Used 2013 Honda CR-V SUV Review & Ratings | Edmunds

Used 2013 Honda CR-V SUV Review

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Edmunds Expert Review of the 2013 Honda CR-V SUV

  • A Edmunds Rating
  • Roomy, fuel-efficient and loaded with family-friendly amenities, the 2013 Honda CR-V is one of our favorite compact crossover SUVs.

  • Safety | Rating Details
  • Pros

    Lots of room for passengers and cargo; high fuel economy; user-friendly controls; ample tech and family-friendly features; top crash test scores.

  • Cons

    No available engine upgrade; transmission lacks manual mode; rear seats don't slide fore and aft.

  • What's New for 2013

    In the wake of last year's redesign, the Honda CR-V carries over unchanged for 2013.

Full 2013 Honda CR-V Review

What's New for 2013

In the wake of last year's redesign, the Honda CR-V carries over unchanged for 2013.


Like the high-school class valedictorian who finds himself swimming in a sea of "A" students on his first day at an Ivy League college, it's easy for even the most impressive small crossover SUVs to get lost in the shuffle. Despite this challenging landscape, the 2013 Honda CR-V earns a well-deserved spot in the hearts of consumers. Much of its appeal is due to Honda's knack for giving most shoppers exactly what they want.

Compact crossovers are often the transportation of choice for those with small families. With ample passenger and cargo capacity and a full complement of family-friendly amenities, the 2013 CR-V is equipped to meet these responsibilities with a cheerful smile. Fuel economy is exceptional, while precise handling and intuitive controls ensure a thoroughly pleasant overall driver experience.

The 2013 CR-V's biggest shortcoming concerns what's under the hood. There's only one engine available, a 2.4-liter four-cylinder. It does provide that exceptional fuel economy, but if you're looking for an engine upgrade, you can't get one here. Also, a manual shift mode for the transmission isn't available, so those who enjoy interfacing with paddle shifters will find themselves out of luck.

One of the more impressive rivals faced by the Honda CR-V is the new Ford Escape, which comes to the table with a wider array of engine choices. Equally desirable are the feature-packed Hyundai Santa Fe Sport, the agile-handling Mazda CX-5 and the comfortable Chevrolet Equinox. Still, despite a campus thick with bright young talent, the CR-V is easily a well-rounded standout, especially for shoppers with family-oriented needs.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2013 Honda CR-V is available in LX, EX and EX-L trim levels, and each can be equipped with front- or all-wheel drive.

The well-equipped LX comes standard with 16-inch steel wheels, automatic headlights, keyless entry, full power accessories, air-conditioning, cruise control, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, driver-seat height adjustment, 60/40-split rear seats, a rearview camera, a 6-inch multi-information display, steering wheel audio controls, and Bluetooth phone and streaming audio. All LX models also have a four-speaker sound system with a CD player, a Pandora interface, an auxiliary audio jack and a USB/iPod interface.

EX models add 17-inch alloy wheels, foglights, a sunroof, rear privacy glass, a retractable cargo cover and six speakers for the sound system. Going with the EX-L gets you roof rails, heated side mirrors, dual-zone automatic climate control, an eight-way power driver seat with power lumbar, leather upholstery, heated front seats and an upgraded sound system with seven speakers and satellite radio. On top of this, the EX-L with Navigation adds a navigation system (with voice controls and real-time traffic), while the EX-L with Rear Entertainment System adds a rear entertainment system. Note that the nav system and rear DVD entertainment system can't be ordered together.

Powertrains and Performance

Every 2013 Honda CR-V comes with a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 185 horsepower and 163 pound-feet of torque. A five-speed automatic and front-wheel drive are standard, while all-wheel drive is optional. The latter sends power to the front wheels exclusively until slippage is detected, at which point power is sent to the wheels with the most traction. In Edmunds performance testing, an EX-L with all-wheel drive went from zero to 60 mph in 9.4 seconds -- a tad slow for a four-cylinder small crossover SUV.

EPA estimates for the front-drive model are an estimated 23 mpg city/31 mpg highway and 26 mpg combined. AWD CR-Vs drop slightly to 22/30/25. These ratings make it one of the most fuel-efficient choices in its segment.


Standard safety equipment on the 2013 Honda CR-V includes antilock disc brakes, stability and traction control, active front head restraints, front side airbags and side curtain airbags. All CR-V models also come with a back-up camera.

In Edmunds brake testing, a CR-V EX-L came to a stop from 60 mph in 120 feet -- a short distance for a vehicle in this segment.

The 2013 CR-V earned a perfect five stars for overall protection in government crash tests, scoring five stars for both frontal- and side-impact protection. In testing by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, the CR-V received the best possible rating of "Good" in the frontal-offset, side impact and roof strength tests.

Interior Design and Special Features

The cabin of the 2013 CR-V boasts fluid, organic lines and ample nooks and crannies for stowing carry-on items. A logical layout makes controls easy to find and the overall aesthetic is pleasing to the eye. The open space between the front seats seen in the previous generation's sub-EX-L models has been retired, and all 2013 CR-Vs feature a full front console that increases utility by providing a bevy of additional storage compartments.

The sliding rear seats seen in the previous-generation CR-V are no more, but they've been discontinued to make way for an amenity that's perhaps even more useful: a spring-loaded auto-fold feature that allows you to fold the rear seats almost flat by gently pulling on a lever. The current seat offers just as much legroom as the sliding seat did, since its new fixed position mirrors the one held by the sliding seat when moved all the way back.

Abundant tech features are available, with a Pandora interface and Bluetooth phone and streaming audio being offered as standard equipment on all models. The CR-V is also available with an SMS text messaging function that allows you to listen to incoming text messages via the audio system and reply with one of six preset responses.

The CR-V also swallows more stuff than its outside appearance would suggest. With the rear seats in place, the CR-V can carry 37.2 cubic feet of cargo; fold the rear seat down and that figure grows to an impressive 70.9 cubic feet.

Driving Impressions

While its performance relative to that of other four-cylinder-powered crossovers is competitive enough, there's no denying that the CR-V is a bit lacking in low-end power. This makes the absence of a V6 or turbocharged four-cylinder upgrade all the more apparent. Still, the CR-V's mill returns very good fuel economy, and while its five-speed automatic is a little behind the times (just about every other competitor has a six-speed auto), it shifts smoothly and responds decently enough to throttle inputs.

Although a few other small crossovers are more enjoyable to drive overall, the CR-V offers precise steering and commendably steady handling. Ride quality on most surfaces is acceptably smooth, and unlike the previous generation, the 2013 Honda CR-V also boasts a relatively quiet cabin. Overall, the feeling is one of refinement.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

Average Consumer Rating (See all 52 reviews) | Write a Review

Faulty a/c and electronics

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Vehicle: 2013 Honda CR-V EX-L 4dr SUV AWD (2.4L 4cyl 5A)

Bought a new 2013 from Whittier Community Honda. 14 months later a/c goes out & battery dies. After doing some research, both are known defects. Honda even lost a class-action lawsuit in 2013 for the a/c but never corrected the problem for newer models. Honda refused to repair a/c saying it's my problem. Honda should've at least warned me about the design flaw & problems so I could make an informed decision whether to buy or not. I had 2 previous Honda's. One had a recall that they never told me about & the other had a class action lawsuit regarding brakes that Honda again lost but they forgot to tell me. I don't trust Honda anymore especially Whittier Community Honda.

Warranty information

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Vehicle: 2013 Honda CR-V EX 4dr SUV (2.4L 4cyl 5A)

This is my second CRV. First was a 2010 and current is a 2013. This past month or so I have notice a squeal when I apply final pressure to the brakes. Made an appt. with the dealer feeling good that it was still under warranty(mileage 28215/less than two years old) but apprehensive going in that they would not hear the squeal. Went thru the process of talking to the service manager and after about 30 mins. was told they indeed had heard the squeal but it was not covered under warranty. They could give me no reason why it was squealing but they were more than willing to do a brake service costing $230. So, another life lesson learned. They never fail to disapoint.

The things no one tells you

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Vehicle: 2013 Honda CR-V EX-L 4dr SUV AWD (2.4L 4cyl 5A)

When your stopped with your foot on the brake the car vibrates. Honda can't find anything wrong. Also if your car ever gets bumped on the front passenger side, there's a chance that your windshield washers won't work because the pump is right behind the bumper. Even though I see just a small scratch there, they said it was hit and that is what broke the pump. After 1 year and $250 I have a new pump. Hopefully no one else hits my bumper there or this could get expensive.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Head lights are awful

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Vehicle: 2013 Honda CR-V EX-L w/Navigation 4dr SUV AWD (2.4L 4cyl 5A)

I have had this car for over a year and hate it at night I can't see the road even with the high beams on. The road noise is very loud. When I go down hill the gears don't down shift and the sound is awful. And the other day I had the ABS light the Power Steering light and the Traction control light come on so now I have to take it in for service I am trading it in as soon as I can and not for another Honda. Very disappointed.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Awful seats, marginal a/c

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Vehicle: 2013 Honda CR-V EX-L 4dr SUV AWD (2.4L 4cyl 5A)

Owned this car for 15,000 miles. The seats are hard and crowned in the middle. Tried to fix them with the help of an upholstery shop. unless you are very large or very young you will not like these seats. They get very painful the more you drive this car. I believe the car critics are a bunch of biased reviewers. How could anyone miss the fact that these seats are this terrible. A friend at work wife has a CR-V and he says the same thing. Bought an Escape and it makes the Honda look and feel like it was a ten year old car. On a hot day we had to put the fan on high and turn temp to 65 and it barely worked.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

15000 mile review

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Vehicle: 2013 Honda CR-V EX-L w/Rear Entertainment 4dr SUV AWD (2.4L 4cyl 5A)

I bought this car for my wife to replace her aging 03 Honda Pilot. Overall it has been a very good car. Easy to drive, plenty of interior room, very comfortable on long trips, and excellent highway mpgs. Last month, saw over 35 mpg at 70 mph. City mileage, running errands mpg drops to low 20's. I have changed the oil twice, replaced the cabin and air filter and the wipers. Has been dead reliable, uses no oil between oil changes. Very solid car!

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Read more about the 2013 Honda CR-V

Gas Mileage


  • 22
  • cty
  • 30
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs
Edmunds Insurance Estimator

The Edmunds TCO® estimated monthly insurance payment for a 2013 Honda CR-V Suv in VA is:

$109.25 per month*

Identifix Reliability Ratings

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