Honda CR-Z Hybrid Sales Begin In August

Honda is set to begin sales of its much anticipated CR-Z sports hybrid coupé in the US from August this year. The car has drawn much attention over the past 3 years, it originally started life as a design concept in 2007 and is clearly based on Honda’s infamous CR-X coupé. With pricing set to begin at $19,200 USD for the 6 speed manual transmission model the CR-Z will be the cheapest and the sportiest hybrid for sale in the North American market, a fact which has many industry analysts tagging it as a potential big win for Honda in a space currently dominated by Toyota.

Many after market tuners have expressed interest in the model and it is expected that many who buy the base model will look to invest in performance upgrades, a first for any hybrid car. The CR-Z will ship with a 1.5L (92 cu in) i-VTEC inline 4 engine and will use Honda’s Integrated Motor Assist (IMA) hybrid system. The 6 speed manual transmission will be standard with the CVT or continuously variable transmission being a paid upgrade (personally, I’d go for the 6 speed). The total horsepower will be 122 with 11 of those horses coming from the electric motor and 111 coming from the gasoline engine. The Japanese model features a 0-60 time of 10.5 seconds and a quarter mile time of 17.6 seconds.

There are those that will point out that the mpg rating isn’t as good as a Toyota Prius and that it isn’t as eco friendly as the Nissan Leaf but I think to say that is to miss the point. This car is for young buyers who want good looks and performance first and eco friendly hybrid second, if large automakers are going to succeed in bringing hybrid and electric cars to the below 40 demographic, they’re going to need more cars like this to achieve it.

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