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by Tim Beissmann

These images give us our first look at the production version of the all-new 2012 Honda CR-V, including its significantly remodelled, top-secret interior.

The new Honda CR-V will begin rolling off production lines later this year. Honda Australia’s Melissa Cross said the new CR-V was expected to go on sale Down Under sometime in the second half of 2012.

The spy shots, published by China Car Times, confirm production models of the 2012 CR-V will retain the bold new three-bar grille, tinted headlights and vertical taillights with wide wraparound, as previewed in last month’s CR-V Concept. Although not seen on the concept, it appears LED running lights will also be available in some markets.

The interior takes a generational leap forward, with a much more car-like design that appears heavily influenced by the 2012 Honda Civic.

The instrument panel is dominated by a large traditional speedo, while the steering wheel, dashboard and centre console get a more upmarket appearance with satin chrome highlights and a simple, uncluttered layout.

The fresh body design, which sports an inflated rear cargo area, promises to be more “accommodating and spacious” with a lower boot floor.

Honda is yet to reveal drivetrain details, although it says the new model will feature “a more fuel efficient engine and reduced body weight”. The outgoing CR-V is powered by a 125kW/218Nm 2.4-litre petrol engine and weighs between 1580-1630kg. Combined cycle fuel consumption is rated at 10.0 litres/100km, which is now off the pace of most of its competitors.

We also understand the 2012 Honda CR-V will be offered in front-wheel drive, as well as the traditional all-wheel drive setup.

The CR-V Concept will be on display in California next month, while the 2012 production model is expected to make its official world premiere at the 2011 Los Angeles Auto Show in November.




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