- Stylish aesthetics
- Impressive interior
- Good to drive
- CVT auto gearbox
- Limited engine range
- Not the most refined ride
Stylish, spacious crossover SUV
When Honda released its first HR-V onto the market in 1998, it was one of the first crossover SUVs. Back then, this mode of transport wasn’t quite as popular as it is today, but with the new-wave in full swing, Honda reintroduced the latest HR-V in 2014 to compete with cars such as the successful Nissan Qashqai. The HR-V is available exclusively with 2WD, and offers a refined, comfortable ride, a striking design, and an exceptional interior. There was huge expectation when the HR-V was re-released, and it certainly lives up to the hype.
Contemporary design and lots of practical storage space
One area in which the HR-V stands out is in its excellent interior. The design is clean, contemporary and practical, whilst the boot is one of the biggest in the class. Equipment levels are also generous, even on entry-level models.
The dashboard design is just as striking as the HR-V’s exterior. The modern contemporary dash might look fancy, but it doesn’t take much getting used to, thanks to well-placed, well-damped controls. Attractive textured materials adorn most of the cabin as well, which give the HR-V a classy feel, though there are some hard plastics if you look hard enough. The gloss-black finishing trim adds to the prestige feel, and it’s hard to argue that the HR-V’s interior isn’t amongst the best in the class.
Space is another area in which the HR-V excels. There’s more than enough room in the back seats for tall passengers, whilst there’s plenty of neat cubbyholes scattered throughout the cabin. The boot is also one of the biggest in the class, so there’s more than enough room for most family needs. Seating flexibility is similarly impressive, with Honda’s ‘magic seat’ arrangement offering almost endless possibilities, allowing you to transport awkward shaped items with ease.
Equipment levels in the HR-V are impressive, no matter which trim you specify. The entry-level S trim comes with enough kit for most buyers, with climate control, cruise control, automatic lights, and alloy wheels all featuring. The slightly more expensive SE trim offers lots of kit for very little extra cash, adding leather interior features, and rear electric windows- additions that most families will appreciate.
All in all the inside of the HR-V is a well-thought out package. It’s ergonomic, contemporary design will win the hearts of a lot of families, whilst the ample space, and generous equipment will only tug on the heartstrings further. It really is an exceptional combination.
Good to drive, relatively comfortable ride
Most cars in the crossover SUV class aren’t particularly exciting cars to drive, but the Honda HR-V is undoubtedly one of the best. The steering is well-weighted and sharp, and you can confidently throw it into a country road bend. It’s also light enough to make it easy to drive around town, aiding you when you need to weave in and out of traffic, or slipping into tight parking spaces. There’s still a fair bit of body roll in the corners, but it’s to be expected for a car in this class.
Suspension and Chassis
The stiff suspension undoubtedly adds to the HR-V’s driving experience, but it does hinder the level of comfort in the ride. It copes well around town at lower speeds, with speed humps and potholes dealt with in an easy manner. At speed however, loose road surfaces shudder through into the cabin. Road and engine noise are also noticeable at speed, so the HR-V isn’t the most refined long-distance motorway cruiser.
Gearbox options in the HR-V come in two guises. The standard throughout the range is a six-speed manual transmission that features a short, snappy shift, ideal for quick gear changes around city centres. An optional CVT automatic gearbox is also available, though it’s not nearly as impressive, due to the fact that it costs almost £1000 more, and it revs the engine hard, causing plenty of intrusive engine noise.
Diesel is the pick of the bunch
When it comes to deciding how you want to power your HR-V, you’ve got the usual two options: petrol, or diesel. There’s one of each currently on offer, though the diesel makes more sense as it’s more economical, greener, and has a more accessible power range.
If it’s power that you want from your HR-V, you’re probably going to be a little disappointed with the engines on offer. That shouldn’t matter to most buyers however, as family SUVs aren’t designed to be especially pacy. The fastest in the HR-V range is the diesel-powered 1.6 i-DTEC model, which produces 118bhp, and features a 0-62mph time of ten seconds flat. This model has 2bhp less than the 1.5 i-VTEC petrol, but accelerates faster, whilst the engine doesn’t need to be revved as hard to access the engines potential.
Eco-friendly buyers will be relatively pleased with the engines on offer in the HR-V, but especially with the 1.6 i-DTEC diesel. That’s because it produces just 104g/km of CO2 emissions. It might not come with free road tax, but at £20 a year it still represents good value, as well as being nice to the planet. Money-savers will also be attracted to this engine, due to the impressive 71mpg fuel efficiency figure. That really is exceptional for a car in this class, and it should save you plenty of money day-to-day.
Whichever engine you choose to go for in your HR-V you’re going to get an efficient engine with enough power to cope with day-to-day family living. The diesel makes more sense however, due to its increased efficiency and lower emissions.
Full marks in NCAP safety tests, with impressive safety kit throughout the range
Like nearly every car in its class, the Honda HR-V easily achieved the highest possible 5-star NCAP safety rating. Honda as a brand is known for its commitment to improving safety standards, and the HR-V’s impressive results are testament to this. The scores of 86% in adult safety, 79% in child safety, and 72% in pedestrian don’t look the best on paper, but consider the fact that the HR-V is one of the latest cars to have been tested, and was therefore put through much more stringent tests than the HR-V’s rivals. The HR-V also comes with plenty of safety kit, with six airbags, and automatic city braking both featuring as standard.
Good value for money, if you avoid the cost of new-car depreciation
The Honda HR-V represents impressive value for money for family buyers. This does depend on which specification you choose, but generally speaking fuel efficiency is impressive throughout the range (with no model achieving less than 50mpg), whilst CO2 emissions are lower than average for the class. Honda’s incredible reliability record will also save you plenty of money on garage bills in the long run.
Insurance groups for the HR-V again depend on which model you choose to go for. The range starts in group 18 for the entry-level 1.5 i-VTEC S, and climbs up towards group 20 if you’re tempted by the range-topping 1.6 i-DTEC EX. Generally speaking, whichever model you plunge for, you won’t be paying any more than you would for an equivalent rival.
Depreciation is a large factor with the HR-V, but only if you choose to buy from new. With first year depreciation for new cars as high as 40%, you’re better off opting for an inspected used equivalent.
The Honda HR-V is the latest in a long line of entries into the family crossover SUV market, and it’s entered straight in towards to the top of the charts. It’s stylish, features an impressive interior, it’s good to drive, whilst it also features some impressively efficient engines. There’s very little to complain about with the HR-V, and it’s fair to say that the best-selling Nissan Qashqai has got some seriously stiff competition to contend with.
Buying a used Honda HR-V online with Carspring
If you’re after a used Honda HR-V for sale, it can all feel like a bit of an ordeal. What, with long days spent around gigantic car supermarkets, or time spent trawling through classified websites, looking for that ideal used HR-V. Carspring makes it simple. Buy your next used Honda HR-V online with the touch of a button. Simply decide on the model you want and choose how you want to pay.
Looking to finance your used Honda? Not a problem, we work with our carefully selected finance partners to ensure that, if you’re paying monthly for your used Honda HR-V, you know you’re getting the best rates. What’s more, with any Carspring used HR-V, you also get our 14-day money-back guarantee and 6 months’ free Carspring Warranty. Plus, you don’t have to leave your home. We’ll deliver your used Honda to you at a time and place of your choice.
*This is an approximate figure based on the range of the car’s list price and the AA’s average 1st-year depreciation cost of 40%.