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2021 Honda CR-V Hybrid Review

The 2021 Honda CR-V Hybrid lands near the middle of our hybrid and electric SUV rankings. It offers a smooth ride and ample cabin space, but it suffers from a cumbersome and out-of-date infotainment system.

Pros & Cons

  • Energetic powertrain
  • Composed ride and handling
  • Upscale, roomy cabin
  • Large cargo hold
  • Cumbersome infotainment system
  • Higher starting price than rivals

Rankings & Awards

The 2021 Honda CR-V Hybrid's #4 ranking is based on its score within the Hybrid and Electric SUVs category. It was a finalist for our 2021 Best Hybrid and Electric SUV for the Money award. Currently the Honda CR-V Hybrid has a score of 7.8 out of 10, which is based on our evaluation of 26 pieces of research and data elements using various sources.

7.8

Overall

Scorecard

Critics' Rating: 8.9
Performance: 7.3
Interior: 6.1
Safety: 9.8
Reliability:
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

Thinking of leasing a Honda CR-V Hybrid?

The U.S. News Best Price Program saves users an average of $3,206 off the MSRP, and a lower price equals lower monthly lease payments. That means you could see a savings of $90 a month on a 36-month lease.

Is the Honda CR-V Hybrid a Good SUV?

The 2021 CR-V Hybrid is a good vehicle, whether you compare it to other compact SUVs or other hybrid and electric SUVs. The CR-V Hybrid was a finalist for our 2021 Best Hybrid and Electric SUV for the Money award because of its solid combination of quality and value. Its main advantage is its roomy cargo hold, but this crossover also impresses with a gentle ride, and its lively powertrain supplies swift acceleration, thanks to the electric motors. Less impressive is the infotainment system, which suffers from outdated graphics and slow response times.

Why You Can Trust Us: 26 Reviews Analyzed

Our goal is to make shopping for your next car as easy as possible. You'll find everything you need to know about this vehicle in our comprehensive review. It combines concrete data like fuel economy estimates, horsepower specs, and cargo space dimensions with 26 professional Honda CR-V Hybrid reviews.

This 2021 CR-V Hybrid review incorporates applicable research for all models in this generation, which launched for 2020.

U.S. News Best Cars has been ranking and reviewing vehicles since 2007, and our staff has more than 75 years of combined experience in the auto industry. To ensure our objectivity, we never accept expensive gifts from carmakers, and an outside firm manages the ads on our site.

Should I Buy the Honda CR-V Hybrid?

The CR-V Hybrid is a good choice, but there are plenty of other hybrids worth considering. For instance, fuel economy ratings are key to a good hybrid, and the Ford Escape Hybrid is more fuel-efficient than this Honda. If you want greater practicality, consider the nonhybrid Honda CR-V, which has more cargo room. Other than lacking a two-motor hybrid system, the CR-V is nearly identical to its hybrid counterpart.

Compare the CR-V Hybrid, Escape Hybrid, and CR-V »

2020 vs. 2021 Honda CR-V Hybrid: What's the Difference?

Honda made no major changes to the CR-V Hybrid for the 2021 model year. Honda launched the CR-V Hybrid as an all-new vehicle for 2020.

Compare the 2020 and 2021 CR-V Hybrid »

If you’re considering an older model, be sure to read our 2020 CR-V Hybrid review. Also, check out our Best New Car Deals and Best New Car Lease Deals pages to learn about savings and discounts you can find on new vehicles.

How Much Does the Honda CR-V Hybrid Cost?

The 2021 Honda CR-V Hybrid has a base MSRP of $30,560, which is rather pricey for a compact SUV. It’s also more expensive than direct rivals like the Toyota RAV4 Hybrid and Ford Escape Hybrid. The CR-V’s high-end Touring trim starts at $36,350.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Honda dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Honda deals page.

Honda CR-V Hybrid Versus the Competition

Honda CR-V Hybrid vs. Toyota RAV4 Hybrid

The Toyota RAV4 Hybrid is one of the best vehicles in our hybrid and electric SUV rankings. The Toyota not only gets better fuel economy estimates than the Honda, but it also has more cargo space and comes with more standard tech features, including a Wi-Fi hot spot. The RAV4 also boasts a lower starting price. In a head-to-head comparison, the Toyota is the better vehicle.

Compare the CR-V Hybrid and RAV4 Hybrid »

Honda CR-V Hybrid vs. Honda CR-V

The nonhybrid Honda CR-V is a compact SUV that has much in common with its hybrid counterpart, but there are a few notable differences. The nonhybrid Honda CR-V has more cargo room, but the hybrid version boasts more horsepower. The hybrid model offers superior fuel economy too, though the regular CR-V is efficient for a nonhybrid, and it costs considerably less. There is no wrong choice between these two.

Compare the CR-V Hybrid and CR-V »

Compare the CR-V Hybrid, RAV4 Hybrid, and CR-V »

CR-V Hybrid Interior: Vast Space but Obtuse Controls

CR-V Hybrid Cargo Space

Because of the placement of its lithium-ion battery pack, this hybrid has less cargo room than its gas-only counterpart by about 6.5 cubic feet. However, with 33.2 cubic feet of space behind the rear seats and 68.7 cubic feet behind the front seats, it still has a large cargo hold compared to other compact SUVs and other vehicles in our hybrid and electric SUV rankings.

How Many People Does the CR-V Hybrid Seat?

The CR-V Hybrid is a small SUV that accommodates five people. Head- and legroom are good in both rows, and even taller riders have a nice amount of space. The seats are comfortable and supportive, with ample cushioning. Driver visibility is good too.

Cloth upholstery is standard. Leather upholstery is available, as are heated front seats, a 12-way power-adjustable driver’s seat, a four-way power-adjustable front passenger seat, and a heated steering wheel.

CR-V Hybrid and Child Car Seats

There are two complete sets of LATCH connectors for the rear outboard seats. There’s also a tether anchor for the rear middle seat, and you can borrow lower anchors from each outboard seat. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the outboard anchors the second-highest rating of Acceptable for ease of use. The middle seat’s anchors received the second-lowest rating of Marginal.

CR-V Hybrid Interior Quality

Chrome and faux wood accents help upper trims feel classy, but even the entry-level model uses top-notch materials and soft plastics.

CR-V Hybrid Infotainment, Bluetooth, and Navigation

The CR-V’s touch screen is unintuitive. Its responses lag, and some settings require you to scroll through several menus, a time-consuming process that takes your eyes off the road. On top of that, its graphics are a bit dated. There are physical controls, but they’re limited to a volume knob and buttons on the steering wheel, as well as an array of climate controls.

  • Standard infotainment features: a 7-inch touch screen, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, HD Radio, satellite radio, an eight-speaker stereo, four USB ports, and Bluetooth
  • Available infotainment features: a navigation system, wireless device charging, and a nine-speaker stereo
  • Additional standard features: keyless entry, push-button start, dual-zone automatic climate control, and a moonroof

For more information, read What Is Apple CarPlay? and What Is Android Auto?

Read more about interior »

CR-V Hybrid Performance: Above Average

CR-V Hybrid Engine

Every CR-V Hybrid has a 2.0-liter, four-cylinder gas engine and two electric motors. Together, they make 212 horsepower and 232 pound-feet of torque. A continuously variable automatic transmission is standard as well.

Thanks to the instant torque supplied by its two-motor setup, this Honda accelerates swiftly from a stop. Its powertrain is punchy at higher speeds too. Gas-electric transitions happen seamlessly, and there are three drive modes, including an EV Mode that lets the CR-V run on electric-only power at lower speeds, though there is no appreciable electric-only driving range.

CR-V Hybrid Gas Mileage

The 2021 CR-V Hybrid gets an EPA-rated 40 mpg in the city and 35 mpg on the highway. While decent, those mpg ratings are not class leading, and you’ll save a little money at the pump with more fuel-efficient rivals like the Ford Escape Hybrid or Toyota RAV4 Hybrid.

CR-V Hybrid Ride and Handling

This crossover has a gentle ride. Good steering feedback and a lack of body roll help it feel planted on the road. All-wheel drive is standard.

Many hybrids suffer from soft, spongy brakes. That’s not the case here. The CR-V Hybrid’s regenerative braking system operates smoothly, feeling more like the traditional friction brakes in a gas-powered car. You can switch between three levels of braking regeneration via steering-wheel-mounted paddles.

Read more about performance »

CR-V Hybrid Reliability

Is the Honda CR-V Hybrid Reliable?

The 2021 CR-V Hybrid has a predicted reliability rating of three out of five, which is about average.

Honda CR-V Hybrid Warranty

Honda covers the 2021 CR-V Hybrid with a three-year/36,000-mile basic warranty and a five-year/60,000-mile powertrain warranty. Hybrid components are covered by an eight-year/100,000-mile or a 10-year/150,000-mile warranty, depending on the state where you purchase the vehicle.

Read more about reliability »

CR-V Hybrid Safety

CR-V Hybrid Crash Test Results

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave the 2021 CR-V Hybrid an overall safety rating of five out of five stars, with five stars in the frontal and side crash tests and four stars in the rollover test.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the Honda CR-V the highest rating of Good in all six crash test categories. The CR-V Hybrid received the second-highest rating of Acceptable for how well the standard LED headlights illuminate the road ahead, while the Touring trim earned a Good rating for forward visibility.

The IIHS uses a different scale for grading collision avoidance features. The CR-V received the highest rating of Superior for its standard vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-pedestrian front crash prevention systems.

CR-V Hybrid Safety Features

Standard advanced safety features:

  • Forward collision warning
  • Automatic emergency braking
  • Rearview camera
  • Adaptive cruise control
  • Lane keep assist
  • Lane departure warning
  • Automatic high-beam headlights

Available advanced safety features:

  • Front and rear parking sensors

Read more about safety »

CR-V Hybrid Dimensions and Weight

The CR-V Hybrid is 15.2 feet long. It has a curb weight of 3,649 pounds.

Where Is the 2021 Honda CR-V Hybrid Built?

Honda builds the 2021 CR-V Hybrid in Ohio and Indiana.

Which Honda CR-V Hybrid Model Is Right for Me?

Honda offers the 2021 CR-V Hybrid in three trim levels: EX, EX-L, and Touring. Each trim is powered by an inline-four gas engine and a pair of electric motors. All-wheel drive comes standard. You could also consider the nonhybrid Honda CR-V, which we review separately.

The base EX trim is well-equipped with standard tech, safety, and convenience features. If you want amenities like leather upholstery, you’ll need the EX-L or Touring models.

Front and rear parking sensors are standard in the Touring trim and available in all other trims.

Honda CR-V Hybrid EX

The base CR-V Hybrid EX costs $30,560. It comes with a 7-inch touch screen, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, HD Radio, satellite radio, four USB ports, Bluetooth, an eight-speaker stereo, dual-zone automatic climate control, keyless entry, a moonroof, automatic high-beam headlights, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, heated front seats, a 12-way power-adjustable driver’s seat, 60/40-split-folding rear seats, and alloy wheels. Also standard is the Honda Sensing suite of driver assistance features, which includes forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, and adaptive cruise control.

Honda CR-V Hybrid EX-L

The EX-L trim costs $33,150 and adds leather-trimmed seats, a four-way power-adjustable front passenger seat, a heated steering wheel, a power liftgate, and an auto-dimming rearview mirror. A hands-free liftgate is available.

Honda CR-V Hybrid Touring

The top-of-the-line Touring trim costs $36,350. It builds off of the EX-L trim with navigation, wireless device charging, a nine-speaker stereo, rain-sensing windshield wipers, a hands-free liftgate, and larger alloy wheels.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Honda dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Honda deals page.

See 2021 Honda CR-V Hybrid specs and trims »

The Final Call

The 2021 Honda CR-V Hybrid impresses with its handsome cabin, spacious seats, and large cargo hold. This crossover also has a strong powertrain capable of handling daily drives with ease. However, while it’s fuel-efficient, there are better hybrid SUVs when it comes to fuel economy, and its infotainment system is hard to use.

Don’t just take our word for it. Check out comments from some of the reviews that drive our rankings and analysis.        

  • "The 2020 Honda CR-V Hybrid is a tempting choice for a small hybrid SUV. It gets high fuel economy and doesn't compromise on the regular CR-V's positive attributes such as roomy seating and a comfortable ride. Standard all-wheel drive is a nice bonus too." -- Edmunds (2020)
  • "The 2020 Honda CR-V Hybrid is a versatile and spacious crossover that builds on the already likable CR-V. Its value and handling make it an attractive SUV, but we wish its real-world fuel efficiency numbers were better. Gas prices may be low, but with Honda's first hybrid SUV on the market, the CR-V will continue to be a popular model." -- Motor Trend (2020)
  • "If you want a more powerful Honda CR-V, get the Hybrid. Also, if you want better mileage, more USB ports and wireless charging for your cellphone, get the CR-V Hybrid. In fact, whatever you want from this class of crossover, you might find that what you want is the 2020 Honda CR-V Hybrid. Unless you like the RAV4 Hybrid or the Escape Hybrid. It’s a buyers market." -- Autoweek (2020)
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