New 2021 Honda HR-V hybrid SUV pictures and details

Next-generation Honda HR-V will go on sale later in 2021 with pure-hybrid power only

This is Honda’s all-new HR-V. The third generation of Honda’s small SUV will go on sale later this year and will only be available with the company's 'e:HEV' petrol-electric hybrid drivetrain. Prices are expected to start at around £25,000 and prospective buyers can register their interest online now.

The new HR-V will join the Jazz supermini and CR-V SUV in Honda’s range of hybrid-only cars. Under the bonnet will be Honda’s ‘e:HEV’ drivetrain technology: a 1.5-litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine that produces 129bhp and 253Nm of torque, paired with two compact electric motors.

The HR-V will be capable of pure-electric driving for short distances, with the batteries being topped up by the engine or with energy harvested by the regenerative braking system. At higher motorway speeds, the HR-V will switch to using the engine. Honda so far has not confirmed the electric-only driving range, or the combined output of the hybrid powertrain.

The second-generation HR-V has been with us for almost eight years now, and with the new hybrid powertrain comes a styling overhaul. It isn’t as head-turning as the Honda e city car, but Honda has given the HR-V a simpler design more reminiscent of premium SUVs like the Jaguar F-Pace, Mercedes GLC or Audi Q5

The body of the small SUV has been styled to reduce airflow across it, improving efficiency and high-speed stability. The short overhangs, steeply raked rear window and bootlid also share some similarities with the Mazda MX-30 electric SUV. The new HR-V gets a more upright front end than the outgoing car, sporting a bigger, body-coloured grille, new lights front and rear, plus 18-inch alloy wheels which are standard across the range. 

There are similarly revolutionary changes inside the car: an almost Mazda-like layout features, with simple lines throughout and a centrally mounted infotainment screen. A suite of active safety and driver assistance systems, called Honda SENSING, will also be available.

The latest version of this suite incorporates a pedestrian collision-mitigation steering system and the automatic emergency braking now works at night. The system can detect vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians crossing your path using a wide-angle front camera and will initiate braking if necessary. 

Practicality has been considered, too: Honda's famous 'Magic Seats' make their way from the Jazz, offering the ability to flip the rear seat bases up to load larger items in the rear footwell. Honda has also increased interior space all round, with an extra 35mm of legroom in the rear, thanks to clever packaging on the hybrid powertrain components.

The new HR-V is the latest product of Honda's scheme to electrify all its European models by 2022; the small SUV will rival the Kia Niro, Hyundai Kona Hybrid and Toyota C-HR most directly, as well as mild-hybrid-powered rivals like the Ford Puma when it goes on sale later this year. In the meantime, see our list of the best hybrid SUVs here.

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