The 2018 Honda CR-V offers everything today’s drivers want. From high-tech safety to strong fuel economy, it’s packed with exciting updates. Here are a few reasons why you’ll want to get behind the wheel of the 2018 Honda CR-V.

What’s Changed from 2017?

No significant changes were made to the 2018 Honda CR-V, though some small improvements have been made. Last year, the model benefited from a complete redesign. This year, reviewers report improved handling and sharper exterior styling as just a small sample of the crossover’s list of highlights.

Performance Specs

In comparison to the previous generation, the 2018 Honda CR-V offers a far more rewarding performance on the street. The base CR-V LX comes exclusively with a 2.4-liter, i-VTEC four-cylinder engine. It develops a satisfying 184 horsepower and 180 pound-feet of torque. Although the base LX model is not a powerhouse, it always feels very responsive. This is in part due to the CR-V’s automatic transmission, ranked one of the best in the segment. It’s capable of quickly transferring all available power without any delays.

The EX, EX-L, and Touring trims all come equipped with a slightly more potent turbocharged four-cylinder engine. Honda tuned the boosted 1.5-liter engine to develop a healthy 190 horsepower and 179 pound-feet of torque. It develops a greater amount of low-end torque than the standard engine, which promotes quicker acceleration. You can also take advantage of the extra fuel savings. The EPA rates the turbocharged CR-V to return 28 mpg in the city and 34 mpg on the highway. This is a couple miles more than the base LX model.

A lot of people have been raving about the CR-V’s smooth driving dynamics. The steering system’s preciseness gives you a strong sense of control, instilling confidence in drivers who might be traversing difficult roads. A supple ride also makes the CR-V a great vehicle for long cruises on the interstate. Despite this crossover not being a skilled off-road machine, the AWD model’s higher ground clearance helps you to tackle deep snow.

Safety and Entertainment Features

Priced as the least expensive trim in the lineup, the base CR-V LX proves to be a solid value. It comes standard with a 5.0-inch color display, Bluetooth connectivity, and a 160-watt sound system. Although you won’t have access to any advanced safety features, the standard rear-view camera helps ensure easier parking.

Stepping up to the EX trim rewards you with some of Honda’s most popular features. Honda’s touch-screen interface now comes equipped with a convenient volume knob. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are included as well. Some of the other goodies consist of a sunroof, satellite radio, and second-row USB ports. Most importantly, the EX model provides modern safety innovations like blind-spot monitoring and automatic emergency braking. The CR-V EX’s upgraded backup camera also guides you out of tight parking areas.

Unlike the lower trim levels, the EX-L model boasts leather upholstery. An eight-speaker sound system sweetens the deal. Navigation can be added as an option.

Atop the lineup sits the luxurious Touring trim. Its hands-free tailgate comes in handy when loading cargo. If you like bass-heavy music, the CR-V Touring’s thumping subwoofer should put a smile on your face.

How It Stacks Up Against the Competition

The 2018 Honda CR-V competes against other small crossovers such as the 2018 Toyota RAV4 and the 2018 Ford Escape. When riding in the Honda CR-V, your family and friends will have a bit more space to stretch out; It’s noticeably roomier than both competitors. Although the Ford Escape may offer a sportier driving experience, it can’t match the CR-V’s outstanding resale value. If you are looking for a SUV that’s more suitable for traveling off-road, consider the rugged Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk.

Pros and Cons

There are several qualities that help the 2018 Honda CR-V to stand out from the pack. It has always held a reputation for being incredibly reliable. For this reason, it’s a great investment for the drivers who aren’t looking to purchase a new vehicle for a long time. If your lifestyle involves shuttling friends, family, or children, the Honda CR-V offers unmatched passenger comfort. Your entire family can look forward to experiencing a relaxing ride. A class-leading cargo capacity further highlights the CR-V’s versatility.

While the new CR-V is certainly an impressive vehicle, there are just a few cons to keep in mind. With a low towing capacity of only 1,500 pounds, the CR-V is clearly not designed for pulling a heavy load. This could be an issue for the folks who need to transport boats and campers. Furthermore, the CR-V is not tough enough to handle a serious off-road adventure. Although Honda’s infotainment system has improved, it is still not great in comparison to the competition.