Review: Honda CR-V (2007 – 2012)


Roomy and versatile. Very comfortable, pleasant and relaxing to drive. not at all cumbersome. 2.2 i-CTDI diesel is excellent.

Can be tricky to link a Bluetooth phone to the car's system, 2.0-litre petrol engine seems lacklustre compared to the diesel. 2.2 i-DTEC comes with a diesel particulate filter.

Honda CR-V (2007 – 2012): At A Glance

When is a 4x4 not a 4x4? Honda would like you to believe when it's the new CR-V. And it puts up a very convincing argument. The 2007, British-built CR-V 2.2 diesel chucks out 173g/km CO2, which is less than a lot of cars and means you can park it for £130 a year instead of £300 in Richmond council's new residents parking tax scheme. It takes up less road space than the average family estate car, yet it offers more room inside.

It's safer for the occupants in a crash and even protects any pedestrians it may hit. So the mere fact that it offers part-time four-wheel drive to help get you out of a muddy field should not upset Ken Livingstone or Bamber Gascoigne in the slightest. You are definitely not an "idiot" for buying one. You can even have a rear window sticker to try to educate the green-envy brigade telling them "not all 4x4s are the same".

Like the RAV4, which was really the first of this type of vehicle, it's now in its third manifestation. And in fairness to the RAV4, the basic 2.2 litre diesel version of that also emits just 173g/km CO2, so is just as friendly to the planet. The big change with the 2007 CR-V is that Honda has made it more car-like to drive.

Honda CR-V 2.2 i-CTDi 2007 Road Test

Honda CR-V 2.2 i-CTDi Long Term Test

What does a Honda CR-V (2007 – 2012) cost?

List Price from £26,935
Buy new from £23,342
Contract hire from £223.34 per month

Honda CR-V (2007 – 2012): What's It Like Inside?

Length 4530–4574 mm
Width 1820 mm
Height 1675 mm
Wheelbase 2630 mm

Full specifications

The interior has been re-thought through. Up front you get a novel short quadrant parking brake lever that works very well and makes it possible to slide across the car to get out the passenger side. The short-throw gearchange sprouts out of the dash. The instruments are back-lit, bright and clear. The (optional) satnav is plasma touch screen. And there are cupholders and a deep cubby with a sliding top tray between the seats. (No folding tray there any more.)

In the back, as before, the rear seats slide and tumble 60-40 leaving a completely clear, low and very capacious load deck. The backrests fold and recline slightly 40-20-40. The spare wheel is now a space-saver located under the boot floor. There's a strong shelf, splitting the boot in half horizontally (ideal for dogs on top; guns and tackle underneath). And the back door is now top-hinged, hatchback style.

Child seats that fit a Honda CR-V (2007 – 2012)

Our unique Car Seat Chooser shows you which child car seats will fit this car and which seat positions that they will fit, so that you don't have to check every car seat manufacturer's website for compatibility.

Which car seat will suit you?

What's the Honda CR-V (2007 – 2012) like to drive?

The predominant feature of the old CR-V was understeer. Honda improved it half way through its model life, but you still always had to remember you were driving a ‘Sports Utility Vehicle', not a car.

Well not any more. The new CR-V is one of the nicest new cars to drive that you can buy. It has excellent ride comfort. It's quite soft. It still understeers, eventually. Yet turn it into a roundabout and it grips like no other SUV on the planet. Not only that, you have a feeling of total control. It's extremely driver friendly and very pleasant however you want to drive it.

Of course the 140PS diesel lacks the grunt of the 177PS RAV4 T180 I drove to the launch. You can't block-change and drop it on the massive torque of the T180. But it's still perfectly adequate and, at 31mph per 1,000rpm in 6th it's an excellent cruiser.

As well as the 2.2 diesel you can also have the new CR-V with a 2.0 litre petrol engine and as a 2.0 litre petrol automatic. (No diesel automatic.) The four-wheel drive system now has a Dual-Pump system. So it engages much more quickly when needed. But the CR-V is a ‘soft roader' with no centre diff locks or low range for ‘serious' off roading.

As the 5-door CR-V and RAV4 have always been, it's a family car for families who don't want a saloon, a hatchback, an estate car and especially don't want an MPV. It offers the slightly raised driving position many women feel more confident with and which is also very friendly to bad backs. It's as practical and as capacious as most MPVs. The chunky tyres shrug off kerbs. And the Dual-Pump four wheel drive system will help get you out of wet grassy fields.

It's smaller, lower and lighter than last year's CR-V. Yet it's also bigger inside, faster, more fuel efficient, better handling and emits less CO2. You could say Honda has done quite a thorough job. But the main virtue of this new CR-V is the friendly driving experience. It isn't merely "just like a car". It's actually better than most cars.

Engine MPG 0-62 CO2
2.0 i-VTEC 34–35 mpg 10.2–12.2 s 190–195 g/km
2.0 i-VTEC Automatic 34 mpg 12.2 s 193 g/km
2.2 i-CTDi 44 mpg 10.3 s 173 g/km
2.2 i-DTEC 44 mpg 9.6 s 171 g/km
2.2 i-DTEC Automatic 38 mpg 10.6 s 195 g/km

Real MPG average for a Honda CR-V (2007 – 2012)

Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.

Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.

Average performance


Real MPG

22–49 mpg

MPGs submitted


Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.

What have we been asked about the Honda CR-V (2007 – 2012)?

Every day we're asked hundreds of questions from car buyers and owners through Ask Honest John. Our team of experts, including the nation's favourite motoring agony uncle - Honest John himself - answer queries and conudrums ranging from what car to buy to how to care for it as an owner. If you could do with a spot of friendly advice before buying you're next car, get in touch and we'll do what we can to help.

Ask HJ

Can you recommend a petrol crossover or SUV with some guts to get me up the hills where I live?

I bought a 2010 Honda CR-V last year. This was my first purchase after many years of loaning a car. However, I’m a single mum and only do short school runs and a 20 minute country lane drives to work. I motorway drive maybe three times a month and then rarely over 30 minutes. You can guess what I’m going to say next. The Honda has been a nightmare with the DPF. So I want to change my vehicle but feel bruised by my last experience. My requirements are five doors, a boot I can fit a dog cage in, and sticks to the road as the country lanes around where I live can be muddy, icy and prone to pot holes. I'd prefer manual and a bit of guts to get me up the hills. Should I stick to petrol? My budget is a max of £13,000. Any advice would be much appreciated.
Yes, sticking to petrol is a good idea. I'd recommend a Kia Sportage. Your budget will get a 2016 or 2017 example with the remainder of its seven-year manufacturer warranty remaining. Unfortunately your budget won't get a turbocharged GDI-T model and you might find the naturally-aspirated petrol engine a bit lacking, so take one for a test drive before committing. Alternatively, a SEAT Ateca with the 1.0-litre TSI engine would be a very good option.
Answered by Andrew Brady
More Questions

What do owners think?

Our view gives your our opinion, based on driving hundreds of cars every year, but you can't beat the views of someone who lives with a car day-in, day out.

  • 5 star 17%
  • 4 star 67%
  • 3 star
  • 2 star 17%
  • 1 star

See all owners' reviews