Fans and prospective family buyers of the Honda CR-V compact crossover won’t be disappointed with the redesigned 2012 CR-V just unveiled at the 2011 Los Angeles Auto Show.
What the 2012 Honda CR-V continues to offer is what family car buyers appreciate most: versatility, spaciousness, comfort, manageability, good fuel economy and affordable price.
2012 Honda CR-V live reveal at Los Angeles Auto Show, Nov 2011Enlarge Photo
But competition is fierce in the compact crossover segment, especially with the all-new 2013 Ford Escape just unveiled at the show and due in dealer showrooms in the spring of 2012.
Not that Honda should be all that worried. After all, the CR-V is the automaker’s third best-selling vehicle behind the Accord and Civic. And as we reported earlier, Honda has apparently solved its parts sourcing problem, finding new facilities or suppliers to replace parts currently sourced from Thailand.
2012 Honda CR-V - First DriveEnlarge Photo
In a first drive of the redesigned fourth-generation 2012 Honda CR-V by our sister publication TheCarConnection, what really stands out is the evolution of the small five-passenger family crossover. Its styling isn’t so much changed as “spruced up a bit.” In other words, the look is not a radical departure, just enough to be noticed.
Besides the freshened exterior styling, what other changes will families find in the 2012 Honda CR-V? We take a look at a few of them here.
Spacious, comfortable interior, good storage, more standard features
One feature families are sure to love is the new-for-2012 Easy Fold-Down 60/40 split rear seat. More than just marketing, as Bengt Halvorson reports in a first drive of the CR-V, all that’s required is to pull on a strap, or use one of the release levers located near the tailgate, and with “one very fluid motion,” the seat folding arrangement, “a CR-V strength,” is accomplished quickly and easily.
Behind the rear seats is an impressive 37.2 cubic feet of cargo capacity. A side cargo net is standard, while EX models and above get a cargo cover that’s retractable and removable. With rear seats folded down, the result is a cargo floor totaling 61.4 cubic feet. And loading groceries, gear and other miscellaneous household items into the back of the CR-V is easier now that Honda has dropped the cargo floor and liftover height to 23.6 inches.
New high-tech features standard in every 2012 CR-V include Bluetooth HandsFreeLink phone interface (previously optional), a full-color intelligent Multi-Information Display (i-MID), and a multi-angle rearview camera. To help reduce distracted driving and a first for Honda, every CR-V now also includes SMS text messaging function, which can read received texts from compatible phones aloud over the audio system. Another first for Honda is the introduction of a Pandora Internet Radio interface, compatible with the Apple iPhone.
Other standard features include remote entry, air conditioning, cruise control, remote entry, air conditioning, cruise control, a roomy new center console, four-speaker 160-watt audio system, and electric power steering. Moving up to the EX model adds a power moonroof, 17-inch alloy wheels, and an upgraded six-speaker audio system, among other features. Top-of-the-line EX-L sports leather-trimmed interior, 10-way power driver’s seat, a seven-speaker 328-watt audio system with XM Radio, automatic dual-zone climate control and more.