Honda confirms new ZR-V SUV to take on Toyota RAV4

The Honda ZR-V has officially been confirmed as the brand’s new entrant in the mid-size SUV segment, due mid-2023 to take on the top-selling Toyota RAV4 and Mazda CX-5.

After a long drip-feed of information with few official details, we know Honda’s all-new SUV nameplate will arrive later this year with four trim levels, including a top-spec e:HEV hybrid version sporting the same drivetrain as the related Civic e:HEV.

The bulk of the range will be powered by a 1.5-litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine paired with a CVT automatic, while the e:HEV uses a 2.0-litre naturally-aspirated petrol engine teamed with a two-motor hybrid system.

In the related Civic, the 1.5-litre turbo generates 131kW and 240Nm, while the e:HEV makes a beefier 135kW and 315Nm. Local specifications for the ZR-V will be released closer to its mid-2023 launch, though the Japanese model mirrors the Civic’s specs.

Honda Australia hasn’t confirmed yet if the ZR-V will offer the choice of front- and all-wheel drive, with both engines offering the choice in Japan.

Camera IconOverseas model shown Credit: CarExpert

In Australia, the line-up will comprise VTi X, VTi L and VTi LX petrol grades, as well as an e:HEV LX hybrid flagship.

It’s the first time we’ve seen Honda Australia offer one of its new models with more than one trim level for a single powertrain variant.

While defined as an SUV, Honda’s media release says the ZR-V “sits lower than most SUVs for a sedan-like driving position but without compromising on visibility”.

“The new SUV also offers a variety of storage spaces, with the floor of the boot featuring a flat design.”

Full pricing and specifications will be announced “in the coming months”, though we’re expecting the ZR-V to launch with fixed drive-away pricing starting in the low-to-mid-$40,000 range, with the top-spec e:HEV LX hybrid likely to be approaching $60,000 based on the smaller HR-V’s positioning.

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Camera IconSupplied Credit: CarExpert

Equipment highlights for Australia include:

  • 1.5L turbo engine and CVT (VTi grades only)
  • 17-inch alloy wheels (VTi X)
  • 18-inch alloy wheels (VTi L, VTi LX, e:HEV LX)
  • Honda Sensing
  • 9.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system
  • Wireless Apple CarPlay
  • Wired Android Auto
  • LED headlights incl. Adaptive Driving Beam
  • Front, rear parking sensors
  • 5-year Honda Connect subscription
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Camera IconSupplied Credit: CarExpert

Stay tuned to CarExpert for the latest, and let us know your thoughts in the comments!

MORE: Honda ZR-V detailed for Japan, hints at Australian line-up

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