What Changed for 2008:
- New dual-zone climate control for EX-L
- New 8-way power driver's seat for EX-L
- Premium audio now standard on EX-L
- LX and EX models unchanged from 2007
Honda's CR-V was one of the original crossover utility vehicles (CUVs), combining car-like handling dexterity and fuel economy with very practical and versatile cargo-carrying functionality. The 2007 model year saw the introduction of the third-generation CR-V, which added new safety features, a more powerful engine, and a more sophisticated and substantial feel, according to the manufacturer.
Honda offers the 2008 CR-V in LX, EX and EX-L models. The LX comes with a CD player with auxiliary input jack, air conditioning, a tilt and telescoping steering column, power windows/locks/mirrors, a retractable center console tray, two glove compartments, an under-seat storage bin, split-folding and tumble-away rear seats, and remote (keyless) entry. The EX version adds a power moonroof, rear privacy glass, audio controls on the steering wheel, 2-level rear cargo shelf, 6-CD changer, and more. The top-of-the-line EX-L includes leather seats (heated in front and power-adjustable for the driver), dual-zone climate control and XM satellite radio with an available navigation system.
Power for the 2008 CR-V comes from Honda's 2.4-liter 4-cylinder engine that provides 166 hp at 5800 rpm and 161 lb.-ft. of torque at 4200 rpm. A 5-speed automatic transmission is standard. All three versions of the CR-V are available with either front- or 4-wheel-drive (FWD or 4WD). EPA fuel economy estimates are 20 mpg city/27 mpg highway for FWD models, 20 mpg city/26 mpg highway for 4WD models.
The 2008 CR-V features Honda's ACE (Advanced Compatibility Engineering) body structure, designed to enhance protection in a frontal collision with vehicles of various shapes and sizes. Additionally, the CR-V comes standard with anti-lock brakes, electronic stability control, side curtain air bags with rollover sensors, and a tire-pressure-monitoring system (TPMS). The CR-V aced the National Traffic Highway Safety Administration (NHTSA) crash tests, with perfect 5-star ratings for front and side impacts. Rollover rating was 4 stars. The CR-V was an Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) \"Top Safety Pick\" for 2008, with \"Good\" ratings (the best possible score) in front- and side-impact tests, and offering vehicle stability control.
The 2008 Honda CR-V is one of many models to employ a drive-by-wire throttle, with no direct connection between the accelerator pedal and the engine. Instead, the engine uses a DC motor to control the throttle butterfly valve (which sets engine power) and a pedal-position sensor on the accelerator. In addition to pedal position, the CR-V's engine also takes into account the vehicle speed, engine speed, and intake manifold vacuum to fine-tune the actual throttle position. The drive-by-wire throttle works in conjunction with the electronically controlled transmission to provide quicker, smoother gear changes, according to Honda.
The CR-V also uses Honda's Real Time 4WD system, which is optimized for bad weather and light off-roading. Lighter in weight than a conventional 4WD transfer case, the Real Time system sends 100 percent of the engine's power to the front wheels under normal conditions. A hydraulic pump is connected to each axle. If the front wheels begin to slip, the front pump produces more pressure, which activates a multi-plate clutch that sends power to the rear wheels until speed is again equalized. The system is 100 percent mechanical and uses no electronics, simplifying maintenance and eliminating the possibility of failure due to electrical problems, Honda says.