The new Honda CR-V may have derived a lot of its improvements from the reworked Honda Civic, but the latter doesn’t lead the pack when it comes to driving the automaker’s popularity. It’s the SUV that holds that honor for the second consecutive year.

While it surprises no one to know Honda has topped the list for the most-researched brand on Edmunds, seeing that it bagged a similar win as Google’s top trending auto brand for 2016, but it’s the manner in which it does so which is impressive.

Last year, the CR-V was the most researched nameplate on the popular auto site, tailed by the Mazda CX-5 before the rest of the top five were filled with the Honda Accord, Pilot and Ford F-150.

This time, the CX-5 has been kicked to 7th spot, while the Civic made an incredible surge from 10th to 3rd, thus making it the standout star of 2016. With the Accord filling in 2nd spot, all three spots on the podium are now dominated by Honda alone.

Honda Civic

The Pilot dropped from 4th to 5th, overtaken by the Toyota RAV4 which understandably turned more heads due to the introduction of its hybrid variant this year. Nevertheless, Honda takes 4 out of the 5 top spots in research popularity, an improvement over 3 out of 5 in 2015.

Can’t Knock Down CR-V

What’s interesting is how the CR-V has fared in all of this. Even when its fourth-gen model was gathering dust and attracting endless criticisms for its outdated and insipid appeal, it beat all others in attracting consumer interest.

This year, with the entry of its sportier and more exciting fifth-gen model inspired by the Civic, it has naturally retained top spot. The Accord is also a little surprising, as it has move upwards in popularity even though its next-gen model isn’t due to bow until next year.

In any case, the CR-V has proven itself as Honda’s most reliable torch-bearer, doing what the Civic does more effectively to keep folks interested even as competition in the SUV segment grows more intense than ever.

A nameplate missing from this list is the Honda Ridgeline, in spite of all the buzz it generated in the first half of 2016. Perhaps 2017 should see more a lot more folks take interest in the swanky mid-size pickup.

And speaking of pickups, the undisputed US best-seller Ford F-150 has dipped considerably when it comes to consumer interest, falling from 5th spot in Edmunds’ list to 9th.