Heightened senses from BGC to Anilao

Published May 27, 2022, 7:51 AM

by Neil N. Pagulayan

All-new Honda HR-V drive

Recently launched, the all-new Honda HR-V shows the brand’s commitment to making roads safer, focusing their attention on protecting their customers which in turn are hoped to reduce accidents on the road. The new HR-V comes in two variants: one turbocharged and one naturally aspirated, both powered by a 1.5 liter gasoline engine. Both variants are equipped with Honda SENSING, Honda’s safety suite.

To allow us to experience it, we were invited to take the all-new Honda HRV for a drive through Tagaytay to Anilao. This drive and route was tailored for us to be able to experience the HR-V’s handling and especially the Honda SENSING safety suite.

All the media participants met in the morning at BGC, proceeding out to C5 and onward to SLEX and CALAX where we would experience the HR-V’s comforts in city driving through rush hour traffic and on to highway speeds. All of which are perfect situations for Honda SENSING to come into play.

What does Honda SENSING do?

Honda SENSING is a suite of multiple safety systems that scan all around the car to warn the driver of dangers or sometimes even help avoid possible collisions.

Collision Mitigation Braking System (CMBS) uses sensors detect nearby vehicles or pedestrians and warns you to brake. If you don’t brake, the vehicle will brake for you to avert the effects of a front collision.

Lane Keeping Assist System (LKAS) keeps the vehicle between visible road lines and will maintain the best driving position as it guides you to follow the lane you’re on.

Road Departure Mitigation (RDM) with Lane Departure Warning (LDW) alerts you with both visual and audible warning when you swerve into another lane without using turn signals.

Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) with Low-Speed Follow (LSF) is ideal for drives on the open road, automatically adjusting your speed to the vehicle in front while maintaining the distance you set. LSF allows the cruise control to perform the same function even at speeds below 30kph.

Lead Car Departure Notification (LCDN) lets you know when the vehicle in front of you has moved forward from a standstill.

Auto High Beam (AHB) switches to high beam automatically when the HR-V detects no vehicles ahead and lowers the beam when it detects oncoming traffic.

The HR-V’s high seating profile gives good visibility of the road ahead and the area immediately around the vehicle. As soon as we were on the road, Collision Mitigation Braking System ( (CMBS) was already at work, alerting us ahead of time that we “might” hit the car ahead of us. This also showed that Honda’s margin of safety was higher than ours. Whenever we stopped, Lead Car Departure Notifcation (LCDN) got to work in city intersections and in stop and go traffic, notifying us whenever the vehicle ahead of us moved forward.

Once we were on CALAX, we put the Honda SENSING suite through its paces at highway speeds, the Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) worked as expected. We set it at the speed limit and when catching up to vehicles slower than us, it made the HR-V slow down to their speed. When the slower vehicle moved off our lane, ACC accelerated back up to our original set speed.

We then made our way up to Tagayatay and there wasn’t much traffic to contend with as it was a weekday morning. We enjoyed driving the turbocharged V variant which made acceleration and overtaking easy on the way to Tagaytay Highlands and the tighter, twistier roads on our way to Sycamore Heights Village Clubhouse.

This was where we would test out Honda SENSING at speeds below 30km/h.

At slower speeds, we would take turns behind the wheel in a 5-6 car convoy (somewhat similar to city driving) and see how handy Adaptive Cruise Control with Low Speed Follow is even on simulated inner city streets. Usually, cruise control is used on highways but this feature lets you utilize it in a moderate to slow moving traffic situation and let the car do the work. We set the distance and speed parameters. We cautiously kept our right foot hovering over the brake pedal, but let the HR-V do the work of following the car ahead of us, slowing down, and accelerating as we went about the set course.

After this we headed back up to the main clubhouse of Tagaytay Highlands, mostly uphill now, again showcasing the ease at which the relatively small 1.5 liter turbocharged engine could make short work of the moderately steep, winding roads.

After lunch, we made our way back up the steeper slopes out of Tagaytay Highlands and further onto STAR Tollway. Here we got to enjoy the highway and the benefits of Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) and how it lessened driver fatigue. You just have to trust it.

If you happened to change lanes (with visible road lines) and forget to signal, the Road Departure Mitigation (RDM) with Lane Departure Warning (LDW) will warn you with an alert and some resistance on the steering wheel. The HR-V will think you might not be doing this on purpose, so don’t forget to use your turn signals when you change lanes.

As we made our way to Aiyanar Beach and Dive Resort, the Lane Keeping Assist System (LKAS) made its presence felt by intervening and steering for us, keeping us in the lane on sweeping curves if we failed to properly follow the curve.

The Honda SENSING suite in the All-New HR-V makes sense. We may be seasoned expert drivers, but this safety suite was on point, pretty much one step ahead of us all the time. It was like having a fresh, well slept, more alert co-driver, sitting next to me. Honda SENSING was useful to us, and will definitely be a big confidence booster for newer, less experienced drivers. It’s a good thing they equipped both variants with it. Honda’s goal of lessening road mishaps is a good thing, starting with themselves and protecting their customers to make our roads safer. The next best thing now is if these technologies trickle down to the Honda City and Brio. Through economics of scale, we hope this technology becomes an affordable standard feature so Honda can really start to make a difference on our roads.