2017 CR-V New Car Test Drive
All-new, the 2017 Honda CR-V maintains its basic concept as a compact crossover SUV with a roomy interior. The new 2017 CR-V delivers greater interior space than its predecessor, with an especially roomy cargo area, even though its exterior dimensions have grown only slightly.
Driving characteristics are just as appealing as in past generations, accompanied by enhanced refinement. Stiffening the CR-V's platform allowed Honda to install a softer suspension, increasing the level of isolation from road turmoil.
The CR-V competes with the Toyota RAV4 and other compact crossovers.
Four trim levels are offered: entry-level CR-V LX, step-up CR-V EX, leather-upholstered EX-L, and top-of-the-line Touring. LX models get a carryover 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine that makes 184 horsepower and 180 pound-feet of torque. All other trim levels benefit from a turbocharged 1.5-liter four-cylinder that produces 190 horsepower and 179 pound-feet.
Each CR-V has a gearless continuously variable transmission (CVT). Front-wheel drive is standard, but all versions can be ordered with all-wheel drive. When road conditions warrant, the all-wheel-drive system can distribute greater power to rear wheels for more stable handling and greater all-weather capability.
Alloy 17-inch wheels are standard on LX models. EX trim level and above substitute 18-inch wheels, and the Touring gets its own wheel design.
All versions except the base LX include Honda Sensing, a suite of advanced, collision-avoidance safety technology, including automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, and lane-departure warning. If the CR-V starts to drift, lane-keep assist can nudge the CR-V back where it belongs. About three-fourths of CR-Vs are expected to get the safety package. A rearview camera is standard on all models.
Honda Sensing also includes road departure mitigation, blind-spot monitoring, and automatic high beams. Touring trim adds rear cross-traffic alert. None of those features are available on the LX.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave the CR-V five stars overall, with five-star scores for each separate crash-test. The four-star score for rollover prevention is typical for crossovers and SUVs.
Top ratings also were given by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, which awarded the CR-V a Top Safety Pick+. Note that this award applies only to CR-Vs that include Honda Sensing safety features and LED headlights.
CR-V LX ($24,045) comes with a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine and CVT, plus automatic climate control, four-speaker audio, a rearview camera, cruise control, 17-inch alloy wheels, LED running lamps, keyless entry, and Bluetooth audio. (Prices are MSRP and do not include $940 destination charge.)
All-wheel drive is available for all trim levels ($1,300).
CR-V EX ($26,795) substitutes a 1.5-liter turbocharged engine, adding 18-inch wheels, heated front seats, power driver's seat, automatic headlights, heated mirrors, pushbutton start, a 7.0-inch touchscreen, satellite radio, and moonroof. Also standard is the Honda Sensing suite of safety technology.
CR-V EX-L ($29,295) includes leather-trimmed seat upholstery, a power tailgate, power passenger's seat, driver's seat memory, and eight-speaker audio. Navigation is optional ($1,000).
Touring ($32,495) adds LED headlights, automatic wipers, a hands-free power tailgate, 330-watt audio, navigation, and side roof rails.