This is what happens when things grow too big and get too expensive. Over the years, the Civic has ballooned to Accord proportions, prompting Honda to build the City. Now it's the CR-V's turn, so they revived the HR-V nameplate to give us this.
HR-V stands for 'Hip and Smart Runabout Vehicle', according to Honda Cars Philippines, Inc. (HCPI), and it's the exact same one we saw at the 43rd Tokyo Motor Show. Philosophically, the HR-V was designed for people who balance the 'career and active lifestyle'. But in technical terms, it's a compact crossover positioned a step below the CR-V in terms of size and price point.
The HR-V is 241 mm shorter, 48 mm narrower, and 50 mm lower than its bigger brother to be exact, yet it's still able to seat 5 adults, offer the toughness of an SUV, and do whatever the CR-V could for a fraction of the price. If the CR-V is based on a Civic's platform, this one is built from a Jazz.
To give you a good idea what it's up against, look at the Subaru XV, Mazda CX-5, and maybe even the Mitsubishi ASX. But no, it's not a match to the much smaller Ford EcoSport.
Honda's new compact crossover is shaped like a coupe, giving it much better aerodynamics than a brick and a sportier feel than a standard SUV. The rear door handles are then hidden in the pillars to complete the look. It's also designed with Honda's new “Exciting H Design!!!” concept, which explains the 'solid wing face' that connects the grille and headlights.
But if you want the pretty LED Day Time Running Lights (DRS), LED Dual Projector Head Lights, and LED Guide Tail Lamps, those bits only come with the top-of-the-line variant.
The cockpit, on the other hand, is filled with familiar bits we've seen in other Hondas such as the steering wheel-mounted audio controls, 7-inch touch screen display audio, touch panel auto A/C, and configurable ULT seats. Yes, the exact same one from the Jazz with its Utility, Tall, and Long modes to fit cargo in all shapes and sizes.
There are also some new toys in there like the Floating Illumination Rings on the instrument panel with 7 color options and the Electric Parking Brake with Auto Brake Hold.
Hip and Smart
As for the mechanical bits, the HR-V employs a 1.8L i-VTEC engine that's borrowed from the Civic that has the same 139 hp and 172 Nm of torque. It then transmits the power through a new Earth Dreams Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) with paddle shifters. This crossover, however, is purely a front-wheel-drive affair with no AWD option.
Other useful bits and bobs it comes with are Cruise Control, USB and HDMI ports, Multi-Information Display (MID), and Smart Entry and Push Start. It also has a long list of safety features such as driver, passenger, and side curtain airbags, Vehicle Stability Assist (VSA), Hill Start Assist (HSA), Emergency Stop Signal (ESS), and Multi-view Reverse Camera.
With the shortlist of features, the all-new HR-V is indeed both 'hip' and 'smart' as the name suggests. And as we see it, this compact crossover is the perfect middleground between the Civic and CR-V. It has the versatility and toughness of an SUV, but without the bulk.
If you want one, the base 1.8 S CVT is listed at only P1,190,000. But the toys come with the 1.8 E CVT and that will set you back P1,230,000. The LED lights, side curtain airbags, and chrome bits, however, are part of the 1.8 EL CVT package for P1,340,000. There are also Modulo and MUGEN packages available that carries a price tag of P1,290,000 for the 1.8 E CVT Modulo and P1,500,000 for the 1.8 EL CVT MUGEN.