The Honda HR-V was released way back in 1998 with the first generation HR-V, meant to be a crossover or a mini-SUV, it featured real time 4WD as well as advanced pedestrian safety systems for its time. After eight years out of production, the second generation HR-V was announced as a concept car and eventually came into realization being released in 2014.
The 2016 Honda HR-V Seeks to Fill in the Gap
The Honda HR-V having based on the third generation Honda Fit (or Jazz in some countries) looks like a typical SUV, but then you realize its way smaller, in fact Honda Fit small even; just a bit wider and longer by a few inches. With the larger CR-V becoming more mature looking as it aged, the HR-V looks to be catered towards a younger group of buyers with its angles and curves that makes the crossover look sporty. Unlike the Fit however, the 1.3-liter is replaced with a 1.8-liter SOHC with VTEC making for 141hp. The engine is mated to a CVT plus 4WD for the highest trim in some countries and CVT or 6-Speed manual to FWD for lower trims.
Inside, you are greeted with excellent Honda build-quality. The design is simple yet speaks elegance, a stark contrast to the futuristic cockpit of the previous generation Civic. Situated on the centre console is a 5 inch touchscreen replacing most of the buttons required for operating your typical head unit.
Driving the CVT variant caused minor annoyances once you notice it, while cruising it makes the engine go for the most efficient torque band and stay there so you’re stuck with a droning engine; better turn up the stereos. This is due to the bad combination of Honda’s 1.8 SOHC lacking low end toque and a CVT that NEEDS low end torque. Thankfully you can distract yourself from the droning with the paddle shifters that give you seven speeds to row through when in S mode.
Meant to be a younger looking and by younger includes being smaller than the CR-V, the 2016 Honda HR-V looks like a teenager ready to have fun for the night versus the CR-V that resembles that teenager’s dad reminding the HR-V to come home 10pm sharp. Suspension is sharp owing to the sharp handling of the Honda Fit. The rear seats disappear into the floor when folded allowing for more cargo space. CVT allows for better economy.
While the 2016 Honda HR-V does look like a vehicle meant for younger generations, it’s a step up from the typical hatchback kids nowadays are so enamored with; as it got the looks of a fun car, with the practicality and safety of a boring car. It’s the best of both worlds.