A redesigned version of Honda’s top-selling CR-V was revealed on Tuesday.
The sixth-generation crossover, which is due on sale this summer as a 2023 model, benefits from a bigger and bolder design, plus a much improved interior, though the powertrains carry over with only some refinements.
The 2023 CR-V features Honda’s new corporate face, while the side profile could be mistaken for a BMW X3 and the rear for a Volvo XC60. The new crossover is longer and wider than its predecessor and this results in more interior space. Legroom in the rear is up 0.6 inches, while cargo space is a maximum 76.5 cubic feet (with rear seats folded), the biggest of any CR-V.
The interior design is a close match to the Civic’s cabin, with a metallic mesh trim piece running across much of the dash below a standard 7.0-inch or available 9.0-inch infotainment screen. The larger screen adds wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, while the smaller screen still requires use of a cord. A 7.0-inch screen features as standard in the instrument cluster.
The platform is a modular design known as the Honda Architecture. It’s stiffer and more rigid than the platform in the outgoing CR-V, which results in improved handling and ride, according to Honda. Up front, MacPherson struts and variable-ratio steering mount to a stiffer subframe, while multi-link suspension can be found at the rear, also mounted to a stiffer subframe.
The standard powertrain remains a turbocharged 1.5-liter inline-4 matching the outgoing CR-V’s 190 hp and 179 lb-ft of torque. This engine is mated exclusively to a continuously variable transmission. Above this is a hybrid powertrain pairing a 2.0-liter inline-4 with a two-motor hybrid system that acts as a transmission. It’s good for 204 hp and 247 lb-ft. That’s 15 lb-ft higher than before, and Honda said the hybrid can now tow up to 1,000 pounds. Depending on the model, buyers will be able to choose between front- or all-wheel drive.
2023 Honda CR-V Hybrid Sport Touring
Even though there’s a lot of competition in the small crossover space, including from the luxury marques, the CR-V is still a top-seller. The outgoing model has averaged over 350,000 annual sales in the U.S. alone since arriving for 2017, and even with production disruptions and Covid restrictions last year a total 361,271 examples were sold.
Pricing for the 2023 CR-V will be announced closer to the market launch.
Honda has a busy year ahead. The automaker in June revealed a redesigned 2023 HR-V and later this month will reveal a redesigned 2023 Civic Type R. A redesigned 2023 Pilot is also set to be revealed this year.