Best & Worst Honda CR-V Years (Problems To Avoid)

Our Honda CR-V ranking lets you pick the best model instead of the worst year of the Honda CR-V.

You can find out which Honda CR-V generation is the best and worst in this ultimate guide.

In the following guide, we break down the strengths and weaknesses of each generation based on reliability surveys, consumer ratings, recall history, and owner reviews.

When considering a Honda CR-V, our guide takes you through everything from technological advancements to common issues.

Best & Worst Honda CR-V Years (Problems To Avoid)

Let’s jump right into the generations of Honda CR-V without further ado.


The Best, Neutral, and Worst Years of the Honda CR-V

The ranking and categorization of Honda CR-V model years are influenced by several factors. The following are included:

  • Reliability as reported by owners (surveys)
  • Costs of annual maintenance
  • Ratings for safety
  • Ratings of Consumer Reports’ reliability
  • Scores of owner satisfaction from Consumer Reports
  • Complaints, investigations, and recalls by the NHTSA
  • Ratings by Edmunds owners
  • Owner ratings from JD Power
  • Owner ratings from Kelley’s Blue Book (KBB)
  • The ratings of VehicleHistory owners
  • Ratings of Cars.com owners

You will soon be able to see an overview of each year’s performance via a comprehensive graph combining ratings from the sources above.

You can then make an informed choice when considering a Honda CR-V by reviewing our table summarizing the categories of best, neutral, and worst years.

CR-V GenerationsBest YearsNeutral YearsWorst Years
[RD4-RD9] 2nd generation2005 2006N/A2002 2003 2004
[RE1-RE5, RE7] 3rd generation20092010 20112007 2008
[RM1-RM4, RE5-RE6] 4th generation2013 201620122014 2015
[RW1-RW8, RT5-RT6] 5th generation20222019 20202017 2018 2021

In “Neutral Years,” the Honda CR-V wasn’t particularly impressive, but it also didn’t have any glaring problems. If you are unsure, they are safe bets because they offer a balanced performance.

A car’s rating can be negatively affected by certain factors, such as NHTSA recalls. The number of complaints and recalls is higher, which means the reliability of the product is lower, leading to a lower score.

Having established the context, let’s discuss the best, neutral, and worst years of the Honda CR-V.


Why Buy a Used CR-V?

Honda’s rock-solid reliability and incredible value trump the appeal of buying a new CR-V.

Value

The sticker price of used cars will be cheaper, registration fees will be lower, and insurance rates will be lower as well.

Longevity

Used vehicles have been around for a longer period of time. Consequently, you will have access to years of information regarding recalls, faulty components, etc.


Generations of the Honda CR-V

Honda CR-V was a pioneer in the compact SUV market when it debuted in the 1990s. Due to its blend of efficiency, reliability, and utility, it quickly became a popular choice.

From 2002, the Honda CR-V has gone through the following generations:

CR-V GenerationsModel Years
[RS] 6th generation2023-2024
[RW1-RW8, RT5-RT6] 5th generation2017-2022
[RM1-RM4, RE5-RE6] 4th generation2012-2016
[RE1-RE5, RE7] 3rd generation2007-2011
[RD4-RD9] 2nd generation2002-2006

There is a distinct difference between each generation in terms of design, features, and technology. Generational differences can have a significant impact on the decision-making process of a potential buyer.


Honda CR-V 6th Generation [2023-2024]

As a continuation of the Honda CR-V legacy, the 2023 model embraces new technologies. A superior lane-keeping function and adaptive cruise control were among the enhanced safety features offered by this model.

Honda CR-V 6th Generation [2023-2024]

As well as improved fuel economy, it features a hybrid system that ensures greater power without sacrificing fuel efficiency. In addition to a more spacious interior, the infotainment system has more connectivity options and a digital dashboard.

The 2024 model builds upon its predecessor’s advancements in safety and technology. Among the notable additions was the advanced pedestrian detection system, which was designed specifically for urban driving conditions.

In addition, the CR-V 2024 is equipped with an e-AWD system that improves off-road performance. This year’s model featured a redesigned grille and brighter LED headlights, making the vehicle more visually appealing.

Despite being relatively new models, Honda’s commitment to reliability, innovation, and customer satisfaction is evident in both. Data from real-world use will allow a clearer picture to be formed about any potential problems or notable highlights.


Best & Worst Years for Honda CR-V [5th Generation, 2017-2022]

A new generation of Honda’s flagship SUV was launched in 2017 with the Honda CR-V. Featuring an enhanced design, modernized technology suite, and advanced performance dynamics, the Honda CR-V aims to remain competitive in the highly competitive SUV market.

Best & Worst Years for Honda CR-V [5th Generation, 2017-2022]

2022 Is One Of The Best Years

During the early years of the fifth generation, Honda received feedback and improved the CR-V.

Providing a balance between reliability, performance, and technological integration, the 2022 model addressed past concerns while also introducing new features.

Many SUV enthusiasts became enthralled with it after it was reported to have fewer issues.

2019 And 2020 Are The Neutral Years

A number of concerns from its predecessors were addressed with Honda’s new 2019 CR-V.

Its engine performance and safety measures were improved, but it failed to achieve the excellence of the later 2022 model.

With the 2020 Honda CR-V, a transitional model in the generation, a balance was sought. As a sign of its commitment to sustainable mobility, Honda introduced a hybrid variant.

2017-2018, 2021 Were The Worst Years

As the generation began, the 2017 CR-V faced a number of issues, primarily with the electrical system, engine, and powertrain. There have been reports of engine stalling from a substantial number of owners, creating safety and reliability concerns.

There was also an unpredictable pattern to the dashboard lights, which further added to the dissatisfaction.

In addition to some of the problems that plagued the 2017 CR-V, the 2018 model also introduced a new issue: service brake problems. This model year has been plagued by incidents of brakes engaging unexpectedly, adding to safety concerns.

The 2021 Honda CR-V still faced setbacks despite being a late model in the generation. Despite the fact that it garnered a low rating of 1.9 out of 5 on VehicleHistory.com , owners pointed to persistent problems, especially with the brakes, which engaged unpredictably.


Best & Worst Years for Honda CR-V [4th Generation, 2012-2016]

Honda’s fourth generation of the CR-V, which spanned from 2012 to 2016, showed the company’s commitment to modernizing its beloved SUV. It featured an innovative design, a number of technological advancements, as well as an emphasis on fuel efficiency and safety.

Best & Worst Years for Honda CR-V [4th Generation, 2012-2016]

2013 And 2016 Are The Best Years

In addition to its dependability, the 2013 Honda CR-V is known to have fewer mechanical issues. As a result of its smooth drive, comfort, and new technological features, it has become a favorite among many drivers.

Unlike its predecessor, the 2016 model addressed many of its shortcomings. There was a significant reduction in complaints related to engine problems.

As an added benefit, the infotainment system has been improved, and safety features have been added.

2012 Is The Neutral Year

In 2012, the CR-V made its debut as the first model of the fourth generation.

In terms of performance and reliability, it did not quite match the 2013 and 2016 models, despite introducing the new aesthetics and features.

Despite these issues, it also didn’t have the most severe problems of 2014 and 2015.

2014 And 2015 Were The Worst Years

There were still problems with the lock actuators in the 2014 model year, which were the same as those in the previous generation. A significant grinding noise was also reported from the VTC actuator and new complaints emerged regarding faulty tire pressure sensors. Despite these concerns, owners disagreed on how to address them.

There have been multiple problems with the 2015 CR-V within its fourth generation. In addition to stalling and loud engine noises, there were a number of engine-related issues to be addressed.

The vehicle often shuddered while idling, which was a particular irritation. It only resolved these problems for some Hondas by updating the Powertrain Control Module ( PCM ) and installing a damper lift kit for the tailgate.

A rodent infestation was described, leading to damaged wiring, malfunctioning heaters, and other complaints.


Best & Worst Years for Honda CR-V [3rd Generation, 2007-2011]

During the third generation of Honda CR-V, which spanned 2007 to 2011, urbanity and sophistication were emphasized. In addition to improving fuel efficiency, this generation also improved interior space.

Best & Worst Years for Honda CR-V [3rd Generation, 2007-2011]

2009 Was The Best Year

Compared with its siblings from the same generation, the 2009 Honda CR-V was relatively trouble-free. Comfort, reliability, and practicality were all carried over from its predecessors.

In contrast to other years of this generation, the 2009 model had few complaints about airbags and electrical issues.

2010 And 2011 Were Neutral Years

In spite of fewer major issues compared to the 2007 and 2008 models, some owners still voiced concerns about the 2010 and 2011 models. There were a number of concerns that were repeated from 2007 and 2008:

  • A second-generation fluid issue persisted with the rear differential.
  • AC compressors have been reported to be faulty by some owners.
  • It was also reported that steering fluid was leaking occasionally.

2007 And 2008 Were The Worst Years

Several complaints were reported with the launch of the third generation in 2007. In most cases, the complaints concerned airbags as well as electrical problems with doors, locks, and linkages. While driving, doors would lock and unlock when the lock actuator failed.

The airbag complaints continued into 2008 as a result of these problems. Airbags failed to deploy in some instances, according to owners. The passenger airbag inflators of certain Honda CR-V models from 2007-2011 were also recalled in 2019.

CR-V’s third-generation model was plagued by unwelcome acceleration issues. Unintentional acceleration would occur when drivers applied the brake, but the engine revved up. Up to $5,000 could be needed to repair this dangerous situation if it ended in disaster.

Moreover, there was a safety risk associated with the under-inflation of airbags, which caused occupants to collide with hard surfaces, potentially resulting in concussions.


Best & Worst Years for Honda CR-V [2nd Generation, 2002-2006]

Several design and technological changes occurred during the second generation of the Honda CR-V, which ran from 2002 to 2006. With this generation, the powertrain options were enhanced and the design was more rugged.

Best & Worst Years for Honda CR-V [2nd Generation, 2002-2006]

There were, however, a number of issues associated with these changes.

2005 And 2006 Were The Best Years

Compared to its predecessors, the Honda CR-V 2005 and 2006 were improved. Compared to earlier models, 2005 appeared to be the year when engine problems decreased.

Comfort, space, and reliability were all hallmarks of the CR-V. Among the second generation, 2005 and 2006 stand out as the best due to improvements made.

2002, 2003, And 2004 Were The Worst Years

It was reported that the 2002 model had problems with the airbags and the air conditioner, as well as some engine problems. The most common problem this year was a failed AC compressor, which caused the entire system to become contaminated, leading to a repair cost of nearly $1,600.

There was a recall concerning the shift cable linkage on the 2003 model, continuing the problems of the 2002 model. The recall stated that excessive corrosion in the shift cable linkage of certain SUVs equipped with automatic transmissions could prevent drivers from shifting their SUVs into park, thus posing a safety risk.

Several CR-V models built from 2002 to 2006 have been recalled due to concerns that the passenger frontal airbag inflators may explode due to propellant degradation, which becomes worse when the vehicles are exposed to high humidity and temperature for a prolonged period.

In addition, the Honda CR-V’s second generation is more prone to recalls than its subsequent generations. It is highly recommended that you check the VIN of any model from this generation for recalls or issues.


Honda CR-V Problems

The Honda CRV is generally regarded as a reliable vehicle, despite numerous challenges. Nevertheless, like any car, they have their share of problems, ranging from fundamental handling concerns to comfort issues to equipment failures. Below you will find a list of some of the most common Honda CRV problems.

Honda CR-V Problems

Engine Problems

  • It is possible to cause harm when you accelerate unintentionally, especially during braking.
  • A 1000 mile oil change is required because of oil consumption.
  • Occasionally, the cooling system fails, causing the engine to overheat.
  • The car vibrates abnormally and is often abrasive.
  • Possible engine damage due to severe oil dilution issues, especially with 1.5-liter Earth Dreams engines.
  • Engine fuel delivery is reduced by cracked fuel pump impellers.

Electrical Problems

  • Rats are attracted to wires coated in soy-based materials, which can damage them.
  • As a result of faulty TPMS programming, a warning light appears for “Check TPMS” despite no TPMS issues.
  • A faulty accident sensor causes seatbelt pretensioners and airbags to malfunction.
  • The Honda Sensing driver assistance system causes erratic stops in motion.

Interior Problems

  • Extended drives can cause backaches, leg pains, and neck exhaustion because of uncomfortably designed seats.
  • Fuel supply from the oil pan overflowing, causing a gasoline odor in the cabin.
  • Broken door locks caused by faulty door lock actuators.
  • Due to excessive window frame strain, CRV windshields crack.
  • A defective AC compressor often results in the “Honda Black Death” due to the release of hot air and metal shavings.

Consumers have expressed significant dissatisfaction with the 2007 Honda CR-V due to these issues. Maintaining Honda’s reputation requires addressing these concerns. For a comprehensive understanding of the Honda CR-V’s performance and potential issues, check Kelley Blue Book, consumer reports, and other reviews. In order to prevent or address these problems, regular maintenance and attention to warning lights are crucial.


What is Honda CR-V Resale Value?

Based on a specified period of time, the following graph shows the Honda CR-V’s average resale value.

The resale value of this vehicle is a key indicator of its durability, demand, and perceived value as one of the leading SUVs on the market.


Best & Worst Honda Civic Years

FAQs

What year Honda CR-V is the most reliable?

The best year to buy a used CR-V is 2005-2006. Despite being 15 years old, these SUVs still perform like new – when properly maintained.

What is the best used Honda CR-V to buy?

A certified used Honda CR-V can be found on any model made within the last five years. Other years since 2017 are also very good, but we recommend 2020, 2021, or 2022. Depending on your budget, you might want to consider either an EX or Touring trim.

Are old Honda CRVS good cars?

Choosing a second-generation Honda CR-V could be the right choice if you’re looking for an affordable used vehicle. Particularly, Honda CR-V models from 2005 and 2006 have excellent reliability ratings. Their reliability, fuel economy, and engine performance make them a great choice.

What is Honda CR-V average Lifespan?

Maintenance and usage frequency heavily influence the lifespan of a Honda CR-V. Due to their premium components and exceptional craftsmanship, CRVs generally last beyond 200,000 kilometers, equivalent to more than 20 years, with extra care. This longevity is largely attributed to regular oil changes and filter replacements.

Which is the Most Reliable Engine in Honda CR-V?

Honda’s latest generation of CR-Vs comes with a highly praised 1.5L turbocharged I4 engine. In combination with a CVT, this engine produces two extra miles per gallon when producing 179 pounds per foot of torque and 190 horsepower. The performance and reliability of this product have been praised.


Conclusion

We’ve explored the Honda CR-V’s generational evolution. Keep in mind that making an informed purchasing decision requires knowledge of the model’s history and issues.

How would you rate the Honda CR-V’s current generation?

If you could share your insights and experiences below, we would appreciate it.

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