Honda CR-V Years To Avoid and The Best Years

Honda CR-V Years To Avoid – We understand the importance of reliability when it comes to choosing a vehicle, and that’s why we’ve thoroughly analyzed owner-supplied reports, official manufacturer recalls, and technical service bulletins (TSBs) to bring you an in-depth year-by-year look at CR-V reliability.

In our research, we’ve uncovered the specific model years that have raised concerns among consumers due to increased customer complaints and mechanical failures.

We’ll share this vital information with you to help you make a well-informed decision and avoid potential pitfalls.

Honda CR-V Years To Avoid

Before we dive into the details, let’s take a brief journey through the various generations of the Honda CR-V, dating back to its introduction in 1997.

From the first-generation CR-V (1997–2001) to the latest fifth-generation (2017–present), we’ll provide insights into each era of this popular compact SUV.

Your CR-V journey begins here, so let’s explore together and make your driving experience an enjoyable and hassle-free one.

Honda CR-V Years To Avoid

Welcome to our comprehensive guide on the Honda CR-V, where we explore everything you need to know about this popular SUV. In today’s article, we explore an important that every car buyer should consider: Honda CR-V years to avoid.

Whether you’re a prospective buyer or a current owner looking for insights, we’ve got you covered.

We understand that purchasing a vehicle is a significant investment, and being aware of the worst years for the Honda CR-V can save you from potential headaches down the road.

Honda CR-V Years To Avoid

So, let’s dive in and discover the Honda CR-V years you should steer clear of to ensure a smooth and enjoyable driving experience.

Our goal is to guide you through the best and worst years of the Honda CR-V, ensuring you drive away with a dependable and trouble-free SUV.

1997 Honda CR-V

As the inaugural model year for the CR-V, the 1997 version experienced some “teething problems,” typical for all-new cars. Owners reported engine and electrical troubles as the primary issues.

We recommend avoiding purchasing an all-new car during its first year, as these initial versions may have unforeseen glitches.

Read Also: Why Are Hondas So Reliable?

1998 Honda CR-V

The 1998 CR-V showed improvement in engine and electrical issues compared to the previous year. Although the number of complaints increased by 15 percent, the overall ratio of complaints to sales dropped significantly due to a 50 percent increase in CR-V sales.

If you’re considering an older CR-V, the 1998 model is worth considering, but do keep in mind that two-decade-old cars may not be flawless.

1999 Honda CR-V

Similar to the previous year, the 1999 CR-V also exhibited similar complaint data. While the issues reported are relatively consistent, it’s essential to remember that this model is over two decades old.

2000 Honda CR-V

The 2000 CR-V marked the beginning of engine-related problems and the notorious Takata airbag recall. The recall affected various model years, mostly from 2002 to 2015. If you’re considering a used CR-V from this period, it’s crucial to check if the recall has been addressed.

2001 Honda CR-V

Despite an increase in overall complaints for the 2001 model year, most of the rise was due to the airbag issue.

Reports of engine troubles were down, and electrical problems were relatively rare. The 2001 CR-V is a suitable addition to your shopping list.

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2002 Honda CR-V

The all-new 2002 CR-V experienced a host of complaints, ranging from engine and electrical issues to airbag and HVAC problems. As a result, we recommend adding this model year to the list of Honda CR-V years to avoid.

2003 Honda CR-V

While complaints decreased slightly for the 2003 CR-V, issues with major systems were still reported. Proceed with caution when considering this model year.

2004 Honda CR-V

The 2004 CR-V saw an uptick in reported engine issues. If this model year interests you, it’s wise to have a mechanic thoroughly inspect the vehicle before making a purchase.

2005 Honda CR-V

Engine-related complaints significantly decreased, but an increase in transmission problems was observed for the 2005 CR-Vs. It’s essential to have the drivetrain and other components checked before finalizing your decision.

Read Also: Honda Insight Years to Avoid

2006 Honda CR-V

With increased sales and decreased complaints, the 2006 CR-V is a model year worth considering, akin to the ’98 CR-V mentioned earlier.

2007 Honda CR-V

The first year of the all-new third-generation CR-V brought along electrical problems, malfunctioning door locks, and premature tire wear. It’s advisable to avoid the 2007 CR-V and explore other model years.

2008 Honda CR-V

Electrical issues persisted with the 2008 CR-V, although complaints in other trouble areas reduced. While not a whole-hearted endorsement, the 2008 model year fared better than its predecessor.

2009 Honda CR-V

By 2009, Honda addressed many of the electrical problems from earlier CR-V models. Overall complaints decreased substantially, making the 2009 CR-V a viable option for potential buyers.

2010 Honda CR-V

Reports of engine troubles slightly increased for the 2010 CR-V, mainly related to excessive oil consumption. If considering this model year, be mindful of this potential issue.

Read Also: Honda S2000 Years to Avoid

2011 Honda CR-V

Surprisingly, the final year of a particular car generation proved worse than its predecessor for the 2011 CR-V. Reports of engine troubles and complaints about brakes deter us from recommending this model year.

2012 Honda CR-V

The all-new fourth-generation CR-V debuted in 2012, bringing along typical first-year issues like batteries going dead. Electrical and engine problems topped the list of complaints against 2012 models.

2013 Honda CR-V

While the number of engine complaints remained similar to 2012, other issues decreased for the 2013 CR-V. Honda also achieved a significant milestone, selling over 300,000 CR-Vs in a single model year. Provided everything checks out, the 2013 CR-V could be a suitable choice.

2014 Honda CR-V

Complaints regarding the 2014 CR-V’s engine saw a significant increase, resulting in a 50 percent rise in owner-reported issues compared to the previous year. As such, we advise skipping this model year.

2015 Honda CR-V

The 2015 CR-V received numerous reports of engine and transmission troubles. It’s essential to include the 2015 model on your list of Honda CR-V years to avoid.

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2016 Honda CR-V

Complaints, particularly engine-related issues, significantly decreased for the 2016 CR-V. While some powerplant issues persisted, this model year is one worth considering.

2017 Honda CR-V

The 2017 CR-V marked the first year of an all-new model. An alarming number of reported engine troubles, combined with over 1,000 overall complaints, deterred potential buyers from considering this year’s CR-V.

2018 Honda CR-V

Owners reported a high number of engine and electrical problems for the 2018 CR-V, earning it a “clunker” label on

2019 Honda CR-V

It appears that Honda made significant improvements to the 2019 CR-V, leading to a substantial decrease in complaints. Considering a 2019 model might even include the remainder of the factory warranty.

Please note that while we’ve included information up to the 2019 model year, we’re still awaiting complete data on the newest CR-Vs. Rest assured, we’ll update our article as soon as more details become available.

Honda CR-V Best Years

You may be wondering which model years are the best in terms of reliability and performance.

As one of the most popular compact SUVs on the market, the Honda CR-V has undergone various updates and improvements over the years.

Read Also: Are Honda CRVs Reliable?

We’ll delve into the best Honda CR-V years that have earned a reputation for being reliable and delivering a satisfying driving experience.

2006 Honda CR-V

The 2006 Honda CR-V stands out as one of the best years for this compact SUV. Owners and automotive experts alike praise the 2006 model for its exceptional build quality and reliability.

This year marks the second generation of the CR-V, offering a well-balanced blend of comfort, practicality, and fuel efficiency.

With a smoother ride and increased interior space compared to its predecessor, the 2006 CR-V continues to be a sought-after option for used car buyers.

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2009 Honda CR-V

The 2009 Honda CR-V represents another standout year for this popular SUV. As part of the third generation, the 2009 model received various updates, including improved interior materials and enhanced safety features.

Known for its comfortable and spacious cabin, the 2009 CR-V earned high marks for its smooth handling and reliable performance on the road.

With fewer reported issues compared to other model years, the 2009 CR-V remains a solid choice for those seeking a dependable and family-friendly SUV.

2013 Honda CR-V

As the fourth generation of the Honda CR-V, the 2013 model year brings further refinements and advancements. With its updated exterior styling and well-designed interior, the 2013 CR-V continues to impress both drivers and critics.

The introduction of advanced technology features, such as Bluetooth connectivity and a rearview camera, added to the overall appeal of this model year.

Owners appreciate the 2013 CR-V’s fuel efficiency, reliability, and responsive handling, making it a reliable choice for daily commuting and family adventures.

Read Also: Honda HR-V Years to Avoid

2016 Honda CR-V

The 2016 Honda CR-V is often praised for its winning combination of performance and practicality. As part of the fourth generation, the 2016 model year received various updates, including a redesigned front grille and enhanced safety features.

The spacious and comfortable interior, along with its smooth ride and excellent fuel efficiency, earned the 2016 CR-V accolades from drivers and automotive enthusiasts alike.

If you’re looking for a used CR-V with modern features and proven reliability, the 2016 model year should be high on your list.

2021 Honda CR-V

While not as seasoned as some of the earlier model years on this list, the 2021 Honda CR-V showcases the continued commitment to excellence in the CR-V lineup.

As part of the fifth generation, the 2021 CR-V boasts a refined and modern exterior design, along with advanced technology features inside the cabin.

Equipped with a responsive and fuel-efficient engine, the 2021 CR-V provides a smooth and enjoyable driving experience.

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Although it may not have as extensive a track record as the older model years, early reports and Honda’s dedication to quality make the 2021 CR-V a promising choice for those seeking the latest innovations in the lineup.

Honda CR-V Problems

It’s essential to be aware of common issues reported by owners to make an informed decision.

While the CR-V is a popular and reliable compact SUV, certain problems have surfaced across various model years.

Honda CR-V Problems

In this section, we’ll explore the top Honda CR-V problems and provide insights into potential solutions.

1. Unintended Acceleration

One of the most frequently reported issues among CR-V owners is unintended acceleration. Some drivers have experienced the engine revving while braking, causing the vehicle to lurch forward even with the foot on the brake pedal.

Unfortunately, the exact cause of this problem remains elusive.

Some have speculated that it could be related to the air conditioning system, as similar occurrences happen when the compressor kicks on.

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2. Excessive Oil Consumption

Excessive oil consumption is a pervasive problem affecting nearly all Honda CR-V model years. Owners have reported that the check engine light or oil light fails to illuminate even when the dipstick shows critically low oil levels.

In extreme cases, mechanics have advised adding oil every time the gas tank is refilled – a highly unusual practice for modern vehicles.

This issue can lead to serious engine damage, necessitating costly repairs or even engine replacements.

3. Air Conditioning Compressor Failure

Many CR-V owners have faced air conditioning issues, particularly with the air compressor. Drivers have noted that the air conditioning system stops blowing cold air, often accompanied by a loud noise.

This problem is commonly due to a broken air compressor.

Reports suggest that this issue becomes more prevalent as CR-Vs accumulate mileage, typically occurring around 80,000 to 100,000 miles.

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4. Engine Issues

Some CR-V owners have reported smelling gas inside the vehicle, primarily resulting from an overfilled gas tank.

Another engine-related problem is insufficient heat production, which seems to coincide with colder climates.

These two issues are most frequently encountered in CR-Vs equipped with the 1.5L engine. The exact correlation between the gas smell and inadequate heat production remains uncertain.

5. Suspension Problems

Certain CR-Vs have experienced suspension issues, leading to frequent replacement of shocks and struts and alignment problems.

Interestingly, alignment problems tend to arise when replacing shocks and struts. Suspension repairs can be costly and are typically not covered under warranty.

Additionally, many owners have reported power steering system leaks, a concern that appears more frequently in newer CRVs.

Read Also: Best Year of Honda Ridgeline

Solutions and Precautions

While the mentioned problems can be disconcerting, there are steps you can take to mitigate the risks:

## Regular Maintenance: Ensure your CR-V undergoes regular maintenance, including oil changes, to prevent excessive oil consumption and potential engine issues.

## Quality Repairs: If you encounter air conditioning or engine problems, seek professional repairs from reputable mechanics who specialize in Honda vehicles.

## Suspension Check-ups: Regularly inspect the suspension system to catch any issues early and ensure proper alignment, reducing wear on shocks and struts.

## Monitor Gas Levels: Be cautious not to overfill your gas tank, as this can lead to gas odors inside the vehicle.

## Research and Inspect: Before purchasing a used CR-V, research the specific model year and inspect the vehicle thoroughly, especially if it has higher mileage.

What are the CR-V years to avoid?

If you’re considering buying a Honda CR-V, it’s crucial to know the years to avoid. Based on customer complaints and mechanical failures, it’s best to steer clear of the following model years: 2002, 2007, 2008, 2011, 2014, 2015, 2017, 2018, and 2019.

These years have shown a higher likelihood of issues, and it’s wise to consider other options.

Instead, consider looking into the more reliable CR-V models from 1998, 2001, 2009, 2013, 2016, 2020, 2021, and 2022.

Read Also: Honda Ridgeline Years to Avoid

Which year CR-V is most reliable?

For those seeking a reliable Honda CR-V, some model years stand out as dependable choices. The years 2005–2006, 2008-2010, 2013, 2015-2016, and 2018–2021 have proven to be among the best for this compact crossover.

These models have gained a positive reputation for their reliability and performance.

On the other hand, it’s advisable to avoid the 2001-2004, 2007, 2011-2012, 2014, and 2017 CR-Vs, as they have had more engine troubles and other issues reported.

How many miles does a CR-V last?

Wondering about the lifespan of a Honda CR-V? With proper maintenance, this compact SUV can serve you well for an impressive 250,000 to 300,000 miles, equivalent to approximately 17 to 20-plus years of use.

However, it’s worth noting that models from 2002 to 2015 have experienced numerous airbag problems, so buyers should be cautious and consider later model years for greater peace of mind.

Are Honda CRVs cheap to maintain?

When it comes to maintenance costs, the Honda CR-V proves to be an economical choice. Over the first decade of ownership, you can expect to spend around $7,155 on maintenance and repairs. This figure is $1,978 lower than the industry average for popular SUV models, making the CR-V a cost-effective option.

Additionally, there’s only a 21.05% chance of a major repair being needed during this period, which is 0.45% better than similar vehicles in the same segment.

Read Also: Cheapest SUV To Maintain


When searching for a used Honda CR-V, it’s crucial to be well-informed about the best years that offer optimal reliability and performance.

Our comprehensive guide has highlighted the top Honda CR-V years to consider, with 2006, 2009, 2013, 2016, and 2021 models shining as excellent choices for their respective generations.

As you embark on your journey to find the perfect Honda CR-V, remember to research thoroughly, inspect the vehicle’s condition, and consider your specific needs.

While these best years have proven to be reliable choices, it’s essential to avoid the Honda CR-V years that have shown increased complaints and potential problems.

Armed with this knowledge, you can confidently make a well-informed decision and drive away with a dependable and enjoyable compact SUV. Happy car hunting!

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