2019 Honda CR-V: Honda’s SUV Legacy

There are many vehicles that have earned their place in automotive history — far too many to list here. Nowadays, the Honda CR-V is a household term for an affordable, utilitarian SUV capable of all-wheel-drive and seeing college kids off safely to ski towns across America.

The 2019 Honda CR-V is no exception to this time-tested legacy. Carrying on the Honda tradition, the CR-V continues to offer a potent mix of features that pleases parents and teens alike.

Trim Levels

For more food for thought, take a look at the trim levels offered on the 2019 Honda CR-V.

The base LX model will cost you $24,350. For that price, the 2019 CR-V comes equipped with the 2.4-liter engine in front-wheel-drive. This trim features 17-inch wheels, LED daytime running lights, a rearview camera, cruise control, Bluetooth, and a five-inch display. Unfortunately, safety aids aren’t great in number on this trim. For that, you’ll have to step up to the EX model.

Starting at $27,250, choose the EX model not just for the safety features, but for the turbocharged engine as well. This trim comes with 18-inch wheels, a cargo cover, keyless entry, push-button start, a sunroof, heated front seats, remote start, an upgraded rearview camera, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration. Safety aids include automatic high beams, blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert, lane keeping assist, adaptive cruise control, and forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking.

Priced at $29,750, the EX-L model sports a programmable-height powered rear hatch, leather seating, a power passenger, and an eight-speaker sound system. Navigation can be added for a small fee.

The Touring model nears Acura levels of luxury with LED headlights, roof rails, a hands-free rear hatch, dual chrome exhaust tips, navigation, and a subwoofer. Costing you $32,740, it’s the best you can get — without adding extras, of course — on the 2019 CR-V.

You can add AWD to any of the trims for only $1,400 extra, so no worries if you’re set on winter-weather capability.

Performance Specifications

The 2019 Honda CR-V exerts power via either a 2.4-liter naturally-aspirated or a 1.5-liter turbocharged inline four-cylinder engine. The larger engine of the two makes about 184 horsepower and 180 lb-ft of torque, while the smaller turbo engine puts out 190 horsepower and 179 lb-ft of torque. Both engines mate to a continuously variable transmission. Towing capacity on the 2019 CR-V tops out at 1,500 pounds.

Fuel Efficiency

Honda models typically sit high on the list when it comes to fuel efficiency ratings. Most of the time this stems from the small-but-mighty powerplants found beneath their hoods. The 2019 CR-V is no exception to this family trait.

The 2.4-liter engine gets an EPA-estimated 26 city and 32 highway mpg in FWD variants, while AWD models lose a point both in-town and on the highway. Surprisingly, the smaller turbocharged engine gets better gas mileage than that, with 28 city and 34 highway mpg for AWD models. Again, AWD models lose a point for both measurements.

Safety

Although the NHTSA has not yet rated the 2019 CR-V, the IIHS awarded it a “Good” rating in all categories.

How the 2019 Honda CR-V Stacks Up

Considering that Honda sold nearly 400,000 CR-Vs in the last year alone, it’s hard to argue with the model’s potent set of features. In fact, U.S. News & World Report had a lot of praise for the popular SUV, noting the “well-built and modern cabin” and “loads of passenger and cargo space.” Experts also gave a nod to the powerplant, which may not inspire any car chases but it performs well under acceleration without the common droning noise characteristic of CVTs.

Oddly enough, both U.S. News and Edmunds experts agreed that the EX trim was the best place to invest your money. Trim levels above that mark add extra creature comforts you might enjoy, but at least with the EX you aren’t settling for a rental car. Plentiful and thoughtful storage areas show how much thought went into the design of the CR-V’s interior, which performs above the segment’s typical standards.

Setting the 2019 CR-V apart from the competition, it has received a good number of awards. This includes:

  • U.S. News’ 2019 Best SUV Brand;
  • Kelley Blue Book’s Compact SUV Best Buy of 2019;
  • IIHS 2019 Top Safety Pick, and;
  • Edmunds’ Editor’s Choice award.

Competitors vying for your attention in the busy compact SUV segment include the Subaru Forester, Toyota RAV4, Hyundai Santa Fe, Mazda CX-5, and Ford Escape. The Chevy Equinox, Volkswagen Tiguan, and Jeep Cherokee make up the lower end of the spectrum when it comes to affordable SUVs, but they each have their own redeemable qualities.

Pros

  • Competent family SUV
  • Straightforward trim levels and optional add-ons
  • Affordable advanced safety features when compared to other brands

Cons

  • Not the sportiest SUV on the market
  • Low towing capacity

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