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Honda HRV EX vs LX

1. Overview

Overall, the Honda HRV EX is better equipped than the LX. It essentially carries over the base LX features and adds more comfort and convenience items. All Honda HRV EX come with LED brake lights, a second 12V power outlet in the back, a power moonroof, and paddle shifters if they opt for the all-wheel drive version. Not to mention the side mirror turn signal indicators that are only available on the EX, makes the EX look much more modern. The Honda EX also adds a multi-angle rearview camera which the LX does not offer. The camera is viewable through the 7-inch touch screen that comes standard on the EX. The 7-inch touch screen does also add a lot of value to the EX trim. This is because the LX comes with a basic display audio system featuring a 5-inch LCD screen. The 7-inch touch screen adds HondaLink Next Generation, Pandora compatibility, and SiriusXM radio. The HRV EX also adds a lot more comfort and convenience to the vehicle. The driver's seat has a manual adjustment for height which is perfect for taller drivers who need the seat to be raised higher. The EX also comes with a second-row magic seat that the LX comes with, but adds heated front seats and automatic climate control with electrostatic touch screen. The automatic climate control is a huge selling point for the EX trim. This is a feature that is only available in the LX trim for the Honda Civic and cannot be added to the Accord LX. Buyers who have experienced a vehicle with automatic climate control will find it difficult to not have this feature.

1.1. Exterior Features

When it comes to the looks of the 2017 Honda HR-V LX and EX, they're essentially the same. The only difference, and it's very slight, comes in the form of the wheels. Exterior colors are evenly shared between the two except for the options of Lunar Silver Metallic, Modern Steel Metallic, and Crystal Black Pearl. All other color options are available for both trims of the Honda HR-V. Both feature Multi-Reflector Halogen Headlights with Auto-On and Off and the same body design. The HR-V has a crossover design mixing capability with style, really brought out by the overall shape of the vehicle and contours in the body. The HR-V sits on 17" silver-painted alloy wheels and has a standard roofline spoiler that give it a slightly sportier look than other competitors in the same vehicle class. The side mirrors are also body colored on both the LX and EX trims and feature integrated turn signals. This feature is very nice to have not only for safety reasons but to make your car's presence more noticeable to others on the road. The wheels are one of the very minor differences of the Honda HR-V LX and EX. The LX being equipped with 17" silver-painted alloy wheels while the EX is on 17" machine finished alloy wheels. This is probably not even noticeable to someone who isn't directly comparing the trims but it is a difference. Rounding out the exterior features, the HR-V is equipped with Smart Entry and Push Button Start features on the EX trim levels. These again add to the overall convenience of operation of the vehicle and make it easier for the driver, one of the main concepts of the HR-V.

1.2. Interior Features

Both the models have a lot of features for entertainment in the cars. This includes a sound system, installed with the same amount of speakers and tweeters, a USB audio interface, and an AM/FM radio. However, the EX model has additional advantages with a 7" display audio with electrostatic touch screen and HDMI compatibility. This would allow the use of smartphones/connecting devices to playback audio and visual media to be easier and more convenient. With iPhones, for example, it is possible to use the lighting adaptor to view videos and use the GPS navigation through the car with the phone. This would not be possible in the LX model and may cater for a lot of decision making due to the generational requirements of the generations buying the car.

Starting with the car seating, the EX and the LX have different specifications to provide different levels of comfort in the car. The EX model is equipped with a 6-way manual adjustable driver's seat and a 2nd row 60/40 split seating. This will cater for the option of having 4 or 5 passengers. The LX model, however, has a 6-way manual adjustable driver's seat and a 4-way adjustable passenger seat. Although both the models have folding seats, the EX provides a leather wrapping for the steering wheel and the shift knob for a luxurious feel.

The LX and EX models of the Honda HRV have a lot in common when it comes to interior features. They both support a security system with remote entry, along with a rear window defroster. The mirrors of the cars are very similar, supporting power mirrors for both and expanded views of the surrounding environment. As well as the exterior features of the cars, both the LX and the EX models have the same specifications when it comes to the wheels and the tires - "17" alloy wheels with all-season tires" - increasing the performance of the car in poor weather conditions. Finally, they both support a 141hp motor with a CVT transmission system. This is where the similarities end and the differences begin to show between the two different models.

1.3. Performance

The HR-V would have the same performance whether you got the LX or EX, so this will be a short overview. The HR-V has a 1.8 liter SOHC 16-valve 4-cylinder engine that's good for 141 hp @ 6500 rpm and 127 lb-ft torque at 4300 rpm. It comes with either a standard 6-speed manual transmission, or an optional continuously variable automatic (CVT) transmission. The optional transmissions are another difference for the LX and EX. The LX is available in either 2WD or AWD, but both are only available with the CVT automatic. The EX is available with the CVT automatic in 2WD or AWD, but if you want the 6-speed manual transmission, that is only available in 2WD. Huh? That's right, you can't get a 6-speed AWD EX. Too bad, we'd guess that there is a small population of driving enthusiasts who would buy an HR-V and Honda won't even give them the chance (explicitly suggesting that we go buy a used CR-V if we want the older K24 engine with AWD and a manual trans). Fuel economy is predictably high, ranging from 25-28 mpg city and 32-35 mpg highway for the LX depending on the 2WD or AWD configuration. The FWD EX does a touch better ranging from 28-28 mpg city and 34-35 mpg highway, and the AWD EX gets a still impressive 27 mpg city and 31-32 mpg highway. So, don't expect any thrills driving the HR-V, but hey 35 mpg highway for an AWD vehicle is pretty awesome. Coming from someone who is even heavier the 2015 CR-V that's rated at 26-33 mpg.

2. Technology

Considering the additional speakers and inch difference in the size of the screens, the EX infotainment system is obviously superior to that of the LX. The HondaLink Next Generation is a useful tool of additional organized applications for someone who already uses their phone frequently. This is especially useful for people who can't part from their phone, considering the easy access to your phone in the pockets of your car next to the applications it emulates. This isn't really that essential for someone who hardly uses their phone or doesn't use it for anything other than the basic uses. Then there is audio streaming through the USB inputs. This was designed with iPod in mind and the benefit is the artist and song information displayed on the screen. This can be useful for the avid audiophile who wants to know the latest band or song playing, though a typical music listener probably wouldn't notice the difference in trying this against Bluetooth audio. With these added features, the potential buyer should consider how frequently and how involved with phone application and audio usage this will be former plays a role in their car usage. (Olwal & Dementyev2022)

On the other hand, the EX comes with a 7-inch display audio touchscreen, Sirius XM radio, and an additional 2 speakers. It offers HondaLink Next Generation which includes Aha mobile application capability that works in conjunction with a compatible Android or iPhone. It offers access to Facebook, Twitter, location sharing, internet radio, news, podcasts and audio books. The display audio system also allows you to customize your wallpaper and organize the shortcuts on the home user screen. There are also two USB inputs for the system available in the center console.

These two trim levels come with different infotainment systems. The LX comes with a 5-inch display audio touchscreen. The 5-inch touchscreen offers Bluetooth streaming audio and hands-free phone, and another feature allowing incoming text to be read over the speakers and the ability to then formulate a response using voice recognition. The LX comes with only 4 speakers in the system.

2.1. Infotainment System

The Honda HRV EX and LX versions' infotainment system is defined by the distinct features that are included. The EX version comes equipped with a 7-inch touch screen display capable of touch operations. It is also equipped with a multi-angle rearview camera, applied on the infotainment screen, which is capable of static and dynamic guidelines and audio to better see what is behind the vehicle. Lounge inside the HRV EX and worry less about misplacing your keys with the Smart Entry system. Step inside and go without ever taking the key fob out of your pocket, which is pretty neat. This version also comes equipped with Honda LaneWatch which features a small camera on the passenger side mirror of the vehicle. When using your right turn signal, the camera will provide you with a live video on your touch screen display of what is in the lane to your right, revealing nearly four times more than the view from the mirror. All of these features further enhance the safety of your drive and convenience, compare this to the LX version which is only equipped with a 5-inch color LCD screen and a multi-angle rearview camera without the touch capabilities or Honda LaneWatch. No matter where you are in the HRV EX, you'll have access to hundreds of crystal clear commercial-free radio stations, news, sports, music, talk, and much more with a trial of Sirius XM radio. This feature can't be found in the LX version. The infotainment system for both versions has easy access audio settings including Bluetooth HandsFreeLink and streaming audio, USB audio interface, and display audio with HondaLink, featuring the next-gen connected audio services. The LX version infotainment system is also equipped with speed-sensing volume control to automatically adjust your audio levels based on the speed of the vehicle. Both infotainment systems have a 4-speaker audio system; the difference is the inclusion of 2 tweeters in the HRV EX to amplify the sound. Beyond these points, the EX version blows away the features of the LX, offering the convenience of Pushbutton Start to get your engine going and the versatile Honda Magic Seats, something to think about when comparing the two versions.

2.2. Safety Features

These two trims provided airbags, four-wheel anti-lock brakes, brake assist, stability control, tire-pressure monitoring, and all other common safety features. However, the EX has optional forward collision warning (FCW) and collision mitigated braking system. This replaces the LX's frontal airbags and adds additional safety in case of an accident. It is worth mentioning that there is no ACC or LKAS in any HRV trims, but it can only be found in the CRV touring trim. The LX trim does not have any option for adding more safety features. The automatic brake hold in the EX only becomes the feature that differentiates the two a little bit. When activated, the automatic brake hold will hold the car's position after the driver brings the car to a stop. This will last until the driver steps on the gas pedal, releasing the brake hold. It's very useful in stopping the car on a slope, during a traffic light, or heavy traffic conditions. This is a very practical feature that is rarely found in a car in the same class, which can reduce the driver's fatigue. However, this feature is purely a convenience feature and does not add to the safety of the car.

2.3. Connectivity Options

Aside from the standard infotainment system, safety features and such, the EX and LX trims of the HR-V begin to differentiate themselves slightly with small advantages in connectivity options over the LX. Both trims have standard Bluetooth capabilities and streaming audio. The EX reintroduces the Honda LaneWatch system, which is a small camera on the passenger side mirror that is activated when the right turn signal is used. The image is displayed on the 7-inch display audio screen and has three settings (normal, wide and top-down view), providing a clearer image of what is in the passenger-side blind spot (e.g. bicyclists, pedestrians, other vehicles) than the mirror itself. Click here to learn more about Honda LaneWatch. The other advantage the EX has over the LX is the introduction of HondaLink and the ability to use it in connecting to Aha, Pandora, playing podcasts, and accessing the Twitter news. HondaLink also has a feature that can assist in the location of the vehicle if it has been stolen. A free subscription of SiriusXM radio is the final touch to the EX trim.

3. Comfort and Convenience

The final comfort feature that has a change in the two models is power adjustable seats. Power adjustable driver's seats come as standard with both models, which makes it easier to find the perfect driving position. The difference in the models is that the EX has power adjustable driver's lumbar support. This allows the driver to increase/decrease the firmness, which can reduce driver fatigue especially on longer drives. (POSTERS)

Both models have a keyless entry system. However, the LX is a remote entry system whereas the EX is a Smart Entry system, which allows the driver to unlock the doors as well as the tailgate without having to push the button on the key. Smart Entry also has push-button start, so the driver never has to take the keys out of his pocket. This is not only convenient but also adds an extra security level when entering the car in a dark or unfamiliar place.

The driver can change the temperature with the LX from the regular three-knob system. However, the automatic climate control system in the EX model has two different sides so the driver and the passenger can have separate temperatures. The system also includes an air filtration system.

The climate in your car can be a very important aspect for feeling comfortable. The climate in the LX is manually controlled single-zone air conditioning. This is sufficient for those who want a simple climate control system. However, for those who are after a more sophisticated automatic system, the EX comes with an automatic climate control with an electrostatic touch-screen.

The LX version comes with a lower cost, yet the seating and comfort is one aspect that remains unchanged. LX comes with the same comfortable seats as the EX. The back seats in both models have 60/40 split folds, which allows the back seats to be folded into the floor of the vehicle. This is useful for increasing cargo space into the car. Both models can allow the user to fold the front passenger seat for even more cargo space. The perfect solution for when you are moving something large and don't want to fork out more money for a delivery service.

3.1. Seating and Cargo Space

If there is one area that the HRV does better than the competition, it is with seating and space. The HRV has what Honda calls a "Magic Seat", this is a gasoline tank that is not beneath the front seats, but below the front seats and below the rear seats. This allows the cushion of the rear seat to be lifted up like in the Fit creating a tall and narrow space behind the front seats. The HRV is also cavernous. It debuts as the roomiest HRV in both passenger and cargo volume in its class. With ample headroom and legroom, the 2nd row seats split 60/40 and have a maximum cargo area of 58.8 cubic feet (LX 2WD), i.e. more than enough space to fit a bicycle. This is all good news, the only drawback is that the doors are heavy and don't stay locked in position when open, wind can easily snatch the door and push it wide open or shut. This can be somewhat dangerous for kids who may not realize the heavy door and keep fingers clear when it closes.

3.2. Climate Control

3. Climate control is an important aspect of any vehicle, especially those with leather interiors like the HRV. The EX comes with an automatic climate control system, while the LX has a single-zone climate control with air filtration. Both the EX and LX have steering wheel-mounted controls for temperature, and the automatic climate control system comes with an electrostatic touch screen. This is a feature that I felt did not make or break the vehicle. It was nice to have automatic climate control, but a manual system can work just as well. This depends on how much you value this particular feature. This is also another tie between the two vehicles, seeing as the automatic climate system is available with the EX and LX is the base system, so it does not really hold either vehicle above one another.

3.3. Keyless Entry and Start

Keyless Entry is quickly becoming a standard feature on vehicles today. On the HR-V, LX is one of the few models in any class that does not include this basic convenience feature. No more searching for your keys, fiddling with frozen locks, or locking your keys inside the vehicle. With LX, you will have to do all of the above. (Pan, 2022)

LX doesn't even have Keyless Entry.

Smart Entry is a convenience feature available on the HR-V EX. When you approach the vehicle while carrying the remote, Smart Entry automatically unlocks the doors. All four doors feature touch-capacitive technology for easier operation. With Smart Entry, the days of fumbling with your keys and taking off your gloves to unlock your doors are a thing of the past. Step on the brake and press the start button, and the engine starts with another tap on the button. Smart Entry also prevents you from locking your keys in the vehicle. If you attempt to lock the doors while the remote is still inside the car, the doors will unlock automatically. Unfortunately, Smart Entry is not available on the HR-V LX with or without Honda Sensing.

3.4. Power Adjustable Seats

In all HRV models, the driver's seat adjusts six ways and includes lumbar support, and all models have a rear seat that splits 60/40 and folds in one simple step to increase the amount of space available for cargo. The front passenger seat four-way adjustment is manual on LX, and is not height-adjustable on any model. However, the EX-L Navi includes a power adjustable driver's seat (eight-way), although it still does not include lumbar support adjustment, and the top-of-the-line Touring model has a four-way power adjustable front passenger seat. These higher end power adjustable seats are certainly a luxury; however, if lumbar support is necessary, it is possible to buy a third-party lumbar support cushion which can provide a similar level of support. The power adjustable passenger seat, in our opinion, is not necessary and is possibly a waste of two hundred dollars, as it is quite possible to adjust a manual seat before the passenger sits down and leaves it in that position. Finally, the power adjustable driver's seat is a useful option for many drivers. It offers a higher level of customization than the manual adjust seat and can allow for small changes in seating position which could prevent discomfort and fatigue over long drives. For drivers with lower back pain and other back problems, the power adjustable driver's seat is a great feature which can make the HRV much more comfortable and driver-friendly.

4. Price and Value

In addition, if you compare the features of HVAC between EX and LX. HVAC in EX and LX are both using the automatic, but the feature of automatic HVAC in EX has a feature heater with plasmacluster ion technology and touch screen. This feature is never owned by a lower grade. By seeing these differences, I think the price difference between EX and LX is worth it because the features owned by EX are not owned by a lower grade.

The price comparison will show the price difference between EX and LX. If you compare the price of EX and LX, the price of EX will be little higher than LX. The price difference is around $3,355. The difference in price is a considerable amount to buy other complements for your HRV. At the price difference, it would be beneficial if you buy high grade. Because by using the money to buy the EX, you could use the features that are not owned by the LX. An example is the audio system. Like other Honda cars, owner LX may be changing the default audio system of the LX with a new audio system so that the sound produced become better. But if you are a music lover and like with the best sound quality, you could just use the default audio system from EX. The Honda default audio system has a good sound quality compared with the audio system of other brands. Audio system in Honda EX has a good sound quality and has a feature which is the tweeter speakers are placed on the front door so that the resulting sound quality becomes better than the LX. The cost to buy an audio system with the quality that is not much different between $200 to $300. By using the Honda audio system default, you can save the money to buy another at around $100.

Ex and LX are two models of Honda HRV. There are many features and specifications in both models. It also has a price and value of the two models. For those of you who are interested to buy HRV but confused to choose the type of high grade or low grade, you could see some of these considerations to compare the value of these two types.

4.1. Price Comparison

Price comparison is very important when choosing a new vehicle. The EX and LX models are only $2000 different in price. The LX model is the more economical of the two. Although the 2WD LX and the 2WD EX are only $1300 difference. The difference in price gives the buyer reason to consider choosing the standard LX model over the standard EX model. When comparing ultimate packages, the EX model with Nav and AWD totals out to $27990 compared to the LX model with AWD at $27275. Evident by the $715 price difference, a buyer can get a similar car to the EX without the better audio, moonroof and rear tint for a considerable amount. This gives the LX a clear edge over its younger brother in terms of value for money spent. In the price department, the LX model is the better buy for a budget specialist.

4.2. Resale Value

There is a difference between price and value. Price is how much money you spend acquiring a vehicle. Value is the monetary gain or loss when you sell the vehicle. The Honda HRV EX has a much higher resale value than the HRV LX. According to the 2015 ALG Residual Value award in the Subcompact Utility Vehicle category, the HRV LX has a predicted 3-year value of 32% and the HRV EX has a predicted 3-year value of 36%. The 4% difference between the EX and LX is significant. Assuming both vehicles are driven 15,000 miles per year for three years, with a difference of $2,950, the EX will be worth $1,600 more than the LX when it comes time to sell the vehicle. When comparing specific features between the EX and LX that are responsible for the residual value gap, we can attribute the difference to the equipment and mechanical differences between the HRV EX and LX. ALG's Residual Value awards are the result of careful study of the competition in each segment, historical vehicle performance, and industry trends. ALG Residual Value awards are highly regarded as they are an indicator of brand value and product quality. This is not necessarily a bad thing for the HRV LX. Having a lower resale value means the owner loses less money when a vehicle is driven into the ground. It is not uncommon for consumers to purchase a vehicle well knowing it will not last as long in comparison to previous vehicles they have owned. An example of such a consumer would be a retiree who plans on moving to a different climate in just a few years. With the Honda HRV being an entry-level SUV, it is clear that the main target is non-family households and the younger generation. Entry-level SUV buyers want the most car for the money, and a lease is a cost-effective method for affording the vehicle. High resale value is important when leasing, as the majority of leasing companies use the Residual Value as a factor to determine the lease rate, with higher Residual Value lowering the monthly payment. Since the HRV LX has a lower Residual Value than the HRV EX, we can expect lease rates to be similar if not the same between the LX and EX despite the price gap between the two trims.

4.3. Cost of Ownership

To provide context for reliability, overall vehicle dependability plays a massive role in determining a vehicle's true cost of ownership. If a vehicle is undependable, even if it is cheaper to purchase, it may end up costing less in the long run to actually own a more dependable car that was more expensive to purchase. When analyzing the JD Power 2016 Vehicle Dependability Study, when considering specific categories of the Honda HRV in comparison to the Honda HRV, the 2016 model was rated a 2 on a scale of 5 for overall dependability. In comparison, the 2017 HRV was rated a 4, which is above average. Considering the 2016 Honda HRV was considered slightly below average in overall reliability, that could spell trouble for anyone considering purchasing the used LX model. Typically, but not always, a vehicle that has a lower rating for last year's model will have less price on its new model, due to anticipated expected lower resale value. Hence Honda created a 2017 HRV model that was rated above average in overall dependability compared to a 2016 model that was rated below average may be an indicator that the 2017 model will have a lesser cost of ownership compared to the previous model. Also considering that the 2017 HRV EX model of current year rated a 5 in overall dependability; this is an indicator that this specific car is very sound investment in terms of car ownership. This is due to average ratings for dependability being more favorable for any rating below a 3.5. Given the average lifespan of a vehicle to be about 5-6 years for the various categories, models, and trims of the HRV, it is quite feasible that the average 2017 HRV will still have relatively few problems compared to the 2016 model near the end of the car's lifespan. This information is crucial for considering price comparison and overall cost of ownership and should not be overlooked when trying to decide between HRV EX and HRV LX.


Olwal, A. and Dementyev, A., 2022, April. Hidden interfaces for ambient computing: Enabling interaction in everyday materials through high-brightness visuals on low-cost matrix displays. In Proceedings of the 2022 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (pp. 1-20). acm.org

POSTERS, D., . E200. namwheels.com. namwheels.com

Pan, Y. Q., 2022. The impact of consumer preference factors on people willingness towards vehicle leasing program. utar.edu.my

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