Honda CR-V 1.6 i-DTEC SE 160 ps 4WD review
What is it?
Honda’s refreshed CR-V takes to the road with new styling, efficient new 1.6-litre diesel and enhanced set of eco/BIK numbers.
It’s an update package built around the intro of that new low-emission (129 g/km) 1.6-litre bi-turbo (160 ps) engine that’ll surely be of special interest to UK company car drivers.
Replacing the former 2.2-litre i-DTEC unit, Honda’s new 1.6 is lighter, has extra power, improved economy and, not least, lower C02. BIK comes down from 24-30% to 21-22%. So plenty of elements going in the right direction, there.
An optional new 9-speed automatic appears. Honda has also fine tuned the CR-V chassis for improved ride and handling, and upped safety kit.
In a reshuffled CR-V range, the existing 2.0 petrol and ‘base’ 1.6 diesel (120 ps) options carry over. However, it’s this new 1.6, 160 ps diesel that may well take centre stage. You can order it in SE, SR and EX trim levels.
Ahead of its imminent UK launch this spring, we had an early taster of this new CR-V on the road in Spain.
- Honda’s new 1.6 i-DTEC diesel, with 160 ps, is lighter, cleaner and more frugal than the outgoing 2.2 i-DTEC. Plus power’s up 10 ps.
- Big drop in C02 emissions (to 129 g/km) versus the 144 g/km of the outgoing 2.2. Economy also improves: 57.7 mpg vs 50.4 mpg.
- Lower C02 means cheaper company car taxes. BIK at 21% (£5778) for this 6-speed manual CR-V compared to 24% (£7274) for previous 2.2.
- New two-stage turbo instrumental in boosting engine output and delivery. New engine/transmission also weighs 65 kgs less than previous powertrain.
- New 9-speed automatic now on offer across the revised CR-V diesel range, versus the 5-speed auto of the old 2.2.
- On the road, keen response, good torque and smooth delivery from Honda’s new 1.6 diesel. No drop off in performance compared to 2.2.
- Solid, stable handling. Reassurance of standard 4WD
- Update brings revised suspension geometry, new dampers and wider tracks to improve stability and ride. Steering response 8% improved.
- Standard City-Brake Active system lowers insurance grouping four levels, from 28 to 24.
- New CR-V premieres Honda’s new Intelligent Adaptive Cruise Control (i-ACC). This ‘Active Safety feature’ senses other vehicles’ position on the road and is capable of predicting, and automatically reacting to, other vehicles “cutting in” to your lane, Honda says.
- All-new Honda Connect app-driven audio and information system includes DAB and internet radio, Bluetooth, sat nav and rear-view parking camera.
- While the new CR-V cruises well, is quiet, comfortable and refined, it is not high on pure driver appeal. Put another way, even with the efficient new 1.6 diesel on board, it’s a slightly dull drive
- Slight deterioration in CO2 emissions and economy with the new 9AT box, ie 134 g/km and 55.4 mpg. Price inevitably creeps higher, too.
- Some cheap looking hard plastics still evident in the cabin, despite facelift.
- Has the facelift (new lights, bumpers, wheels?) improved the CR-V’s looks? Differing opinions on that one.
Verdict on the Honda CR-V 1.6 i-DTEC SE 160 ps 4WD
For Honda, the CR-V has been a long running successful story. Now comes this 2015 facelift package to improve efficiency and lower C02, bringing fresh appeal to its hit SUV, not least to UK company car drivers thanks to its more accommodating tax burden.
With this new 1.6-litre, 160 ps i-DTEC diesel, Honda has found an impressive substitute for the outgoing 2.2-litre unit. It’s a smaller, lighter engine with better economy. It’s sub 130 g/km for C02 and there’s no loss of performance. Even better, it costs less to buy and run.
True, the existing 1.6-litre i-DTEC (with 120 ps) is still available in the Swindon-built CR-V, which is better yet on costs. So are the various petrol versions. But this new 160 ps diesel is a strong all-rounder and arguably the pick of the new bunch.
With improvements to refinement, new safety kit, new 9-speed auto, the new 1.6 diesel engine and more, Honda has usefully raised the bar with the CR-V. Again, it’s a solid company car choice.
The Low Down…
|Doors and body style||5-door SUV|
|Engine/gearbox:||1.6-litre 4 cyl turbo diesel/6-speed manual transmission|
|0-62mph/top speed:||9.6 secs/126 mph|
…and what it costs
|Monthly business rental (ex VAT)||From £xxx (3yrs/30,000 miles)|
|Road tax (VED)||Band D|
|Company Car Tax Bands 2014/15 to 2016/17||£21%, 23%,22%|
|Benefit in kind 2014/15 to 2016/17||£5778; £6328; £6053|
|Annual/Monthly fuel benefit (20%)||£911/£75.92|
|Annual/Monthly fuel benefit (40%)||£1823/£151.92|
|Annual/monthly company car tax (20%)||£1156/£96.33|
|Annual/monthly company car tax (40%)||£2311/£192.58|
|Figures correct at time of posting|
|For latest figures||Use our company car tax calculator|