2012 Honda CR-V Long Term Road Test

2012 Honda CR-V AWD: Area 51 Bluetooth Woes

October 17, 2012


During my Oregon trip, and every now and then around town, the CR-V's Bluetooth connection drops out, but I only know this because the nice nav lady's voice breaks in and says "The phone has been connected" as a similar text message covers the screen.

This is supposed to happen just once when you start the car to let you know an existing connection has been reestablished, but in our CR-V it sometimes happens while we're driving, indicating the connection was lost then found again. On long trips it's not unusual for it to happen once every 30 minutes to an hour.

Why? I have no idea, but it should have nothing to do with variations in local cell reception, because Bluetooth is a protocol that connects a phone/MP3 player to the car. What's going on at the tower shouldn't matter.

It's mildly annoying, but things started to get out of hand when we were in Rachel, Nevada, where the message started to come up every 2 or 3 minutes. I started to keep track but quickly gave up after I recorded 30 incidents in less than 90 minutes.

In case you don't know, Rachel is mid-point way station on Nevada's Extraterrestrial Highway. It's the nearest settlement to Groom Lake and Area 51, an isolated military base where top secret stuff is tested. It's all fun and games, but the top secret military base is for real. Who knows what kind of radio signals and jamming devices are in play out here.

From the Honda I want two things: a stable and robust Bluetooth connection, and if I can't have that I need a way to turn off the damn warning so I don't have to listen to it all the time. But there is no such setting in the CR-V's nav system.

Dan Edmunds, Director of Vehicle Testing @ 9,618 miles

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Edmunds Insurance Estimator

The Edmunds TCO® estimated monthly insurance payment for a 2012 Honda CR-V in VA is:

$114 per month*
* Explanation