Make / Model Search

Honda HR-V


1 Jan 1999

HONDA had hoped to replicate the success of its CR-V in the light-SUV segment with its HR-V mini-4WD wagon.

But Australians seemed to shun such cars – with exception to the inexpensive Daihatsu Terios – as the Mitsubishi Pajero iO also proved.

The HR-V was based on the light car that preceded the popular Jazz that Australians never saw – the Toyota Starlet-like Logo – and so was deceptively compact in its dimensions.

Initially a two-door wagon arrived, in base and Sport guises, powered by a 77kW/138Nm 1.6-litre SOHC 16-valve four-cylinder engine.

Interestingly the automatic was of the constant velocity CVT type – giving smoothness and efficiency a regular torque-converter automatic cannot quite match – while a conventional five-speed manual was the other gearbox choice.

The HR-V was essentially a front-wheel drive hatchback, until slippage detected in the front wheels activated a version of Honda’s tried and true Real Time part-time 4WD system.

All models included dual airbags, power steering, central locking, power windows and cloth trim, while the racier Sport added anti-lock brakes, remote central locking, alloy wheels, roof racks and a rear spoiler.

The latter was discontinued in May 2000, two months after the four-door HR-V wagon arrived.

A limited edition ‘Indy’ special was based on the base three-door model, and was available in late ’99.

The Road to Recovery podcast series

Read more

Honda models

Catch up on all of the latest industry news with this week's edition of GoAutoNews
Click here