The HR-V and CR-V will be getting a new sibling.
New trademark filings are often the first clue of automakers' future plans, long before flashy reveals at motor shows (or, these days, dramatic online unveilings). Some are more challenging to put into perspective, such as Volkswagen's 2018 trademark for the 'Type 7' which was once a military vehicle. Others, like Ford's recent trademark application for the 'Wolftrak' name, are easier to envision being used on models like the new, upcoming F-150.
Now, we've just caught wind of Honda recently applying to trademark the name 'ZR-V' in Australia. This one isn't too mysterious, as the 'R-V' part of the name naturally implies a new SUV/crossover that will join the likes of the HR-V and CR-V.
What's unknown at this stage is what size the new ZR-V crossover will be. According to a post on ZRV Forum, this could be a new compact crossover. Considering that the trademark application was made in Australia, this might also be a model reserved for that region and the Asia-Pacific market.
In America, we already have the HR-V which starts at just over the $20,000-dollar mark. Whether there is room for a new small crossover at or below the HR-V's price point is debatable, so if the ZR-V badge does find its way onto such a crossover, it may not make it stateside at all. Then again, Hyundai has shown us that cheap doesn't mean nasty with its new Venue, which starts at just over $17,000 and is over 10 inches shorter than the already compact HR-V.
Honda's SUV prowess is well-documented; none of the automaker's current batch of crossovers has a BuzzScore of lower than 8.4, all the way up to the excellent three-row Pilot. In such an uncertain economic climate, we're sure that many shoppers would quickly warm to the idea of a low-priced SUV wearing a trusted badge.
Although it's all speculation at this point, let's hope that this isn't another occasion when we're deprived of an excellent small Honda. The new generation of the Fit is, of course, only sold overseas. If the ZR-V does come to be, let's hope we get to enjoy it, too.