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Old 28th March 2005, 10:37   #1
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Default Honda CR-V 2.4 iVTEC driven

Driving the Innova just wasn't enough, so a few paces away from Shinrai lies the (un)holy shrine of Ichibaan Honda. I thought to myself that since I hadn't driven the 2.4 CR-V that seemed to change the vehicle into altogether a different beast (BSM, ACI quotes), a test drive was inevitable.

10 minutes of waiting and I was firmly seated behind the wheel of the 2.4 iVTEC.

Exteriors

The Ford Endeavour really is butch looking. So is the Grand Vitara. But the old 2.0 iVTEC CR-V always looked like a plain jane female in a ballroom full of beauties. One of the reasons why the Endeavour managed to cock a snook and steal sales away from the CR-V to some extent, inspite the two having the fundamental difference of diesel and petrol.

To add to the woes was the Auto-box, which great, doesn't necessarily make for a great companion for some manual junkies. For Honda's thought actually cost the company sales of the car. Tired of having to play second fiddle, especially when its other two cars were market leaders, Honda launched this version. And boy, are changes evident.

The frontal portion has received the most change. The bumper has changed to incorporate circular fog lamps that are standard on the Auto box version. Also a chrome grille and coloured bumpers add to the masculinity of the vehicle. Suddenly, this plain jane female seems to have undergone plastic surgery, and how.

Exteriors - 8.5 on 10

The Interiors

The interiors are of a high standard here. Clever touches like the handbrake location, the cool box and rotatory knobs that scream quality abound. To add to that, the location of the manual box and the handbrake frees-up space for a tray and armrest, right where you expect a gearbox... in the centre of the two front seats. There is space to store nicknacks everywhere, making it quite practical. The seat belts are height adjustable, but the seats aren't electrically adjustable, a bit hard to digest for a 16 lakh rupee vehicle.

Space is bountiful in this vehicle. Its as spacious as the previous gen CR-V, but with better treatment of the dashboard and other small touches. The rear seats recline by a good extent, still leaving enough space to fill your boot up with luggage for a week or more. The seats are fabric on the manual, while leather is available on the auto version. The spare wheel cover is rexine material on the manual, but a hard cover on the auto.

Interiors - 8 on 10

On the move

The brilliantly lit dials with red needles really eggs you on to whip the car. The seating position is not too high, marginally higher than my Wagon-R, something quite difficult to fathom for an SUV/SAV. Peak power comes at a high 6500 rpm, by then the vehicle is churning 150 horses and probably has eclipsed the 0-100 timings in a shade over 10 seconds.

The power in one word is "brutal". Brutal for a SUV to be precise. Mash each gear and the vehicle moves forward faster than you'd expect it to. All of a sudden, there is loads of torque to play around with, something the old CR-V lacked. The manual has a short throw and slots into its positions brilliantly, the gearbox undoubtedly one of the best in the country. That further pushes you to whip the car.

To tell you how powerful this car really is, I had driven the previous gen V6 Vitara with 154 hp which felt extremely torquey and pulled very well. This eclipses it in terms of sheer performance by a quarter-mile, if not a mile. Up 2500 rpm and the vehicle surges. There is ample torque and power even below 2500 rpm to cruise, but above that the vehicle behaves like a beast. Clocking close to 120 kmph on the seaface on curves which i took at 80 in the Innova just an hour back, the vehicle felt extremely taut, grip levels being quite good, and nary a body-roll effect, quite controlled in comparison to an Endeavour that sometimes can feel like a tug-boat on choppy seas. High speed turns also revealed its ability to stay away from the dreaded "understeer", but that can be attributed to the Real-Time AWD kicking in every now and then. It barely feels like an SUV, and more of a sedan. Hard to believe but true.

Performance: 9 on 10

At a shade over 16.5 lakhs, on-road Mumbai, the 2.4 manual is a brilliant car that deserves to sell more than it does now. I for one am bowled over by this princess in new clothes. The Honda badge really is now living up to its name.

Overall: 8.5 on 10


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Old 28th March 2005, 11:02   #2
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Great one dude! Can't wait to get my hands on the CRV now! Should be one heck of a beast for sure. Would be a nice line up from the honda.

BTW is the auto still being sold or has the manual replaced the auto?
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Old 28th March 2005, 11:13   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Harrie

BTW is the auto still being sold or has the manual replaced the auto?
Yes Harrie, the 2.4 is available in both manual and auto. The difference is pricing is a shade over a lakh rupees.

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Old 28th March 2005, 11:25   #4
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The CR-V has for sure, gone through a drastic change in personality.

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Old 25th January 2006, 18:10   #5
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Beautiful review and informative too. Thanks, Revvmaster!!

Wish you said something about the mileage too... I mean 2.4 petrol in our city conditions is something to consider with the fuel prices shooting up like a rocket. I usually never consider mileage, but with vehicles like X-Trail, Tuscan, Scorpio and CR-V, I am so sure I would choose to drive four times more than I choose to now... Sedans/ hatchbacks all scare me. If not for being tired of maintaining 2-3 cars always and if not for MotorMoms health, I would definitely buy myself a Scorpio... Just perfect for Chennai and the girls love it!

Revvmasters review - 10 on 10.

Last edited by MrBoombastic : 25th January 2006 at 18:15.
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Old 25th January 2006, 20:25   #6
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Great Review..

Any clue as to how the Off roading Performance & Handling of this vehicle is compared to the Endeavor or Grand Vitara..?
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Old 10th April 2006, 14:39   #7
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hey nice review revvmaster.......
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Old 11th April 2006, 05:54   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrBoombastic
Beautiful review and informative too. Thanks, Revvmaster!!

Wish you said something about the mileage too... I mean 2.4 petrol in our city conditions is something to consider with the fuel prices shooting up like a rocket. I usually never consider mileage, but with vehicles like X-Trail, Tuscan, Scorpio and CR-V, I am so sure I would choose to drive four times more than I choose to now... Sedans/ hatchbacks all scare me. If not for being tired of maintaining 2-3 cars always and if not for MotorMoms health, I would definitely buy myself a Scorpio... Just perfect for Chennai and the girls love it!

Revvmasters review - 10 on 10.
My CR-V gives around 8km with A/C in city driving and i got around 14 - 15 with A/C on the highway..
The mileage is not the best part of the crv but the comfort level it provides i think it can be ignored..
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Old 10th May 2006, 14:43   #9
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Well a person who can shell out 16.5 lakhs on-road will not think about FE...
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Old 22nd May 2006, 00:10   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zulfikar
Well a person who can shell out 16.5 lakhs on-road will not think about FE...
If that would be the case there would not be any diesel cars above 15 lak.
Even the S class has diesel, 7 series has , A8's have and so do others.
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