While my 2 year old civic was at the dealer having photos taken of the alloy wheels which are sadly all deteriorating fast (black and silver 'diamond cut' alloys) as evidence in a bid to get them replaced by HUK, I had a look at all the brand new offerings, HRV, CRV, new Jazz, Civic in the showroom, and couldn't believe Honda is still fitting that hard, scratchy brittle plastic not just on the door cards, B pillar bits etc but all over the TOP of the dash on HRV, new Jazz, even CRV. The civic was the only one with the soft feel dashboard, and the plastics elsewhere on these are decidedly scratchy and cheap. These cars ain't cheap brand new. Sure the Honda purists will say the engineering makes up for it, but really, in this day and age shouldn't we expect a decent interior as well? I don't look at new cars very often but is this still the standard?
HRV dash doesn't look hard in the most of the pictures as it's usually shown to the press with full leather. However, I have turned this pic up which appears to confirm what you say and show what looks like hard looking plastics with cloth:
However, that being the case, I think Honda will pay the price for it, at least in the crossover section of the market. The HRV starts at £18.5K. and goes up to £26K without options. That's firmly in Quashquai territory which also starts at £18.5K and goes up to £26K for the 2wd models.
The trouble for Honda is the Quashquai as the UK's best selling crossover commands a premium and has a very very high quality interior - I sat in one only last week and the dash was lovely and soft touch. This was the best cloth interior pic I could find of the Quashqui:
Pictures bely the quality. Equally, even the cheap little Nissan Juke, has a real quality dashboard - soft plastics and even a leather instrument dial shield to keep the sun off the dials. Interiors of both were top notch (Jukes a little bit down to personal taste with the painted panels, not my thing but otherwise very nice) and walking away I even felt the Jukes dash was better than the Quashquai's for quality.
Where this leaves Honda as I see it is with a car they're trying to sell against a top quality market leader at the same premium as the market leader. A tough call in any event. However, if the HRV has hard scratchy plastics, personally I can't see it taking Quashquai sales. Nor can I see the Jazz taking Juke sales for the same reason, as again the material used are very high quality.