Honda CRV Roadtest
When Honda announced the plan to put a 1.6 i-DTEC diesel engine into their CRV Crossover, their certainly were some bemused faces in our office not to mention among industry insiders. The CRV weighs in at 1600kg which is around 300kg heavier than the Civic powered by the same 120bhp engine. This alone would make you think that the odds are stacked against the CRV. But that isn’t entirely how we saw it when we got the chance to drive it.
First up, let’s get this out there now. The CRV is no Evoque. If you value looks over capability, the Honda won’t even warrant a second look. It is not a beautiful, lithe car but instead a big slice of unapologetic family car and as such it succeeds magnificently. Space inside is ample, the seats are supportive & seem hard wearing, the controls well laid out & concise, the dash plastics are simple and robust giving the whole cabin a “family proof” feel. Which means it isn’t that exciting but it will carry on working long after your kids become adults.
When turning the key to start the CRV, the level of refinement from such a small capacity diesel engine is impressive. The noise at idle is very well controlled and, at pace, very little changes to make you aware that this car is any less than the larger 2.2 i-DTEC car. The engine doesn’t even need to be worked hard to keep up with fast flowing traffic either and it has decent enough reserves to make overtaking reasonably easy too. Real world test mpg wasn’t far off the 62.8mpg boasted by Honda either so all in all, our reservations about the power plant were blown out of the water on this test.
Having said that, it is rather expensive to buy and therefore the P11D Value is high regardless of spec level. And speaking of spec, some levels seem quite miserly equipped for the outright cost. But, if you’re after a large family crossover/SUV and are not driven entirely by image then the low CO2/high MPG cocktail that drives the 1.6 CRV is hard to resist.