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US-spec 2023 Honda HR-V teased

North America is getting a different Honda HR-V to the rest of the world, and it's been teased wearing more aggressive styling.

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William Stopford
William Stopford

The Honda HR-V name will be shared across two different-looking crossovers.

While Australia, Europe and other markets are getting the Japanese-spec model, which has already been revealed, North America is receiving its own, bespoke HR-V.

American Honda Motor Company has teased its 2023 HR-V, set to be introduced this year, with a pair of detailed sketches.

They reveal a more athletic, aggressive-looking model than the restrained Japanese model.

Up front, there’s a low-set grille flanked by wide headlights, and sitting above a sporty-looking front bumper.

Moving along the sides there appears to be a prominent shoulder line, while the rear bears a resemblance to Honda’s flagship SUV, the MDX from its premium brand Acura.

Our HR-V, in contrast, follows a similarly minimalist aesthetic to the likes of the Honda e and redesigned Civic, with sheer sides seemingly interrupted by only a single crease, plus a frameless grille.

The North American HR-V’s interior has yet to be revealed, while we also don’t yet know what will power it.

A hybrid powertrain seems a likely inclusion, given the presence of one in the North American CR-V line-up.

The outgoing HR-V uses a naturally-aspirated 1.8-litre four-cylinder engine with 105kW of power and 172Nm of torque, mated with a continuously-variable transmission, just as it does in Australia.

In contrast, our HR-V will be offered with a choice of 1.5-litre four-cylinder engines, one with a hybrid system.

The non-hybrid model produces 87kW of power and 142Nm of torque, while the e:HEV hybrid adds two electric motors for total outputs of 96kW and 253Nm.

MORE: 2022 Honda HR-V engines confirmed

As the North American HR-V has been developed for the “distinct needs” of that market, according to Honda, it could borrow its engines from the US-built Civic.

The Civic is offered there with either a naturally-aspirated 2.0-litre four-cylinder with 118kW and 187Nm, or a turbocharged 1.5-litre four with 134kW and 240Nm. Both are paired with a continuously-variable transmission.

There’s precedent for two different Hondas with the same nameplate.

In 1993, Honda Europe introduced a different fifth-generation Accord to that sold in other markets, based on the Japanese Ascot Innova.

This continued up until the eighth-generation Accord, with the last two sold in North America as the Acura TSX and here as the Accord Euro.

While we were in a unique position to receive two parallel lines of Accord in Australia as the Accord and Accord Euro, we’re unlikely to receive this North American HR-V.

It’ll join the likes of the Honda Passport, Pilot and Ridgeline in being restricted to markets such as the US and Canada.

Which HR-V do you think looks better? Let us know in the comments!

MORE: Everything Honda HR-V

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William Stopford
William Stopford

William Stopford is an automotive journalist based in Brisbane, Australia. William is a Business/Journalism graduate from the Queensland University of Technology who loves to travel (remember that?), briefly lived in the US, and has a particular interest in the American car industry.

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