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Print 63 comment(s) - last by otispunkmeyer.. on Oct 27 at 8:41 AM


Honda has already axed the S2000.

The tiny CR-Z will carry the "sports" torch for Honda and will be priced from $19k to $25k.

Crosstown rival Toyota goes the conventional route with a RWD sports car which was co-developed with Subaru -- it will be in the same price range as the CR-Z. The production version of the FT-86 is expected to be shown next year.

While Honda has killed plans for its V-10 powered NSX replacement, Toyota just pulled the wraps off its ultra-exclusive Lexus LFA.
Honda is really taking "going green" seriously

The company that brought us small, nimble, sporty, FWD vehicles like the CRX, Prelude, Integra, and RSX is slowly giving in to the green movement. While Honda was content in stepping things up to the next level with the expensive, mid-engined, RWD NSX during the early 90s and the lightweight S2000 roadster later in the decade, those days are coming to an end (the NSX is long gone and the S2000 was recently given the axe).

Honda is now turning almost completely away from performance vehicles and instead intends to “green” its lineup. Going forward, the “sport” end of the spectrum for Honda will be relegated to the Civic Si and the upcoming CR-Z hybrid. The CR-Z uses the hybrid powertrain from the Civic Hybrid/Insight and pairs it with a 6-speed manual transmission. The 161-inch vehicle is expected to be priced from $19,000 to $25,000.

While Toyota plans to wow gear heads with money to spend with the $375,000 V-10 powered limited production (500 units worldwide total) Lexus LFA super car and the much cheaper, RWD FT-86 sports car; Honda has cancelled the V-10-powered replacement for the NSX. According to Temple of VTEC, Honda has no plans to introduce another sports car to the market unless it can incorporate hybrid, plug-in hybrid, or hydrogen technology.

Honda CEO Takanobu Ito told Temple of VTEC, “Once we come up with these new, innovative technologies that we are researching - once we have (an) abundance of cash on hand - I would definitely love to see Honda develop a sports car which would symbolize these technologies. And, once that day comes, the sportscar will NOT be something like Toyota announced yesterday, but instead it will be environmentally friendly (while) at the same time enjoying outstanding performance. I'd love to do that."

In other news, Honda has also cancelled plans to bring a diesel engine to the U.S for its Accord sedan due to cost issues. The Accord was to have an optional 2.2-liter i-CTDi 4-cylinder Tier 2 Bin 5 diesel engine which produces 150 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque. The diesel engine would have also given the Accord an overall fuel economy rating of about 40 mpg. Also cancelled are plans for a larger 3.5-liter V6 diesel engine which was destined to go into Honda's large vehicles which include the Odyssey, Pilot, and Ridgeline. The diesel engine was supposed to give these vehicles a 30 increase in fuel economy.

While Honda has made an effort to embrace all-electric vehicles with the recently showcased EV-N concept, Honda's CEO continues to state that hydrogen is the future for consumer vehicles.



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Disappointed by the Cancelled Diesels
By ashishmishra on 10/22/2009 9:33:08 PM , Rating: 4
I was really looking forward to Honda bringing in the highly acclaimed 2.2I4 and 3.5V6 Diesel engines. I understand there would have been some sticker shock but at least it would have increased diesel engine's acceptance in passenger cars in public's eyes.




RE: Disappointed by the Cancelled Diesels
By randomposter on 10/22/2009 10:10:18 PM , Rating: 2
I was looking forward to this as well. When Honda puts their engineers on something the result is generally pretty impressive, and I would have liked to see them advance the art of passenger car diesel.

I am confused that Honda thinks Diesel != Green given the fuel economy performance of today's common rail designs.


RE: Disappointed by the Cancelled Diesels
By Hoser McMoose on 10/23/2009 1:17:14 AM , Rating: 3
quote:
I am confused that Honda thinks Diesel != Green given the fuel economy performance of today's common rail designs.

They use less fuel but, generally speaking, produce more air pollution than gasoline engines.

Granted today's diesels are much better than those of just 3 or 4 years ago, but the 'green' aspect of diesels has always been very questionable. If your concern is CO2 emissions than diesels are better, if your concern is air pollution than diesels are worse.

Case in point, the Audi A3 2.0L diesel manages a fairly impressive Tier 2 Bin 5 rating (minimum rating to be legal for sale in California). However the A3 2.0L gas engine manages a much more stringent Tier 2 Bin 3 rating, basically HALF as much air pollution. The diesel though is rated for 18.4kg of CO2 per 100km (6.9L/100km) while the gasoline A3 is rated for 22.7kg of CO2 per 100km (9.8L/100km).


By Yawgm0th on 10/23/2009 11:01:16 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
They use less fuel but, generally speaking, produce more air pollution than gasoline engines.

Granted today's diesels are much better than those of just 3 or 4 years ago, but the 'green' aspect of diesels has always been very questionable. If your concern is CO2 emissions than diesels are better, if your concern is air pollution than diesels are worse.
QFT
I don't know why people are so up in arms about the unsure effect of CO2 emissions on global warming when we know exactly what the pollutants in car exhaust do now. If smog kills us before the polar ice caps melt, what's the point of carbon reduction?


RE: Disappointed by the Cancelled Diesels
By AmazighQ on 10/23/2009 11:49:35 AM , Rating: 4
the problem aint using diesel or no diesel
the problem is building 3 ton(metric) cars to transport a singel person and sticking an 'ancient' 5 liter engine in it


RE: Disappointed by the Cancelled Diesels
By Spuke on 10/23/2009 6:52:12 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
the problem is building 3 ton(metric) cars to transport a singel person and sticking an 'ancient' 5 liter engine in it
Not aware of any 3 ton vehicles that have 5L engines.


By xsilver on 10/25/2009 10:26:25 PM , Rating: 2
I think that would be referring to a hummer or an escalade.

they actually have 5+ litre engines


RE: Disappointed by the Cancelled Diesels
By Samus on 10/23/2009 1:41:17 PM , Rating: 2
Indeed this is very disappointing.

I guess Volkswagon will continue to reap all the deisel momentum. I remember back in June they outsold all other car manufactures, most of which were deisels. And those always carry many thousands of dollars price premium, so I don't think that's an issue with the consumer. People want deisels because they use less fuel and are exceptionally reliable.


By Spuke on 10/23/2009 7:03:04 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
I remember back in June they outsold all other car manufactures, most of which were deisels.
VW has never outsold every car manufacturer. VW, at least in the US, is nearly a niche car manufacturer with only 160,000 in TOTAL sales so far this year. Toyota sold more Corolla's in that same period (215,000).


By Mint on 10/23/2009 4:50:58 PM , Rating: 2
Diesel is not green. If cars shifted to diesel, you'd see diesel prices go up and gas would go down. When you refine crude oil, you produce both gas and diesel, so the supply ratio will always be fixed.

The result would either be trucks switching to now-cheaper gas or less incentive for people to replace their gas guzzlers.

Finally, as the other posters mentioned, diesels pollute. Who cares about CO2 when air pollution already kills so many people in our cities. I believe in AGW, but I also believe its projections and consequences are exaggerated. PHEV is really the only green tech worth pursuing.


By Brazos on 10/22/2009 10:11:13 PM , Rating: 3
I'd kill for a CRV with a turbo diesel.


By ksherman on 10/22/2009 11:17:48 PM , Rating: 2
I agree. Was really considering an Accord diesel for my next car. Looks like I'm goin' to a Golf TDI next!


By otispunkmeyer on 10/27/2009 8:41:47 AM , Rating: 2
this sucks for you guys

honda's 2.2 CDTi engine is a very good engine indeed. i've driven the new civic with it and it suits the car very well. i couldnt believe how easy this thing revs!

sure its got the diesel clatter on start up but once its warm it quiets down. the lower than normal compression ratio helps too. then theres the smoothness of the power delivery! and the civic being relatively light compared to some rivals absolutely flies with this engine. its faster than the petrol!


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