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CAR OF THE MONTH May 2007

2007 Honda CR-V EX-L

 

Comfortable Runabout Vehicle

A three-quarter front view of the 2007 Honda CR-V EX-L 2WD

In short: A practical, roomy and surprisingly sporty small SUV.

CR-V stands for Comfortable Runabout Vehicle and that’s exactly what it has been since Honda revolutionized the compact SUV market in 1997 with its car-based quasi truck. The first two generations sold very well, performing its runabout duties with a car-like driving experience and enough room for most families. With the all-new, third generation CR-V, Honda has opted for a less utilitarian appearance inside and out, with an increased emphasis placed on comfort and luxury. The new rear design is particularly noteworthy, as the spare tire has migrated from the tailgate to beneath the trunk, while the tailgate itself now swings up in one piece rather than the old side-swinging door.

Honda CR-V interior
The Honda CR-V's center console with optional touchscreen navigation system
The Honda CR-V's flip-down "conversation" or "spy on the kids" mirror

The interior has been vastly improved, with an attractive design that utilizes good quality materials and innovative features. The rear seat slides forward, allowing for parents to bring their children’s car seats closer to the front cabin. When paired with the standard drop-down “conversation” or “spy on the kids” mirror, spotting and wiping a runny nose while driving has never been easier. Our fully loaded tester came with heated leather front seats and an intuitive voice-activated touchscreen navigation system. As luxurious as the CR-V is, it’s disappointing that Honda left out features like Bluetooth and power memory seats—the latter of which would help with the driver seat’s limited leg room.

Honda CR-V 60/40 back seat slides forward and reclines The Honda CR-V now has a traditional tailgate and also offers a split load floor

Although the 166-horsepower inline-4 won’t exactly light the tires on fire, it feels solid off the line with a good amount of torque, and only when trying to pass someone on the highway does one notice its lack of muscular fortitude. There are no plans yet to offer a V6. Perhaps the best surprise was the CR-V’s steering, which was tight, direct and made driving actually fun. Credit this with it sharing its platform with the performance-tuned Acura RDX.

The Honda CR-V's 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine The Honda CR-V's unique double grille

The Honda CR-V is now a much more luxurious and fun Comfortable Runabout Vehicle than its forbearers, but it hasn’t forgotten how to be a roomy, economical small SUV that should meet most families’ needs.

The Honda CR-V sports elegant new rear styling

Related Content:
2014 Honda CR-V EX-L AWD

Warranty/Service: Three-year/36,000-mile basic warranty; five-year/60,000-mile powertrain warranty.

QUICK SHEET
Base Price: $20,600 /As tested: $26,800

Technical Specifications

Vehicle type: front-engine, front-wheel-drive, 5-passenger, 5-door SUV

Engine: 2.4-liter inline-4
Horsepower: 166 bhp @ 5800 rpm
Torque: 161 lb-ft @ 4200 rpm
Transmission: 5-speed automatic

Curb weight: 3,415 lbs
Wheelbase: 103.1 in
Length/Width/Height: 178/71.6/66.1 in
Turning circle: 37.8 feet

Brakes: front and rear disc with ABS and electronic brake assist

Suspension: independent front and rear
Traction: vehicle stability control, optional all-wheel drive
Safety: front air bags, front side air bags, side curtain air bags, tire pressure monitor

0-60 mph: 9.2 seconds (est.)
Top Speed: 109 mph (governed)

EPA City: 23 mpg
EPA Highway: 30 mpg

Likes: roomy, economical, great visibility for an SUV
Dislikes: slightly underpowered

Check out other Honda models
See all of our Automobile Reviews
Visit the Honda website

Text and photography: James Riswick

PJR011207
(Updated: 10/09/13 NW)

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