Review: 2012 Honda CR-V EX-L

Posted on 21. Nov, 2011 by in Auto News

"Hey Brendan," runs the e-mail from our illustrious ed, Ed: "I wonder if before you take on the most difficult story I wanted to today. Interesting power, the new Honda CR-V."

Fat chance.

"Do not be done in the free bacon!"

Wait, what now? Free bacon? I'm there.

The next thing you know, I'm ensconced in the driver's seat of the latest Honda mild tweak A total redesign of the 2012 Honda CR-V, roll through the bleached-out stubble Southern Cali country, mentally projecting the headlines of our beloved colleague, colleagues and co bloggists car-writey types.

"The New CR-V: Honda has lost its mojo?"

"2012 CR-V: Honda Mojo has lost it?"

"Totally Revised 2012 CR-V casts doubt on fate of Honda Mojo".

"The top 10 cars of Playboy Playmates Owned! Also, CR-V something-something Mojo".

Here's the thing: It's way too much slapstick, fooferaw, bluster and blather about apparent design Honda burglary. It's not a slump, it is a Strategy. The question is: Is it working for the CR-V, where it failed with the Civic?

As the critically-unacclaimed Honda Civic, almost every piece of sheet metal on the new CR-V is very different – but not so that you would notice. In fact, as our convoy snakes through the bleached-out California landscape, I'll take a triple when someone double-lane changes from our line and dives for the off-ramp. I miss a turn? Wait, no: it's just some lunatic in a last-generation CR-V.

On the other hand operates the conservatism. Gone is the somewhat frumpy melting ice cube of the previous generation, which, if you squint a little, looked a bit like the '11 cute-ute had muffin top. The strong three-bar corporate grille gives the new CR-V some presence, faux skid plate treatment butches things up a bit, and from there, think back current Tribeca. There is little to inspire, but also to insult little.

Inside should be known to everyone, the cockpit, the Accord in a recent SAT. Hard plastic surfaces abound, about a lot of hay to be made in various publications. However, it is perfectly acceptable, and should wear well except for the occasional bits trim painted silver. The between-seat storage bin, captain chairs and dash-mounted shift lever, the minimum mini-van in the earlier model, but keep total, it's a bit less utilitarian and more car-like.

A multi-angle rearview camera as standard. Across the area, as well as an eco-coaching tool that is green around the gills when you drive carefully Also standard: Bluetooth hands-free function and a USB port for audio. If you have an iPhone, you can run Pandora through the stereo system, if you have a BlackBerry, the car can read your text messages. There is now an optional DVD player in the rear savages calm. Just enough to keep tech-date.

Product specialists were quick to point out how clever the rear seats were muffled in a position flat-folding with a single train from both sides, or by levers in the cargo bay. Do not expect the magic of Hogwarts just fit the rear seats, but again: easy-to-use, works well, does not feel like it's broken. Honda has also verspundet the old cargo compartment for a more standard layout. Dog owners beware: the cargo floor is very low at 23.6 ", ideal for older pooches The rear doors open a full 90 degrees for maximum kid-wrangling..

I say the alert my co-pilot for launch, internationally acclaimed rock star and noted loud walker-Blake Z. Rong – Cato my Clouseau, my Hooch Turner – as we do in a corner too hot and all-season tires howl injured indignation. Understeer? Oh, sure. There is less role than one might expect, and the CR-V is perfectly capable of this hectic along winding country roads, but there is joy to be found here? Not much.

Besides the, threw the young in the cabin with lateral-g is a sure way to end up. Cleaning vomit from the headliner Forget the Hooning, instead stick to the easy commute (10% more cushioning stroke) and noise level in the cabin who are decent, until you start interested in speed.

This new CR-V has yet to hear a 5-speed gearbox, but a revised one, and clucks of disapproval, you might think that is a misstep. Why? Since six is another, right? Despite the fact that every other manufacturer of Nigel Tufnel syndrome, the five-speed box in the CR-V is perfectly decent fuel economy (claimed 22/30mpg) seems to suffer, and will undoubtedly be years of trouble-free operation, because it must not fixed a V6 in it.

Mind you, the '12 CR-V show a steep hill and the 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine – with all 5 HP more this year – can get a little fight. Engaging Eco Mode you feel suddenly are trying to tow the Sea Shepherd. Twice I saw a kick-down restraint, even with the accelerator pedal fully depressed, and with a larger gear down the line things can leisurely a little.

The 2012 CR-V will be added as a safe choice. An easy choice. A choice that you make to be on reasonable price, reasonable consumption, a legacy of decent reliability, strong resale value and low operating costs. This new Honda presents all the same arguments that you would traditionally expect from a Toyota product, and it is 5-10% better than the best-selling out-going model in any empirically measurable range.

But as I morning sit product presentation, listening as PR people of flesh from the target buyer to the point where we could clearly identify them in a police state lineup (30s, female, "cool mom", active lifestyle enjoys pina coladas, always in the rain, etc.) I started can not help but to start contrasting this spit-and-polish with recent Mazda SKYACTIV show-and-tell. Mazda gambling under a moon-shot with high-compression engines, and a dedication to driving pleasure. Honda has responded to current economic instability and public cooling passion for the automobile by circling the wagons. Except they do not car anymore, so they circle the crossover.

The Q & A was told. Why only five gears in the gearbox? A: Our research told us that the people no longer require courses, but better fuel economy. Why is this hard plastics? A: Our research has shown that people do not have a problem with the old interior. What small displacement turbo engines? A: Our research has shown us that do not require people to know that

You know actually what? Survey each 80 Legend buyer, and no one will tell you to build a NSX. Survey each DC chassis Integra owner and no one will tell you to build the S2000. Poll every 90 Accord wagon owners, and no one would tell you to build a small, flexible, Civic-based SUV.

This new CR-V is a fine, sensitive equipment, they are going to sell boatloads of them. Forgive me if I expected something with a little more innovation, a little more creative, a little more cutting edge.

A little more Honda.

Honda we flew all the way to sunny San Diego, took us to a fancy hotel, stuffed us full of rich food, provided current and previous models of the CR-V and even threw in a free Camelbak. We were on set too and from the airport in a high-mile Town Car.