CRV questions

Greetings all. I am new to this group. I am considering buying a 2008 Honda CRV when the new models come out in the fall. I bought a 2000 Toyota Echo in the fall of 1999. It is a good little
car with good gas mileage,but when I bought it I was commuting to work in New York City by train, and didn't do very much driving. Now, however, I work much closer to home and have to drive to work every day. I average driving around 150 miles a week, and have to drive on one of Long Island's busiest highways. The Echo doesn't have much "pick-up" and I sort of don't feel that safe in it while driving amid all the trucks and SUVs. So, I kind of want to upgrade to a larger, sturdier and driver-friendly vehicle. I have narrowed down my choices to the Toyota Rav 4 and the Honda CRV. They both get excellent ratings all around, but I like the design of the CRV better. I will test drive one of each. My questions relate to the AWD(all wheel drive). First, for what drving conditions is it for? Off road? Icy, snowy conditions? Driving in a hilly setting? Is it crazy to get a CRV without it? I just wanted to hear some thoughts on it before I buy. Thanks in advance.
Darren
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Let us know how it works out for you. I'm looking at the same two choices, come Jauary.
We currently have a 2005 Pilot, but it's larger and more vehicle than what we need.
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That all sounds good in principle, but I think when you test drive a larger vehicle you might find that the Echo is much more maneuverable. You might actually feel safer in it.
Indeed one of the reasons many SUVs are involved in crashes is because the high center of gravity, among other things, makes it less maneuverable.
Lately I have been switching driving a bit between my little 1991 Honda Civic sedan and a friend's quite long Toyota Tundra. The height and interior of the Tundra make it a comfortable ride, but I far prefer how quickly I can maneuver my little Civic to make turns.
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snip
Both the RAV4 and CRV are on-road vehicles. AWD will help in slippery conditions, especially in climbing a snow-covered hill. However, proper tires will help more.

AWD reduces mpg and increases maintenance costs.

A 4-cyl 2008 Accord or Camry will have plenty of power for rush hour commuting and will get better mpg than the cute utes you are considering.

Both the CRV and RAV4 are good vehicles but unless you need a station wagon's room, you will save a bunch of mpg with a sedan.
I own both Honda and Toyota vehicles. IMHO, Honda's drive better but Toyota's are much less expensive to keep over the long haul. Toyota consistently puts crappy tires on their cars, often a major factor in how badly they seem to feel on the road.

Good luck.
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ACAR wrote:

A lot of manufacturers put crappy tires on their cars, including Honda.
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I have a 2007 CRV 2WD and live in MN. After driving 2WD cars for years I couldn't justify the added purchase price, maintenance and lower mpg that comes with AWD.
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You've gotten some good answers so far. Stop by CR-V Owners Club too when you get a chance. You may be able to get some more good advice there.

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