2023 Honda HR-V, Packs More Power and Tech


Competes with: Chevrolet Trailblazer, Kia Seltos, Mazda CX-30, Toyota Corolla Cross

Looks like: A longer, wider version of the outgoing model

Powertrains: 158-horsepower, 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine; continuously variable automatic transmission; front- or all-wheel drive

Hits dealerships: Now

The Honda HR-V is one of the most budget-friendly SUVs available and offers surprisingly roomy cargo and passenger space for its small size. But despite these benefits, the 2022 HR-V also comes with some drawbacks: The subcompact SUV’s base model lacks basic tech and safety features, its powertrain struggles with acceleration, and its quirky looking exterior can be polarizing. Honda has addressed these concerns with the redesigned 2023 HR-V — the SUV now comes with more standard safety tech, a larger engine with increased power and revised exterior styling.

Related: 1990 Chevrolet Corvette ZR-1

Longer, Wider Exterior

2023 Honda HR-V | Manufacturer image

The redesigned HR-V’s exterior departs from its predecessor’s in a number of ways, most notably in size: The HR-V grows by 9.4 inches in length and 2.6 inches in width. A low horizontal beltline and longer hood replace the shorter, coupelike design, while the hidden rear door handles of the previous HR-V are replaced with traditional ones. As a result of the changes, the HR-V’s exterior now more closely resembles competitors such as the Mazda CX-30 and Toyota Corolla Cross.

The HR-V also wears a new face with a redesigned grille, wider-set headlights and hidden windshield wipers. The base LX’s honeycomb grille and front and rear bumpers get a matte finish; the Sport wears a mesh version of the grille and gets a gloss-black rear spoiler, chrome exhaust finisher and gunmetal metallic rear bumper; and the range-topping EX-L gets a gloss-black honeycomb grille among other accents in the same finish.

Like the outgoing model, the 2023 HR-V rides on standard 17-inch alloy wheels; 18-inch wheels are standard on the Sport. Two new colors also are added for 2023: Nordic Forest Pearl and Urban Gray Pearl.

Interior Enhancements


2023 Honda HR-V | Manufacturer image

Updates such as repositioned windshield pillars should help with visibility; a redesigned instrument panel also minimizes reflections. A new pass-through area holds USB ports and space for smaller items. In back, the HR-V better accommodates three passengers thanks to a wider rear-seat area, and the SUV’s new seat design is intended to better stabilize occupants for improved comfort.

More Standard Tech and Safety

honda-hr-v-ex-l-2023-08-interior-center-stack-display-oem2023 Honda HR-V | Manufacturer image

The 2023 HR-V gets a new 7-inch digital instrument cluster and a larger standard 7-inch center touchscreen, up from 5 inches in the 2022 base LX model. Standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are also expanded to the LX. A larger 9-inch touchscreen, wireless CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, and wireless charging can be found on the top EX-L. Honda says the new touchscreen is easier to use thanks to simplified navigation and fewer hidden menus.

While the 2022 HR-V failed to earn an IIHS top safety pick designation and scored poorly in the agency’s updated side impact test, Honda says the 2023 model’s structural improvements should help the vehicle meet tougher collision standards; it’s not yet been formally evaluated, however. The SUV also gets new airbags for enhanced protection in the event of a crash.

To prevent a crash from occurring in the first place, the standard Honda Sensing system expands to all trim levels and gets several new features: A front wide-view camera, traffic jam assist and traffic sign recognition are added for 2023. The new features enhance the existing suite of systems that include forward collision warning with pedestrian detection and brake assist, road departure mitigation, adaptive cruise control, lane departure prevention and lane keep assist.

Powertrain and Performance

honda-hr-v-ex-l-2023-02-exterior-front-angle-oem2023 Honda HR-V | Manufacturer image

Performance should also be enhanced thanks to a new engine, independent rear suspension, an updated continuously variable automatic transmission and a retuned AWD system, according to Honda. All HR-Vs are powered by a larger 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that replaces the outgoing model’s 1.8-liter four-cylinder. Power jumps from 141 horses to 158, and torque is increased from 127 to 138 pounds-feet. The improvements come with a decrease in mpg, however: The outgoing HR-V gets a combined 29 mpg with AWD and 30 mpg with FWD, per the EPA. The 2023’s EPA rating drops to 27 combined mpg with AWD and 28 with FWD.

Honda expects ride quality and responsiveness to improve thanks to the HR-V’s new platform and a new fully independent rear suspension. The SUV’s CVT has also been reengineered for better power delivery and a more refined driving experience, says Honda. The available AWD system, offered on every trim level, is now more capable in snow or slick conditions, and a new Snow Mode joins the SUV’s Normal and Eco options to improve traction. The HR-V also gets newly standard hill descent control that allows drivers to select a preset speed from 2-12 mph; the vehicle will maintain that speed while traveling down steep grades as the driver steers.

Trims, Pricing and Release Date

honda-2023-01-group-shot-oem2023 Honda HR-V | Manufacturer image

The 2023 HR-V comes in three trims: LX, Sport and EX-L. The EX model offered for 2022 is no longer available. All trims come standard with FWD and offer available AWD. The base LX starts at $24,895 (all prices include a $1,245 destination charge), the Sport at $26,895 and the EX-L at $28,695; AWD adds $1,500 to each. The starting price of the LX climbs $1,780 over the 2022 HR-V, while the top EX-L sees a $780 price bump. The 2023 HR-V is available now on Honda’s site.

Versus the Competition

The 2023 HR-V carries a higher starting price than some of its competitors, but it will likely hold onto its spot as one of the most affordable SUVs even after the price increase. The 2022 Mazda CX-30 starts at $23,725, the 2022 Toyota Corolla Cross starts at $23,660 and the 2023 Chevrolet Trailblazer’s starting price is $22,995.

Author: pauadu

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