh very well, I guess. The check vehicle was a best-trim EX-L with all alternatives, which include wireless Apple CarPlay which was most likely the snappiest wireless CarPlay I’ve expert to day.

Regretably or possibly luckily, based on the sort of driver you are, the HR-V’s ergonomics have modified with its changeover to the new platform. In a conversation with Honda’s Head of Products Planning, Quincy Tam claimed Honda engineers had been able to match the inside dimensions of the previous HR-V. The old HR-V’s trump card was its top-quality packaging: it had a roomy back seat, a lot of trunk room, a tall driving posture, and a trick folding back again seat with a number of modes to take weirdly shaped products.

Well, the newest HR-V missing its trick rear seat (known as Magic Seat), and all of the latest seats themselves come to feel to some degree close to the flooring in a extra car-like driving situation. For some, this is great. For other individuals, they might choose a a lot more upright, taller driving placement in competition like the Chevrolet Trailblazer, or Jeep Renegade. Numerically, the HR-V rear seat misplaced not pretty two inches of legroom, but room is nevertheless excellent and the seats themselves are softer and additional relaxed than the outdated vehicle.

On the street, the HR-V’s new, more considerable chassis will make by itself acknowledged. The aged HR-V wasn’t undesirable in this area, for every se. It was just sluggish and a finances motor vehicle beneath with a sort of brittle journey and a noisy interior.

This new HR-V cuts all that absent, with a silent inside and a experience that is able of tackling both of those bumps and curves with aplomb. Honda eschewed the old car’s semi-independent torsion beam rear axle for a much more refined multi-website link set up. Now, most HR-V consumers won’t be corner-carving monitor geeks, but the new HR-V is now entertaining on the twisties in methods the previous a person could only dream of. The steering is correct, effortless to live with, and communicative for the kind of car or truck it is. The HR-V is fairly mannerly on the freeway, with lane continue to keep help that does not ping-pong between lines, and experience high-quality that soaked up the Portland, Oregon, place freeways without having batting an eye.

The HR-V is powered by a 2. liter, 4-cylinder motor, mated to a CVT computerized, either sent to the front wheels, or all 4 via an AWD technique. The whole getup statements 158 horsepower, no issue the travel wheels. The procedure alone is great enough I by no means found myself in want of added power for the HR-V, but I’d be lying if I claimed the HR-V was exceptionally quick. The CVT is adept plenty of at acquiring the accurate gear ratio without the engine racing or droning as well considerably, and it’ll even emulate a standard automatic transmission, via pretend shifting, beneath challenging acceleration.

This powertrain is in essence what is in the Honda Civic LX or Activity sedan, but products preparing head Tam stated that there have been tweaks, specifically in the CVT transmission tuning, that are special to the HR-V. In shorter, it’s likely great for most potential buyers. The gas economic system is form of mediocre, though. The EX-L AWD tester was rated for 26 mpg in the city, 30 on the freeway. Around a 30-mile jaunt at 65 mph, the HR-V’s fuel economic system calculator showed a middling 32 mpg.

“The HR-V is an aspirational gateway from Honda’s cars to light-weight trucks,” explained Tam at the HR-V’s press start. To Honda, the HR-V customer is a youthful professional, in search of their initially new car, and is someone who likes accomplishing outdoorsy crap. That’s why they introduced us an hour outside of Portland, in the middle of the woods, to present the car in what Honda thinks is its all-natural habitat. Alright, I guess, but I suggest, aren’t all the OEMs chasing following this mythical 20-anything young expert that likes hiking in the woods on the weekends?

At the very the very least, Tam is right—the HR-V has stepped up a bit and is more of an aspirational car or truck for entry-stage Honda customers. It no longer feels like a budget auto to drive, but as an alternative, just a compact SUV-like style of auto with a superior experience, wonderful interior, and affordable rate. It is the variety of car that a younger adult with a excellent task would be proud to spend their 1st “big kid” career funds on, signaling to all of their good friends and spouse and children that they’ve eventually adjusted tax brackets and are upwardly mobile.

Personally, I almost certainly would not obtain an HR-V it’s far too car-like, and I assume if I’m likely to get an SUV, it’s heading to be an SUV. But not every little thing is about me. I can recognize why anyone would be stoked to get a 2023 Honda HR-V. And, nicely, if you like it, then I like it.

Obtained a idea? Electronic mail [email protected]