Anyone who follows the Car Confections channel knows we have spent a ton of time with the all-new 2023 Honda CR-V. And with that time comes extensive education about the features, powertrain, and trim levels. So, you could imagine our surprise when we pulled up to our Honda dealer to discover a SECRET trim level of the CR-V that Honda never told us about. Surprise! The CR-V LX is back to take its place as the base offering in the lineup. You can’t find it anywhere on the Honda website, at least at the time of writing this. However, that’s okay, because we are here to share all the details about the Honda CR-V LX.
What’s Different About the LX?
- Hubcaps instead of alloys
- Matte black grille instead of shiny black
- Matte black spoiler instead of body color
- No tinted back windows
- 4 speakers instead of 6 speakers
- No smart entry or remote start
- No moonroof
- Only driver auto up window
- American build (at least on our tester)
Gas: LX -> EX -> EX-L | Hybrid: Sport -> Sport Touring
The exterior design of the LX isn’t too far removed from that of the EX and EX-L trims, most of which the untrained eye would miss. The LX still holds that classic CR-V styling that Honda has taken to the next level for 2023. The notable changes can be found in the grille, where the shiny black plastic has been removed for a less premium matte black plastic. The headlights are still fully LED, a welcome feature on the base trim. However, the mirrors will not come equipped with heating or blind-spot monitoring. The final change will be at the wheels, where the standard 18-inch alloys have been bumped down to 17-inch steel wheels with hubcaps. Considering few other Hondas have hubcaps nowadays, we were quite surprised by this decision.
Side and Rear
The LX continues to carry the new redesign characteristics, with the A-Pillars being pushed back to make for a more aggressive stance. You will notice that the rear windows on the LX will not be tinted at all. Overall, the CR-V comes in at 184.8 inches, about 2.7 inches longer than the outgoing generation. There is only one major change in the rear, where Honda has continued the standard vertical partial-LED taillights for the CR-V but has swapped out part of the spoiler to be matte black plastic once again. As the other gas trims do, there will be no exposed exhaust and towing capability of 1,500lbs.
Safety and Warranty
We are thankful to see Honda not skimp out on any safety systems on the LX, with all of the mainstream ones as standard:
- Forward Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Detection
- Lane Keeping Assist
- Adaptive Cruise Control
- Auto High Beams
Paired with these safety features will continue to be a 3-year, 36,000 mile basic warranty, a 5-year, 60,000 mile powertrain warranty, and 2 years, 24,000 miles of complimentary maintenance.
Now the LX doesn’t change that much in the interior, but you will notice some sacrifices to reach a lower price point. This begins when it comes to getting in the car, where you will lose both remote start and smart entry, with keyless entry being the only remaining feature. Inside of the car, you will notice a very similar design to the other CR-V trims and recent Honda products. The changes on the inside include losing two speakers, reducing the total to 4, and the moonroof. One final sacrifice is the driver’s window only being auto up. For an in depth perspective on the interior, watch our full review below!
Thankfully, there is nothing to sacrifice on the LX when it comes to the rear areas. The CR-V LX still offers the same class leading leg room and cargo capacity it is known for! With the second row folded, you will have up to 76.5 cubic feet of space. Not too shabby for a car at this price point!
Powertrain & Driving Impressions
The LX has the same powertrain as the EX and EX-L trims, with the specs as follows:
- 1.5L Turbo I-4: 190 hp | 174 lb. ft
As expected, the LX will not have a Hybrid powertrain, though it will still have a CVT transmission and optional AWD. The 1.5L Turbo engine has the following fuel economy figures:
- 5T FWD: 28/34/30 MPG
- 5T AWD: 27/32/29 MPG
Taking the LX out for a drive, it didn’t seem like Honda had cheeped out on anything here, which we were quite happy with. The CR-V LX should be quite comfortable to take on a long road trip with the whole family!
Obviously, the benefit of having an extra lower-end model falls down to the price. Here is the updated pricing for the 2023 Honda CR-V:
- LX: $28,410 (savings of $3,200)
- EX: $31,610
- Sport: $32,950
- EX-L: $34,260
- Sport Touring (AWD): $39,100
Why the LX again?
I think this is probably one of the foremost questions when it comes a new base trim that is released unannounced, unplanned, and unadvertised. Well, we did some digging and found some things that make the reintroduction of the LX make a bit more sense. As every manufacturer is at the moment, Honda is still struggling with supply issues. Specifically, when it comes to the Blind Spot Information System (BSM) that is supposed to be standard on the EX trim. Apparently, Honda had 10,000 CR-V units with everything, but BSM equipped. So, instead of waiting, Honda took the gamble and said “What the heck! We will sell these CR-Vs without BSM! And while we are at it, let’s bring back the LX!”
Well, there you have it! The “not so secret” Honda CR-V LX trim is back. Now, is it better than ever? That is for you all to decide. Watch the full review below and let us know your thoughts in the comments!