2017 Honda CR V AWD Review

Test drive #2 begins with Honda CRV.  It is the #1 overall best selling SUV/Crossover for 5 years in row (as of Feb. 2017); an impressive feat for a car no matter its car class. I don’t know if the CRV is the first vehicle people think of when thinking about SUVs but it seems the one that they end up buying.

Either way, the draw to Honda seems to be simple enough: Honda has a strong brand name based of reliability, safety and great value compared to its competition.  As a previous Honda owner, I knew Honda CRV was always going to be in my top 3 consideration for a vehicle.

Now for the Test Drive…..

 

Out of a possible 50 points. (10 for each category)

Performance/Driving: Rack and pinion steering shines as this vehicle is very responsive to any touch when making turns. 1.5 L Turbo charged engine is smaller than previous CR V incarnations and though it may feel underpowered in acceleration to some, I think it is a worthwhile trade-off for its fuel economy (27 city, 33 highway mpg). CR V is even more responsive with its safety features in brake assist if coming up too fast on another vehicle. Impressive overall. 9/10

Space/Room: Amongst its peers in class, this car boasts the most cargo space. You don’t think it is very significant observing the overall size of the CR V but it is. Engineers created maximum utility in getting you the most room without compromising other features of this vehicle. I see the room/spacing nearly impossible to beat for what we are looking for. 10/10

Appearance: 2017 model brings about a new design different from the past 5-6 years and I say it is for the better. Wheels are now bigger, ground clearance higher, and the interior is more visually appealing. Its appearance has come a long ways since it’s boxier introduction model and it is all for the better. Button/switch/handle placement are very well designed and thought out by engineers. 9/10

2016 Honda CR-V

Cost: Well significant upgrades in 2017, it is hard to want to settle for a prior year model; especially when the price between a brand new CR V and a 2016 is a few thousand dollars. It makes it hard to justify buying anything less than a new model of this CR V, which unfortunately isn’t something we are looking necessarily to do. 8/10

Comfort:  There is nothing over the top here but it is quiet and rides very nicely. The “sensing safety features”, crash test ratings do bring a peace a mind. There is a lot of storage to put things and the placement of switches/buttons seems to be convenient, thought out with common sense. You are not hunting all over the dash to find the trunk release or adjust windshield wiper speed, etc. 9/10

Overall:  It is hard not too simply gush about this vehicle because there is really nothing significant I find wrong with it. It is the complete package for a SUV of it is class and I find it hard to think I am going to find something that stacks as well against the Honda CR V overall. Safety features, cargo space, affordability, fuel economy really put this vehicle over the top for me. I am biased as I am a believer in the Honda brand, but this really is a top selling SUV for consecutive years for many reasons. Total Score: 45/50

 

2017 Ford Edge SEL Review

2017 Ford Edge SEL/AWD
Ford Edge, aka Ford Escape’s big brother. I suppose it needs to be said before I begin that this car review is the first car search that involves the input of my wife as we look for our first vehicle together in our family. Before our test drive, I knew little about the Ford Edge and after my first look at it, I have some takeaways to share:

– Plenty of space for a family with two kids

– Provides comfort in riding long distances with investment in seats, electronic convienences ( heated driving wheel , driving wheel filled with all sorts of buttons for everything, etc)

– Pricey for a person/family looking for something less than 30k. Fully loaded Edges go for nearly 40k.

Ford Edge’s first production year was 2006 and as I stated initially, was setup to be a big brother to Ford Escape. It is a car that seems to overall be well recieved by critics and customer. The Microsoft made the car computer system, SYNC, is still very much apart of the Ford line 5+years later and has greatly evolved compared to my 2011 Ford Fusion SE. The difference in the SYNC systems is day and night. My SYNC system looks like something MS DOS created where I could almost play “Number Munchers” where the newer SYNC looks like the latest Nintendo Switch or PS4 game console. The Ford Edge looks like a bigger, slightly bloated Escape with a weird sort of “duck tail” on the top of its trunk . The “Duck Tail” is truly the defining feature for me in instantly telling the difference between the Edge and any other of its SUV family.  Looks aren’t everything though and with encouragement from family/friend car experts, we decided to check out this vehicle first on our car search.

As I mentioned before, this car doesn’t give off any emotion from exterior looks but interior wise it looks beautiful. Plenty of trunk space, all sorts of cargo storage areas, cup holders, back seats are very comfortable (especially for someone of my 6’3 frame). The interior looks flashy with it’s digital display, oversized buttons, and feels like you are driving in a more luxury vehicle as the features seem to want to pamper its owner. (Intelligent Access w/push button start start, 10 way power driver and passenger front seats, dual climate control, bright, shiny digital computer screen displays….to name a few things) Under the hood looked like something I could actually get my hands in and around and do some basic maintenance on my own without having to take it to a shop for every little knick knack sort of thing.

Now to the test drive……

Test drive was fairly short as the dealer’s sales rep had me drive maybe 3 miles in town driving before switching places with my wife so she could get a feel for the car. Honestly, I need a longer test drive (which is the plan to test drive another Ford Edge) to be more completely objective on my thoughts of this car.

Drive was nothing impressive, nothing really stuck out for me that wowed me in any sense. Blind spots seemed to be bigger than I would be willing to live with in a personal car. Although the engine size 2.0L, 2.7L EcoBoost or 3.5L has plenty of power to get you to point A to point B, I felt no excitement in driving this car. Yes it is a comfortable ride, but we also test drove a model that was nearly the 40k price mark. I expect it to be a good ride for that kind of money. It seems the Edge wants to overwhelm you with its bells and whistles in electronic, conveience features that blow us its price instead of giving you a lasting memory beyond the intial excitement of new gadgets, features to play with (the new excitement that wears off eventually with any type of purchase).

Out of a possible 50 points. (10 for each category)

Performance/Driving: Comfortable, well suited for long trips but seems too gimmicky in features. 6/10

Space/Room: Easily the best feature of this car. If you don’t have enough room in this vehicle, my guess is you are more than likely a family of 6 or more ( have pets or pack too much in general with traveling any sort of distance) 10/10

Appearance: Exterior is uninspiring=aka “Bloated Escape with a Duck Tail”, but interior is well crafted in showering its occupants in luxury. Engine room underneath the hood is a plus as well. 7/10

Cost: Pay more to get more, right? I don’t know if all these features, more space, bigger engine warrant all the price difference compared to a Ford Escape but I guess I will find out when I test drive an Escape. Granted we are more into the ” Pre-certified/Like New ” neighborhood than buying new so maybe that impacts my rating too much. 6/10

Comfort: Very comfortable seating, so many things to adjust/control from your fingertips. Rides quiet   and smooth but my negative is likely being more paranoid in city/interstate traffic when switching lanes, fighting with the blind spots, and worried about running into other vehicles. 7/10

Overall: A 2nd test drive that is more complete is warranted. It may brighten up some negatives I hold on this car but I feel confident this won’t be our next vehicle. Cost and blind spots are enough currently to dissuade me, but we simply don’t need this much room to haul people and things right now in our family anyway.  If the cost isn’t too high, blind spots don’t affect you as negatively,  and you need the space, the Ford Edge may be a car to be considered by you.

Total Score: 35/50