We bought our CRV brand new off the lot in 2002 and it went through 10 years of nasty northern winters and rainy summers and now in the blistering heat of the southwest. We've had the a/c repaired then replaced and the starter . I know now that gas is cheaper than a starter ! It has 155,000 miles on it and in the shop as I type and needs timing belt, valves adjusted, axle boots, alignment, sway bar and struts for less $1500. - which is far less than buying an unknown used car.
I got it brand new in 2002. First new car I ever bought. I've had it now for 14 years. Here are the repairs I have done:
1) A/C system was completely replaced under warranty after 2 years. 2) Throttle body was replaced under warranty in year 4. 3) Passenger side door actuator (lock mechanism) failed. Replaced all 4. 4) Struts replaced at 70,000 miles 5) A/C compressor replaced in 2015
Other than that it has just been batteries, tires and brake pads. The A/C systems in these vehicles can be problematic. The door actuators were a cheap design and tend to fail but are relatively cheap to replace.
The engine, transmission, electrical system, AWD system, and audio are absolutely bullet proof in my experience. The paint finish still looks like new. The seats could be more comfortable but the material has held up well.
When it is just me in the CRV the engine has a fair amount of pep. When you load it up with people and stuff - not so much. But it does get a consistent 25 MPG in mixed driving so I'm not complaining. Very easy to park and great visibility all around. The stereo system is reliable but the sound is pretty crummy by modern standards. It is extremely versitile. It serves just as well as a daily commuter as it does a grocery hauler.
Currently I've got about 125,000 miles on it and it runs like a swiss watch. The only real complaint has been the A/C system. Other than that, it's been a very reliable and economical vehicle. I should be able to get 250,000 miles out of it if I continue to take care of it. Highly recommended.
This has been the best car ever. I bought mine new many years ago, and have always loved this car. It has needed extraordinarily little maintenance over all these years, and still runs beautifully - I am even on the original clutch. Great Car!!!!!