The 2023 Honda CR-V Bumped From ‘Class Leader’ by Cheaper Rival SUV

The Honda CR-V is a massively popular crossover. Its rugged dependability, killer gas mileage, and decent size have kept customers happy for over a decade. However, Edmunds just bumped the 2023 Honda CR-V from its position as class leader to make room for another crossover, the 2023 Mazda-CX-50

A blue 2023 Mazda CX-50 small SUV is driving off-road.
The 2023 Mazda CX-50 | Mazda

2023 Honda CR-V overview 

2023 Honda CR-V Sport Touring
2023 Honda CR-V | Honda

Despite the CR-V’s fall from grace, Edmunds still loved the 2023 Honda CR-V. Edmunds says it like this:

“There’s a reason many consider the Honda CR-V the benchmark small SUV for families. Its latest version pulls off this feat with a smooth ride, helpful tech features, and excellent storage space. Still, competitors have improved significantly. The CR-V is a good choice but no longer the clear leader.”

The 2023 Honda CR-V is a small yet roomy crossover sporting a peppy little inline four-cylinder making 190 hp and 179 lb-ft of torque. This little powerplant offers plenty of power while maintaining the model’s reputation of being kind to drivers at the pump. The 2023 Honda CR-V gets 28 mpg City / 34 mpg Hwy / 30 mpg Combined. 

Prices for the newest CR-V start at $32,355 for the base EX trim. If you want to step up to the top trim, the Sport Touring Hybrid, MSRP starts at $39,825. 

The 2023 Honda CR-V fell from first in its class on Edmunds to second place. 

2023 Mazda CX-50 overview

2023 Mazda CX-50 front exterior view
2023 Mazda CX-50 | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

The 2023 Mazda CX-50 is enjoying its position as the class leader on Edmunds. This glow-up comes from its rugged versatility, efficient powertrain, and competitive pricing. 

The 2023 Mazda CX-50 is similarly sized to the CR-V yet has an interior that is unrivaled in its class. Mazda’s inline-four makes fewer horses at 187 hp and 186 lb-ft of torque. It also only gets 24 mpg City / 30 mpg Hwy / 27 mpg Combined. However, where the 2023 Mazda CX-50 makes up ground is its starting price. 

The 2023 Mazda CX-50 starts at only $28,835 for the base 2.5S trim. Unlike the Honda, the CX-50 has many trim levels, with the most expensive being the Turbo Premium Plus trim making 227 hp and a starting MSRP of $43,575. 

Is the 2023 Mazda CX-50 a good SUV?

One of the main factors that lead to Mazda’s climb to the top of Small SUV Mountain is its attractive starting price. Considering the base model specs for the two crossovers are only slightly different, the Mazda starts at nearly $5,000 cheaper. 

And, while the Honda makes a little more power and is slightly more fuel efficient, the Mazda has a more upscale look and feel.