Driving the Honda HR-V makes me wish I’m young again

They say that age is just a number, but we can’t deny that this statement is a big fat lie. Our genetics say otherwise, and with that increasing number comes inevitable body transformations that make us wish for immortality.

But then again, we aren’t in a vampire movie or a fantasy story where wishes come true. We have to face aging – the very problem that I’m facing right now. You see, I have crossed the 30-year-old mark, an age where people would tease me about not being on the calendar anymore. And it shows – with wrinkles on my forehead, with increasing instances of fatigue, and most importantly, my dropping metabolism rate. It sucks, I know, but as I’ve said, it’s inevitable.

In case you’re wondering why I’m blabbering here about youth, I came to a realization when I test drove the Honda HR-V: I want to be back to the glory days of my youth.

Design-wise, it’s hard to turn a blind eye on the fact that the HR-V looks really youthful. As the smallest crossover in Honda’s range, the HR-V exudes a sporty vibe that goes well with its diminutive size. I just love how the sloping roofline ends with a spoiler, which gives this crossover the shape of a lifted hatchback rather than an SUV. That shape is well-complemented by equally snarky front and rear LED-crowned fascias. One glance at this urban crossover, you know it’s perfect for 20-something professionals and college students. Ironically, Honda Cars Philippines’ test unit came with a license plate number that says DAD.

The same goes for the interior. The dashboard’s curvy and driver-oriented, plus the separated space of the driver and front passenger evokes individualism. Plus, the bevy of scratch-prone piano black plastics around the center console isn’t exactly child-friendly. The third-party Kenwood infotainment, which has Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, is just perfect for this device-driven generation.

Space-wise, the HR-V is somehow puerile; it isn’t a family car – it’s more of a barkada vehicle to take out endless night outs or on spontaneous road trips. The wiggle-room at the rear cabin isn’t that great – just enough to squeeze in three people but would be a problem for a big family, children included. Heck, even the foldable center armrest lacks cupholders, so imagine the horror of having to succumb to a drive-thru request from your toddler. Trunk space? Enough for overnight bags and knapsacks, but not for foldable strollers and boatloads of toys.

The HR-V’s youthful styling is partnered with uncomplicated driving dynamics. The 2.0L responds well to driver inputs, with Honda’s esteemed Earth Dreams CVT working its magic in not making you feel like you’re driving a golf cart. Plus, the paddle shifters work effectively in emulating gears. It’s also easy to maneuver even on tight streets since overall visibility isn’t really hampered. 

At the end of the day, driving the HR-V really made me wish that I’m young again, not caring about others as long as I’m driving a good-looking car. I’m not saying it’s a car reserved for those who have a lot more years to face in their lives. It would be perfect for them, but if you’re like me who’s in denial of age, it could still be an option. Or better yet, get the bigger CR-V, but I wouldn’t be surprised if my son asked for an HR-V someday – so long as Honda retains its overall package for active lifestyles.

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