Honda HR-V - long term review - Report No:4 2023 | Top Gear
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Long-term review

Honda HR-V - long term review

£32,660 / £36,035 as tested
Published: 30 Aug 2022

Our HR-V is over delivering on its fuel economy

Recently the Honda HR-V impressed me with its fuel economy over a long distance. Now I’m determined to push its eco credentials to the limit. Honda claims WLTP combined economy of 52.3mpg, a respectable figure, so since last brimming the 40-litre tank I’ve switched permanently into eco-mode to see how many miles I can squeeze out of it. Just over half a tank in and after multiple airport runs, a jaunt to the countryside and several eight-mile, hour long commutes to and from the office (yes, the joys of London…) things are looking good. In fact, I’ve well exceeded Honda’s claimed economy, averaging an applaudable 58.3mpg. I even had it tip over 62 at one stage.

So, what? I hear you say. Well, we’re used to taking the WLTP figures with a grain of salt. The last long-termer I ran was a Peugeot 508 PSE plug-in hybrid with a claimed 139mpg on the WLTP combined cycle, when in reality I’d struggle to get up to 50mpg on a moderately long journey with a fully charged battery. In fact, because charging at home wasn’t always practical for me, I’d usually average around 35mpg… crikey. With the HR-V being a self-charging hybrid, this isn’t an issue, and given the spiralling cost of fuel it becomes an attractive proposition. Especially so if you’re not quite ready to make the jump to a plug-in or fully electric vehicle.

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As you’d expect, chasing those high MPG figures hasn’t been a walk in the park. A more restrained use of the throttle is required, which to be frank is a non-issue when the 0-60mph is a woeful 10.3 seconds. But what’s more important is getting the most out of the regenerative braking system. With the regen in its maximum setting it almost becomes a one-pedal driving experience. Once you become accustomed to this you can easily see over 60mpg driving around town.

Rather predictably the MPG takes a dive at higher speeds. Regardless, I’m still on course for 500+ miles from a single tank if I keep it slow and steady, and that’s got me thinking… How far do I need to go to hit 70mpg - remove the rear seats? Delete the infotainment and AC? I’m not sure Honda would be too pleased, mind you.

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