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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I mentioned some of this in a post under another thread, but since doing a test drive today thought I'd elaborate for those who are on the fence.

My plan for 2015 was to replace my 2000 Civic (224k) in the Fall with a 2016 CR-V. And when it comes to buying things, I'm a bit of a research freak and I'll often spend far too much time scouring forums, looking out for fake reviews on Amazon, etc. Therefore I would skip the 2015 CR-V and see if the 2016 fixed the vibration issues.

But my car entered a rapid decline in the last few weeks. CEL light went on, indicating bad O2 sensor. I didn't replace it, and the light went off a week later. Then I stalled out on the way home from work. Got it towed, had to spend a few hundred to replace coils. Seemed OK, then CEL came on again. Now it's O2 sensor and catalytic converter efficiency.

So I'm at the incredibly stressful situation of needing either a new car (that might not be ideal since there isn't long-term HR-V experience) now, or spend a fair amount of money to try and keep my Civic going. Before the Winter it would need a major tuneup, new tires, etc.

I somewhat disregarded the HR-V after the initial reviews came out, due to the complaints about power and the touch controls. Fast forward to today, and with my limited choices I decided to test drive an HR-V.

Firstly I wanted an EX-L, based on my experience with my girlfriend's CR-V. I definitely wanted the heated mirrors, and heated seats would be nice. But these are also on the EX level on the HR-V, and it's a $2600 or so premium for the leather, the navigation (I have an iPhone), the automatic dim mirror (neat, but I've never had one) and the roof rails. Well, $2600 would also replace my dilapidated sofa.. so I tested an EX.

I find that reading car reviews - be they from expert sites, friends, posts in message boards - is a treacherous path. We're expected to base our $20K plus, multi-year financial decision on a few paragraphs? And especially in the HR-V case, there's no long-term reliability available.

I'll skip over the stuff that's already been established as positive - roomy interior for its size, flexible seats, comfortable, etc. (I found the cloth seats quite comfortable, even after sitting in the EX-L)

To address the negative:

Power - nope, it's not a sports car. I didn't floor it in the test drive, but I drove it like I drive my Civic (because that's what I know), and it was comparable. Certainly not as powerful as the gf's CR-V. But it maneuvered quite well, and testing the turning radius seemed quite good.

Touch interface for climate controls - that's a tough one. With the analog buttons/knobs in the Civic I can adjust things while being blindfolded. But how much of that is because they are analog - or because 15 years of driving that car, my muscle memory just knows where they are? Probably a bit of both. I think the new thinking is, use the "auto" mode and eliminate the need for messing with buttons. Will that work in practice..?

Touch interface for audio - I didn't get to mess with this much and being a tech geek, a short test drive wouldn't have sufficed for a full exploration. 90% of my audio behavior is: Get in car and connect iPhone and listen to music or podcasts. Only interaction with radio is for input and volume. This would need further testing, and I'm hoping CarPlay comes in a firmware update.

Storage - I do think the door pockets and the console could be more generous. But what's my reality check? My Civic door pockets contain - expired coupons, some receipts, a microfiber cloth that needs washing. The console has my current iPhone charging cable, and some old cables, and a bunch of crinkled receipts. So there's not much to begin with, and I don't have kids so I can't comment on the need for space. BUT I do agree that they could have thrown in the sunglasses storage near the map lights. :|

So my test drive comes to an end. Well, I'm picking it up on Saturday! AWD EX, the metallic gray color. I added the moonroof visor, car mats & splash guards, cargo cover. My point of writing all of this stuff is for folks who are on the fence - I think it's important to match your expectations with what the reviews say. But my general rationale was:

- My car cost less than a CR-V.
- It's brand-new and under warranty.
- There's the stress of a new car payment, but no more stress of breaking down.
- I have lots of new features to look forward to - cameras, keyless entry, flexible seating/storage, modern safety, Siri eyes free, etc.
- That new car smell!

I'll post back more details after I've driven it a few days. Good luck folks!






 

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Congrats! The biggest thing I like about the HRV is you can nearly guarantee it will be a Top Pick in crash test.

Noticed some have gone with the Scion xB which personally I would avoid due to crash tests.

 

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As someone almost side swiped me yesterday on my 5 mile commute home I thought at least the HR-V is finally available. The last time I almost got hit I wondered what I might have considered as a worthy replacement with the HR-V so imminent. Have fun! It's nice to have a new car under warranty after having an older one with that ever growing to-do list. Whether DIY or at the mechanic none of it is cheap either in your own time or your wallet.
 

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Hope you weren't driving that Scion xB. :(:(



As someone almost side swiped me yesterday on my 5 mile commute home I thought at least the HR-V is finally available. The last time I almost got hit I wondered what I might have considered as a worthy replacement with the HR-V so imminent. Have fun! It's nice to have a new car under warranty after having an older one with that ever growing to-do list. Whether DIY or at the mechanic none of it is cheap either in your own time or your wallet.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Well, today was the day! I can't promise a full review as I've only driven it for a couple of dozen miles. And with all the stress of hoping my old car would make it to the dealer, to finally getting my hands on the key(less) fob, I'm tired. But, here's what I have:

I did a very unscientific decibel test of both my old car and the HR-V, using the SPL Meter app. I had the phone on a dash mount, vents and radio off, windows closed. Anyway, here are measurements in decibels.

Civic:
Idling - 41
35mph- 65
65mph - 68 (a bit more difficult to measure due to keeping my eyes on the road as best as I could while glancing the screen!)

HR-V:
Idling - 39
35mph - 59
65mph - 66

So on paper it's a little quieter, but real-world experience it was much quieter than my old Civic! This is likely because in both cases the iPhone was mounted on the dash, so it's picking up noise that wouldn't be experienced in the cabin.

Comfort:

The fabric seats are great. I feel "snug" in the seat as it wraps nicely around my back. The center console is certainly larger than my on my old Civic, which helps in the secure feeling. I have a history of back problems, and this was very comfortable for me. I'm only 5'9", so cabin height in general isn't an issue for me. When some of my taller friends take a ride I can give their feedback.

Oh, I love the electronic brake. I like to stretch out my left leg, and not having the parking brake on the floor is awesome.

Driving:

I think the sluggishness that some sites complained about are valid, but may be overcome with some behavioral changes. At the beginning of my day I pressed the gas as I was used to driving in my Civic. But by the end of the day I found myself pressing it a bit more on takeoff, and then leveling off. That definitely improved my driving experience, and maybe it's the nature of the CVT. My gf who has a 2014 CR-V EX-L didn't have any issues with the HR-V's power when she gave it a drive. I'll have to see again next week when the work commute returns, but at this point I'm not concerned.

Steering is very responsive. My old Civic felt very mushy compared to the HR-V.

I'll have to comment later on LaneWatch and other things, when I've done more driving.

Technology

Keyless entry:


This is awesome. Being able to just walk up to the car and open the handle without ever reaching into your pocket is so nice. As is the push-button start/stop. It's interesting that if you have the key and unlock the driver's side door, it only opens the driver's door. You then have to use the inside unlock to open the other doors. Conversely, if you open it from the passenger side it opens all doors. I kind of wish you could enable unlocking all doors from the driver's side w/o any extra steps. (note that with 2 click on the key fob it does unlock all doors, so I'm only referring to driver's door handle)

Oh, and FINALLY - upon locking the doors, Honda replaced the very loud horn **BEEP** with a pleasing chirp.

I'm a technology geek so a review of the touchscreen and and touch controls will need more testing. I still have reservations about not having knobs for climate controls, and since today's weather was excellent it didn't require much fiddling. After a week of work commuting I should have a better idea of this stuff and ergonomics in general.

Anyway - so far, so good. More to come!
 

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Note that in reading a manual earlier I saw mentioned you could control climate controls and audio all with audio commands? I'm a tech geek myself but I did not know this until after my test drive today and I don't pick mine up for a couple of weeks when it comes in so maybe you can try it out! I generally do not use audio commands on my phones and such but I could see me using it in the car a lot so as to not mess with the touchscreen.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Note that in reading a manual earlier I saw mentioned you could control climate controls and audio all with audio commands? I'm a tech geek myself but I did not know this until after my test drive today and I don't pick mine up for a couple of weeks when it comes in so maybe you can try it out! I generally do not use audio commands on my phones and such but I could see me using it in the car a lot so as to not mess with the touchscreen.
Huh, I didn't know that existed! I took a quick look, and I think it might be limited to the EX-L Navi. When I bring up the voice commands help, all it gives me is the phone commands. I'm going to invent some errands to run this morning so can can go driving, I'll try it again. :D
 

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Huh, I didn't know that existed! I took a quick look, and I think it might be limited to the EX-L Navi. When I bring up the voice commands help, all it gives me is the phone commands. I'm going to invent some errands to run this morning so can can go driving, I'll try it again. :D
Yeah, I could not tell if it was any touchscreen radio, or just the navi version myself. I also purchased an EX so I may well be without this feature also. I don't think my dealer was aware of this feature either, as it was never mentioned and I was test driving an EX-L Navi. I could not justify $2600 for leather as I saw it.

I'd never use built in navi, that's what waze and a smartphone is for!:D
 

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Well, today was the day! I can't promise a full review as I've only driven it for a couple of dozen miles. And with all the stress of hoping my old car would make it to the dealer, to finally getting my hands on the key(less) fob, I'm tired. But, here's what I have:

I did a very unscientific decibel test of both my old car and the HR-V, using the SPL Meter app. I had the phone on a dash mount, vents and radio off, windows closed. Anyway, here are measurements in decibels.

Civic:
Idling - 41
35mph- 65
65mph - 68 (a bit more difficult to measure due to keeping my eyes on the road as best as I could while glancing the screen!)

HR-V:
Idling - 39
35mph - 59
65mph - 66

So on paper it's a little quieter, but real-world experience it was much quieter than my old Civic! This is likely because in both cases the iPhone was mounted on the dash, so it's picking up noise that wouldn't be experienced in the cabin.

Comfort:

The fabric seats are great. I feel "snug" in the seat as it wraps nicely around my back. The center console is certainly larger than my on my old Civic, which helps in the secure feeling. I have a history of back problems, and this was very comfortable for me. I'm only 5'9", so cabin height in general isn't an issue for me. When some of my taller friends take a ride I can give their feedback.

Oh, I love the electronic brake. I like to stretch out my left leg, and not having the parking brake on the floor is awesome.

Driving:

I think the sluggishness that some sites complained about are valid, but may be overcome with some behavioral changes. At the beginning of my day I pressed the gas as I was used to driving in my Civic. But by the end of the day I found myself pressing it a bit more on takeoff, and then leveling off. That definitely improved my driving experience, and maybe it's the nature of the CVT. My gf who has a 2014 CR-V EX-L didn't have any issues with the HR-V's power when she gave it a drive. I'll have to see again next week when the work commute returns, but at this point I'm not concerned.

Steering is very responsive. My old Civic felt very mushy compared to the HR-V.

I'll have to comment later on LaneWatch and other things, when I've done more driving.

Technology

Keyless entry:


This is awesome. Being able to just walk up to the car and open the handle without ever reaching into your pocket is so nice. As is the push-button start/stop. It's interesting that if you have the key and unlock the driver's side door, it only opens the driver's door. You then have to use the inside unlock to open the other doors. Conversely, if you open it from the passenger side it opens all doors. I kind of wish you could enable unlocking all doors from the driver's side w/o any extra steps. (note that with 2 click on the key fob it does unlock all doors, so I'm only referring to driver's door handle)

Oh, and FINALLY - upon locking the doors, Honda replaced the very loud horn **BEEP** with a pleasing chirp.

I'm a technology geek so a review of the touchscreen and and touch controls will need more testing. I still have reservations about not having knobs for climate controls, and since today's weather was excellent it didn't require much fiddling. After a week of work commuting I should have a better idea of this stuff and ergonomics in general.

Anyway - so far, so good. More to come!
So you are telling me on the drivers side door by clicking the button on the door you can only open the driver door?? My car now the first click on the door opens driver, second all doors, and third locks.
 

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Impressive; gas mileage seems far better than expected by being able to get near 40mpg on the highway.

I mentioned some of this in a post under another thread, but since doing a test drive today thought I'd elaborate for those who are on the fence.

My plan for 2015 was to replace my 2000 Civic (224k) in the Fall with a 2016 CR-V. And when it comes to buying things, I'm a bit of a research freak and I'll often spend far too much time scouring forums, looking out for fake reviews on Amazon, etc. Therefore I would skip the 2015 CR-V and see if the 2016 fixed the vibration issues.

But my car entered a rapid decline in the last few weeks. CEL light went on, indicating bad O2 sensor. I didn't replace it, and the light went off a week later. Then I stalled out on the way home from work. Got it towed, had to spend a few hundred to replace coils. Seemed OK, then CEL came on again. Now it's O2 sensor and catalytic converter efficiency.

So I'm at the incredibly stressful situation of needing either a new car (that might not be ideal since there isn't long-term HR-V experience) now, or spend a fair amount of money to try and keep my Civic going. Before the Winter it would need a major tuneup, new tires, etc.

I somewhat disregarded the HR-V after the initial reviews came out, due to the complaints about power and the touch controls. Fast forward to today, and with my limited choices I decided to test drive an HR-V.

Firstly I wanted an EX-L, based on my experience with my girlfriend's CR-V. I definitely wanted the heated mirrors, and heated seats would be nice. But these are also on the EX level on the HR-V, and it's a $2600 or so premium for the leather, the navigation (I have an iPhone), the automatic dim mirror (neat, but I've never had one) and the roof rails. Well, $2600 would also replace my dilapidated sofa.. so I tested an EX.

I find that reading car reviews - be they from expert sites, friends, posts in message boards - is a treacherous path. We're expected to base our $20K plus, multi-year financial decision on a few paragraphs? And especially in the HR-V case, there's no long-term reliability available.

I'll skip over the stuff that's already been established as positive - roomy interior for its size, flexible seats, comfortable, etc. (I found the cloth seats quite comfortable, even after sitting in the EX-L)

To address the negative:

Power - nope, it's not a sports car. I didn't floor it in the test drive, but I drove it like I drive my Civic (because that's what I know), and it was comparable. Certainly not as powerful as the gf's CR-V. But it maneuvered quite well, and testing the turning radius seemed quite good.

Touch interface for climate controls - that's a tough one. With the analog buttons/knobs in the Civic I can adjust things while being blindfolded. But how much of that is because they are analog - or because 15 years of driving that car, my muscle memory just knows where they are? Probably a bit of both. I think the new thinking is, use the "auto" mode and eliminate the need for messing with buttons. Will that work in practice..?

Touch interface for audio - I didn't get to mess with this much and being a tech geek, a short test drive wouldn't have sufficed for a full exploration. 90% of my audio behavior is: Get in car and connect iPhone and listen to music or podcasts. Only interaction with radio is for input and volume. This would need further testing, and I'm hoping CarPlay comes in a firmware update.

Storage - I do think the door pockets and the console could be more generous. But what's my reality check? My Civic door pockets contain - expired coupons, some receipts, a microfiber cloth that needs washing. The console has my current iPhone charging cable, and some old cables, and a bunch of crinkled receipts. So there's not much to begin with, and I don't have kids so I can't comment on the need for space. BUT I do agree that they could have thrown in the sunglasses storage near the map lights. :|

So my test drive comes to an end. Well, I'm picking it up on Saturday! AWD EX, the metallic gray color. I added the moonroof visor, car mats & splash guards, cargo cover. My point of writing all of this stuff is for folks who are on the fence - I think it's important to match your expectations with what the reviews say. But my general rationale was:

- My car cost less than a CR-V.
- It's brand-new and under warranty.
- There's the stress of a new car payment, but no more stress of breaking down.
- I have lots of new features to look forward to - cameras, keyless entry, flexible seating/storage, modern safety, Siri eyes free, etc.
- That new car smell!

I'll post back more details after I've driven it a few days. Good luck folks!






 

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So you are telling me on the drivers side door by clicking the button on the door you can only open the driver door?? My car now the first click on the door opens driver, second all doors, and third locks.
Glad your back! How was the vacation?
Thanks! It kicked my butt! Hiked the Inca trail to machu Picchu - 26 miles - the altitude killed my ability to breathe properly, but what an amazing place, beautiful area and great accomplishment!
 

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So you are telling me on the drivers side door by clicking the button on the door you can only open the driver door?? My car now the first click on the door opens driver, second all doors, and third locks.
I think he's talking about if you use the feature where the door unlocks when you touch it if you are close enough to it. If you use the unlock button on the key fob, press unlock once for driver's, twice for all doors. Similarly, if you were to walk up the passenger side door with the key in your pocket, touching the door handle should unlock all doors.

One interesting thing I read in the manual - if you unlock with key fob and don't open a door within 30 seconds, it locks back.

Hope to pick mine up next week, so I've been studying the manual and guide.
 

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Thanks! It kicked my butt! Hiked the Inca trail to machu Picchu - 26 miles - the altitude killed my ability to breathe properly, but what an amazing place, beautiful area and great accomplishment!
glad you enjoyed it., reminds me of a great book
Machu Picchu : a civil engineering marvel

I remember helping my son do a report on it., we took it out of our local library, highly recommended!
 

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So you are telling me on the drivers side door by clicking the button on the door you can only open the driver door?? My car now the first click on the door opens driver, second all doors, and third locks.
I think he's talking about if you use the feature where the door unlocks when you touch it if you are close enough to it. If you use the unlock button on the key fob, press unlock once for driver's, twice for all doors. Similarly, if you were to walk up the passenger side door with the key in your pocket, touching the door handle should unlock all doors.

One interesting thing I read in the manual - if you unlock with key fob and don't open a door within 30 seconds, it locks back.

Hope to pick mine up next week, so I've been studying the manual and guide.
That's what I'm talking about. I never have my key fob out now, can't tell you the last time I've used it, but I can unlock all doors either from the drivers or passenger side doors.
 

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That's what I'm talking about. I never have my key fob out now, can't tell you the last time I've used it, but I can unlock all doors either from the drivers or passenger side doors.

Ok, the word button through me off. No button on the door to unlock. You just grab the handle. The button there is to lock it.
 
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