By KBB.com Editors
KBB Expert Rating: 7.5
Fresh from its complete makeover last year, the 2013 Honda CR-V compact SUV carries on largely unchanged. The 5-passenger CR-V remains modestly-sized on the outside, but is extremely roomy inside, with a rear seat that accommodates adults and a proper-sized cargo area. Available in LX, EX and the leather-appointed EX-L, the CR-X for 2013 offers varying levels of features and equipment packed into each trim level. However, new rivals, such as the Hyundai Santa Fe, Mazda CX-5 and Ford Escape, offer better audio and infotainment systems, more features and, in some cases, more horsepower and better fuel economy. Still, it's hard to argue with the CR-V's excellent repair history and it continues to lead the pack in terms of long-term resale values.
If you're looking for simple, dependable transportation in a vehicle that can handle snow and mud as efficiently as it does a day of cruising yard sales, the 2013 Honda CR-V is an excellent choice. Need more reasons? There's good fuel economy, a reasonable price and lots of standard equipment.
Those needing the power of a V6 (for towing) or the convenience of a third-row seat won't be interested in the 2013 Honda CR-V. The Ford Escape and Hyundai Santa Fe offer more powerful engines with the same or better fuel economy as the CR-V.
No major changes for 2013.
Driving Impressions Building on the Honda CR-V's already-stellar reputation for being easy to drive and easy to live with, the latest iteration has raised those benchmarks in modest but genuinely meaningful ways....Extensive noise reduction efforts yield a quiet, well-isolated passenger compartment, and the rigid unit-body structure, coupled with taut suspension tuning, gives the 2013 Honda CR-V impressively capable handling characteristics. Honda equips the CR-V with its Motion-Adaptive electric power steering system that interfaces with the standard stability control to automatically encourage proper corrective inputs when it senses slippery or uneven road conditions during cornering or braking. For ultimate 4-season security, the 2013 CR-V is available with Honda's Real Time AWD (all-wheel drive) with Intelligent Control System. Smaller, lighter and quicker to respond than the previous Real Time setup, it smoothes out initial acceleration and can transfer up to 100 percent of torque to the rear wheels if necessary.
INTELLIGENT MULTI-INFORMATION DISPLAY (I-MID)
All 2013 Honda CR-V models come with a new, 5.0-inch LCD color screen in the center of the dash that allows the driver to access and control a range of functions using buttons on the steering wheel.
EASY FOLD REAR SEATS
The backs on the 2013 Honda CR-V's new 60/40-split rear bench seat now flop forward with the pulls of levers conveniently located on either side of the cargo bay to create a near-flat load floor that's over five inches longer than the one in the current CR-V.
We like the sophisticated overall look and feel inside the Honda CR-V, highlighted by a smartly-sculpted dash, large and bright gauges and elegant switchgear. Special attention is paid to driver comfort, with supportive front seats that flank an accommodating center console punctuated by two big cup holders. A large covered center stow bin houses USB and auxiliary inputs as well as a 12-volt power point. Although the 2013 CR-V's overall interior dimensions are largely unchanged from the previous two generations, its cargo area now offers a bit more space than before with the rear seat up, but marginally less when it's folded down.
While the 2013 CR-V retains roughly the same dimensions as the last-generation CR-V, it looks substantially larger. With a bold, more aerodynamic look, the CR-V appears a bit more rugged, with swept-up rear quarter windows and edgy front and rear fascia treatments. A steeply-raked windshield and slightly lower roofline effectively complement the CR-V's high-profile grille and lamp treatments, while a large single-piece liftgate, coupled with a significantly lower lift-over height, eases loading and unloading chores. All LX models are fitted with 16-inch steel wheels and 215/70 all-season tires, while EX/EX-L versions have 225/65 tires on 17-inch alloy wheels.
Honda's CR-V LX for 2013 boasts a full range of power assists, a 160-watt AM/FM/CD audio system with USB/AUX inputs, Bluetooth HandsFree Link, Pandora Internet Radio interface, read-aloud SMS text messaging capability, air conditioning, an intelligent Multi-Information Display, multifunction steering wheel, multi-angle rearview camera, keyless entry, cruise control and a tilt/telescoping steering column. The EX adds various interior and exterior enhancements, a power moonroof, privacy glass, alloy wheels and a security system, while the EX-L gains leather upholstery, a power driver's seat, heated front seats, automatic dual-zone climate control, XM Radio and more.
In keeping with its longstanding practice of offering vehicles largely in "mono-spec" trim levels, options for the 2013 Honda CR-V are extremely limited. The LX, EX and EX-L can be fitted with the new Real Time AWD with Intelligent Control System, while CR-V EX-L buyers can opt to add either the Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation System with a 6.5-inch dash-mounted touch-screen or a DVD-based Rear Seat Entertainment system that features a single 7.0-inch hi-resolution LCD screen that flips down from the headliner.
The sole powertrain combination in all 2013 Honda CR-V models is the familiar 2.4-liter i-VTEC 4-cylinder engine matched with the equally-familiar 5-speed automatic transmission. Rated at 185 horsepower, the CR-V has fuel economy ratings of 23/31 for front drive models and 22/30 with 4WD. To help in the mileage-maxing cause, all 2013 CR-Vs feature an energy-efficient multistage alternator and come with Honda's Eco Assist system that includes the green "ECON" button on the dash that can modify throttle mapping as well as operation of the air conditioning and cruise control. The maximum tow rating also remains unchanged, at 1,500 pounds.
185 horsepower @ 7,000 rpm
163 lb-ft of torque @4,300 rpm
EPA City/highway fuel economy: 23/31 mpg (front-wheel drive), 22/30 mpg (AWD)
The 2013 Honda CR-V LX 2WD has a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price starting around $23,500, the EX is about $25,500 and the EX-L starts just under $28,500; a fully-loaded model with navigation is around $31,000. Stepping up to all-wheel-drive will add about $1,250. To get your best deal, check the KBB Fair Purchase Price and find out what others in your area are paying for the CR-V. Historically, Honda's CR-V has done an outstanding job of holding onto its value over time, with only the Toyota RAV4 seriously challenging it in that critical area. In marked contrast to many other vehicles, the upline EX – and particularly the EX-L version – leads the CR-V's resale value index, with all-wheel-drive versions also besting front-drive models.
By Honda Guy on Wednesday, February 26, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 24,000overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "Great Car!"
Cons: "No much to pick on in this car!"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"The Honda products that I have previously owned are of high quality (for the price)in my opinion. They require very little up-keep and are always up to the task of furnishing trouble free transportation day in and day out. This 2012 CRV AWD has given me great fuel mileage,up to 36 highway/mpg & almost 30 combined/mpg during summertime driving. Wintertime driving mileage suffers somewhat and drops to about 26 combined/mpg. I would prefer a little more power, but I know that the fuel mileage would suffer. There are loads of little amenities that impress me, like the rear doors open 90deg. from the vehicle which makes putting kids and things in the rear seat an easy chore. Also, the solid rattle free body is another plus. This is just a few of the things I like about this car. A satisfied Honda owner."
3 people out of 3 found this review helpful
By Luli on Friday, February 21, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 14,800overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "Back doors open 90 degrees is awesome!!"
Cons: "None really worth worrying about."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"This car grew on me. It was my first Honda. I wasn't crazy about my color choice, I have the White Diamond Pearl and wish I would have gotten the brown one but having said that - I love it more every day. And am now loving the color more everyday as well. So glad I got it and kept it, I really hope to drive it for another 15 years lol!!"
2 people out of 2 found this review helpful
By Jam on Tuesday, February 18, 2014
I don't own this caroverall rating 5 of 10rating details
Pros: "Nice size, Price, Fuel mileage"
Cons: "Seats, Road noise, Engine noise"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 4
"Really tried to like Honda CRV and Toyota RAV4. I test drove several of each all top of the line. I found the seats to be uncomfortable and small. The road noise was just to much."
4 people out of 7 found this review helpful
By Jodyj on Sunday, February 16, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 2,000overall rating 6 of 10rating details
Pros: "Interior, price, trunk space"
Cons: "Rear door latch, wiper fluid - freeze up"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1
"While this car drives well tin the snow, especially with snow tires, for some reason, the rear door latch freezes shut gand cannot be opened when temps drop below 20-ish degrees. Also, the windshield wiper fluid freezes - ?! At first I thought I got a version built just for Hawaii. I took it in and the dealer replaced the rear latch and drained and refilled the wiper fluid. Slight improvement on the wiper fluid. It seems to withstand lower temps but still froze up eventually. Rear latch still freezes shut and then works fine when temps warm up. Dealer says they are waiting to see if Honda will do anything. Can't find any indication that Honda even is acknowledging the problem, but apparently I'm not the only customer our dealer has heard from. If it weren't for these issues , I'd rate higher, but an inaccessible trunk and touchy wiper fluid isn't helpful in a cold, mountainous state like Colorado! I recently told a friend looking to buy to NOT buy a CRV unless they've fixed this with the 2014."
7 people out of 8 found this review helpful
By jimmie on Sunday, February 16, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 17,000overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "Rear seats go up and down easily..doors ooen wide."
Cons: "Tires are noisy on some surfaces."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I am 65 years old...6'2"/200 lbs. It is easy to get in and out of. Very comforta ble. Dives great.MPG is 32 around the city driving easy and 37 going 55-60 MPH. I cannot say enough good points about this car. Prior to this Honda I owned a PT Cruiser for 11 years a nd never thought I'd find another car as great.When it developed electrical problems that I couldn't fix I drove the CR-V and bought it the next day."
By Heidi on Tuesday, February 11, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 1,000overall rating 9 of 10rating details
Pros: "fun to drive"
Cons: "wished it was better looking."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I am very happy with this car, the only things I don't like is,,,,they could have made it a little better looking. Second is my friend who had a Honda said she felt that she never had to put gas in it, she felt the gas mileage was that good. I am getting 27mpg and that is not in ECON mode, I believe ECON mode for me was 28 mpg. This is city and hwy driving - so in actuality this is good. But no matter what car I get, whether considered good gas mileage or not, I still fill my car up with gas 1x every 2 wks. So I was a little let down because of what my friend said, I thought I would be filling up 1x every 3 wks or something. I feel like I can watch the gas gage moving down as I drive. But,,,it says what it says,,,and I guess I am getting good gas mileage."
5 people out of 9 found this review helpful