The first new car I ever got was a Honda Accord. I did 60k miles a year in it for three consecutive years as a sales rep. and, apart from a window regulator clip, nothing broke. So it’s fair to say I had high expectations when I collected a new CR-V from Honda’s media team recently. It is the season for cycling, and the CR-V makes an excellent (and enjoyable) workhorse.

The first job was to clean up a toddlers bike and a junior mountain bike that my kids very kindly donated to a local charity, and deliver them. New Parks Adventure Playground provide activities and support to families who don’t have much access to outdoor fun. “They’ll fight over these” said the lady, unloading the bikes, smiling. If you have an unused bike, please drop them a line, they’d be grateful for any donations.

From there to Belvoir castle for some pictures. It rained a bit and the grounds are gravel and mud, the off-road abilities of the CR-V aren’t essential to me, although we ploughed on where cars may have faltered. A word on the tech; This self-charging hybrid has a two litre petrol engine and a CVT gearbox. Gearchanges are made by pushbuttons on the dash. It’s an easy thing to waft along in. This EX spec car came with a panoramic roof, head-up display and leather seats.

Back at home came a knock at the door from my petrolhead nephew who already knew more about the car than me. Joe is also a biker (mountain and motor) and he had done a few miles on his Cube mountain bike to come and see me. It was a good excuse for a little roadtrip so we loaded the bike up and went for a drive. The flat floor and relatively long loadbay with the seats down made this easy. He charged up his phone using the wireless charger. His screensaver pic is him on his motocross bike. He likes Hondas, his mum has a Mk1 CR-V and if hers ever breaks, this one is on her wish list.

Then a long slog down south. Adaptive cruise control on, climate set, BBC Radio 6 playing. The CR-V averaged 42.8mpg during my time with it, and time on the M1 on adaptive cruise gave time to ponder the cost justification for hybrids like this. You haul around some serious weight and that gearbox might occasionally sound laboured on uphill hauls when laden, but the ‘bik’ numbers look good and, of course, you won’t be blacklisted when visiting any of the growing list of towns with low emission zones. Plus, everything just works. Me and t’other half (ex-Honda Hornet biker) cycled the Billy trail in Hampshire, an old railway line which terminates on Hayling Island. Her new Viking touring bike has that upright, Dutch style and perfect for a ride away from roads. There was room in the back for both bikes, and a new barbeque picked up en-route.

My Dad isn’t much into cars but he is into the outdoors, so my next trip was to collect him and both our bikes, and visit Holkham Hall in Norfolk. For a chap in his seventies he bombs along a bit and managed to get mucky in the woods. We had coffees and a great unwind on the easy drive home, with plenty of space. Dad appreciated the elevated seating position and got in and out without swearing, unlike my Elise which is, in his words; “a bloody stupid thing”.

Other trips included a drive to a spot in the Cotswolds for some pictures which was abandoned when I realised I was in the same street where ‘This Country’ was filmed. A comedy classic, if you don’t know it. The CR-V fills the lanes but is less socially unpleasant than the inevitable Range Rovers which roam these parts. Another task was to shift something known as ‘death bike’ – an ancient, orange Shopper converted to run on a chainsaw engine (pic below). I have no idea of the legality of the thing and don’t doubt it has earned its lethal moniker. I had wanted to move my Schauff tandem (pic below, it’s too big for my Fiat!) and my beloved Royal Enfield, complete with home-made bicycle bar (here), which is wanted on loan by Enfield’s motorbike marketing department. But, as with all good things – time ran out.

Back at Honda I ogled a brace of NSXs, a flawless S600, and an original Civic which had me salivating a bit. The CR-V had been (as expected) comfortable, reliable and a thoroughly sensible choice as an all-rounder for the week of two-wheeled adventures. I was as sad to give it back, as I was relieved to see the back of ‘death bike’.

The Honda CR-V starts at £32,950, there’s more info here.

About The Author

Rich Duisberg

Rich's drivel regularly appears in Practical Performance Car and GT Porsche magazines. He has also written for Classic & Sportscar, MogMag, Classic Performance and Retro, Banzai, Evo, and Modern Mini. He also did a book no-one bought. His hungover fizzog also often appears on CBS’s Carfection channel enthusing about historic motoring. Le Mans winner Derek Bell once refused to get in Rich's Morgan Three Wheeler with him at the wheel. Currently amongst the detritus in his garage is a 1972 Fiat 500 Abarth, a fat BMW and a Lotus Elise. Previous machinery includes a Porsche 968, an Alfa GTV V6 and a dreadful Sinclair C5. He also owns a vintage Royal Enfield pushbike.

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