Honda Kept It Simple With the New 2021 CR-V

The Honda CR-V has a long track record of reliability and comfort, and the 2021 model year is no different. While this Honda did get a few upgrades for 2020, very little has changed for the upcoming year, AutoTrader reports — and we think this might be a good thing. After all, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Here’s everything you can expect from this dependable compact crossover.

What you’ll get with the Honda CR-V

The Honda CR-V retails anywhere from $25,000 to $36,000 depending on which trim you choose. It also has a $1,120 destination charge. The CR-V’s 1.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine makes 190 hp, and its fuel economy is excellent for its class: 28 miles per gallon in the city and 34 miles per gallon on the highway.

The CR-V did receive a few upgrades for 2020. Perhaps most significantly, Honda added a hybrid to the lineup. This option makes 212 hp, with a fuel economy of 40 miles per gallon in the city and 35 miles per gallon on the highway.

Standard features in the Honda CR-V include a backup camera, automatic climate control, and anti-lock brakes. The automaker’s safety suite, Honda Sensing, also comes standard on the 2021 CR-V. This system contains a host of features, including automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping assist, and forward collision warning.

The pros and cons of the CR-V

The pros of the Honda CR-V far outweigh its cons. It is an incredibly high-quality compact crossover SUV that AutoTrader describes as “just a pleasure to own and operate.” The CR-V is powerful and responsive even in its base trim, offering one of the class’s more competitive engines. Its quiet cabin simply adds to the overall pleasant driving experience.

Additionally, the CR-V has some of the highest cargo space in its class, lagging just slightly behind the Subaru Forester. AutoTrader also praises the “clever” front center console, which provides additional storage space. 

The CR-V’s cabin is top-notch, packed full of excellent materials and spacious, comfortable seating. Its rear legroom is unparalleled, and it features LATCH points in all the rear seating positions — overall, a perfect choice for larger families, or anyone who will frequently transport lots of people. This SUV also received perfect ratings in its safety tests, and was named a Top Safety Pick by the IIHS.

However, there are a few small downsides. The CR-V’s base model doesn’t come with Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, a fact that definitely makes this SUV lose a few points compared to the competition. Additionally, AutoTrader notes that the touchscreen, while functional, is not particularly user-friendly.

While this SUV’s standard engine is competitive and powerful, there is no high-performance engine option for those who would like one. The high quality of the CR-V’s engine means that this is a relatively minor con, but it is still worth noting.

Sticking with what works

Related: The Honda CR-V is Still Better than the Hyundai Santa Fe

The Honda CR-V received three significant changes for 2020. Honda Sensing became standard for the first time, a turbo engine was added, and a hybrid option joined the lineup. These are some pretty great upgrades — in fact, there’s not much extra that the CR-V really needs for 2021.

While it’s always fun to get new and exciting features, sometimes simple really is better. There’s a reason that the Honda CR-V has been a competitive SUV option for over 20 years: it’s great the way it is. With its comfortable interior, responsive ride, phenomenal fuel economy, and a surplus of cargo space, the CR-V is a great choice for just about anyone looking for a reliable compact crossover SUV.