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2016+ Used Guide HR-V(Honda)

With available all-wheel drive (AWD), a highly-proven powertrain, plenty of safety equipment, and over 1,660 litres of available cargo space

With available all-wheel drive (AWD), a highly-proven powertrain, plenty of safety equipment, and over 1,660 litres of available cargo space, the HR-V was (and still is) a small crossover that did big things for owners looking for storage, capability, and flexibility in a vehicle with a small footprint.

Rear seating can fold up or down to accommodate a wide range of cargo and gear, and in typical Honda fashion, the interior serves up more storage provisions and room than the overall size of the HR-V leads on.

Expect good fuel mileage, courtesy of a highly-proven 1.8 litre VTEC four-cylinder engine with 141 horsepower. A manual transmission was available in front-drive models, all units with AWD got a fuel-saving CVT automatic transmission, instead.

Look for heated seats, a backup camera, Bluetooth, navigation, automatic climate control, rain-sensing wipers, and more.

Follow the related links for more information, specs, pricing, news, and reviews on the Honda HR-V, and read on for five tips to help you find the best used HR-V for your dollar.

Some Honda HR-V models were available with a manual transmission. If that’s the case for the unit you’re considering, approach it assuming that the clutch needs to be replaced, until you have proof to the contrary. A clutch can last the life of the car, but a bad driver can reduce that lifespan to just a few years. Find the steepest hill possible, ideally on a length of highway. Where appropriate, apply full throttle from a low speed, as well as in a high gear — perhaps in fourth gear at 70 km/h. This works the engine hard from low revs, which will tend to coax unwanted slippage out of a badly-worn clutch. If you notice any, budget for a clutch replacement before you buy.

If you’re opting for a model with the CVT automatic transmission, be sure all previous fluid changes have been completed on time and in a dealer setting; you can do this by checking service records against the maintenance schedule. Familiarize yourself with the maintenance requirements of the transmission with a look in the owner’s manual. Remember that failing to properly maintain a CVT transmission can cause damage and issues that aren’t covered by warranty.

The HR-V has a tailgate, cargo hold, and folding seating system that intend to make your life easier — and according to some owners, now’s the time to confirm everything is in working order.

Start with the tailgate: can it be released from the remote, the tailgate-mounted release button, and the tailgate release button inside the vehicle? If not, the tailgate latch may need to be adjusted or replaced. Once open, apply moderate downwards force on the tailgate, confirming that the struts hold it firmly in place. If that’s not the case, you’ll want to replace them, before anyone takes any sheetmetal to the dome.

Try the rear seating, next. Flip and fold each seat segment through its entire range of motion, several times, to confirm proper operation, and to confirm that all latches, levers, and springs inside the seating system are intact and operational.

With some owners reporting premature shock-absorber failure, possibly evidenced by a fluid leak from the damper itself, you’ll want to find a stretch of rough road and be sure to use it on your test drive to coax telltale trouble sounds out of the HR-V’s suspension.

When test-driving your potential used HR-V on a rough road, note that any popping, snapping, or banging and smashing sounds from beneath the vehicle indicate suspension trouble that could cause serious problems and cost you money. If you hear any, you’ll want to have the suspension assessed by a professional before your purchase, as repairs may be required.

Many factors affect the life of a vehicle’s suspension components, and some HR-V owners have reported having defective shocks replaced under warranty. Many have not.

Tip 4: Climate control system

To help prevent possible climate-control system trouble reported by some owners, be sure to check two specific things on your test drive.

First, confirm that the cabin air filter in the HR-V you’re considering is clean and fresh, not clogged up and overdue to be replaced. A failure by previous owners to maintain the cabin air filter is a leading cause of problems with performance from both the air conditioner and heater/defrost functions of the climate control system. Starting ownership with a fresh cabin air filter is a great way to reduce the likelihood of system trouble.

Second, stress test the air conditioner by parking the vehicle and cranking the AC to max. If the system fails to supply a continual and consistent supply of cold air, a refrigerant leak, hardware problem, or manufacturing defect may be to blame.If you detect any problems with the air conditioner, have the vehicle seen by a professional before you buy. Undiagnosed air conditioner problems can cost you a lot of money.

As you complete your test drive of a used HR-V, check two more areas before making your final assessment. First, inspect the entire ceiling liner, as well as all carpeted surfaces on board, for signs of water staining, water leaks, or dampness.

Some drivers have reported water leaks caused by a poorly-sealed windshield, poorly-sealed door handles, or a blocked sunroof drain tube. Most have not. Water leaks can cause serious trouble and be pricey to fix, and if the HR-V you’re considering has one, it’ll probably be evidenced by dampness in the carpet or ceiling liner.

Second, especially if you’re buying just ahead of winter, be sure to have the battery tested and replaced at the first sign of trouble. Some owners are disappointed with the lifespan of the battery in the HR-V, which may require replacement every two or three years. Running a fresh and healthy battery is a great way to start your ownership off right, increase reliability in the cold, and fend off numerous problems across a multitude of vehicle systems.

Final thought

These tips are designed to help test-driving shoppers more easily identify possible trouble areas reported by some owners. An attentive test-drive and shopping process that focuses on the areas above can help you find a first-class example of a used Honda HR-V.

About the author

Rajesh Tamada