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2020 Honda HR-V Pros vs Cons

Why Buy a 2020 Honda HR-V?
Reviewed & fact checked by
James Murdoch

Are You Considering a 2020 Honda HR-V? Here Are Some Reasons For and Against

Honda has been hard at work perfecting the HR-V since this vehicle was introduced in 2016. Of course, that means the 2020 Honda HR-V is still part of the first generation. Sure, there were kinks to work out in the beginning, but many of them have been smoother out. Unfortunately, there are still things left that need tweaking. But does that mean the HR-V is not worth buying? Hardly. Let's see why the 2020 Honda HR-V is a good choice among others in its segment.

What's New for 2020?

Nothing has changed from the 2019 model line-up. The 2019 was given a revamped front and rear fascia, making it look more contemporary. The 2019 also gained the Touring and Sport trims, standard Honda Sensing technology, and a new infotainment system that made Android Auto and Apple CarPlay standard features as well.

Ten Reasons You May Like the 2020 Honda HR-V – The Pros

1. Solid Steering

Steering feels totally refined and precise on the 2020 Honda HR-V. There is just the right amount of weight given to the steering wheel so that it easily rounds the vehicle through even the most difficult turns and makes passing other vehicles feel like a breeze. It is easy to get into tight parking spaces, and there is a ton of feedback that comes through the wheel, thereby ensuring the driver's confidence.

2. A Well-tuned Suspension

The HR-V displays excellent handling capabilities thanks to its well-tuned suspension. The precise steering lends to this as well, of course. Altogether, this system helps the HR-V wind through all kinds of twists and turns. Country roads are fun to drive down, and the extra ground clearance is a bonus. The traction and stability control kick right in as needed, and there is hardly any body roll to be felt.

3. A Lot of Ride Comfort

The 2020 Honda HR-V has a lot of ride comfort to offer. The wheels are sized just right to absorb a lot of the smaller bumps that you will come across while driving on city and suburban roads. The suspension picks up those larger bumps and smooths them out quite efficiently. Almost zero road imperfections make their presence known inside of the cabin.

4. An Effective Climate Control System

Although the digital controls on the touchscreen system can be a bit tricky, the climate control system itself works really well at pumping out air. Air flows through all areas of the cabin and quickly gets to your desired temperature. Also, the front seats on the higher trims come with heated front seats, and there are two heating levels you can switch between.

5. Finding a Driving Position is Easy

Getting behind the wheel and finding the right driving position is simple in the 2020 Honda HR-V. Both the driver's seat and tilt and telescoping steering column are adjustable, allowing the driver to create enough space for themselves in the cockpit. Drivers won't have to reach far to get to controls either. Many are already mounted on the steering wheel, and the center stack is well within arm's reach.

6. Plenty of Room in the Rear

In the rear, passengers will find themselves getting cozy with how much space is back there. Adults - even those with extra-long legs - can kick back and relax. There is plenty of head, shoulder, hip, and leg space in the rear of the cabin. And if you need to seat three children back there, you can easily do so without them bumping shoulders.

7. Superb Outward Visibility

The 2020 Honda HR-V has expansive outward visibility. The dashboard is set low enough, and the roof pillars are slender. Also, the windshield is large, as are the side windows. There really aren't too many big blind spots, and the blind spot monitoring system will help drivers deal with those anyway.

8. A Spacious and Versatile Cargo Area

Honda excels at utility, and it shows in how they have designed the HR-V's cargo area. The vehicle's 23.2 cubic feet of cargo space can be maxed out to 55.9 cubes, thus defeating basically all of its competitors. That's all well and good, sure, but the Magic Seat system for the rear seats makes it even better. This makes the seats configurable multiple different ways, catering to the driver's cargo needs.

9. An Abundance of Driver Aids

Since Honda Sensing is standard on the EX trim level and above, drivers of the 2020 Honda HR-V will benefit from a huge array of driver aids. This bundle includes lane departure mitigation, lane keep assist, forward collision mitigation, and more. These driver aids tend to work pretty well and are not that intrusive. Drivers should like how easy they are to use too.

10. Plenty of Ground Clearance

Of course, ground clearance is something a lot of SUV drivers look for while shopping for a new SUV. The Honda HR-V gets 7.3 inches of clearance, which is pretty good for this segment. It is definitely a lot more than what you get on smaller vehicles like the Fit, Civic, and Accord. Feel free to take the HR-V on a light off-roading adventure.

Reasons You May Not Like the 2020 Honda HR-V – The Cons

1. Sluggish Acceleration

The biggest downfall to owning the 2020 Honda HR-V is that it is slow to accelerate. The 1.8-L engine needs about 10.4 seconds to get from 0 to 60 mph, which is one of the slowest times for this segment. You won't be able to quickly pass another vehicle or get up to speed on the highway.

2. Excessive Noise Inside of the Cabin

The amount of noise that seeps into the cabin will be a bit distracting for drivers and passengers. Just scuttling around town makes the engine growl, and when you decide to floor it, the engine roars. Wind and road noise, thankfully, are kept to a minimum.

3. A Clunky Infotainment System

Let's face it, the infotainment system on the 2020 Honda HR-V just needs to get scrapped. Its controls and interface are clunky and confusing for a lot of users. There is a long learning curve, and you won't want to have to fiddle with these controls while driving. Some controls are just too sensitive while others are not sensitive enough.

4. Voice Control Requires Specific Commands

One frustrating aspect of the infotainment system is its voice control. It struggles with recognizing natural speech patterns, so you will have to slow down and consider how you are saying a command. Of course, this means that you are going to have to use very specific commands. Although, if this really annoys you, just switch over to your smartphone, which can easily be integrated.

How It Stacks Up to the Competition:

2020 Honda HR-V vs. 2020 Mazda CX-3

The 2020 Honda HR-V sees some stiff competition from the chic new 2020 Mazda CX-3. The CX-3 has a beautiful interior design that looks truly upscale. You can also find a wide array of standard driver aids and infotainment features inside of the CX-3. It does have an exciting driving performance and great fuel economy, but it lacks some refinement when it comes to the rear seats. The space back there feels too cramped for a vehicle in this segment. Also, there is not a lot of cargo space available. It certainly isn't as versatile as the HR-V's cargo area, either.

2020 Honda HR-V vs. 2020 Nissan Kicks

The 2020 Nissan Kicks is another contender in the crossover SUV market this model year. The Kicks has a starting MSRP that is several thousand dollars below the HR-V, which is what will initially attract buyers to it. Its cargo area is pretty spacious, and the fuel economy is also extremely appealing. It lacks a lot of features though, like adaptive cruise control and a sunroof - things that the HR-V does offer on some of the higher trim levels. All-wheel drive is not even available as an option, which is going to be a deal-breaker for some drivers. Oh, and its acceleration is about as slow as the HR-V's. Essentially, you get what you pay for here.


The 2020 Honda HR-V is, for the most part, a vehicle that performs well. But there are some kinks that Honda really needs to hammer out within the next few model years. The infotainment system is one of the biggest gripes that drivers have about this vehicle, and Honda has already shown that they can do better with making their tweaks. But if Honda really want to be sitting in the number one position for this segment, they will have to ditch the sluggish transmission and 1.8-L engine and get something more powerful, thereby enhancing acceleration and providing a more enthralling ride.
Previous Honda HR-V Buying Guides:

Why buy a 2019 Honda HR-V? w/ pros vs cons