New 2018 Honda CR-V SUV New 2018
Honda CRV SUV

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KBB Editor's Overview

By KBB.com Editorial Staff

Fresh from its complete overhaul last year, the 2018 Honda CR-V compact-crossover SUV continues to offer the size, features, fuel economy and excellent reliability buyers have come to expect from Honda. In a market where small SUVs are now crushing sales of small and midsize sedans, the CR-V offers 5-passenger seating, a roomy and versatile cargo bay plus more ground clearance than the average car with the option of all-wheel drive. While not as off-road-ready as a Jeep Cherokee or Subaru Forester, the CR-V nevertheless can be somewhat adventurous. It has more interior room than a Toyota RAV4, more power than the Nissan Rogue and better resale value than a Ford Escape.

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You'll Like This SUV If...

The 2018 Honda CR-V continues to be the go-to crossover SUV for those seeking dependability, affordability, safety and simplicity. Prepackaged trim levels remove the complication of picking and choosing numerous features, and EX and higher trims offer advanced safety features like collision-mitigation braking and lane-keeping assist.

You May Not Like This SUV If...

If you’re looking to venture off-road or tow more than 1,500 pounds, you’re better off in a V6-powered Jeep Cherokee. If you’re looking for impressive handling, the Mazda CX-5 or Ford Escape is a better choice, while the Toyota RAV4 offers its suite of driver-assist features as standard equipment on every trim.

What's New for 2018

After a complete overhaul last year, Honda’s compact CR-V crossover SUV for 2018 returns with no changes of note.

Driving It

Driving Impressions

Honda now offers two engine options for the 2018 CR-V. The 2.4-liter engine continues to be offered in the base LX trim, while all others now feature a 1.5-liter turbocharged engine. Before you get all excited by the “turbo” word, this isn’t a high-performance engine like the one found in the Ford Escape. Instead, the CR-V’s turbocharged engine delivers better low-end torque for quicker passing and merging maneuvers, while improving fuel economy by a few mpg. The turbo delivers a smooth, linear performance that belies its diminutive displacement, with no lag or sudden rush of power when you hammer the accelerator. Both engines are mated to one of the best CVT automatics in the industry, one that even simulates traditional gear changes when pressed hard. The CR-V’s handling is good but not exceptional, the ride comfortable without being too soft and the interior devoid of obnoxious exterior noise or maddening squeaks and rattles.

Favorite Features

HONDA SENSING SAFETY SUITE
Standard on EX and higher trims, the CR-V’s suite of standard driver-assist and safety features includes such vital accident-avoidance systems as collision-mitigation braking, adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring and lane-keeping assist.

INTERIOR SPACE
Although the latest CR-V isn’t all that much bigger than the generation it replaced, interior space is noticeably improved. With 40 cubic feet of cargo space behind the rear seat, the CR-V trumps the Ford Escape, Toyota RAV4 and Hyundai Tucson. Rear legroom is equally impressive at a whopping 40.4 inches.

Vehicle Details

Interior

As noted, the 2018 CR-V's 2-row, 5-passenger interior space has only improved -- an impressive feat given that the previous generation was already among the most spacious in its class. In addition to its growth, this Honda SUV's space is easier to utilize. The 60/40-split rear seats fold with a simple pull of a lever, and the rear cargo area has a 2-tier setup in which the floor can be flat or set lower to keep objects secure. EX and above models have a pair of useful rear USB ports to keep mobile devices juiced. Up front is the CR-V's familiar and enviable seating position that is comfortable and provides a good view out.

Exterior

Though still unmistakably a CR-V, the latest version of Honda's small SUV looks like it has hit the gym, with a long, wide stance and more aggressive wheel designs. Ground clearance is a respectable 7.8 inches for front-wheel-drive (FWD) models and 8.2 inches for all-wheel drive (AWD). This is especially good news for CR-V owners who will contend with snow and other foul weather. To our eyes, the latest design is just what the CR-V needed, making it appear less bulbous in the rear, and more substantial and slightly tougher in general.

Notable Standard Equipment

The 2018 Honda CR-V comes in four flavors: LX, EX, EX-L and Touring. The least expensive Honda CR-V LX includes single-zone automatic climate control, rearview camera, 6-way manual-adjust driver's seat, cruise control, and a 4-speaker, 160-watt audio system with 5-inch color screen and Bluetooth wireless connectivity. The LX is the only CR-V with the carryover 2.4-liter engine. Most buyers will (and should) opt for the EX, which includes the turbo engine, power driver's seat, dual-zone climate control, moonroof, push-button start, heated front seats and 7-inch-display audio/infotainment system that's Apple CarPlay/Android Auto compatible. Significantly, EX models include the Honda Sensing safety suite (see Favorite Features).

Notable Optional Equipment

Major options come by climbing trims. Step up to the EX-L and you gain leather seating, a power tailgate, 4-way power-adjustable passenger seat, HomeLink universal garage-door opener, auto-dimming rearview mirror and 8-speaker audio system. Top-line Touring models add a hands-free tailgate, navigation (optional in EX-L models), LED headlights, rain-sensing windshield wipers, roof rails, dual chrome exhaust outlets, and a 330-watt/9-speaker premium audio system. All-wheel drive is optional on all trims of the 2018 CR-V.

Under the Hood

The 2018 Honda CR-V offers two engine choices, though both are tied to trim level. The well-regarded 2.4-liter 4-cylinder that powered the last-gen CR-V carries over, but only in LX models. All other CR-Vs get a 1.5-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder. Both have nearly the same power output, but the turbo has a few more horsepower and earns higher fuel economy. Unlike some turbo engines, this one is happy drinking regular unleaded gasoline. Both engines are tied to a CVT automatic transmission that has a Sport mode for added responsiveness. Front-wheel drive is the standard setup, with all-wheel drive optional on both. Both engines in the CR-V are rated to tow 1,500 pounds -- on the low end of the SUV spectrum.

2.4-liter inline-4
184 horsepower @ 6,400 rpm
180 lb-ft of torque @ 3,900 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 26/32 mpg (FWD), 25/31 mpg (AWD)

1.5-liter turbocharged inline-4
190 horsepower @ 5,600 rpm
179 lb-ft of torque @ 2,000-5,000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 28/34 mpg (FWD), 27/33 mpg (AWD)

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Pricing Notes

The 2018 Honda CR-V crossover SUV has a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) starting right around $25,000 for the base LX model. With its impressive amenities and advanced safety features, the EX model that starts just under $28,000 is far more recommendable. Adding leather and the other features in the EX-L model will cost around $30,000, while a top-line CR-V Touring edition begins over $33,000. Adding AWD is an extra $1,300. At these prices, the new CR-V is nearly in step with its archrival the Toyota RAV4, yet still manages to undercut it slightly. Others in this hot segment, such as the Nissan Rogue and Ford Escape, start slightly lower. Subaru’s Forester is similarly priced but comes standard with AWD and offers a manual-transmission option. Before buying, be sure to check the KBB.com Fair Purchase Price to see what others are paying. Another aspect the CR-V has going for it is high resale value. It has traditionally held its value very well, and we expect the same of this new model.

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