Honda HRX Versamow Hydro Self-Propelled Lawn Mower Review

Honda has spent decades building a well-earned reputation for quality and dependability. Especially with its small engines and lawnmowers like the Honda HRX HRX217VYAHydro Self-Propelled Lawn Mower.

It has a 201 cc Honda OVH 4-stroke engine that powers both the Micro Cut twin blade system as well the self-propulsion system. The dual blades under the 21-inch cutting deck do a great job of harvesting grass clippings and reducing them down to very small pieces. There’s also an automatic choke system which makes for very easy starting.

The Honda HRX was also engineered to be a 4-in-1 lawnmower. You can use it as a rear discharge, mulching mower, rear bagger, or as a leaf shredder. The fourth mode is certainly something you’ll appreciate in the fall for returning some much-needed carbon to your turf or your fall compost pile. The cutting deck has 7 different height settings from as low as .75 or an inch to has high as 4-inches. There’s also a retro stop blade system that arrests the blades almost instantly.

The bagger that comes with the initial purchase holds a large 2.5 bushels of grass clippings. It’s also engineered to release easily, even when fully loaded, which spares you the hassle of having to wrestle with an awkwardly heavy bag of grass clippings.

The 201 cc Honda engine also powers the self-propulsion system. It was engineered with Honda’s Select Drive variable speed system, which lets you precisely set the speed of the self-propulsion system to your natural walking speed. The wheels measure in at 9-inches in diameter and each has ball bearings to make for smooth motion across even uneven terrain.

The controls on the Honda HRX are comfortable and easy to use. The handlebars can even be adjusted to three different height positions to further let you customize it to your height and mowing style.

Key Features

  • 201 cc Honda OVH 4-stroke engine
  • Known for reliability
  • Automatic choke system for easy starting
  • 21-inch cutting deck
  • Micro cut twin blade system
  • 4-in-1 mulching, rear bagging, bagless discharge and leaf shredding
  • 7 Height settings
  • Cuts from .75 of an inch to 4-inches
  • Self-propelled
  • Select drive variable speed
  • Hydrostatic transmission
  • 9-inch wheels with ball bearings
  • Retro stop blade system
  • 2.5-bushel bagger
  • 3 position height for handlebars


The 201 cc Honda 4-stroke engine produces an impressive amount of power to both spin the dual Micro Cut blades as well as the hydrostatic self-propulsion system with a variable speed select drive. The 9-inch wheels with their smooth ball bearings help the self-propulsion system to glide over rough patches of ground and uneven terrain.

Ease of Use

The Honda HRX is very easy to use. The handlebars can be set to three different settings, which lets you comfortably dial it to your personal height. The retro stop blade system lets you quickly shut down the dual cutting blades, without turning off the engine. It’s very handy for those times when you need to avoid running over a stick.

The engine has an automatic choke, which makes for easy starting. It also reduces the chances of flooding the engine.

The retro blade stop is also a handy feature that essentially arrests the blades without killing the engine.

You also have to tip your cap to the adjustable handlebars. With three distinct height settings, you can set it up to your height or adjust it for someone else in your family.

You have to also like the variable speed feature of the self-propulsion system. It makes it easy to set it close to your walking speed or to quickly dial it lower for times when you might need to weave slowly around some trees and landscaping features.

Cut Quality & Options

The Micro Cut dual cutting blade system makes quick work of the grass with each pass of your lawn. On their own, they practically act like a mulcher. So, when you do use the Versamow system to switch it to mulching you get a fine puree of grass clippings.

The 2.5-bushel bagger is large and the way the dual cutting blades mince the blades of grass means they are packing more grass into the bag than you would get from a traditional single blade lawnmower. This also means that the bagger holds more compact grass clippings, which can drive up the weight per cubic inch. Fortunately, Honda made an extra effort to make the grass collection bagger easier to detach and carry to the compost pile or green waste bin.


The Honda HRX is pretty easy to maintain for a gas-powered lawnmower. It needs the usual oil changes and basic care that all gas-powered lawnmower does. If you are a do-it-yourselfer you could try to sharpen the blades yourself with a mill file, or simply order replacement blades, which are relatively inexpensive.

Safety Features

The Honda HRX has all the standard safety features and hand controls you expect to find with a self-propelled gas-powered lawnmower. Then they take it a step further with the Roto Stop blade system. It lets you quickly arrest the dual cutting blades without having to kill the mower engine.

Special Features

The auto choke system makes for easy ignition and reduces the chances of flooding the engine during startup.

The variable speed Select Drive lets you set the self-propulsion system to your personal walking speed.

The Roto Stop blade system gives you the ability to arrest the blades in an instant if you accidentally come across an obstacle like an errant stick in the grass.


There’s a lot of thoughtful engineering infused into the Honda HRX that really helps bring down the cost of ownership while ensuring that you see a robust return on your investment. The fact that the 4-in-1 Versamow includes a leaf shredder even helps save money on otherwise tedious fall cleanup.

9.5 Total Score
Well-engineered and reliable self-propelled lawnmower from Honda

  • Powerful 201 cc Honda gasoline engine
  • 4-in-1 Versamow
  • Bagger, rear discharge, mulching mower, and leaf shredder
  • Hydrostatic self-propulsion system
  • Variable speed self-propulsion
  • 2.5-bushel bagger
  • Price is a little high
  • Bagger can get heavy
  • Dual cutting blades are hard to self-sharpen
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Honda HRX Versamow Hydro Self-Propelled Lawn Mower Review
Honda HRX Versamow Hydro Self-Propelled Lawn Mower Review
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