Honda has pulled back the curtain on their next-generation CR-V, boasting a bolder exterior, revamped cabin, and a dramatic sweep of electrified powertrains to retain its SUV crown.
As has been the case for a few cars, the Japanese automaker has again elected to debut another all-new model in the United States. America was the premiere venue for the previous Civic FC (10th-gen) in late 2015, then a year later 5th-gen CR-V back in 2016, subsequently the newest Civic FE….and now this.
2022 Honda CR-V 6th-Gen previewed!
There, it will lock horns most often and ferociously with the Toyota RAV4, which explains why Honda has given the all-new CR-V a range of engines boosted - for performance and efficiency - in some fashion by an electric motor, being the first model in the brand’s range to do so across the board.
Mind you, the outgoing CR-V wasn’t exactly elderly despite its replacement arriving on the scene just 6 years later. Naturally, we expect North America to be prioritised in terms of vehicle deliveries as European sales are only due to begin in 2023. Other regions such as Southeast Asia should be even further down the pecking order.
2022 Honda CR-V powertrains
Powering the lower-rung EX and EX-L variants is the familiar 1.5-litre VTEC Turbo four-cylinder petrol with its outputs carried over as well, sending 193PS and 243Nm to the front wheels (AWD optional) via Honda’s CVT.
Moving to ditch pure-ICE power is a bold move for Honda but not an entirely surprising one considering what its rivals are plotting. Lifted from the hybridised Civic Hatchback, the most pervasive powertrain in the range is a naturally aspirated Atkinson cycle 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine that’s paired with two electric motors.
It's essentially a beefier version of the e:HEV hybrid powertrain that’s fitted into the City RS, City Hatchback RS, and now the all-new HR-V in top-spec form. Its traction motor actually delivers 20Nm additional torque over the last time we saw this hybrid combo, and altogether delivers 207PS for the CR-V Sport and Sport Touring (pictured).
Exterior design of the 2022 Honda CR-V
In terms of its exterior design, there are definitely some of Honda’s newest aesthetic cues at play. It’s a squarer shape overall that should stand it in good stead among the chunkier SUVs that litter the US market while conforming to the styling found on US-specific Honda stablemates, the Passport and Ridgeline.
There are hints of the Accord and Civic here and there but, for better or worse, its pronounced shoulder line and Hoffmeister-esque kinked window line past the C-pillar puts us in mind of the Volkswagen Tiguan and more than a few BMWs.
Its bonnet is rather flat and pretty long for a Honda, reminding us of a similarly deliberate design choice by Mazda. Meanwhile, at the nose, its fascia is more uncluttered than we’re used to seeing from Honda but more in tune with its more upmarket sister brand Acura. Slim headlights flank a rather large central grille that’s joined by other cosmetic furnishings depending on the variant chosen.
Interior 2022 Honda CR-V
Inside, the CR-V doesn’t stray far from the Civic in terms of general ergonomics and layout. Where the previous-gen version sported a fairly distinctive dashboard design to fit its more purposeful, practicality-oriented ethos, we wouldn’t be surprised if this 6th-generation replacement was lifted directly from the FE with only the most minor of alterations.
Each variant receives a 7-inch infotainment touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto but only the range-topper gets a 12-speaker Bose sound system among other goodies.
In addition to an impressive reserve of 10 airbags, each CR-V should receive Honda Sensing as standard with AEB, Adaptive Cruise Control, Lane Keep Assist, Traffic Jam Assist, Blind Spot Monitoring, and all the rest, enhanced by a new 90-degree FOV camera system and 120-degree millimetre-wave radar.
There’s no doubt that the CR-V will be a big hit with buyers, provided Honda has applied their engineering mastery as they usually do. The big question for us is how long will it take for this newest C-segment SUV to reach our shores and, upon its arrival, can Honda Malaysia keep up with demand enough to avoid the year-long waiting period that’s become a stain on the otherwise spotless local introduction of the 3rd-gen 2022 HR-V.