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2018 Honda HR-V Review

The 2018 Honda HR-V ranks in the top half of our subcompact SUV rankings. It has a roomy cabin for the class and a large cargo area, but its weak acceleration keeps it from finishing closer to the top.

Pros & Cons

  • Roomy backseat and cargo space
  • Good fuel economy
  • Pleasant ride and handling
  • Awkward available touch screen
  • Sluggish acceleration

Rankings & Awards

The 2018 Honda HR-V's #6 ranking is based on its score within the 2018 Affordable Subcompact SUVs category. It was the winner of our 2018 Best Subcompact SUV for the Money award. Currently the Honda HR-V has a score of 7.9 out of 10, which is based on our evaluation of 31 pieces of research and data elements using various sources.

7.9

Overall

Scorecard

Overall: 7.9
Critics' Rating: 8.8
Performance: 7.3
Interior: 7.7
Total Cost of Ownership: 8.9
Safety: 9.0
Reliability:
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

Is the 2018 Honda HR-V a Good Used SUV?

The HR-V is a fine option if you’re shopping for a used subcompact SUV. Despite its size, this Honda is a practical choice in the class.  

Highlights of the 2018 HR-V include:

  • Generous seating space
  • Lots of cargo room for the class
  • Quality cabin materials
  • Balanced handling and a comfortable ride
  • Great fuel economy
  • Average projected ownership costs

That said, the HR-V has its share of drawbacks:

  • Weak four-cylinder engine
  • Few advanced safety features
  • Clumsy available touch screen

If you want a small SUV with zippier performance and more safety features, consider the higher-rated 2018 Mazda CX-3 or 2018 Hyundai Kona.

Compare the HR-V, CX-3, and Kona »

Why You Can Trust Us

U.S. News Best Cars has been ranking and reviewing vehicles since 2007, and our team has decades of experience in the auto industry. Though we’re passionate about cars, we’re even more committed to providing helpful consumer advice. To maintain objectivity, we don’t accept expensive gifts or trips from car companies.

We’ve analyzed 31 Honda HR-V reviews, as well as hard data points like reliability scores and cost of ownership estimates, to help you make the best car-buying decision possible.

How Much Is the 2018 Honda HR-V?

Based on listing on our site for the 2018 Honda HR-V, the average price is $21,400. Prices range from $17,700 and $25,000 and vary depending on the vehicle's condition, mileage, features, and location.

See the Best Used Car Deals »

How Much Does the 2018 Honda HR-V Cost to Own?

The HR-V’s five-year costs for gas, insurance, repairs, and maintenance are projected to be $23,300, or around $4,700 per year. That’s about average for a subcompact SUV.

Is It Better to Buy a Used or New HR-V?

Honda launched the HR-V as an all-new crossover vehicle for the 2016 model year. There were virtually no updates between 2016 and 2018, so you can spend less for an older model within this generation, and you'll still find the same features.

It’s a different story for the refreshed 2019 HR-V, though. This newer model has an updated and easier-to-use infotainment system, which now supports Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. This model is also available with Honda Sensing, a suite of active safety features that the HR-V hasn’t offered before. These include forward collision warning with brake assist, adaptive cruise control, and more. Opt for a new HR-V if these updates are worth it to you.

Read about the new Honda HR-V »

Compare the 2016, 2017, and 2018 HR-V »

See the Best New Car Deals »

See the Best New Car Lease Deals »

How Reliable Is the 2018 Honda HR-V?

J.D. Power gave the 2018 HR-V a predicted reliability rating of three out of five, which is about average.

Read more about HR-V reliability »

2018 Honda HR-V Recalls

The 2018 HR-V is affected by one recall:

  • Insufficient coating for the brake caliper piston

Make sure this recall is addressed by a Honda dealer before buying a used HR-V.

See more information on Honda HR-V safety recalls »

Which Used Honda HR-V Trim Is Right for Me?

The 2018 Honda HR-V is available in three trim levels: LX, EX, and EX-L Navi. The base model HR-V LX is well equipped, making it a good starting point. All HR-V models share the same 141-horsepower engine.

  • Honda HR-V LX: The entry-level LX trim comes standard with a 5-inch infotainment screen, a rearview camera, four speakers, a CD player, Bluetooth, a USB port, remote keyless entry, cloth seats, and 17-inch alloy wheels.
  • Honda HR-V EX: The mid-range EX trim adds a 7-inch touch screen, six speakers, an additional USB port, proximity keyless entry, push-button start, automatic climate control, heated front seats, a moonroof, heated side mirrors, automatic on/off headlights, fog lights, and a passenger-side blind spot camera called LaneWatch.
  • Honda HR-V EX-L Navi: The EX-L Navi trim adds a navigation system, satellite radio, leather seats, and a leather-trimmed steering wheel.

See 2018 Honda HR-V trims and specs »

What Does Honda's Certified Pre-Owned Warranty Cover?

Honda offers two levels of certification for its certified pre-owned vehicles: HondaTrue Certified and HondaTrue Certified+. Both levels come with a seven-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty, roadside assistance, up to two oil changes within the first year of ownership, and a 90-day SiriusXM satellite radio trial subscription.

The vehicle’s model year determines which program and repair coverage it qualifies for. HondaTrue Certified covers vehicles from the 2014 through 2020 model years. For vehicles still under the new-car warranty, Honda extends coverage to four years from the original sale date or 48,000 miles. For vehicles outside the new-car warranty, Honda offers a one-year/12,000-mile limited warranty. HondaTrue Certified+ is for 2018 to 2020 Hondas still under the new-car warranty. Honda extends these warranties to five years from the original sale date or 86,000 miles. Additional benefits may be available, so read Honda’s warranty page carefully.

According to our analysis, Honda’s CPO program is better than that offered by many other affordable carmakers. Still, Chevrolet, Kia, and Hyundai have better programs.

See the best CPO programs »

Read more about the Honda certified pre-owned program »

How Safe Is the HR-V?

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave the 2018 HR-V an overall rating of five out of five stars. It also received a five-star rating in the side crash test, as well as four stars in the frontal crash and rollover tests. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the SUV the second-highest rating of Acceptable in the small overlap front crash test. The HR-V earned a top score in all other crash tests, but it received the lowest rating of Poor for how well the headlights illuminate the road ahead.

Standard advanced safety features:

  • rearview camera

Available advanced safety features:

  • a passenger-side blind spot camera (Honda LaneWatch)

See HR-V safety scores »

2018 Honda HR-V Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: 2018 Honda HR-V or 2018 Honda CR-V?

The HR-V is a fine SUV, but it’s outshined in nearly every way by the larger 2018 Honda CR-V. The CR-V has more cargo space, even nicer cabin materials, and more-user-friendly infotainment controls than the HR-V. The CR-V rates higher for crash safety, and it offers far more advanced safety features, such as forward collision warning. Better still, the CR-V’s engine options are more powerful yet similarly fuel efficient. You’re apt to pay more for a used CR-V, but it’s the better vehicle.

Which Is Better: 2018 Honda HR-V or 2018 Subaru Crosstrek?

The 2018 Subaru Crosstrek earns similar praise as the HR-V. Both of these subcompact SUVs have roomy seating, large cargo areas, comfortable rides, good fuel economy, and quality cabin materials. Both earn some common criticisms as well, like sluggish acceleration. Opt for the Crosstrek if you plan to go off-roading or if you typically drive on unpaved roads. The Subaru’s tall 8.7 inches of ground clearance and permanent all-wheel-drive system are better suited for rough conditions. Otherwise, the HR-V is a fine and typically more affordable option.

Which Is Better: 2018 Honda HR-V or 2018 Toyota C-HR?

The 2018 Toyota C-HR isn’t a great pick. Though the C-HR offers more-advanced safety features than the Honda, it also has a lot less seating and cargo space. Its cabin materials don’t look or feel as nice as the HR-V's, either. Notably, both models offer leisurely engine performance. Go with the HR-V.

Compare the HR-V, Crosstrek, and C-HR »

2018 HR-V Performance

How Does the 2018 Honda HR-V Drive?

The HR-V is one of the comfiest vehicles to drive in its class. This Honda's suspension filters out most dips and bumps in the road, resulting in a smooth and composed ride. The steering is quick and nicely weighted. This crossover feels stable around corners, and its tight turning radius makes it easy to park.

That said, the HR-V’s four-cylinder engine is a letdown. It provides weak acceleration around town and struggles to get the HR-V up to highway speeds, especially with a few passengers onboard. This engine can also get quite noisy, which can become frustrating on longer trips. The six-speed manual transmission makes the best use of the engine’s limited power. The CVT automatic is refined overall, but it can feel a bit jumpy at lower speeds.

  • Engine: 1.8-liter four-cylinder with 141 horsepower and 127 pound-feet torque
  • Drivetrain: standard front-wheel drive; available all-wheel drive  
  • Transmission: standard six-speed manual transmission; available continuously variable automatic (CVT)
Does the 2018 Honda HR-V Get Good Gas Mileage?

The HR-V delivers good fuel economy for a subcompact SUV.

  • six-speed manual, FWD: 25/33 mpg
  • CVT, FWD: 28/34 mpg city/highway
  • CVT, AWD: 27/31 mpg

Read more about HR-V performance »

2018 HR-V Interior

How Many People Does the 2018 HR-V Seat?

The Honda HR-V is a two-row SUV with five seats. The front seats offer ample headroom, but they don’t slide back far enough for tall occupants with long legs. The seat cushions are rather firm as well, and it can be tough to find a comfy driving position. The rear seats are nicer, and they provide generous head- and legroom for adults, which isn’t typical in this class.

Overall, the HR-V’s cabin is handsomely styled, and there are quality materials in most areas. Thin roof pillars provide good visibility to the front and side of the vehicle, but thick pillars in the back create some blind spots.

Standard seating features:

  • cloth upholstery
  • second-row seats that can flip up or fold down (Magic Seat)

Available seating features:

  • leather upholstery
  • heated front seats
How Many Car Seats Fit in the 2018 Honda HR-V?

The HR-V’s second row has two full sets of LATCH connectors for securing child car seats. This setup can be tricky to use, as some of the anchors are hard to attach because they are so deep in the seat cushions.

2018 Honda HR-V Features

The standard 5-inch display in the HR-V is accompanied by surrounding buttons and knobs that are simple to use. This setup makes it very easy to adjust the audio and air conditioning controls, and in most cases you won’t have to take your eyes off the road to do so.

The EX and EX-L trims have a 7-inch touch screen (HondaLink) and a touch-sensitive climate control panel. This layout looks slick and modern, but in practice it can be quite distracting to use. The on-screen menus aren’t intuitive, and response times are rather slow. Adjusting the volume is a chore too – you have to swipe up or down on the screen. Another drawback is the lack of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support. These features have become common in many other small SUVs.

  • Standard infotainment features: a 5-inch display, a CD player, four speakers, Bluetooth, and a USB port
  • Available infotainment features: a 7-inch touch screen, a navigation system, satellite radio, and six speakers
  • Additional standard features: remote keyless entry
  • Other available features: proximity keyless entry, push-button start, automatic climate control, and a moonroof

See 2018 Honda HR-V specs »

Read more about HR-V interior »

2018 Honda HR-V Dimensions

Honda HR-V Cargo Space

The HR-V has 24.3 cubic feet of cargo space behind its rear seats and 58.8 cubic feet with these seats folded. That’s a lot of room, and the cargo area is quite a flexible as well. The second-row seat bottoms can flip upright, allowing for nearly four feet of floor-to-ceiling space (directly behind the front seats). This can be helpful for transporting tall items like a flat-screen TV.

These cargo dimensions are for comparative purposes. There is no substitute for visually examining the storage area in any car you’re considering.

2018 Honda HR-V Length and Weight
  • Length: 14 feet, 1 inch
  • Curb weight: 2,888 to 3,109 pounds

Where Was the 2018 Honda HR-V Built?

Honda built the 2018 HR-V in Mexico.

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