Honda’s coupe-styled compact SUV combines dynamic looks with class-leading interior space and a high level of standard features even on entry level versions.
This all-round package gives the HR-V a distinct edge in an SUV sector swamped with accomplished rivals, especially as Honda has over the years built up a formidable reputation for reliability and strong re-sale values.
Prices start at €24,518 (£20,690) for an S-trim model with 1.5-litre petrol engine and manual gearbox. Standard kit is very good and includes alloy wheels, climate control, front and rear power windows, cruise control, dusk-sensing headlights, digital radio, Bluetooth and USB/AUX sockets.
My test model was the top-range EX version with the 1.5-litre 128 hp petrol engine but with CVT auto transmission and priced at €32,593 (£27,500).
Additional equipment includes sat-nav, connectivity features, front and rear parking sensors, roof rails, rear-view camera, panoramic glass sunroof, leather interior with heated front and rear seats.
Safety features include hill-start assist, forward collision and lane departure warnings and traffic sign recognition with intelligent speed limiter.
The cabin is well designed for comfort and practicality and the dashboard is user-friendly with a touch-screen infotainment centre, steering-wheel-mounted controls and a straight-line auto gearshift which is simple to use.
The HR-V scores top marks for everyday versatility. It will seat five adults though ideally four would be more comfortable and the boot has a large 470-litre capacity boosted to a impressively substantial 1,533 litres. And Honda’s ‘Magic Seat System’ means the rear seats slide and drop in an instant to form a flat load floor.
The exterior of the car has a more sporty stance than most rivals, in part due to its sleek coupe-styling, with rear door handles disguised by incorporating them into the edge of the side windows.
On the road, the HR-V is smooth and pleasing, The gear shift is slick, the steering feedback precise and reassuring and ride quality excellent even on rougher surfaces. The 0-100 kph time of 10.7 seconds is typical of the class standard and top speed is 186 kph (116 mph). Average fuel economy is 18.5 kpl (52.3 mpg) with emissions of 125 g/km.
Honda says the HR-V has ‘an unmatched combination of attributes’ and while I wouldn’t argue with that, I might put it more simply: it’s a great all-rounder.
Facts at a glance
- Model: Honda HR-V EX
- Engine: 1.5 litre petrol
- Transmission: CVT automatic
- Performance: 0-100 kph 10.7 seconds, top speed 186 kph (116 mph)
- Economy: 18.5 kpl (52.3 mpg)
- Emissions: 125 g/km
Model tested was UK-specification and equipment levels and prices may vary in other markets.