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
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.
quote: I don't get it. The Prius is the only hybrid that sells in legitimate volume. Now every company has plans for more hybrids and electric vehicles, but where is the demand? Who is going to buy one?