A Modest Redesign. The Honda CR-V has been a leader in the compact SUV segment since its introduction in 1997. For the CR-V’s full redesign in 2023, Honda didn’t have to rewrite the compact handbook to continue to have a best-seller on its hands. That explains why the CR-V’s full redesign for 2023 could be mistaken for a refresh or a hefty update.

We think Honda played it a little too safe with the CR-V’s redesign from a design standpoint, but there's no denying that the SUV is more stylish than before. The exterior of the 2023 CR-V sports a look that’s similar to the current Civic, but with larger proportions. The square grille, slim headlights, and blunt front end are dramatically different from last year’s CR-V. The rear end of the CR-V hasn’t changed that much for 2023, but the taillights have been updated and the liftgate has a more prominent body line.

It’s a similar story on the inside where the 2023 CR-V moves to sharing an interior design with the Civic. It’s a straightforward look that’s far more user-friendly than the current SUV. Instead of having a center console that juts out of the dashboard in a V-shape, the new CR-V has a flat dashboard with a center console that sits flush with the dashboard. Having a similar design to the Civic works for the 2023 CR-V, as it’s a major upgrade over the current generation’s interior design.

More Interior Space. For 2023, the CR-V grows much larger, which results in a more spacious cabin. Compared to last year’s model, the new CR-V is 2.7 inches longer, while the wheelbase has grown by 1.5 inches. The compact SUV’s front and rear tracks have grown, as well. The result is more rear legroom and a more spacious cargo area.

In the back, passengers get 41 inches of rear legroom, which has gone up by 0.6 inches. That figure makes the CR-V the roomiest SUV in the compact segment. Of course, the SUV continues to have a generous amount of headroom, too, with 38.2 inches of rear headroom. Adults, even tall ones, will find the CR-V to be a roomy vehicle.

Thanks to a tiered cargo floor, CR-V owners can adjust the SUV’s cargo area for more cargo space. With the floor in its lowest position, the CR-V offers up to 39.3 cubic feet of cargo space with the rear seats in place. Folding the rear seats down opens cargo space to 76.5 cubic feet. This is one of the largest cargo areas in the class and almost matches some two-row midsize SUVs.

2023 Honda CR-V Interior

Upgraded Tech Features. Compared to last year, the 2023 CR-V gets a major tech upgrade. The 2023 CR-V finally enters the modern era with larger touchscreens and a lengthy list of advanced safety features.

Not only does the new CR-V come with Honda’s latest infotainment system, which is a massive improvement compared to last year’s model, but it’s also running on larger touchscreens. The CR-V comes with a standard seven-inch touchscreen. Move up to the EX-L and Honda fits the CR-V with a nine-inch touchscreen and wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

The other major tech upgrade comes in the form of standard Honda Sensing, which has been updated for 2023. The suite includes forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, lane keeping assist, adaptive cruise control, and traffic sign recognition. Blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert are also standard. Honda Sensing has been updated with a new wide-view camera and radar system for improved performance.

Comfortable, But Boring. The CR-V has never been aimed at drivers who want to go out for a spirited drive and the 2023 model won’t light your hair on fire, either. While the CR-V’s design has changed and its list of tech features has been upgraded, Honda has retained the SUV’s turbocharged 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine. It’s rated at the same 190 horsepower and 179 pound-feet of torque as before.

Without a boost in performance, the CR-V is perfectly adequate in a straight line, but fails to excite in the same way as rivals like the Mazda CX-5 or the Ford Bronco Sport. With retuned suspension, a stiffer subframe, a wider stance, and a longer wheelbase, the 2023 CR-V feels stable on the road and handles confidently, but not enthusiastically.

Final Thoughts. If sportiness is something you’re not looking for in a compact SUV, the 2023 Honda CR-V doubles down on everything that made the last-gen model so popular. It remains a comfortable, user-friendly SUV, but now has more interior space, more advanced tech features, and a more refined design. Drivers seeking more power and better fuel economy should explore the CR-V Hybrid, which we cover separately.

For consumers that enjoy driving, the Mazda CX-5 continues to be a standout choice. It has athletic handling and is available with a 250-horsepower engine. The CX-5 also has a luxurious cabin, a standard 10.3-inch display, and a gorgeous design.

The Hyundai Tucson is for drivers that prefer their SUVs to have a more daring design. It’s available with a 10.3-inch touchscreen, is offered with a plug-in hybrid powertrain, has a roomy cargo area, and comes with an extensive list of standard features.

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