Japan’s Honda Motor Company began as a motorbike manufacturer in 1949, and by 1962 they produced a motorcycle that caught the fancy of my big brother, a 150cc black bike with twin cylinders. By 1964 the company became the world’s biggest motorcycle producer and that year I joined my brother and purchased a 50cc Honda, later trading it for a 1965 305cc white “Dream”. Another brother bought a similar, blue Dream and the three of us terrorized the streets of Albion (and Grant) Nebraska for years thereafter.
Honda began producing automobiles shortly thereafter, and now is one of the ten largest such manufacturers in the world. Many are made in America and sent to Japan; more in fact than are exported to America from that country. One of Honda’s products is the CR-V, which perhaps stands for “compact recreational vehicle”. It has been produced since 1995, and originally was a knockoff of the Civic. Since the cancellation of the Honda Element, it has moved into the entry-level SUV slot for the company.
A recent test that I conducted was of a 2015 Honda CR-V Touring model in a Copper Sunset Pearl paint scheme with black leather interior. It had an M.S.R.P. of $33,775.00, including freight of $880.00. As a Touring CR-V, it came with a lot of equipment such as navigation (7″ screen), heated seats, power memory driver seat, lane watch system, radar cruise control, moon roof, power tailgate, high end alloy wheels, fancy roof rails, fog lights and 7-speaker XM stereo. The lane keeping assist arrangement allowed me to drive down I-25 without touching the steering wheel and the lane watch camera peeked at the blind spot on the passenger side (to the rear) for ease of lane changing. In town the system is particularly helpful as a right turn is anticipated. The leather seating inside the Honda was supportive and attractive with room for five adults.
Styling from Honda on this crossover is improved and slightly updated for 2015. I’ve always admired the CR-V styling, and the new one was perfectly suitable to my eyes. I particularly like the paint color, and although the wheels were not anything that I was wild about, others that saw the Honda made positive comments about them on a couple of occasions. They were 2-tone 18″ x 7″ alloys fitted with P225/60R18 Dunlop AT20’s, and with that aspect, the ride was great.
Wheelbase of the CR-V is 103.1″, overall length is 179.4″, weight is 3,624 lbs., and towing capacity is 1,500 lbs. Power is supplied by a four-cylinder, 2.4 liter engine with 185 horsepower at 6,400 rpm. Torque is 181 lb. ft. at 3,900 rpm, and a CVT (continuously variable) transmission is standard without a manual-mode arrangement. Ground clearance is 6.8″ on the all-wheel drive CR-V, and the EPA ratings are 26 mpg-city, 33 mpg-highway, and 28 mpg-combined. I obtained 26 mpg during my week with the Honda.
As my test of the Honda CR-V unfolded, I found myself becoming pretty familiar with, and fond of, the car. Honda sells almost 30,000 of these each month in the U.S., and it is evident why Americans find it so appealing.