LAST WORD

Torque (Singapore) - - TOYOTA HARRIER TURBO 2.0 VS MAZDA CX-5 2.5 VS HOND -

The new CR-V is the most com­fort­able run­about ve­hi­cle that Honda has ever pro­duced. We are pleased with its creamy en­gine and roomy cabin, which is a boon for fam­i­lies.

Also im­pres­sive is the CR-V’s so­phis­ti­cated cock­pit. The digi­tised in­stru­ment clus­ter and fan­tas­tic con­nec­tiv­ity op­tions are fea­tures you would ex­pect in more ex­pen­sive lux­ury mod­els.

Not so fan­tas­tic is the Honda seven-seater’s stiffer pric­ing ver­sus its ri­vals. Even the five-seater vari­ant of the CR-V costs more (at press time) than the en­trylevel Har­rier Turbo and CX-5 mod­els.

The most af­ford­able SUV in this story is the Toy­ota Har­rier Turbo. Like the CR-V, com­fort is also one of its strong points. In fact, the Har­rier’s cushy ride and quiet cabin can eas­ily lull pas­sen­gers to sleep.

But the Har­rier driver can also ex­cite (or frighten) pas­sen­gers by un­leash­ing the SUV’s per­for­mance, cour­tesy of the 227bhp un­der its bon­net.

The Har­rier’s dis­ad­van­tages are its in­fo­tain­ment sys­tem and back­seat. The for­mer doesn’t work as well as the sys­tems in the Honda and Mazda, while the rear seat could re­ally use taller back­rests.

Mak­ing an even big­ger im­pres­sion on us is the Mazda CX-5. Its strong points are its driver-friendly cabin, in­tu­itive in­fo­tain­ment and flex­i­ble boot .

Keen driv­ers would also choose the CX-5 over the Har­rier Turbo, as the Mazda’s lighter weight, well­tuned sus­pen­sion and more re­spon­sive pow­er­train re­sult in more de­light­ful han­dling.

The CX-5’s only short­com­ings, re­ally, are its rel­a­tively smaller rear cabin and big­ger road tax bills.

If you’re will­ing to for­give those faults, Mazda’s “sub­ur­ban pop sen­sa­tion” would surely sat­isfy the sub­ur­ban­ite’s de­mands for space, pace and prac­ti­cal­ity. And thanks to its bevy of safety fea­tures, the CX-5 also ticks the box for se­cu­rity, too.

KEYS (left to right) The CR-V’s fob feels the stur­di­est, the CX-5’s long de­vice is the least pocket- and bag-friendly, while the Har­rier’s key has the most func­tions.

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