The Honda CR-V is one of the original crossovers and has been a dominant force in the market since its introduction. Competition is getting fiercer all the time though, so let's see how it fares against a real new kid on the block: the 2018 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross.
With plenty of creases and angles everywhere you look, the Eclipse Cross is the epitome of Japanese styling. It might be a little futuristic for some tastes and even a little busy, but it seems to be the look that buyers crave and Mitsubishi has done a great job with it. Honda appears have tried too hard with the exterior styling of the CR-V and missed the mark. It sort of tries to incorporate the kind of futuristic styling the Mitsubishi carries off so well, but did it only halfway.
As far as power ratings are concerned, the Honda has this round in the bag with a standard engine offering 184 horsepower and most of the other trims boasting a 190 horsepower turbo-four. However, the 1.5-liter turbo-four found throughout the Eclipse Cross lineup has more torque than either of the two powerplants in the CR-V, and it's delivered fairly low in the rev range for very enjoyable performance. Both the Honda and the Mitsubishi use CVT transmissions exclusively, which aren't to everyone's liking, so we'll have to declare this round a tie.
There are five different trim levels in the Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross family, which start with the front-wheel drive ES 2WD and then go to the ES, LE, SE and SEL that all get standard all-wheel drive. A number of impressive upgrade packages are also available to tailor the Mitsubishi to your specific requirements, and apart from the Premium Exterior Package they're all available for every trim level. The Honda is available in four trim levels that are all well-equipped, but they're mostly take-it or leave-it with little option for personalization, so the Eclipse Cross takes this round.
Even though the Honda is bigger inside and out than the Mitsubishi, they both weigh exactly the same and the CR-V is better on gas. The best fuel economy ratings the Eclipse Cross can offer are 25 mpg in the city, 28 mpg on the highway and 26 mpg combined, which is short of the 28 mpg in the city, 34 mpg on the highway and 30 mpg combined of the CR-V.
This is a really close call and it shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone the 2018 Honda CR-V comes out as well as it does. But despite the fact the Honda still sells in such massive numbers it's clear this is an ageing model that's about to be replaced, so we'd go for the more modern and youthful Mitsubishi.