– Article/Photos by Rod Fuller –
CR-V, has been with us for 25 years, but what’s with its name? Is it just a collection of letters? Or, do they mean something? The name quite simply describes what it is, a “Comfortable Runabout-Vehicle” as Honda announced in 1995 when the car was first launched.
And there is truth in advertising as it delivers on that promise, offering practical/versatile and ‘comfortable’ motoring in a medium SUV. Many growing families (even ‘fur baby’ families) have adopted a CR-V as their vehicle of choice over the years and with good reason.
It’s available as a five or seven seater, with 2WD and AWD options, although seven seat models are 2WD only. All variants have a CVT transmission and are powered by a 1.5lt DOHC VTEC turbo engine (140kW/240Nm), except the entry level Vi, which has a 2.0lt SOHC VTEC engine (113kW/189Nm).
I feel, the CR-V is one of the most attractively styled SUV’s available today; it’s a very well-balanced design, that’s beautifully sculpted to create a vehicle that has a purposeful and strong stance as well a commanding road presence.
I drove the VTi-L7, the higher grade model of the two seven-seaters. It’s very well appointed, leather trim and seats (heated in front and power adjustable for driver), dual zone climate-control (air vents for all, roof mounted for third row seats), panoramic sunroof and 7” touchscreen for the infotainment system with eight speaker stereo, Sat Nav, Bluetooth and Apple Car Play.
Every-day the CR-V lives up to its promise of being an easy comfortable drive. It’s smooth and effortless, riding on 18”alloys with 235/60R18 tyres (complete with full size spare). Ride quality is good and compliant over most road surfaces, with a well-balanced mix of steering responsive, agility, ride comfort and handling.
The turbo engine ensures it has the ‘get up and go’ when you need/want it and also delivers reasonable fuel economy (7.3lt/100 combined listed). I spent most of my week in the CR-V around town and it still delivered 10.4lt/100km, which was acceptable.
CRV’s interior is pleasing to the eye, with all controls/switches logically placed and in easy reach. Front seat occupants enjoy spacious head/leg/hip/shoulder room with an expansive view of the road ahead. Rear seat (second row) passengers in the seven seater though, will notice the 62mm reduction in headroom compared to the five seater. No problem for the kiddies, but Grandpa won’t be comfortable with his head touching the roof. Third row seats fold down flat when not in use.
VTi-L7’s power tailgate allows access to the cavernous luggage space that CR-V can provide. Seven seats up – 150lt capacity, five seats up – 472lt, two seats up (full IKEA mode)-967lt. There’s also 10 cup/bottle holders, large adjustable centre console bin, four USB’s, two 12V in the front (but none in the boot) and a HDMI and AUX connection.
Honda Sensing is available on CR-V AWD models, providing a suite of safety features designed to support the driver in keeping them safe on the road; including Forward Collision Warning, Collision Mitigation Braking, Lane and Road Departure Warnings, Lane Keeping Assist and Adaptive Cruise Control. Honda Sensing isn’t available on 2WD CR-V’s, but VTi-L7 does have front and rear parking sensors, three mode reversing camera and LaneWatch.
Honda offers a five year unlimited km warranty on all CR-V models. Service intervals are set at 12 months/10,000km and VTi-L7 is priced from $38,990 (MSRP). Looking for a medium sized SUV for your next novated lease and need a seven seat option? CR-V VTi-L7 looks good, goes well and as its name suggests, might just be the Comfortable Runabout Vehicle for you.
What does it look like as a Novated Lease?
|RRP (including GST)||$44,290|
|Annual Savings with a Novated Lease||$2,789|
This data is from the 2020 Novated Leasing Guide produced by Fleet Auto News.