Honda is on track to change the game in 2020 with a long-awaited hybrid version of one of its all-time best sellers, the CR-V. This refined and practical crossover will promise significantly higher mpg ratings than the already-efficient gas-only CR-V, and its revised styling and new slate of features will keep it a top contender in the crossover segment. Honda's goal is to have vehicles with some or all electric propulsion to make up two-thirds of its sales by 2030.

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Trims and Powertrain

Like the gas-only CR-V, the 2020 CR-V Hybrid is available in four trim levels: LX, EX, EX-L, and Touring. Their powertrain consists of a naturally-aspirated Atkinson-cycle 2.0-liter inline-four gas engine with two electric motors (total system output is 212 horsepower), matched to a continuously variable transmission (CVT). While EPA-estimates have yet to be released, expect it to return around 40 mpg combined. All-wheel drive also comes standard, with a clutch that will send the electric motors' power to the rear wheels as slippage is detected.

Refreshed Design and Comfort

This new hybrid variant will maintain the conventional CR-V's balance of standard and available features, driving dynamics, and comfort, with no loss of cabin space to accommodate the battery pack. This is because Honda's design smartly houses the compact intelligent power unit (IPU) underneath the cargo floor. The 2020 Honda CR-V Hybrid's appearance is mostly differentiated by its electric-blue logo on the front, plus version-specific taillights, dark chrome trim, and a concealed exhaust pipe for the combustion half of the hybrid powertrain.


The base LX comes with a push-button shifter, a drive mode selector (Sport, Econ, and EV), automatic climate control (single zone), and a multi-angle rearview camera with guidelines. The EX adds LED fog lights, a power-adjustable driver's seat, a one-touch moonroof, Smart Start and Smart Entry, remote start, heated front seats, heated side mirrors, dual-zone automatic climate control, interior ambient lighting, and a cargo area cover. With the EX-L, standard equipment includes leather seating, a power tailgate, a power-adjustable front passenger seat, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, memory functions for the driver's seat, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shifter. The Touring trim is supplied with a heated steering wheel, LED high- and low-beam headlights, roof rails, and a hands-free power tailgate.


Safety and Technology


Conventional CR-V models used to only include the Honda Sensing suite of driver-assist features for the EX, EX-L, and Touring trims, but with the CR-V Hybrid, the base LX gets to join in. The list of technologies includes collision mitigation braking, road departure mitigation, lane keeping assist, and adaptive cruise control with low-speed follow. The EX adds blind-spot information with rear cross-traffic alert, and the Touring gets rain-sensing wipers.


The LX kicks off with a digital gauge cluster that shows certain hybrid-specific displays like power flow and brake regeneration (controlled by deceleration paddles on the steering wheel), a 5-inch infotainment touchscreen, a four-speaker audio system, a USB port, and a 12-volt power outlet. The EX and EX-L upgrade with a 7-inch touchscreen, a six-speaker audio system, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, satellite radio, and an additional USB port, while the Touring gets a wireless smartphone charger and a premium nine-speaker audio system.

*40 city/35 highway/38 combined mpg rating. Based on 2020 EPA mileage ratings. Use for comparison purposes only. Your mileage will vary depending on how you drive and maintain your vehicle, driving conditions, battery-pack age/condition and other factors.

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