Honda, like your local artisanal bakery, has a habit of throwing away perfectly good stuff on a regular schedule. Except that while La Crise Cardiaque Belle is tossing out that morning’s croissants, Honda disposes of vehicles that are still near the top of the class. To wit: the present CR-V, introduced in 2006, still was good enough to take third place out of eight in a Car and Driver comparo with several much newer vehicles last year. It also continues to rack up sales for Honda, outselling Toyota’s RAV4 by almost 40 percent in March. But the proverbial palm flower crystal is now glowing in the CR-V’s hand, meaning that its time has expired. A new CR-V, Honda says, will join us in late 2011 as a 2012 model.
As for the rest of the details on the H’s upcoming soft-roader—you’re kidding, right? No companies play their cards closer to the vest than does Honda. Still, we can take a stab at a few likely details of the 2012 CR-V. Figure on a slight improvement from the current model’s EPA fuel economy rating of 21 mpg city/28 highway in two-wheel-drive form. Honda typically doesn’t jack up horsepower from generation to generation, and the brand-new Civic just launched with a five-speed automatic—not a six, like many of its competitors now pack—so don’t expect the CR-V’s power rating to leap beyond its present 180, either.
It certainly makes sense for the brass at Honda to stick with what works, but with so many of the company’s competitors in the process or rolling out outstanding compact crossovers, we’re not enamored with Honda’s conservative philosophy. Then again, after 22,000 CR-Vs found homes in March, maybe American consumers are.Tags: Honda, Honda CR-V, Honda Pilot |