2022 Honda HR-V Pros vs Cons. Should You Buy?
Small on the outside but surprisingly spacious within, the 2022 Honda HR-V is easy to fit a few extra passengers and some cargo into. It just so happens to be the most affordable vehicle Honda has in its line-up, and that is what will initially attract buyers. But there is definitely more to this vehicle than just a reasonable price tag.
First, though, the downfalls. The HR-V's acceleration is pretty bland thanks to its standard 1.8-L 4-cylinder engine. It only musters up 141 hp and 127 lb-ft of torque, which just does not feel like enough to get this small SUV up and at it. The continuously variable automatic transmission (or CVT for short) is oriented for efficiency but does not do much to get power distributed to the wheels in a timely fashion. But it might just be the engine that is really to blame. A turbo engine would really spice things up here.
Then, there is the matter of the infotainment system. It is not quite as up-to-snuff as some of the other systems Honda is equipping in its vehicles. For some reason, this one comes off as fussy. And the voice controls? They struggle with recognizing natural speech patterns, which makes using them pretty frustrating for drivers.
The HR-V is certainly far from being a total loss. Its cabin has some nice appointments and is more spacious than you might think. Its cargo area offers a lot of versatility, letting you make the most of what space you have back there. Also, the fuel economy is above average for this segment, hitting around 30 miles per gallon combined. And, of course, the clear view from the driver's seat is a nice little bonus.
So, could the 2022 Honda HR-V meet your needs? Or might you benefit from one of the line-up's larger SUVs? It is time to find out.
What's New for 2022?
Honda has not made any changes to the 2022 Honda HR-V. Its efforts were directed toward the Civic (which was fully redesigned) and Accord (which got a newly styled front end). Honda has also been hard at work on the future EV known as the Prologue.
Top 10 Reasons to Buy a 2022 Honda HR-V – The Pros
1. Spacious Seating for This Segment
The 2022 Honda HR-V has some seriously spacious seats fore and aft - at least, as far as this segment's standards go. Extra-small SUVs are certainly not known for being spacious, but the HR-V gives enough head and leg room in both rows of seats for full-sized adults to feel comfortable. This makes the HR-V cozy enough, and with well-shaped front seats, you can easily log a lot of road trip miles.
2. Cargo Volume and Versatility
Cargo volume is nothing extraordinary, but that is the case for this class. Still, Honda tries to max it out as much as possible in the HR-V. In the front-wheel drive (FWD) models, you get 24.3 cubic feet of cargo space with the rear seats left upright. Folding them down will max that space out at 58.8 cubes. This is one of the best figures you will get in this segment. Plus you get a lot of clever storage options for the cargo area that help you maximize and organize what can otherwise become a busy space.
3. An Impressive Fuel Economy
The Honda HR-V's fuel economy is another big selling point. For a subcompact with all-wheel-drive (AWD) equipped, it manages to do well at the pump, getting about 29 miles per gallon combined. With FWD equipped, it can do even better, and real-world tests show that the numbers hold up well.
4. Clear Outward Visibility
With slender roof pillars and wide glass panels all around, the HR-V is easy to see out of. Drivers can see out the rear with ease, and glancing out the side windows gives a good view too. The seat is positioned just high enough for a good view but not so high that taller drivers will be banging their knees beneath the dash.
5. Superior Steering and Handling Capabilities
The HR-V might have a lackluster engine, but when it comes to steering and handling this vehicle excels. Body roll is kept to a bare minimum while rounding through turns, and the well-tuned suspension makes winding along on curvy roads rather engaging. And that's just the thing - the driver feels connected and engaged while steering this vehicle. You will feel that the HR-V is securely planted as it chugs along.
6. A Lot of Adjustability for the Driver's Seat
The driver's seat has a lot of adjustability, making it easy for people of all sizes to slide in behind the steering wheel. If you need to, the tilting and telescoping steering wheel can be adjusted to accommodate you. The front passenger's seat is fairly easy to adjust as well, lending that occupant a good deal of comfort as well.
7. Easy-to-use Controls
Controls are, for the most part, easy to use. (You just have to look past the fussy touchscreen infotainment system.) All of the physical controls are placed well within the driver's reach, with some even being mounted onto the steering wheel for easy access. They are all clearly labeled, taking the guesswork out of what does which function.
8. The Honda Sensing Suite of Driver Aids
The Honda Sensing suite of driver aids bundles together a handful of helpful features. While it is only equipped on the EX and EX-L trims (other Hondas have them on every trim), this gives the vehicle lane keep assist, adaptive cruise control, and forward collision warning. These vehicles also come with LaneWatch, Honda's blind spot monitoring system. They can help keep you safe while on the road and are not that intrusive.
9. A Lot of Standard Tech Features
You get quite a few standard tech features with the HR-V. Smartphone app integration via Apple CarPlay and Android Auto comes on all but the base LX trim level. The Sport and above offers two USB ports and the 7-inch infotainment touchscreen system. The EX offers Satellite Radio through SiriusXM, and the line-topping EX-L adds a premium sound system with crisp audio quality.
10. The EX-L's Chic Upgrades
The EX-L has a few big upgrades that make it a fun trim level to drive. It has leather appointed seats that look chic and feel comfy enough. Of course, there is also the aforementioned upgraded sound system that should make music-lovers happy. And you also get an auto-dimming rear-view mirror up front. This trim level is still pretty affordable all things considered.
Reasons Not to Buy a 2022 Honda HR-V – The Cons
1. Poor Acceleration
The biggest issue here is the bland base engine. Its acceleration is slow, taking a snooze-worthy 10.4 seconds for the vehicle to get from 0 to 60 miles per hour. Trying to get onto the highway and pass other vehicles feels like a total chore. It also seems to undergo a lot of extra stress while on uphill grades. Whatever you do, plan your moves well in advanced in the HR-V. You will need the time to make speedier maneuvers.
2. A Fair Amount of Engine Noise
Surprisingly, a moderate amount of engine noise makes its way into the cabin. The cabin is otherwise well insulated from exterior noise. It seems as though this pesky engine just really likes to whine, and you will hear it the more stress you put it under. You will even feel some vibrations in the floor when you decide to "gun it" (if you can even really do that) on the highway.
3. Not As Tech-savvy As Some Rivals
The HR-V is not quite as tech savvy as some of its rivals - or as other Hondas, for that matter. To keep the cost down, it appears Honda sacrificed technology in the HR-V. There are not a ton of features packed into the base trim, and it is hard to justify jumping to the Sport since it doesn't have a lot either. The EX-L has the best sound system of the bunch, sure, but some people will still want more.
4. A Finicky Touchscreen Interface
The touchscreens inside of the 2022 Honda HR-V are known for being hard to use. The controls can come off as being kind of clunky, and that makes navigating through menus a bit difficult while you are trying to drive. It can become a distraction, and that is not something you want while driving.
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How It Stacks Up to the Competition:
2022 Honda HR-V vs. 2022 Chevrolet Trailblazer
Spacious and cozy, the 2022 Chevy Trailblazer is equipped with a lot of standard and optional technology - much more so than the HR-V. And its touchscreen system has a lot more finesse. When you buy the Activ trim level, you get a small SUV that can handle some light off-road duties. And, for its size, the Trailblazer offers a lot of cabin and cargo space. Unfortunately, this vehicle also suffers from an underwhelming base engine performance. Not only that, but the transmission paired up with it is sluggish on the downshift.
2022 Honda HR-V vs. 2022 Mazda CX-30
The 2022 Mazda CX-30 is a top contender this model year. It has a strong turbo engine equipped and has a refined ride quality with its sharp handling capabilities. Also, the cabin has a high build quality with some nice-looking materials and little in the way of hard plastics. There are also quite a few standard advanced safety features. On the downside, its transmission is slow to downshift, and the fuel economy is below average for this segment. On top of that, there are some pretty big rear blind spots for drivers to deal with, and blind spot monitoring has to be relied upon because of this.
The 2022 Honda HR-V is small but significant in many ways. While it would clearly benefit from a turbo engine option and revised touchscreen infotainment system, the HR-V gets other important elements right. The handling and steering are spunky, and you get a good feel for comfort and space inside of this extra-small crossover SUV.