Amidst all the hype surrounding the new Honda City; and rightly so, you might be forgiven in assuming that the compact sedan is the only model Honda Malaysia will be releasing this year. Nonetheless; although not as much of an upgrade as the City, the CR-V will be getting a refresh as well by the end of the year with bookings for the facelifted CR-V now being accepted.
Cosmetic alterations on the exterior are limited to the barest minimum to justify a facelift. The front bumper is redesigned with more generous use of black plastics in favour of the previous chrome trim bits.
Even the rollers have been given a new take with the previous turbine-style wheels replaced with a more conventional (read: boring) split-spoke design. They’re still 18-inch pieces.
Judging from other markets that’ve already received the refreshed CR-V, our local model will also be on the receiving end of less chrome in the rear and sequential front indicators. Inside, nothing major is to be reported except for the possible inclusion of a Qi wireless phone charger.
The Honda LaneWatch blind-spot camera for the left side will now be standard across the range. There’ll also be a handsfree powered tailgate. Honda Sensing’s suite of active safety tech will now be available on the all-wheel drive CR-V as well, hinting at the possibility of a flagship all-wheel drive trim for the model.
The move certainly bucks the trend of other carmakers positioning the two-wheel drive variants as the flagship trim, including Proton’s move in dropping the all-wheel drive X70 altogether due to poor sales. Perhaps Honda Malaysia sees a market for premium all-wheel drive trims.
Expect the 1.5-litre turbo engine to continue as the propulsion unit of choice. It remains to be seen if the 2.0-litre naturally-aspirated engine will be carried over or dropped from the line-up completely due to poor sales.