Conservative Utility Vehicle (Honda CR-V 2007-2012)

ENGINES – With Honda offering one of each, there’s no excuse for not finding something that suits your lifestyle. Petrol will favour low mileage owners while diesel will be a smarter choice for more spirited, longer distance driving if you want to save the pennies. Neither engine is a performance thoroughbred but they’re both refined and capable of getting the job done.

EXTERIOR – A marked improvement over previous generations, this CR-V is more car-like and in keeping with the whole ‘soft-roader’ genre. The bulky spare wheel has disappeared from the tailgate, and, as a whole, this CR-V looks more substantial and ‘premium’.

INTERIOR – In typical Honda fashion the CR-V’s cabin is dominated by black plastics, but the trade-off is a potentially hardwearing and durable environment – and one that should compliment an owner’s active lifestyle. Crucially, there’s enough room fore and aft for a growing family.

DRIVING – Like the exterior styling, the CR-V’s ride and handling has also evolved. The result is a noticeably more car-like experience despite the retention of the lofty driving position. Don’t expect outright performance to be sparkling though, as refinement and comfort are the CR-V’s dominant attributes.

OWNERSHIP – Alongside Toyota, Honda enjoys a solid reputation for durable, sensible and affordable cars. The CR-V joins this club, and delivers a straightforward driving experience with no quirks, while especially in diesel trim it’s also kind on your wallet. As such, it’s no surprise that many view it as an attractive high-rise family hatch alternative.

WHAT TO LOOK FOR – Although the CR-V is a 4x4, you’ll be lucky to spot evidence of a previous owner taking the car off the road. That said, do conduct a full underbody inspection just in case there’s damage, and always ask what was connected to a towbar as it might have exceeded the car’s limits. Elsewhere, a comprehensive service history and all-round good visual and mechanical condition is a must to avoid the potential for costly future repairs.

MODEL HISTORY

2007: Honda launches third generation CR-V. Now more refined and car-like, power comes from one petrol and diesel engine option plus an auto gearbox on selected models. Good level of standard kit supported by high levels of cabin and build quality. Part time 4x4 system requires no driver input.

REASONS TO BUY – brand values and reputation, high quality cabin, dependable diesel engine option, well equipped

REASONS TO BEWARE – not a proper all-terrain car, thirsty petrol option

PICK OF THE RANGE – CR-V 2.2 i-DTEC EX

WHAT TO PAY

2009 59 15,926

2010 10 17,600

2010 60 18,350

2011 11 20,330

2011 61 21,090

Figures relate to showroom prices for cars in A1 condition.

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