Honda’s popular CR-V sports utility vehicle (SUV) has undergone a number of key changes for the 2010 model year. While the improvements include a subtle styling update, the big news is the addition of a cleaner, more powerful turbodiesel engine, which can be ordered with an automatic transmission for the first time. And it’s this 2.2 i-DTEC automatic that we tested recently.
The new 2,2-litre turbodiesel engine has been uprated to deliver improved levels of power and torque, while emissions have been reduced by fitting a diesel particulate filter. The 2,2-litre turbodiesel engine is identical to the unit already employed in the Honda Accord range. It produces a modest 110 kW at 4 000 r/min, while the torque peak has been upped from 320 N.m to a healthy 350 N.m at 2 000 r/min. Linked to a new 5-speed automatic transmission, performance of the 2010 CR-V is adequate. The CR-V offers enough acceleration off the line to keep ahead of the rat race around town and once up to speed on country roads, cruises comfortably.
Despite the additional power and performance over its predecessor, the latest CR-V 2.2 i-DTEC is also more fuel efficient with Honda claiming a combined-cycle fuel consumption figure of 7.5 l/100 km. We achieved an average of 10.1 l/100km, but we weren’t making a point of driving economically, choosing instead to explore the new engine and its relationship with the new gearbox. We can report these mechanicals work well together. The automatic gearbox doesn’t hunt unnecessarily or labour in too high a gear. Shifts are as expected for a traditional auto – smooth, but beginning to feel dated in comparison to the growing number of cars on the market equipped with dual-clutch transmissions (DSG, S tronic, DCT, etc).
Styling of the current generation CR-V has never really appealed to us, however updates to the latest 2010 CR-V have helped to achieve a more polished look. Changes include a new front grille, as well as front and rear bumpers, which are now also colour-coded on ‘Executive’ spec models. A new set of 17-inch alloy wheels are now standard on all new CR-V’s, as is a full-sized spare wheel.
Inside, the CR-V certainly has a premium feel about it. The plastics are of a high quality and well put together – our press car had over 13 000 kms on the odometer and not a single creak or rattle was heard. In fact, the entire car has a solid and reliable feel to it – peace of mind can be worth a lot when travelling long distances or when you have family onboard.
Leather trimmed seats are standard across the range and proved very comfortable for both the driver and all passengers. Legroom is also generous no matter which seating position you opt for and the driver’s seat is 8-way electronically adjustable. A nice feature as we head into winter are the heated front seats. The rear seats feature backrests that can be adjusted to varying levels of inclination for added comfort, but also to free up boot space. The 513-litre boot capacity is ample, with a ‘double-deck’ cargo shelf providing two separate areas – handy for keeping our laptop from being squashed by heavier items.
Plenty of storage areas are dotted around the cabin, some of which have a non-slip mat preventing items from rolling around.
From the driving position all controls are within easy reach and logical in their use. Satellite controls for the audio as well as cruise control are located on the steering wheel. A clearly legible instrument display with onboard computer is further enhanced at night with blue lighting around the dials. The centre console houses the 6-disc radio/CD-player and dual-zone climate controls – also lit up with blue ambient lighting at night. On top of the dashboard sits a factory fitted, touch-screen GPS unit that swivels easily in any direction and can be removed at the touch of a button.
All CR-V models feature Honda’s Real-Time Four-Wheel Drive system, which seamlessly transfers a variable portion of power from the front wheels to the rear as and when conditions require. Honda’s independent suspension, front and rear, is firmly sprung and offers a harder ride than expected, but in exchange offers competent handling. Weighing in at 2 160 kg’s, the CR-V 2.2 i-DTEC is no feather weight and it can be felt through the steering. However, this adds to the SUV’s overall feel of solidity and the power steering ensures the car is easy to manoeuvre. The CR-V has park distance control to help you in and out of tight spots, and a handy feature is the auto-tilt passenger side mirror that activates when the car is placed in reverse gear, to allow you to see edge of the pavement.
Although insulation has been improved, we still noticed a fair amount of wind and tyre noise on the open road. The CR-V cruised happily on our weekend sojourn up the West Coast and proved comfortable throughout. The Xenon headlights work well at night.
Safety remains a high priority across the latest Honda CR-V range, with standard equipment including dual front, side and curtain airbags; ISOFIX child seat anchors; anti-lock brakes (ABS) with electronic brake-force distribution (EBD) and electronic brake assist (EBA); vehicle stability assist (VSA); trailer stability assist (TSA), and a tyre deflation warning system. In the case of Executive models, xenon headlights, auto-activating windscreen wipers and headlights, and an auto-dimming rear-view mirror are also included.
Perhaps a bit pricey, but if you’re looking for a practical, reliable and very comfortable SUV that has good road manners and safety to boot, then the 2010 Honda CR-V could be the all-rounder for you.
What We Like…
- Solid build and feeling of reliability.
- Smooth diesel engine with enough power for the needs of most.
- Spacious, comfortable cabin.
What We Would Like…
- Slightly softer ride.
- Height adjustable headlights for when your CR-V is loaded with luggage or when towing.
|Base Price||R439 400|
|Warranty||3 year / 100 000 km|
|Service Plan||5 year / 90 000 km|
|Engine Capacity||2 199 cm³|
|No. Of Cylinders||4-cylinders, in-line|
|Power||110 kW @ 4 000 r/min|
|Torque||350 N.m @ 2 000 r/min|
|Drive type||Realtime 4WD|
|Acceleration||0-100 km/h in 10.6 seconds (claimed)|
|Top Speed||187 km/h (claimed)|
|Fuel Consumption||7.5 l/100km (claimed combined)|