Honda CR-V: Welcome to the fleet

  • We welcome a new Honda into the Parkers fleet
  • Mud and snow tyres replace four-wheel drive
  • Is it worth the £25,925 asking price?

Last winter was horrible wasn’t it? Wind thrashing, sleet, fog, snow – it was nasty. You can imagine my delight when I learnt the next long-term test car on offer was a Honda CR-V.

With a reputation for reliable and confident motoring, the Japanese cross-over (a cocktail of hatchback and off-roader characteristics, since you asked) seemed the perfect choice in which to brave the inevitable winter weather.

While it most certainly looks like a four-wheel drive, there’s something quite intriguing about the particular car we have here. It’s fitted with Honda’s clever 1.6-litre diesel engine, which only powers the front wheels.

Honda's new 1.6-litre diesel engine made its debut in the Civic before arriving in the CR-V

This immediately made me think about the snow. You see, four-wheel drive cars have a serious advantage in the white stuff. They have far more traction, so it’s lots more difficult to get stuck.

No matter though, because it appears the CR-V has some mud and snow tyres on it. They're beefy-looking affairs which look perfectly geared to inclement conditions. That should ensure enough traction to get me around. It would be good to see how it fares off-road too, but we’ll have to wait and see if that opportunity presents itself. 

Chunky mud and snow tyres look like they'll be capable in bad conditions

The main reason not to have four-wheel drive on a car like this is to lower the running costs thanks to a more efficient drive-train. That is certainly one of this car’s biggest selling points. You see, even though it’s a large car, it’s claimed to return 62.8mpg during average driving and it emits 119g/km of CO2. That latter figure matters because not only does it dictate how much car tax private drivers pay but it plays a huge part in how much tax fleet drivers pay each month too.

We'll be keeping a close eye on the CR-V's fuel consumption

It’ll be interesting to see how close we can get to the claimed fuel economy. Very often it’s impossible to get anywhere near the figures during normal driving. They’re measured in laboratory conditions and thus are very difficult to replicate on the road.

I’m also interested in how the CR-V performs. The 1.6 has 118bhp and 300Nm of torque, which translates to an official 0-62mph time of 11.2 seconds. I won’t be testing its top speed out though, don’t worry.

I’ll be testing the practicality too. I lead a varied lifestyle and it’ll be good to see how it does transporting racing gear, ferrying friends and carrying groceries. Honda says there’s 589 litres of load space in the boot, which is nearly double what you’d find in many hatchbacks. It’s certainly big enough for my usage anyway.

The car is in SE-T specification, which means it gets a swish sat-nav system along with all of the usual fare on SE models. Highlights include cruise control, Bluetooth connectivity, automatic lights and wipers, a rear-view camera and parking sensors at both ends of the car.

Sat-nav is standard on SE-T models and includes a rear-view camera to help with parking

My last car had nearly £10,000-worth of optional extras installed, but the Honda has twenty times less. The only additional thing is that metallic paintjob, which will set you back £500.

The list price of £25,425 means the car I’m driving costs just under £26k. On the face of it that seems fairly reasonable considering the size of the thing, the low running costs and the kit on board. Stay tuned for updates as I find out whether it’s worth it.

Miles: 359

Fuel economy: n/a