Small crossover vehicles like the Honda CR-V comprise one of the hottest market segments in the US and why not? They are superb family haulers that can cruise comfortably on the interstate while navigating easily on city streets and in shopping mall parking lots. They have the high seating many Americans prefer and most are available with all wheel drive for those who live in locations where slippery winter roads are a concern.
If these vehicles have a downside, it is that they typically are somewhat thirstier than the most efficient sedans available today. Even at a time of record low gasoline prices, fuel economy is still an important consideration for most drivers. Nobody enjoys driving a gas pig that is capable of passing everything except a gas station.
The 2017 Honda CR-V equipped with the 1.5 liter turbocharged engine now has the distinction of having the highest EPA fuel efficiency rating of any vehicle in its class. The new model rides on the same global chassis that is the basis of the latest Honda Civic. In front wheel drive trim, its miles per gallon efficiency is rated by the EPA at 34 highway, 28 city, and 30 overall. That puts it ahead of all its peers.
- 2017 Toyota RAV4 — 23/30/26 mpg
- 2017 Kia Sportage — 23/30/26 mpg
- 2017 Nissan Rogue — 26/33/29 mpg
- 2017 Ford Escape — 23/30/26 mpg
- 2017 Chevrolet Equinox — 21/31/25 mpg
- 2017 Subaru Forester — 26/32/28 mpg
The Toyota RAV4 Hybrid has slightly better numbers in city mode but also costs more. It is rated 34/30/32 mpg by the EPA. The four wheel drive version of the new CR-V loses about 1 mile per gallon in all parameters. It is rated 27/33/29 mpg. One mile per gallon may seem an acceptable trade off for the security that all wheel drive offers.
In LX trim with last year’s 2.4-liter four-cylinder, the CR-V is rated 26/32/28 mpg with front-wheel drive and 25/31/27 mpg with all-wheel drive. The 2017 car is 1.5 inches longer, is an inch taller and rides on a 1.6 inch longer wheelbase. Production has begun at Honda’s factory in East Liberty, Ohio. It will also be made in Honda’s other facilities located in Alliston, Ontario and Greensburg, Indiana. Deliveries are expected to begin early next year.
Source: Motor Trend Photo credit: Honda (2016 CR-V shown)