Honda CR-V Review & Prices

The Honda CR-V is a handsome, comfortable family SUV, but it’s quite expensive and alternatives have bigger boots

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RRP £45,930 - £53,995 Avg. Carwow saving £4,753 off RRP
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Reviewed by Darren Cassey after extensive testing of the vehicle.

What's good

  • Comfortable seats
  • Spacious inside
  • Good assistance tech as standard

What's not so good

  • Quite expensive
  • Noisy on the motorway
  • Infotainment system is far from the best

Find out more about the Honda CR-V

Is the Honda CR-V a good car?

The Honda CR-V is a large family SUV with a stylish, modern exterior design, comfortable interior and the option of a frugal plug-in hybrid engine.

With smart, upmarket alternatives as varied as the Hyundai Santa Fe, Kia Sorento, and Peugeot 5008, the CR-V has plenty of popular options to tackle– like a strapping centre-back going up against the technically gifted Manchester City midfield.

Much like a pampered professional footballer, the Honda CR-V is a smart looking thing. It has hints of Volvo from the back, sharp creases in the side, and a big grille with narrow headlights. There’s a cool edge to it.

Things are a bit more restrained inside, but the simple design works well. There are nice squishy materials for the most part, but it doesn’t take much work to find cheap, scratchy plastics. The Sorento and Santa Fe feel more posh and robust.

The infotainment is a mixed bag too, because while the system is easy to operate, the graphics look a bit dated, and the digital instrument display is fine if a little plain.

There can be no complaints about the seats, which are almost sports car-like in the way they hug you, while also being comfy enough to moonlight as sofas. The high driving position is also excellent, a theme that continues to the rear seats, which are pretty spacious, even if headroom isn’t great.

The Honda CR-V is good car, but its price makes it tough to justify over alternatives

Practicality is decent, with useful cubby holes throughout the cabin and a fairly big boot. Curiously, the regular hybrid model has a smaller boot than the plug-in hybrid – the opposite is usually true – at 587 litres and 619 litres respectively. That’s a useful enough size, but it is similar to the Citroen C5 Aircross, Kia Sportage and Hyundai Tucson, which are smaller, cheaper cars.

Those two hybrids are the only engine options – the self-charging model will be better for those who don’t have access to charging, while the plug-in hybrid will suit those who can top up the batteries or are looking for a company car. The plug-in will go a good distance on electric power alone, with up to 51 miles possible when it’s fully charged.

Longer journeys that drain the battery will see economy drop, and there’s quite a bit of road and wind noise at higher speeds. A Volkswagen Tiguan is a more relaxing option for longer journeys.

The CR-V is not the sportiest option, either, but what about around town? The Honda is an excellent choice, because it’s so easy to drive and you get great visibility. Bumps in the road are barely noticeable, and those lovely seats make things super-relaxing.

Despite all these positives, there is an elephant in the room, and that’s the price. However appealing the Honda CR-V might sound, it’s considerably more expensive than smaller family SUVs that are just as practical, and it’s not as posh as similarly-sized SUVs that cost about the same.

Still tempted? Check out the latest Honda CR-V deals available through carwow, where you can also find used Honda CR-V models as well as other used Hondas. Need to sell your car? Well, carwow’s trusted network of dealers can help you get a great price.

How much is the Honda CR-V?

The Honda CR-V has a RRP range of £45,930 to £53,995. However, with Carwow you can save on average £4,753. Prices start at £41,402 if paying cash. Monthly payments start at £473. The price of a used Honda CR-V on Carwow starts at £38,995.

Our most popular versions of the Honda CR-V are:

Model version Carwow price from
2.0 eHEV Elegance 5dr eCVT £41,402 Compare offers

The Honda CR-V starts at around £45,000 with a self-charging hybrid engine, or about £54,000 for the plug-in hybrid option – which means it’s pretty expensive compared with alternatives.

For example, that’s a similar price bracket to the Hyundai Santa Fe and Kia Sorento, which are a similar size to the Honda but are available with seven seats and feel more fancy inside. The Skoda Kodiaq and Peugeot 5008 are also seven-seaters, cost a bit less than the CR-V, and are more practical, too.

Looking at five-seat alternatives, hybrid versions of the Kia Sportage and Hyundai Tucson cost about £10,000 less than the CR-V, and despite having smaller dimensions, have similar-sized boots.

Performance and drive comfort

The Honda CR-V is really comfortable, but it’s quite noisy at motorway speeds

In town

Despite being a pretty big SUV, the Honda CR-V is really easy to drive around town. You get great visibility because the pillars aren’t too wide and don’t block your view. All but the base model get a 360-degree camera system, so you can check the car’s extremities if things do get a bit tight.

Comfort is impressive, too. Sure, you get a bit of a jolt over speed bumps, but generally the CR-V irons out road imperfections and goes down the road beautifully. The brakes aren’t too jerky either, which can be a problem with hybrid models that regenerate energy for the battery as you slow down, so it’s easy to make smooth progress.

Steering is light without being too vague, so it’s easy to place the car where you want it, and the electric motors have enough punch to jump out of junctions when required.

One cool feature is that the throttle has a ‘false stop’. There’s a bit of resistance that you need to push past to call on the petrol engine. It’s good, because it means you can accelerate quickly on the electric motor when required, judging the accelerator prod to not call on the engine unnecessarily. Then, if you do want full power, you just push the pedal further and the petrol engine wakes up.

On the motorway

Although you might think a big, comfy SUV would be the ideal car for long stints on the motorway, the Honda CR-V is actually not as quiet and refined as alternatives such as the Volkswagen Tiguan.

The problem is that there’s quite a lot of wind and road noise, so it’s not as relaxing as you might expect, given the fact that it’s so comfortable because of the cosseting seats and soft suspension.

Because both engines offer the same power output, each is equally adept at getting you up to speed. And in the plug-in model, even if you’re driving on electric power and press the throttle down for an overtake, there’s little delay as the petrol engine kicks in pretty quickly. The engine can groan a bit under hard acceleration, but it doesn’t sound too bad, at least.

There’s a blind-spot camera that shows up on the main infotainment screen when you indicate left, but there isn’t one for turning right, presumably because it doesn’t make sense to look left at the infotainment display while doing so. It just feels a bit clunky, and works better in a Hyundai or Kia, for example, where the cameras display in the instrument screen ahead of you.

On a twisty road

The Honda CR-V is a comfort-focussed family SUV, so it’s not the most agile car for a twisty road. It goes round corners well enough, but it certainly doesn’t encourage you to have fun – it’s competent, but dull.

There are selectable drive modes on all models, so you can switch to Sport to make things a bit more lively; you get heavier steering and sharper throttle response, and plug-in hybrid models get adaptive dampers which make the suspension firmer to improve handling.

Sport mode also changes the sound of the engine in the cabin, but it’s frankly bizarre. It sounds a bit like there are bees trapped behind the dashboard trying to get out. Probably best to keep it in Normal mode…

Space and practicality

The seats are big and comfortable and cabin storage is pretty good, but rear seat headroom is a touch limited

There’s loads of space for those in the front, and you get fantastic seats that are big and comfortable like armchairs, but also hold you in place like a sports car. Couple this with the high driving position and plenty of adjustment in both the seats and steering wheel, and it’s easy to find the ideal driving position.

Storage is plentiful, with a large cubby hole beneath the armrest, a couple of cupholders and a wireless charging pad beneath the dashboard. You also get a 12V connector and USB and USB-C slots to charge your phone. The glovebox and door bins are good rather than great, but overall there should be enough storage for most.

Space in the back seats

Space in the back is decent, with lots of kneeroom and space to put your feet. Headroom is more average, with taller passengers likely to brush their hair on the roof. You do get a lot of reclination, though, so it’s easy to relax on longer journeys and makes headroom less of an issue. The window line sits pretty low, so those in the back have a great view out.

Practicality continues in the back, with fairly large door bins, big pockets on the seatbacks in front, and two USB-C charging slots.

Fitting three across the back is a bit of a squeeze, but more annoying is that the middle seat seatbelt is mounted on the roof and pulled forward, which means it rubs on your neck more than a typical seatbelt.

Putting a child seat in is little effort because the doors open really wide and the ISOFIX mounting points are easy to access. Even big seats should have enough space to the seat in front so you don’t have to move it forward.

Boot space

We’ve already discussed the wide variety of alternatives to the Honda CR-V, but whichever way you look, its boot capacity is merely average among them and outgunned by the roomiest options. For reference, the Honda has a 579-litre boot in hybrid form or 617 litres as a plug-in hybrid.

Among large, seven-seat SUVs, the Peugeot 5008 rules the roost with a cavernous 952 litres when the third-row seats are folded. The five-seat Skoda Kodiaq has 720 litres, while the seven-seat version has 630 litres with the third row down. Both the Hyundai Santa Fe and Kia Sorento are in the same ballpark as the CR-V, with 571 litres and 616 litres respectively in five-seat mode.

If you’re not so worried about having lots of cabin space, there are smaller SUVs with boots that aren’t far off the CR-V’s capacity, yet cost considerably less. The Hyundai Tucson has 577 litres in hybrid form, or 558 litres as a plug-in hybrid, while the Kia Sportage falls a bit behind with 540 litres in plug-in form.

It should be noted, though, that the CR-V’s boot should be more than spacious enough for most people, and it has a useful square shape that means it’s easy to maximise use of the space. You also get a bit of under-floor storage, which is good for cables on the plug-in hybrid. There’s also no load lip to lift heavy items over, and it’s easy to remove the load cover when required.

It’s possible to fold the seats but, annoyingly, you have to go round to the rear doors and do it from there, rather than reaching in from the boot or pressing a button. And once they’re folded, there’s a slight ridge to push longer items over.

Interior style, infotainment and accessories

The Honda CR-V’s cabin looks good, but there are some cheap plastics to be found

First impressions of the Honda CR-V’s interior are pretty good. The design is fairly simple but it works well, with a panel spanning from the middle out to the passenger side integrating the air vents, and physical climate control dials with the temperature housed within them.

You get some quality materials, too, with plenty of squidgy plastics, chrome on areas such as the door handles, and some lovely trim accents. However, when you consider top-spec models cost in excess of £50,000, it’s too easy to find scratchy plastics – on the lower dashboard and door bins, for example. It also doesn’t feel particularly robust.

The infotainment screen is a 9.0-inch unit on all trims, and while it’s not necessarily small, it could do with being a bit bigger in a car this size. It’s a lot better than Honda systems of old, and fairly intuitive to operate, but the graphics are still a little dull and dated. You get wireless Apple CarPlay, but Android Auto is only available through a wired connection.

The 10.2-inch digital instrument display is also standard across the range. Again, the display isn’t the brightest nor most interesting to look at, but it’s easy enough to navigate to the information you need using the steering wheel-mounted scrolls.

Music lovers will be tempted to step up from the base trim, because Advance models get a Bose sound system with extra speakers and a subwoofer. These models also get ventilated seats in the front and heated rear seats, while all models get heated front seats and a heated steering wheel.

MPG, emissions and tax

There are two hybrid engines available with the Honda CR-V – one is a self-charging hybrid, the other is a plug-in hybrid, and they both have the same power output.

Starting with the regular hybrid, it combines an electric motor with a 2.0-litre petrol engine, providing all-wheel drive. The maximum power output is 184hp and the 0-62mph time is 9.4 seconds, while official tests put the fuel economy at 42.8mpg.

The plug-in hybrid is more expensive to buy, but if you can keep the battery charged, it will provide much lower running costs. You would have to run it almost exclusively on electric power to hit the official 353mpg figure, but fairly regular charging should return over 60mpg. Regular charging should return better economy than alternatives because the 50-mile range is more than you get in plug-in hybrid versions of the Kia Sportage, Hyundai Tucson and Peugeot 3008.

You’ll pay less for road tax in the plug-in, too, because its low emissions put it in one of the lowest bands, and it’s the favourable option for company car buyers because of its lower benefit-in-kind rate.

Safety and security

The new Honda CR-V has not been safety tested yet by Euro NCAP, but the previous model received full marks with a particularly high score in the adult occupant protection section.

All models have Honda’s Sensing 360 technology, which uses sonar, radar and cameras to build a 360-degree view of the world around the car to help inform various driver assistance systems such as lane-keeping assistance, adaptive cruise control and collision avoidance.

Other safety kit seen across the range includes whiplash-lessening headrests, unintended acceleration mitigation, a traffic jam assistant and road departure mitigation.

Reliability and problems

The Honda CR-V comes with a three-year, 90,000-mile warranty. That’s one of the poorer offerings around, with Hyundai providing five years with unlimited mileage, and Kias coming with seven years or 100,000 miles. It is at least above the industry minimum of three years or 60,000 miles that some manufacturers are wedded to.

Fortunately, Honda is one of the most reliable car brands you can buy from. The Japanese manufacturer regularly tops reliability and owner satisfaction surveys, and parts and repairs tend not to be too pricey.

Buy or lease the Honda CR-V at a price you’ll love
We take the hassle and haggle out of car buying by finding you great deals from local and national dealers
RRP £45,930 - £53,995 Avg. Carwow saving £4,753 off RRP
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