The Hybrid Honda CR-V Is The One To Get (And Its Not Just About Efficiency)

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I’m andy warhol asking you to subscribe to tom volk’s car review channel he’s very good at what he does as an artist i find his photography exemplary and he has a sense of humor though even i admit he needs a haircut you’ve seen them dropping off kids getting the groceries sometimes even on the trail yes it does light off-roading the honda crv is among the

Most popular vehicles in america more than 5 million have been built for 2020 it gets some updates there’s a new face plus dark tinting on the taillights rear glass and chrome bar new paint colors too including this radiant red metallic oh and a new powertrain for the first time crv is available as a hybrid it’s the twin motor setup found in accord spotted by

The badges blue accents on the h logo elongated fog lamps and the lack of a visible tailpipe in other words it’s pretty subtle the hybrid is available in all of the same trim levels as the standard crv so that won’t cramp your style what’s the price difference between the two well it can be as high as twenty seven hundred dollars but the hybrid is strictly

All-wheel drive that’s a fifteen hundred dollar option on the gas only model so really a twelve hundred dollar premium for the hybrid that’s a great deal the base lx starts at just under twenty nine thousand dollars with shipping this top trim touring model retails for 37 grand crv’s main hybrid rivals are the toyota rav4 and ford escape toyota runs the rear

Wheels with electric motors ford and honda send a physical drive shaft to the back crv’s hybrid system starts with a 2-liter atkinson cycle 4-cylinder engine that mainly provides electricity to power an electric drive motor which also acts as a generator to charge the battery during coasting and braking a second motor generator is a starter for the gas engine

The two are about the same size a 1.4 kilowatt hour lithium-ion battery and control systems are under the load floor usually there’s no sound on startup occasionally the gas engine turns over when standing still for a while like when sitting in the driveway finishing that npr story the selector is different than gas only crvs there’s no real transmission here

Since electric motors drive the wheels now in some cases a clutch will engage that actually physically connects the engine with the drive wheels usually during highway cruising it’s for efficiency a second clutch engages the automatic all-wheel drive system when traction is low you’ll be looking at a slightly different gauge cluster with powertrain info and no

Tachometer paddles increase and reduce the regenerative braking effort there are four levels of this for testing purposes i generally left it in standard drive mode sport mode reduces the active noise cancellation for extra engine growl to set the mood honda says the ev setting is good for one to two miles of electric propulsion i saw a little less than that

It’s easy to creep on battery power alone as expected the hybrid is more fuel efficient than the gas only model but there’s also another advantage it’s more powerful that is always a good thing and rich torque from the electric motors make it feel punchier than it is especially in city driving zero to 60 miles an hour takes around seven seconds another advantage

To the hybrid powertrain overall to me it seems smoother than the 1.5 turbo and by the way that is the only engine that you can get in the gas only model now how fuel efficient is the crv hybrid well the epa rates it at an average of 38 miles per gallon while the standard four-cylinder all-wheel drive touring version scores 29 mpg i’m not quite hitting the epa

Figure i’m about two or three miles per gallon off but still not bad for a roomy 5 passenger crossover rav4 and escape hybrid’s top crv by a couple miles per gallon not sure that’s make or break though buy the vehicle that speaks to you the honda is a good way to motor about town and country its handling is capable enough to entertain the average driver mazda

Cx-5 might be more fun but it’s smaller inside and doesn’t come as a hybrid and this powertrain feels fairly normal in operation i’ve said it time and time again i’m not too crazy about the feel of continuously variable transmissions and this system has some of that rubbery dynamic especially when you put your foot hard into it but overall it’s really not bad i

Kind of like it for the most part engine revs don’t swing wildly and incongruently from the driving speed a reminder there’s no real transmission just a lock-up clutch any engine revving means the gas engine is driving the generator to produce more electricity the drivetrain operation can be monitored in the gauge cluster but the dynamic is so normal and smooth

You’ll probably forget to do that sometimes on hybrids the brake pedal feel feels a little bit lumpy or abrupt when you go from regenerative braking to the actual physical disc brakes this one pretty much feels like a regular gas only car really well done chances are the brake pads will last longer because some of the stopping is regenerative even though that’s

Not overly aggressive and like all crvs the hybrid is modestly quiet and comfortable it will go off-road but don’t think about following a subaru outback on a rough trail crv doesn’t have the same kind of ground clearance honda’s suite of active electronic safety tech is called honda sensing and it’s standard in all crvs it includes automatic emergency braking

With pedestrian detection and adaptive cruise control and the lane keep assist on the highway is actually fairly decent you know for this price range if you’ve been in the current fifth generation crv there are no surprises here it’s a roomy cabin that bigger drivers can get situated in eyes are immediately drawn to the photoshopped wood grain good thing it’s

Decent molded stitching is less successful i’m trying to figure out what would go in these button blanks and knees would like it if these console panels were padded drop down to the exl model and the heated seats are still covered in cowhide and the wheel remains toasty this saves three grand it means giving up 19-inch wheels navigation and wireless phone charging

Not a huge loss the center console has a new design for 2020 with creative options to store all sorts of items though because of the open nature of it an ipad is easy for thieves to see as for the other storage cubbies this one gives parents the option of knowing who really did hit who first all of the other storage spots are normal in size the biggest gripe i

Have in here is the user interface the screen itself is on the small side touch response is average the layout and the flow of the sections is not overly intuitive and some of the graphics are cluttered it looks five years old best to stick with android auto or apple carplay which are standard on all crvs except for the base lx the hvac system with dedicated

Buttons has a traditional look and feel the backup cam has multiple views including one helpful when aiming a tow arm but the hybrid model is not recommended for pulling things is the back of the hybrid the same as the regular crv yep and you’re going to talk about it anyway i need my residual check we’re both five foot nine right and uh there’s plenty of

Room for a family of four in the crv head knee foot and leg room all terrific cushions are high enough so that thigh support is good and the door openings are wide enough so that car seats go in and out no sweat my coffee cup here is pretty big and there’s even room for more stuff yes there are usb ports so phones can be charged and i like how flat the floor

Is back here i do have some gripes why why is there no pocket on this side and this is a top touring trim there are no heated seats back here plus the seats don’t slide fore and aft to max out either leg or cargo room but still i like how spacious crv’s back seat is two six footers are probably going to be fine back here and three adults going across town will

Be okay and one more thing did you know in canada you can get a crv with a panoramic glass roof i didn’t know that but our neighbors to the north don’t get the hybrid model yet i’m sure that will change personally i find motorized tailgates a bit annoying because they’re kind of slow but the kick to open units pretty nice since i always have my hands full of

Gear remember this is where the battery goes in regular gas only crvs there’s storage here that has been eliminated so is the spare tire there’s just a repair kit that’s not great for off-roading and standard crvs allow the floor to drop three or four inches remote releases are good to have and with the seats down this is a giant space with a pretty flat load

Floor while i’m not traveling to costco this week i can show you the standard crv that i did in the past the cargo hold is about the same size if the floor is set to the higher level which it is here that’s nine packs of the two ply that recently could have been swapped on the black market for this car all right i’m trying something new kind of a recap called red

Light green light that has the strengths and weaknesses of the vehicle let me know if you like it in the comments green light crv hybrid is much more fuel efficient 13 extra miles per gallon in the city also there are no trade-offs over the gas only model even some drivability benefits and the hybrid powertrain is reasonably priced yellow lights well there’s

A slightly smaller cargo area though much of the utility remains and crv is a very useful family vehicle also the exl model is a better value than the touring version tested for three grand less you really won’t miss much red light the aging user interface should have been replaced a year or two ago or three the hybrid doesn’t get a spare tire a big issue if

You’re in the wilderness crv hybrid isn’t just about getting better gas mileage for the cost of an extra car payment or two the hybrid model adds more power and a smoother drivetrain experience to go along with better efficiency now the price at the dealership might be different if word gets out how good it is there’s a good chance a premium might be demanded for

The gas electric model the crv has always been a smart choice for getting the family duties done the smoother more efficient hybrid should make it an even more popular way for the tribe to travel on the claims two-thirds of its global automotive sales will come from electrified vehicles by 2030 but remember electrified doesn’t always mean pure ev while honda

Has partnered up with general motors to produce all electric vehicles many of the cars will be hybrids like this one when i was in japan i saw quite a few hondas wearing hybrid badges and wondered why we don’t see more of that powertrain here for example the hrv known as the vessel in japan is available as a hybrid there one of the many reasons why you should

Subscribe to this channel and click the notifications bell as that often times at the end of the video i offer up a fun fact and this week is no exception i recently wrote an article for the new york times about why suvs and crossovers are so popular these days and i talked to gary robinson who’s the assistant vice president of product planning for north america

And he told me that originally when japan was shipping the crv over to the us the folks at american honda didn’t think it was going to be very popular at all remember it had the load floor it had legs on the bottom it would become a picnic table you got to remember back in those days people bought sedans lots of accords and lots of civics and get this in 2019

The crv was the second most popular passenger vehicle sold in america anybody know the first one the toyota rav4 yeah in fact sedans don’t even hit the list until number eight the toyota camry uh of course pickups take the number one two and three slots but uh yeah suvs and crossovers very very popular so subscribe to this channel click the notifications bell

And follow me on twitter okay all right that’s driven i’m tom volk you

Transcribed from video
The Hybrid Honda CR-V Is The One To Get (And It’s Not Just About Efficiency) By Driven Car Reviews With Tom Voelk