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Honda is a very popular and successful automaker, and one of the reasons for the company’s continued success has been its reputation for making safe and reliable cars. While many cars in Honda’s lineup lives up to that reputation for being reliable, not all cars do, and it’s possible that’s had an effect on its sales. Here’s a look at the Honda HR-V and whether its low reliability scores are to blame for its faltering sales numbers.

A blue Honda HR-V on display.
2023 Honda HR-V | Honda

The Honda HR-V has the worst reliability score in the lineup right now

iSeeCars gave 11 Honda models a reliability rating after analyzing over 12 million different cars, and unsurprisingly, the Civic and the Accord topped the list. The Civic Coupe got a score of 9.1 out of 10, while the Accord got a 9 out of 10. The Odyssey was in third place with a score of 8.7 out of 10, and after that, there was a three-way tie between the Pilot, the Ridgeline, and the regular Civic as all got an 8.6 out of 10.

The popular CR-V came next with its score of 8.5 out of 10, and it was followed by the Fit, which had a score of 8.4 out of 10. The Civic Hatchback was in the bottom three, as it had a score of 7.7 out of 10. The Accord Hybrid was in second-to-last place as it got a 7.4 out of 10.

Finally, the HR-V is the least reliable Honda of them all, and it was by a big margin. It got a score of 5.6 out of 10. That made it the least reliable subcompact SUV overall.

The Honda HR-V has also been struggling in terms of sales this year

On top of having such a poor showing in terms of reliability, the HR-V’s sales numbers have been dropping a lot lately, according to GoodCarBadCar. So far in 2023, the Japanese auto giant has moved over 35,000 units of the subcompact SUV. In a vacuum, that’s a good amount of sales and it’s a better sales figure than what the Pilot or Odyssey has so far this year.

However, when that number is compared to what the HR-V was pulling last year, it’s become clear that the small SUV is struggling. In the same time frame last year, Honda sold almost 56,000 units of the SUV.

That means that in 2023, Honda is seeing a drop of about 35%. That’s the largest year-over-year drop out of all Honda models. In fact, no other Honda model saw a drop year-over-year, and all of them grew in sales.

There are many possible explanations for the Honda HR-V’s lackluster popularity

What’s also surprising about this downward trend in terms of sales is the fact that the Japanese auto giant recently gave the HR-V a redesign. When automakers do that, it usually results in renewed interest from car shoppers, and that interest often translates to sales. That doesn’t seem to have happened, and it’s not entirely clear why that’s been the case.

It’s possible that car shoppers are looking online at critical reviews and seeing the bad reliability rating that the HR-V has. That, in turn, may make drivers pass on the subcompact SUV and choose a different option, including options in Honda’s lineup.

However, the HR-V dropped massively in sales year-over-year, and it’s unlikely that the car’s reliability rating is to blame for all of that. In all likelihood, there are many factors at play that explain why the subcompact SUV is struggling. Other possible reasons are simply down to taste, as shoppers may not want a small SUV. 


2023 Honda HR-V Has 1 Giant Advantage Over Toyota C-HR