Honda HR-V is Bigger than the French, the new “SUV” Japanese brand enjoys the strength of the formidable reputation. The HR-V certainly does not spark, but homogeneous, well, it is suitable for prolonged use without problems.
The “SUV” are fashionable. These pseudo-fighters now represent a quarter of the French auto market. At the heart of the segment, straddling the small Renault Captur and Peugeot 2008 compact vehicles such Opel Mokka or Nissan Qashqai, Honda that seems cut expressly for the Old Continent. Besides the “big” CR-V, a recent competitor Renault Qajar become much larger in France while the size of the vehicle bottom gradually, HR-V will arrive in September in France. With such punchline: the excellent reputation of reliability of Japanese manufacturer. Honda has even guarantee a while one million kilometers of its small 1.6 diesel 120 horsepower, just to demonstrate its strength.
The quality of workmanship is also very good. It’s robust. As for after-sales network, it certainly has 80 outlets, but its reputation is second to none. That is what get you to buy it rationally. Otherwise, whatever its qualities, HR-V risk of being marginalized … in a European market where competitors are overstaffed. Alas.
Lines very worked or tortured
Distant heir of the first HR-V 1999, which enjoyed some success because it was small, handy, original, the new comes with a different philosophy. Fini simplicity of a geometric body, no frills. The time is the aggressiveness with very sculpted lines. They throw in the obvious. But we would have liked fewer folds sheet metal in all directions to make rich. But, hey, it’s fashionable.
The interior is well done, everything is in its place. The fuel tank installed in a central position frees up space for one of the most spacious interiors in its class. The slightly elevated driving position seems investigated unless the seatbacks now not back enough. Damage: it’s black, austere, without much personality. The enthusiastic speech on the relevance of design and colors … in which we were treated during the presentation seemed really surreal! A little more heat does not hurt seriously in this world, too rational. Why not offer domestic less sinister as the version sold overseas (see picture below)?
Fuel-efficient engines, good for CO2
The motors are available in two numbers: the 120 hp 1.6 diesel therefore already known about the Civic and CR-V, and a new mechanical petrol 1.5 130 horses. We tested both engines around Lisbon. The diesel engine is always a little hollow at low speed and start – like all small current diesels. But it displays a fine ranging in all other cases. The manual gearbox is firm but well-guided.
The 1.5, he comes in manual or optional automatic transmission with a continuously variable CVT we tested. “The sensations are close to a manual transmission” through “a specific management software in Europe,” promises Honda. Alas, this is not the case. All is revealed in fact with two faces: mild and pleasant in town or on flat road at a moderate pace. But, as always with these transmissions, as soon as it churns accelerates hard. The response time is too long: the engine racing unnecessarily before the power comes. Unpleasant Hill or highway. On a road course with little city, however, we consumed 8.3 liters per hundred with the petrol version, which is correct. The vehicle is not “malussé” nor gasoline nor diesel.
Suspensions well maintained but firm
The suspensions are dry but the air rises is not too sporty, unlike a current trend. The road behavior poses no problem. However, it is more pleasant with the gasoline engine, lighter. The nose gear appears more accurate and better traction. Even if a strong acceleration bullies just the front wheels. The HR-V finally appears very neutral in its reactions. Note that this is a false 4×4 … false adventurer. Despite its appearance, it will be delivered in France in two-wheel drive.
The HR-V, produced and marketed in Mexico for several months in Japan, is a flawless marking vehicle, well designed and built. He has no projecting characteristic. It is a pure Japanese product, homogeneous, that will not trigger a lightning strike. A car to last, what is ultimately essential.
Rates start at 21,000 euros for the 1.5 Elegance manual version. There are essentially at this price, nothing more. The Executive NAVI version allows access to the touchscreen GPS (too slow), to 23,670 euros. The optional automatic transmission remains affordable: 1.300 euros. One option: 550 euros for the metallic paint. The diesel costs 2,300 euros more than the gasoline model. A supplement that certainly helps tackle the major route more easily, but which is justified for short trips.
- Test model: Honda HR-V 1.5 Executive CVT NAVI: 24,970 euros
- Power output: 130 hp (gasoline)
- Dimensions: 4.29 meters (length) x 1, 60 (top)
- Qualities: Good finish, robust reputation, roominess, overall homogeneity
- Faults: austere interior, sometimes unpleasant CVT, firm suspension, ergonomics details
- Competing: Opel Mokka 1.4 Cosmo Turbos (BVA): 23,510 euros; Nissan Qashqai X DIG-T Tronic Acenta: 26,100 euros