2013 Honda CR-V : First Drive
The 4th generation Honda CR-V has finally made it to Indian shores. It's new, stylish, well-built and has that typical 'Honda' air of distinction, and should be able to put up quite a fight in the entry level premium SUV league
The two-litre unit on the other hand proved to be rather impressive. In no way does it feel underpowered and mated to an automatic, the 2.0 litre version was capable of pulling away to kingdom come. The ultra smooth 6 speed manual gearbox was a blessing as well, and I personally enjoyed being behind the wheel of the 2.0 litre version a lot more than the 2.4 litre version, however, for Honda’s sake I hope this doesn’t speak for the volumes of people who will by the new CR-V as the company is bullish about the sheer success of the 2.4 litre engine.
What it boils down to is choice and if you are looking for a CR-V that you want to enjoy, buy the 2.0 litre version, however if it is a car that you will spend a lot of time being chauffer driven in, then get the 2.4 litre manual. The good news on the engine front is that both units are total gems and extremely refined mills, so in effect, either way, you really can’t go wrong!
Ride quality is fantastic and like all CR-Vs, this has always remained one of its top qualities. Sharing its platform with the new Civic, the CR-V has a McPherson strut suspension system up front and utilizes a double wishbone system at the rear. Riding on large 17 inch alloys, the CR-V is designed to soak up road undulations like no other and that is where it has earned its reputation of being the ultimate soft-roader.
On the safety front, the CR-V does come with a solid range of products on offer as standard fitment. To start with, the SUV comes with vehicle stability assist (VSA), ABS, EBD, Brake Assist, 6 airbags, advance compatibility engineering (ACE), hill start assist (HSA), occupant position detection system (OPDS) as well as advanced suspension settings and motion adaptive electronic power steering.
Honda has really gone all out on the new CR-V and rightly so. It is a great vehicle that offers performance, mileage, comfort and class, yet the most important question is why it isn’t a diesel? Honda has been known for their reliability, quality as well as their commitment to petrol engines. While there is talk about a 1.5 diesel coming in for their smaller cars, Honda has not made any commitments for a larger engine for the Accord or the CR-V.
Instead, Honda is betting on the market. Diesel prices are set to increase by almost Rupees 10/- this year, while further reducing the gap between petrol and diesel pricing. This itself should bring petrol vehicles back in demand according to how the market has responded to such change in the past. So, going back to why no diesel, well its more of an economical reason rather than a reason of just going with your heart. Do the math and this reasoning becomes even more apparent! Last but not least, with the new CR-V coming in as a CKD, prices are expected to be much lower than what they were earlier. All these advantages summed up is enough to justify the lack of a diesel engine, but such is the curse of India that the consumer shall always demand what is not apparent or in front of them!
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