The Honda CR-V is a crossover that's been around for what seems like forever, as it dates back to the 1997 model year. In 2016, the small SUV gets a pretty significant refresh that includes a new front and rear design, an upgraded interior. Continue reading to learn what we thought about the 2016 CR-V after spending some time with it.

Pricing and Equipment

As a compact crossover, the CR-V must do a few things well, and one of them is deliver a great price. In this area, the CR-V is competitive with its $23,595 base price for the LX trim level. That is slightly higher than some of its competitors, but it is pretty well equipped. It comes standard with:

  • Keyless entry
  • Air conditioning
  • Cruise control
  • Four-speaker audio system with Bluetooth streaming audio, Pandora radio, and an MP3 jack

If you're looking for something with more features, there are plenty of other trims to choose from, including the $24,395 SE, the $25,845 EX, the $28,295 EX-L, and the $31,945 Touring.

All CR-V's come standard with front-wheel drive, but all-wheel drive is available for an extra $1,300.

Performance Pros

Honda CR-V

Compact crossovers are supposed to deliver good fuel economy and acceptable performance, and the CR-V does just that. It is also pretty comfy for its class.

  • Up to 33 mpg city is among the best in its class.
  • Sufficient power won't leave you worrying about merging on the highway.
  • It has a surprisingly good ride for its class.

Performance Cons

The 2016 CR-V is no sports car, and this is evident almost immediately. The engine is just enough for the small crossover, especially when loaded with passengers and cargo. Further, its suspension is a tad soft, and its electric power steering is a bit of a guessing game.

Interior Pros

The CR-V outshines its competition in cargo hauling, thanks to excellent maximum capacity of 64 cubic feet and the configurable Magic Seat system.

Interior Cons

While the updates to the cabin of the 2016 CR-V are upgrades to previous years, its base trim level still has that cheap, entry-level crossover look and feel.

  • Fake stitching on the edges of the dash is a little chintzy.
  • Gauges are very dated, time for an upgrade here.

The Most Pleasant Surprise

The max cargo capacity of the CR-V has always been impressive, but the 2016 model’s capacity was unexpectedly great. The Magic Seat system is also one of the easiest and cleanest ways we’ve ever seem to access maximum cargo capacity.

The Least Pleasant Surprise

On paper, the CR-V seems adequate at 185 horsepower, but on the road and with a full load, you can feel this engine struggling.

The Bottom Line

Honda CR-V

The CR-V is what it is: compact crossover that hauls people and cargo while while delivering better-than-average fuel economy. Its optional all-wheel drive is also plenty capable in snow and mud, and it can handle very light off-road driving.