Honda CR-V Hybrid Review – could we see this in Bermuda soon?
The Honda CR-V has been a popular car on Bermuda’s roads for some time now. We at Motoring Bermuda have not yet seen this model, but it can only be a matter of time.
So, we thought we’d give you a look at what we can (hope) to expect.
More ecologically-minded motorists who want to drive more environmentally-minded vehicles but for whatever reason can’t, or won’t, go 100% electric are increasingly being tempted by a hybrid – especially now they have their foothold in the SUV market.
The Honda CR-V Hybrid builds on an already established brand that dominates the SUV field.
I can put it this simply: We drove from London to Bury in Greater Manchester and back for the weekend on one tank of petrol – and still had fuel to spare.
That’s more than 450 miles.
Thanks to traffic snarl-ups, that was around 14 hours of driving.
That’s nothing short of brilliant.
How? Well to start with – and cut a very long story short – the CR-V’s petrol engine also powers a generator which charges a lithium battery motor which kicks in when it’s a good idea, if you have the right options selected.
The brain juggling the modes behind it all is Honda’s Intelligent Multi-Mode Drive or I-MMD control system, and to be honest, it’s hard to know when you are driving using one or the other.
The insulation and other noise-cancelling tech on the CR-V is so good, this is probably the quietest drive I have ever experienced in a non-100% electric.
Much of the journey began in London in slow-moving heavy traffic which I suspect was when the motor kicked in and operated by electric power a lot.
We also encountered coming to a standstill and more slow-moving traffic when three of the M1 motorway lanes closed at the same time due to an accident miles ahead in the distance.
While it was frustrating to be delayed, we did it in the comfort of knowing we weren’t guzzling up petrol.
When we weren’t stuck in traffic moving at a snail’s pace, we seemed to be stuck in the modern-day eternal hell that is the 50mph average speed cameras for long stretches – allegedly for roadworks, although we didn’t see anyone actually working on those roads.
But this is where the Honda operates at its best. Regular readers may remember how when I reviewed the Honda Civic, I particularly revelled in the brainy speed limiter which (again, comes as standard with the CR-V) stops you edging over the 50mph maximum – and reads and adjusts to temporary speed limit road signs put in place for roadworks.
I still have no idea how it works, but the Honda CR-V must have been saving me a packet on fuel (as well from getting speeding fines) by not edging over 50mph no matter how hard I pressed the accelerator.
In my usual drive, I am constantly staring at the speedometer, accelerating and braking, to keep within the limit – using up much more petrol as well as increasing my stress levels.
Add in the cars other abilities which come as standard – like brake assist, forward-collision warning, lane-keep assist – to the traffic sign recognition and adaptive cruise control – and you might begin to understand it when I say that this is a car which makes driving easier.
This is what is great about the CR-V – it does all the thinking for you.
I’ve already told you it’s comfortable to be stuck in traffic – when we were, a few taps on its large touchscreen told us what the incident was ahead while other drivers were left craning their heads out of the window.
On our drive back the satnav alerted us to delays ahead and gave us alternative options to avoid them without us even having to ask it.
The car sits extremely high towering over other vehicles, so you always feel safe, although like any SUV, you will need to find a little extra space to park it in.
Unsurprisingly, it drives like the petrol or diesel versions (note, there is no hybrid diesel version) and may seem a stiffer ride than its nearest rivals – the Toyota RAV4 hybrid or Lexus UX F-Sport – but is perfectly comfortable to drive.
The range starts with the entry-level S and moves up to the SE, then the SR before the range-topping EX.
Prices start at £ 29,250 for the 2l which produces 143bhp and does 0-62mph in 9.2seconds.
The official fuel efficiency is 51.4mpg – above its rivals.
Admittedly there is slightly less space than the petrol versions boast – 497 litres instead of the usual 561 – because of the batteries.
But there’s still an enormous amount of space in the rear (for kids, teens or even six-footers) and with a hatch that opens so high and doors that open so wide, you’re unlikely to be struggling with day-to-day usage.
A nice touch is handles on either side of the boot, which enable you to drop the rear seats without having to go around to the side doors.
The EX has a powered tailgate which will open when you wave your foot under a sensor (great when you have both your hands full), that really should be standard on all versions.
Obviously, school runs and trips to the supermarket or the tip are something the CR-V handles with ease – I know from my father.
But If you are wondering if I can recommend it to my dad, the answer is I can’t, because the towing capacity of the hybrid is but 750kg compared with the petrol model which can pull 2,000kg.
This article was first published in The Mirror