Honda's AWD SUV is

up quality street

Honda CR-V, front
Honda CR-V Hybrid, 2019, rear, static
Honda CR-V Hybrid, 2019, side
Honda CR-V Hybrid, 2019, front, action
Honda CR-V Hybrid, 2019, front
Honda CR-V Hybrid, 2019, rear
Honda CR-V Hybrid, 2019, interior

THERE is a theory that in the future cars will have no operation buttons which has me wondering about driving by voice activation and hand gestures.

Many cars appear to adopt these principles already. So often drivers can be seen shouting and waving furiously.

Sometimes windows are dropped and the benefits of these talents directed towards other drivers who respond likewise.

In extreme cases the result is physical contact or ‘fisticuffs' as doctors call them, although not so often since the hard shoulders were removed.

Honda has been a great example of technology without over-fussy operational features. Compare this with Peugeot which developed the excellent I-cockpit then strung it out with festive lights and rocker switches. Or that much missed Lancia with the honeycomb of push buttons: "Sorry officer, I got my finger stuck in the car's bits."

My first experience was with a CR-V predictive cruise control in the early earlies was when it couldn't see a Morris Minor on the M6. I had to employ the human touch had I been scrabbling about the dash for the last Maynards wine gum there could have been a disaster. I may have dropped it in the foot well.

We now take our seats for the 2.0-litre Honda Hybrid CR-V EX AWD CVT, £37, 305.

Obviously because it's a Honda it is what your granny aspires to use or tow sailors out of the bingo. Ha, you think?

It is an able hybrid with a genuine 52mpg. Adopt the sport mode, yes it's a button, and you have a regular rocket man on the motorway. The all-wheel drive versions hits 62mph in nine seconds without sacrificing refinement or noise suppression, which has been advanced along with interior quality.

The power train is the pulsing heart with the petrol engine working in conjunction with a drive motor and a charger overseen by Honda's unique three setting intelligent mode drive.

Honda matches the best when it comes to passive safety features.On today's roads it becomes ever more important you defend against othere road users, many in the throes of their own personal semafore, driving in the Narnia GP or crossing in front by virtue of mobile telephone.

Standard are such as adaptive cruise, stability assist for trailer, handling lane keeping and collision warning. AWD comes only with SR, EX trim.

The EX comes with sexy interior lighting, a big old sunroof, power tailgate and heated electric leather seats.

That is over the essential of a navigator front screen de-ice and cross traffic alert.

That is added to the rear View camera from SR upwards and four parking sensors.

How does it drive? Well you would not chose this to play slippery Sam the rally cross man but it is an able vehicle in the bends, very little lean, exceptional in everyday use and not at all wanting as a towing vehicle or mild off roader.

One feature which really impresses is the absence of a gearstick, lever, shift or whatever. You change via button gear shift. Great idea. Why does anyone buy a manual? The 2019 version is a good looking car with much more muscular lines and a visual appeal which puts it firmly in the Volvo desirability class.

There is no doubting the EX at the top end is in the luxury class and not badly priced for that. It is not surprise the CR-V has gone on to be the world's bestselling SUV.

So its hands up for the Honda.

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