The 2021 Honda CR-V does just about everything right

If you’re in the market for a compact crossover SUV, the 2021 Honda CR-V must be on your test drive list. Like its rival the Toyota RAV4
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the Honda CR-V
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has been around for over two decades and has an enviable reputation for reliability and high resale value. Plus, it’s just a joy to own and operate.

The Honda CR-V is easy to get in and drive. Its standard turbo engine is energetic enough and surprisingly efficient. A hybrid CR-V model (tested separately) that debuted last year is even more so. It reaches up to 40 mpg, has extra power and standard all-wheel drive.

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The Honda Sensing Suite of Active Safety Systems is Standard and Apple
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CarPlay and Android Auto are available on most panels. The cargo space is almost the best in its class, just behind that of a basic Subaru Forester (but better than with higher equipment). It all adds up to a 2-row / 5-person SUV that gets almost everything right and caters to a wide range of buyers.

What’s new

After a busy 2020 in which Honda Sensing and the turbo engine were standardized, the 2021 model carries over without significant changes.

What we like
  • Excellent passenger and cargo space

  • Lively and efficient engine

  • Refined driving experience

  • Clever storage

  • Generous standard security technology

What we don’t do
  • No more powerful engine option available

  • The base model lacks Apple CarPlay / Android Auto

  • Tech interface can be frustrating

How much?

$ 23,550 to $ 30,450 (plus $ 1,120 target fee)

Fuel consumption

The only engine option in the stock 2021 CR-V is a 1.5-liter, turbocharged 4-cylinder that delivers 190 horsepower and 179 lb-ft of torque. Fuel economy is impressive: it delivers 28 miles per gallon in the city, 34 MPG on the highway, and 30 MPG in combined driving for front-wheel drive models. Adding all-wheel drive takes those numbers down a bit, down to 27 mpg city / 32 mpg hwy / 29 mpg combined.

The Honda CR-V


The CR-V uses a continuously variable transmission that mimics a conventional automatic.

Standard features and options

The 2021 CR-V is available in a configuration with just 5 passengers and is offered in four trim levels: LX, EX, EX-L and Touring. The standard gasoline models are FWD, AWD optional.

The LX ($ 25,350 plus target fee) comes with 17-inch alloy wheels, LED running / accent lights, automatic climate control, height-adjustable driver’s seat, fabric upholstery, a 60/40 foldable and adjustable rear seat (with remote control). easy fold ”(in the cargo area), a reversing camera, Bluetooth, a USB connection and a sound system with 4 speakers. Also included is the Honda Accident Avoidance Technology Sensing Pack, which consists of lane departure warning and forward collision warning systems as well as automatic emergency braking, lane departure prevention and adaptive cruise control with traffic-friendly, slow-speed follow features.

The EX ($ 27,860) is the kit most people end up with, which is unsurprising given the spike in the kit. It offers blind spot monitoring and a rear cross-traffic assistant as well as 18-inch wheels, automatic headlights, fog lights, proximity access and push-button start, remote ignition, rear privacy glass, a sunroof, a load compartment cover and a two-zone automatic climate control, an 8-way driver’s seat, heated Front seats, three additional USB ports (one at the front, two at the back), a 7-inch touchscreen, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and a 6-speaker sound system with satellite radio.

The EX 50 ($ 30,000) features an electric tailgate, leather upholstery, driver memory settings, a 4-way passenger seat, a leather steering wheel, an HD radio, and an 8-speaker sound system.

The Touring ($ 30,450) provides roof rails, 19-inch wheels, LED headlights, wireless charging, a heated steering wheel, hands-free tailgate, premium audio with 9 speakers, two chrome-plated exhaust tips, rain-sensitive wipers, ambient lighting, and a navigation system .


The 2021 Honda CR-V has the usual safety equipment: anti-lock braking system, stability and traction control, front airbags, front airbags and side airbags that cover both rows. There are also LATCH anchors in all three rear positions.

Equally, or more importantly, every cladding is equipped with a system that can help prevent an accident in the first place. It’s called Honda Sensing and includes forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, descent reduction and adaptive cruise control. Each fairing except the basic LX model is also equipped with blind spot monitoring and rear cross traffic support.

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The government gave the CR-V 2020 the perfect 5-star rating for overall, frontal and side crash protection. The non-profit insurance institute for road safety has given the CR-V top marks in all relevant categories for accident and accident prevention as a top safety pick.


If you’re the owner of the previous generation CR-V, this latest version is sure to feel more adult and sophisticated. It has a more comfortable and controlled ride, a quieter cab and steering that requires fewer corrections on the highway. This observation applies not only to comparisons between the current model and its predecessor, but also to most of the compact SUV segment.

The turbocharged 1.5 liter engine used in the 2021 CR-V is arguably the most competitive engine in this segment. It features admirable fuel economy and performance, as well as responsive power delivery that doesn’t draw too much attention to the turbo-charged and engine-connected continuously variable transmission. The fact that this is now the standard engine for the CR-V makes this Honda even more competitive than before.

Your passengers enjoy unmatched interior comfort and space for this segment. Rear legroom is top notch and there are LATCH points in all three rear seating positions, making for an extremely family-friendly SUV. The ample load capacity of the CR-V and the clever front center console make it a champion that carries it all. The material quality in the interior is also strong – both in comparison to its predecessor and to the competition.

If there’s one downside inside, it’s the touchscreen that’s found in all but the base LX. It’s perfectly functional, but its responsiveness, menu structure, and touch-sensitive menu buttons result in a system that is less user-friendly than the latest system from Honda (Accord, Odyssey) and that of its competitors (Subaru)
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Förster, Toyota RAV4).

Other cars to consider

2021 Toyota RAV4– The Toyota RAV4, the long-time enemy of the CR-V, has been completely redesigned for 2019.

2020 Subaru Forester– The Forester also offers plenty of cargo space and is more adventurous thanks to its sophisticated all-wheel drive system, 8.7-inch ground clearance and off-road modes. It includes a bunch of safety features and has a slightly lower starting price than the CR-V.

2020 Hyundai Santa Fe—The Hyundai with 5 passengers
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Slightly larger than the CR-V, Santa Fe has a technically advanced interior, great cargo space and an unbeatable powertrain warranty of 10 years / 100,000 miles.

See: Why the 2021 Hyundai Santa Fe is one of the best cars of the year

2020 Mazda CX-5“Mazda.”
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The competitor has less cargo space than the CR-V, but has some of the sportiest manners in its class. The optional turbo engine makes it even better.

Used Honda Pilot– If the CR-V still doesn’t have the family-friendly utility you need, a larger SUV is likely fine. As the bigger brother of the CR-V, the Pilot has three rows of seating for up to eight people and all of Honda’s great manners.

Questions to ask

Is the 2021 Honda CR-V a good car?

Yes. In fact, it is among the best. Even in the crowded field of compact crossovers, the CR-V stands out as one of the best.

Will the Honda CR-V be redesigned in 2021?

No. The CR-V has received a mild refreshment for the 2020 model year and will be broadcast for 2021.

Is the 2021 Honda CR-V a Safe SUV?

Yes. Among the compact crossover SUVs, the CR-V is one of the safest. It received a 5-star crash test from the government and a Top Safety Pick from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. It comes standard with a full line of active safety systems called Honda Sensing.

Where is the 2021 Honda CR-V manufactured?

The Honda CR-V is made in America. Specifically, it will be built at Honda’s Greensburg, Indiana facility.

Autotrader Advice

We love that Honda Sensing and the turbocharged 1.5L engine are now standard on every CR-V, but we’d skip the base LX fairing for at least one EX anyway. For around $ 2,500 versus the base model, the CR-V EX offers plenty of content, including an improved infotainment system with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, additional security technologies, a sunroof, heated seats, and many other features like the sweet value of value in the range of this model Honda. As for the drivetrain, we’re thinking of the standard turbo engine.

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