2016 Honda HR-V Ground Clearance

The 2016 Honda HR-V has a ground clearance of 6.7 inches across all models—but if you load it to full capacity, ride height can shrink to 4.7 inches.
Written by Maxine Boyko
Reviewed by Jessica Barrett
Updated on Mar 23, 2023
Ground clearance for the 2016 Honda HR-V is 6.7 inches for the base LX, EX, and EX-L models. This is the unloaded maximum ground clearance, however. When loaded, the ground clearance spec drops to just 4.7 inches.
SUVs are ubiquitous in today’s world—known for roomy cabins and cargo space, fit for adventures big and small. If you’re looking for a vehicle that you don’t have to worry about taking off-road, your attention may turn to the drivetrain, tires, and engine specs. But ground clearance is just as important!
In this article, we'll cover what the HR-V’s ground clearance is, what it’s looked like over the years, and what this means for your off-roading plans. 
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2016 Honda HR-V ground clearance

The ground clearance for all 2016 Honda HR-V trims is 6.7 inches.
That changes, however, if you load up the SUV with adult passengers and stow heavy luggage or equipment in the cargo hold. The HR-V’s ground clearance drops to 4.7 inches at its fully loaded capacity. This is true regardless of whether your drivetrain is FWD or AWD.
Honda’s HR-V was introduced to the American market in 2016, so there isn’t too much variation among trim levels. Here are the three HR-V trims which offer a maximum of 6.7 inches of ground clearance:

Honda HR-V ground clearance over the years

If you’re curious about the HR-V’s ground clearance over the years, you may be surprised to learn that the base level trim hasn’t changed much. That said, ride height has increased for some younger generation trims.
Take a look at the Honda HR-V’s ground clearance over the years:
  • 2016: 6.7 inches
  • 2017–2018: 6.7–7 inches
  • 2019: 6.7–7.3 inches
  • 2020–2022: 6.7–7.4 inches
As you can see, the ground clearance maximum has increased over the past few years. A key thing to keep in mind is that your HR-V’s ground clearance will shift based on its configuration, trim, and model year. The 2020 HR-V FWD drivetrain, for example, has more ground clearance than the AWD, at 7.3 and 6.7 inches, respectively. 

What is ground clearance—and why does it matter?

Let’s get down to the one thing on your mind: Why is ground clearance important? Put simply, ground clearance helps you decide on how much your vehicle can handle, particularly for off-roading. Ground clearance is a measurement of the space between the lowest point of a vehicle’s chassis and the ground.
If your vehicle has higher ground clearance, that means there is more distance between its underbelly and the road. This ultimately reduces the chances your vehicle will sustain damage to the chassis from uneven and challenging terrain. 
Most experts recommend a ground clearance of at least 8.5 inches to qualify a vehicle as a safe off-roading choice. So if you were planning any off-roading adventures in your Honda HR-V, we have some bad news: The maximum 7.4 inches still doesn’t cut the minimum recommended ground clearance. Thus, the HR-V is not suitable to take on any wild, all-terrain escapades
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Is the 2016 Honda HR-V a good off-road vehicle?

The 2016 Honda HR-V could make a great adventure vehicle, given its supportive front seats and roomy cargo hold. But from a purely technical standpoint, the HR-V is simply not cut out for off-roading
All Honda HR-V trims are 6.7 inches from the ground. While this is likely sufficient to get you over graded dirt roads, it’s not enough for traversing over rough and rocky terrain, deep snow, and other demanding off-road obstacles.
If you’re looking for a vehicle to drive for a no-frills weekend camping trip, the HR-V is a great little compact crossover. When equipped with a continually variable transmission, the front-wheel-drive model gets 31 miles combined. Plus, the seats are configurable and there’s plenty of storage.
In short: If you’re looking for an SUV that’s straightforward and utilitarian with a splash of versatility, the 2016 Honda HR-V fits the bill. If you’re okay with the 6.7 inches of ground clearance, a used baseline LX is typically listed for between $16,000 and $17,000 on Kelly Blue Book.
If you want a great off-roading vehicle from the same year, however, you’re better off with a
Toyota Land Cruiser
, which has a generous 9.1 inches of ground clearance.

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