Sleek HR-V is taken to task.. but it’s not thirsty work. It goes Hon and on.
BUY the Honda HR-V because it never runs out of fuel.
OK, maybe I am exaggerating slightly, but the first tank of diesel you are gifted when you purchase the 1.6-litre i-DTEC model will go so far, you think the fuel gauge is broken.
As with most week-long car loans, the sleek HR-V came with its tank brimmed. And, like most weeks, I had a packed schedule of family visits, runs to the shops and lengthy motorway slogs.
But even when I handed the keys back to a man in a Honda shirt, the digital readout insisted there was a quarter of a tank left.
I had covered hundreds of miles and picked up a dozen takeaway Costa coffees, but I had not had to reach for the pump once.
The brochure says the official fuel economy figure is 70.6mpg on lower spec S models.
The SUV segment has changed dramatically since Honda last offered a faux-by-four of this size, back in 2005.
There are now plenty of smooth operators muscling in on the patch.
Renault has its chic Captur, Mazda will sell you a sporty CX-3 and there is always the tried-and-tested Nissan Juke for those who want to own a proven bestseller.
But unlike the aforementioned motors, the latest HR-V manages to blend everyday usability, comfortable ride and a wallet-relieving fuel efficiency without trading in the good looks and purposeful road presence expected of a modern soft-roader.
Take interior space, for example. Despite being based on the Honda Jazz, the HR-V is 159mm longer than the Nissan Juke and has a boot that is 40litres larger than the Nissan Qashqai, a model that sits in the segment above.
The Magic Seats (which are also pinched from the Jazz) are another brilliant touch.
It means that the rear seats can be folded in all manner of configurations, so both long and tall items can be transported inside the cabin, rather than bashing around in the boot.
In fact, you can squeeze items up to 2.4metres long into the back, making relationship-straining trips to Ikea easier.
So what are the bad points? It does not come offered in four-wheel-drive, the diesel engine could do with a little more poke, the infotainment system is a bit creaky and it is expensive when compared to key rivals.
Regardless of this, it is built well, rides comfortably and sips at its fuel like a supermodel during Fashion Week.
Honestly, Honda needs to check that fuel gauge. I swear it is broken.
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