I purchased the 2009 CRV EX just a week ago. I had a 2004 Xterra (which got, at best, 17 mpg's highway). I figured instead of spending $400/mo in gas this summer, I needed something more practical, but did not want to compromise on size. The CRV is just as big inside, if not bigger, than the Xterra. Although it appears much smaller on the outside? Love the digital display...it has current mpg's, average mpg's (on that tank), tire pressure monitor, and the Maintenance Meter (reminds you to get your oil changed, etc). Does not have a center 'console.' Instead it's a drop-down walk-through (like a minivan would have). The 2.4L 4-banger really has some pep comparable to my old V6.
MPG's, for sure...averaging 25.8 mpg's (about 50/50 town/highway) on the first tank!! Handling is great. 8 cup holders...awesome. A lot of standard features (even on the base model) like power, tire pressure monitor, digital display. Price, when I thought Honda was always too much $$, was great.
More comfort in the seats...very stiff. Offer GRAY interior on the 'urban titanium' exterior (only offered that manilla folder color or solid black). GROUND NOISE is bad. But every Honda I've ever been in has had the same issue, just didn't expect it in a 'higher ground clearance' vehicle.