All brands need one. A semi-compact crossover which offers all the practicalities of a crossover with a true ease of usability and styling which will even make millennials turn their heads. Honda has recently updated the HR-V and for me it simply ticks so many boxes.

Bare Facts

  • Price: FromR362,000 (1.5 Comfortline CVT) – R428,300 (1.8 Elegance CVT)
  • Engine: 1.8-litre 4-cylinder naturally aspirated petrol
  • Gearbox: 7-step CVT 
  • Fuel economy: 6.8 L/100 km (claimed)
  • Power/Torque: 105 kW/172 Nm

What’s New

The end of 2018 saw Honda further updating its already popular HR-V by adding the likes of a more contemporary front end, new full-LED headlights, repositioned daytime running lights and even a vibrant new colour called Passion Red Pearl, as seen on my test unit.

The vehicle also now features new 17-inch dual-tone alloy wheels and also has the option to have a panoramic sunroof. Over on the inside, the cabin space is made-up of many soft touch surfaces and I simply love that Honda has decided to wrap many of the interior panels, such as the door cards with leather. The piano black centre console further adds to what is an overall sense of a premium built interior.

In terms of multimedia, at the centre of the cabin is Honda’s familiar 6.8-inch touchscreen-based media system with USB and HDMI ports. It’s one which we have come used to with many modern Honda models and supports major media sources using its Android-based architecture. Sadly though Android Auto and Apple CarPlay do not feature, the system thankfully makes-up for this by offering such a wide array of media formats which it supports.

Overall Safety & Practicality

The Honda HR-V has always been at the forefront of safety and practicality within its segment, and this latest iteration remains right up there among the best in the compact family car class.

In terms of safety features, the HR-V offers a comprehensive suite: ABS with EBD, emergency brake assist (EBA) and emergency stop signal (ESS) activation. Stability control is standard, as are Hill Start Assist. ISOFIX child seat mounting points and 6 airbags around the cabin help make for what is a safe family vehicle.

The luggage loading area is claimed at a sizeable claimed 393 litres which is impressive and makes for good capacity.

The Drive

The naturally-aspirated 1.8-litre 4-cylinder petrol motor powering the HR-V produces 105 kW and 172 Nm of torque. The 1.8 Elegance returned impressive fuel economy figures during my week of testing, averaging 7.3 L/100 km.

The HR-V’s steering has a solid feel to it and, and the HR-V features good road-holding, it feels sure-footed, both on road and when off the asphalt, in which I drove on some very rutted surfaces.

Conclusion, SA Pricing & Warranty

Packing impressive styling, easy to move-around yet practical dimensions and a lot in the way of safety and real-world features, the Honda HR-V makes a really good case for itself, it remains one of my favourite vehicles out of the Honda family stable and easily one of the nicest compact crossovers which I have driven in recent times.

The Honda HR-V range starts from R362,000 for the 1.5 Comfort, while this 1.8 Elegance range-topper costs from R428,300. The prices include a 5-year/200 000 km warranty, a 4-year/60 000 km service plan.

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