The Honda ZR-V is a very capable crossover
It slots into Honda’s lineup between the compact HR-V and the larger CR-V, becoming the latest SUV to use the company’s e:HEV hybrid setup.
The powertrain strikes a reasonable balance between performance and efficiency, with a 2.0-liter direct injection four-cylinder engine working in tandem with two engines.
At low speeds, you might be fooled into thinking you’re driving a fully electric car, because the electric motors do all the work.
Around town, it’s a super-smooth and comfortable car to drive, offering excellent ease of use and responsiveness.
On B-roads at higher speeds, the driving experience isn’t quite as enjoyable. On undulating or uneven surfaces, it can feel choppy and fidgety, which doesn’t inspire much confidence in the car’s handling when cornering quickly.
However, the majority of potential family-oriented buyers may be more focused on the comfortable setup rather than sharp handling – and there’s no doubt that the suspension dampens bumps well.
Running costs are satisfactory, with fuel consumption averaging 48.7 miles per gallon on the official combined range – not too far off from that figure in real-world driving.
Once inside, the ZR-V’s cabin is well thought out, with sharp styling and clear displays.
The seats are very comfortable, with a wide range of adjustments, plenty of legroom and reasonable headroom.
Storage is a bit of a mixed bag, with the convenience of the deep space under the center armrest no match for the shallow spaces inside the doors.
Multiple USB charging slots come in handy, while the low dashboard and raised center console create a striking visual impact.
High-quality materials, detailed finishes and subtle lighting create a wonderful atmosphere in the cabin.
Advanced HMI technology keeps the driver and passengers connected to the outside world, as well as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto functionality.
The ZR-V’s boot, at 380 litres, will swallow plenty of items, but it’s not among the largest in its class, with some rivals offering around 500 litres.
In terms of appearance, the ZR-V has a sleek exterior design defined by smooth, uninterrupted surfaces that flow from front to rear.
At the front, slim headlights combine nicely with the large, elegantly designed grille. At the other end, the rear bumper and taillights are elegantly integrated with the tailgate.
The ZR-V is the latest Honda vehicle to feature the company’s advanced suite of SENSING technologies as standard.
Combined with a comprehensive airbag system and impressive overall crash performance, the ZR-V achieves high levels of active and passive safety.
In conclusion, there’s a lot to like about the ZR-V, with the vehicle’s practicality and excellent interior making it very easy to live with.
The obvious quality of the hybrid powertrain is a big plus point, making it a compelling package, but keen drivers may feel frustrated with the car’s handling on speed-limited national roads.
Honda ZR-V Sport
Engine: 2.0L unleaded i-MMD hybrid
Transmission: e-CVT, front-wheel drive
Price: £41,745 on the road
0 – 62 mph: 7.9 seconds
Top speed: 108 mph
CO2: 131 g/km combined
Fuel economy: 48.7 mpg combined