2022 Honda HR-V vs Nissan Kicks
Subcompact SUVs have gained a lot of fans over the past several years. It's not a big surprise that they've become so popular, considering their versatility. They offer many advantages since they're efficient and can hold a decent amount of cargo. The Honda HR-V and Nissan Kicks are two solid competitors in this market. They have many similarities, so it makes sense why potential buyers would have to think carefully about which model would be better. This overview will review what each has to offer.
The HR-V and Kicks are both relatively new models, introduced in 2016. Although they might not have the widespread recognition of their larger counterparts, still they have a unique selling proposition among some customers. Honda offers four trims for the HR-V - LX, Sport, EX, and EX-L, while Nissan has three trims for the Kicks - S, SV, and SR.
With two dynamic options to choose from, the HR-V and Kicks offer a spirited driving experience. The 1.8-liter engine of the HR-V produces an impressive 141 horsepower while its cousin, the Kicks is no slouch either with 122 horsepower coming out of its efficient yet powerful 1.6L four cylinder engine; both SUVs are equipped with continuously variable transmissions for smooth shifting gear performance characteristic of vehicles in their class.
Additionally, the HR-V's 1.8-liter engine delivers a more confident driving experience. With 141 horses under the hood, it offers a peppier acceleration compared to the Kicks' 122 horsepower engine. The HR-V's extra power and the availability of all-wheel drive make it a more versatile vehicle for various driving conditions. Whether you're facing slippery roads or just need to merge onto the highway with ease, the HR-V's added performance makes it a great choice. On the other hand, the Kicks's front-wheel drive and smaller engine might not be enough for some drivers, especially in challenging driving conditions.
The HR-V is equipped with a sporty feature, the Sports mode, as part of its transmission system. With this facet, driving can be made more thrilling and dynamic. Furthermore, the top three trims boast paddle shifters, providing drivers with an added level of control and flexibility on the road.
Drivers will appreciate the standard Hill Start Assist feature on the HR-V and Kicks. This feature holds the pressure on the brakes, making it easier for drivers to transition from the brake pedal to the accelerator without the worry of the vehicle rolling backward.
The Kicks delivers a stylish ride with 16-inch steel wheels as standard and larger 17-inch aluminum alloy options on its upper trims. For those who desire extra road presence, the HR-V offers engaging wheel sizes between 17" and 18", perfect for adding to any driver's statement of style.
When it comes to fuel efficiency, the Kicks is a clear frontrunner. This efficient little car offers an impressive estimated 36 MPG on the highway and 31 MPG in the city - plus its numbers may even increase depending on factors like driving habits. However, don't underestimate HR-V either; with FWD offering up 34 MPG for highways and 28 MPGs in cities while AWD models boast 31/27 respectively.
The HR-V is designed to offer a more refined driving experience, thanks to its responsive handling and available Active Noise Cancellation system. Three of its trims feature this technology, which uses microphones to detect disruptive sounds from the engine and emits a signal to cancel them out, creating a quieter cabin environment. It's a small touch, but one that can make a big difference in overall driving comfort.
In terms of physically driving these SUVs, there shouldn't be any problems with maneuvering since they're fairly agile. The Honda HR-V is 170.4 inches long, while the Nissan Kicks is 169.6 inches long. This actually makes them shorter than many compact sedans. The two models are about the same height and width as each other. Ground clearance on the Kicks is seven inches. An HR-V with all-wheel drive sits 6.7 inches off the ground, while one with front-wheel drive has a higher ground clearance of 7.3 inches.
The SUV-style body of these vehicles is what helps them attract attention. If they're so compact, though, do they have enough space in their cabins? Both can hold up to five passengers plus cargo, but it might be a tight squeeze for rear-seat passengers in the Kicks. The Nissan only has 33.5-inches of rear-seat leg room. In a significant contrast, the Honda has 39.3 inches of second-row leg room.
If you value space and comfort, the front seat of the Kicks offers a generous 43.7 inches of legroom for stretching out your legs. However, if regularly carrying passengers in back is paramount to you, then choosing the HR-V over its sibling might be preferable due to its larger rear seating area. The decision between these two comes down heavily on how much passenger space matters in relation to your own personal roominess needs.
Behind the seating areas, cargo can be loaded up. This rear area has a volume of 24.3 cubic feet in the Honda HR-V, and in the Nissan Kicks, it measures 25.3 cubic feet. The rear seats can easily be folded down to create more storage opportunities. Doing so would expand cargo capacity to 58.8 cubic feet in the HR-V. The Kicks would have 53.1 cubic feet of cargo capacity in this case.
When it comes to cargo, the HR-V has a clear advantage. With its fold-flat rear seats, loading large items is a breeze. On the other hand, the Kicks' rear seats don't lay flat, which means you might have to lift heavy items a few inches just to fit them in. This could make packing for road trips or moving items more challenging. So, if versatility is important to you, the HR-V might be the way to
This added feature in the HR-V can make transporting items a lot more convenient and stress-free, giving you the peace of mind you need when hauling delicate items or just needing more space. The Magic Seat truly lives up to its name, making it a valuable asset for anyone who needs to transport items that would otherwise not fit in a conventional storage area.
When it comes to technology, both the Honda HR-V and Nissan Kicks have their own set of features. While the HR-V has the option of a seven-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, this feature is only available in its top three trims. The base trim has a five-inch color LCD screen, Bluetooth connectivity, and four speakers along with one USB port. The other trims offer a bit more, with two USB ports and some having six speakers. Additionally, these higher trims have HondaLink and Pandora compatibility, and the top two are even more advanced with SiriusXM and HD Radio capabilities.
Technology is an area in which the Nissan Kicks really shines. All of its trims have touchscreens, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto; the first trim has a seven-inch one, and the others have eight-inch touchscreens. Like the HR-V, the Kicks comes standard with Bluetooth.
Another distinction that sets the Kicks apart is the amount of USB ports it has. It comes standard with three USB ports, and two of its trims have four total ports. The base package offers six speakers, with a Bose eight-speaker system being available on the highest trim. That trim can be upgraded with Wi-Fi connectivity and NissanConnect Services, too. SiriusXM and a seven-inch digital information display are found on the SV and SR trims, but not on the entry-level S.
The Kicks also better positions itself from the HR-V in the area of safety. That's because it boasts standard driver-assist technology. Each one of its trims has several advanced mechanisms that play a crucial role in safeguarding passengers. Meanwhile, only the top half of the HR-V has driver-assist systems.
When the Kicks is approaching other vehicles or pedestrians too quickly, it can alert the driver. If it seems like pressure to the brakes needs to be applied immediately, then the vehicle can take care of that. Further, the Kicks comes standard with lane departure warning, blind spot warning, and rear cross-traffic alert. It even has rear automatic braking to prevent people from backing up into other objects. Automatic high beams and a rear sonar system are standard as well.
Higher trims of the Kicks have a driver attention program that can warn drivers when their attention needs to be refocused on the roads. Along with this, these trims have adaptive cruise control. The base trim just has regular cruise control. Regular cruise control can't adjust speed like the adaptive cruise control program can. The highest trim of the Kicks has a 360-degree monitor to provide a better perspective while making maneuvers at slow speeds.
The Honda HR-V comes equipped with anti-lock brakes, tire pressure monitoring systems, and a rearview camera as standard features across all trims. However, only the top two trims have advanced safety features such as adaptive cruise control, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning and correction, automatic high beams, and Honda LaneWatch. This innovative program displays a live view of the vehicle's blind spot when the right-turn signal is activated, providing drivers with a better view of their surroundings and increasing road safety.
Which Has the Best Value?
The Nissan Kicks is the cheaper of the two models. Its base trim comes in at just under $20,000. Its mid-level trim has a cost of $21,850, and its most expensive one is still very reasonably priced, with a cost of $22,550.
The HR-V, on the other hand, starts off with a cost of $21,870. Remember that this trim does not have driver-assist technologies, nor does it have a touchscreen with smartphone compatibility. The Sport and EX cost $23,820 and $25,070, respectively, and the EX-L tops off the list with a price of $26,670.
In terms of luxury, how do the top trims are compared? The Honda EX-L offers leather upholstery and heated front seats with an auto-dimming mirror and automatic climate control. Furthermore, the leather-wrapped steering wheel bestows a nice touch.
The Kicks' SR trim features sport cloth upholstery, with leather being optional. Although heated front seats are optional rather than standard, the SR does come with a standard leather-wrapped steering wheel, which can even include a heating element for an additional cost. While the SR offers automatic climate control, it does not come with an auto-dimming rearview mirror.
Which is Better?
Each model has its own strengths when compared to the others. The HR-V boasts more power and the option of all-wheel drive, which may be important to some buyers. Additionally, the Honda offers significantly more rear-seat legroom and a spacious cabin with versatile features that could be appealing to potential customers. Meanwhile, higher trims of the HR-V come equipped with advanced technology and comprehensive safety packages, the lower trims may not offer as many features.
If affordability is a top priority, the Kicks is a clear choice, as it offers better technology and safety features at a lower price point. The Kicks could be particularly attractive to those with fewer passengers or less cargo to transport, who don't want to compromise on advanced equipment despite a lower budget.