[dropcap]T[/dropcap]he HR-V is a nice addition to the 2016 Honda lineup. It’s a personal and functional compact crossover vehicle that fits neatly into position between the Honda FIT and the CR-V.
The all-new Honda HR-V has a sportiness that blends nicely with SUV usability. It has a coupe-like cabin shape and a bold, powerful tapered face, with distinctive side contours and a deeply sculpted lower body flowing into a tapered rear fascia. A sharp upswept character line and concealed rear door handles enhance the coupe-like design.
The HR-V comes with a long list of standard features and technologies, including 17- inch alloy wheels, push-button electric parking brake, a rearview camera with guidelines, Pandora radio and Bluetooth HandsFreeLink.
The HR-V is available in LX, EX and EXL Navi trims, all powered by a highly refined and efficient 1.8-liter 4-cylinder 16-valve DOHC i-VTEC engine (35 mpg highway) producing a peak 141 hp and 127 pound-feet of torque.
Under the hood
The engine is paired with one of two efficient and responsive Honda transmissions — a continuously variable transmission (CVT) available for all models or a short-shifting six-speed manual transmission available on LX and EX models with 2WD. The HR-V is available with front-wheel-drive or with Honda’s Real Time AWD with Intelligent Control System for all-weather traction and control.
Developed on Honda’s new global platform, the HR-V has a center-mounted fuel tank layout and a reconfigurable second row Magic Seat that delivers a huge interior space, along with a flexible cabin with multiple seating/cargo modes. With the second row seats folded down, the HR-V has space to rival some midsize SUV offerings.
On the inside
The interior is sporty, sophisticated and roomy, and appointed with soft-touch materials and premium detailing, precise bezels, sophisticated stitch lines, brushed chrome and piano black highlights. The three-meter instrument cluster has “floating” illumination rings and Honda’s ECO Assist feature, with the speedometer lighting changing from white to green depending on current fuel efficiency.
Driving efficiency, handling performance and cabin quietness are aided by the aerodynamic shape and the lightweight body structure with noise-insulating materials and design features. The body utilizes Honda’s next-generation Advanced Compatibility Engineering (ACE) body structure for enhanced frontal collision protection, and 27 percent of the body is made of advanced ultra-high strength steel for improved rigidity that enhances collision-protection, handling response, ride quality and a quiet cabin environment.
The HR-V has been designed for safety and Honda makes no bones about it, confidently predicting that it will achieve top safety ratings, including an NCAP five-star Overall Vehicle Score from NHTSA and a TOP SAFETY PICK rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.
The starting MSRP for the 2016 Honda HR-V is $19,115.
[author image=”http://www.samaonline.org/Ron.jpg” ]Ron Beasley is the automotive editor for Miami’s Community Newspapers. He may be contacted by calling 305-662-2277, ext. 261, or by addressing email correspondence to LetsTalkCars@aol.com.[/author]