Inside, the CR-V continues to impress. A big departure from the old-school look of the previous gen CR-V, the cabin is both spacious and well laid out with some cleverly placed storage bins that not only lend it an air of plushness, but also make for a practical daily driver. The build quality is right on the money and barring the plasticky steering mounted buttons, nothing in here feels cheap or badly put together. In fact, the cabin design and layout is a big highlight of this car, given its in here the owners will spend time, it’s a big draw card for choosing it over the rivals. The dash for instance is all black with shiny gloss black trim pieces whereas the door pads are a mix of beige, wooden inserts and gloss black trim pieces. Somehow, this amalgamation of materials works well to create a soothing ambience. All in all, the cabin has got character for sure and though it’s not quite as contemporary as the Kodiaq, it certainly looks and feels better than the Fortuner.
The new CR-V leaves a good impression when you set yourself into the front seat. Even though you tend to sink deep into the seat rather than that ‘on it’ feeling you get from some of the rivals, the space in here is great for a mid-size SUV. The front seats are snug and supportive and foot well is generous as well despite the wide centre console. Visibility, too, is excellent thanks to the huge glass area and a driving position that’s set high enough to provide good all-round vision. But if that’s still not enough, there is a segment-first camera based system which enhances driver’s view of side traffic. Honda calls it ‘Lane Watch Camera’ and this system uses a camera on the passenger-side mirror – the driver can have a live feed of the traffic in the car’s blind spot, on the infotainment screen. All said and done, it really works and offers a lot of convenience on our often jam-packed roads.
Space in the second row is good for this segment – there is plenty of legroom and the rear seat itself is nicely contoured and offers adequate thigh support. The seat back and the base are properly bolstered although it’s best to have two occupants for that cocooned feeling. What’s not so impressive is the third row accommodation – there is no legroom for adults when the sliding second row is set far back. Also, the rear most occupants (presumably kids) would be forced to sit in the knees-up position due to the high floor and the low seat height although to be fair the CR-V isn’t a proper 7-seater. It’s more of a 5+2 offering where the third row is ideal only for short distances. We would like to add that the 7-seater configuration is available only in the diesel version (the petrol version seats five only). Overall, the third row can only accommodate short occupants and you might want to line the passengers up by height and relegate the shortest in here.
With all rows up, the boot space is 150 litres which is good enough for a couple of soft bags at most. But with the last two seats folded, it can be extended to 472 litres. Better still, there’s all of 936 litres of luggage space when both rows are folded.