IT’S A BEST BUY BECAUSE:
The HR-V packs excellent cargo room and decent passenger space into a pint-sized package, and it strikes a nice balance between lively handling and a comfortable ride.
Acceleration is middling, and the engine can get loud when accelerating.
The HR-V’s second-row seat bottoms flip up to create a narrow-but-tall storage space that’s handy for hauling items such as a tall potted plant or a big flat-screen TV box.
WHAT IS IT?
The HR-V is Honda’s subcompact SUV; it shares some of its basic design with Honda’s similarly space-efficient Fit subcompact hatchback. The HR-V’s lone powertrain is a 141-horsepower 1.8-liter 4-cylinder paired with a continuously variable transmission (CVT). Trim levels ascend through LX, Sport, EX, EX-L, and Touring. All models are available with front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive save for the Touring, which comes solely with AWD. Standard on all HR-Vs are a USB port and 17-inch alloy wheels; EX and above models get the Honda Sensing suite of safety features. Available features include a sunroof, heated front seats, keyless entry and starting, a 7-inch touchscreen display, Honda’s LaneWatch right-side camera, a navigation system, leather upholstery, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, and LED headlights and foglights.
The HR-V is carried over with no changes for 2020 after receiving a substantial update for 2019. That freshening included a styling facelift, an updated interior with new materials, additional sound-deadening material, and a new Display Audio system with Apple CarPlay/Android Auto functionality.
The EPA rated the front-wheel-drive HR-V at 28 mpg city/34 mpg highway; all-wheel drive models are rated at 27/31 in base LX form and 26/31 in all other trim levels. In Consumer Guide® testing, an all-wheel-drive EX-L with Navigation averaged 27.0 mpg in 75-percent city driving.
VALUE IN CLASS
The HR-V’s biggest strengths are its surprisingly cavernous and configurable cargo area, nicely sorted ride/handling balance, and accommodating cabin with impressive outward visibility. You might wish for a bit more power from the engine, but the HR-V is still one of the best and most versatile vehicles in its class