Having retreated into a decade of beige design, Honda has come out of its shell with a more exciting range of products. Along with the handsome new Civic Hatch, which launched at the Paris Motor Show, the Japanese giant has unveiled an all-new iteration of its CR-V. With an edgier design and turbocharged motor, the fifth-generation will face off against the new Nissan Rogue and Volkswagen Tiguan when it lands.
The new CR-V will wade into battle with a new 1.5-liter turbocharged engine, punching out 190 hp (142 kW). A naturally aspirated 2.4-liter four-cylinder motor will also be offered up. Both will be combined with a CVT gearbox, with no mention of a manual option.
Along with fresh turbo power, the new car will run with a refreshed suspension. Honda says the MacPherson strut suspension up front and multi-link rear end offer more ground clearance than before, but also shouldn't compromise when keen drivers show it a set of corners.
For many buyers the way the car handles is only part of the equation; the look of the interior is the other. To our eyes, the car wins here as well. Honda has focused on using premium materials, with a new soft-touch dashboard finish and sumptuous seats replacing the cheaper items used on the outgoing car.
As is now the norm, the new CR-V will come with a set of active safety features previously reserved for high-end luxury cars. Lane-keeping assist, automatic-emergency braking, adaptive cruise control and rear cross-traffic alerts are included, along with blind spot warning and automatic high-beam headlamps.
Honda hasn't announced pricing details for the new CR-V, but expect it to remain largely the same as the current model, which starts at US$23,845.