Archive for performance

Acura Encourages “Less Talk, More Drive” in New Brand Campaign

  • “Less Talk, More Drive” is a high-speed, exhilarating thrill ride touting Acura’s “Beat That” competitive spirit
  • Campaign tracks Acura’s performance roots from the legendary NSX and Integra Type R to motorsports championships and the emergence of the Type S Concept

 

Acura lets its vehicles do the talking in “Less Talk, More Drive,” a new brand marketing campaign launching today. A high-speed television thrill ride kicks off the campaign, giving viewers a glimpse into Acura’s world of Precision Crafted Performance through the eyes of its engineers, race car drivers and lineup of performance vehicles: acura.us/lesstalkmoredrive. The multichannel campaign will run throughout the fall on broadcast TV and Acura’s social and digital media properties.

“Less Talk, More Drive” represents the spirit of Acura’s Precision Crafted Performance,” said Jon Ikeda, vice president and Acura brand officer. “It is influenced heavily by our renewed focus on what matters most — the driving experience — and Acura’s commitment to testing ourselves on the track, at the factory and on the street.”

Acura was born a challenger brand and “Less Talk, More Drive” portrays its independent spirit and relentless pursuit of improvement through the constant challenge, “Beat That.” The commercial, set to the soundtrack of Dick Dale’s “Nitrus,” opens with a thrill-seeker driving the iconic Integra Type R and throwing down the gauntlet with a challenge to “Beat That.” The gauntlet is picked up by a succession of Acura vehicles demonstrating various elements of Precision Crafted Performance:

  • A first-generation 1991 NSX in Formula Red showcases Acura’s iconic, game-changing supercar in action.
  • The second-generation 2020 NSX in Indy Yellow Pearl flexes its powertrain on the dyno.
  • The ILX sports sedan proves its safety performance by acing a crash test.
  • The 2019 IMSA Daytona Prototype Manufacturer Championship-leading Acura ARX-05 race car driven by Juan Pablo Montoya and Helio Castroneves challenge for the lead.
  • The Acura Type S Concept is revealed showing the world the next expression of Acura performance.

Campaign Elements

Acura’s “Less Talk, More Drive” brand campaign will be featured on network cable and national broadcast including high-profile NFL matchups, and streaming video within top-rated programming and fall premieres. Targeting younger consumers, “Less Talk, More Drive” will include digital media programming on Donut Media, Padsquad and Teads, as well as digital placements on Amazon, Bustle, ESPN and Thrillist.

The campaign will also be amplified on social media, featuring high performance Acura vehicle imagery receiving a variety of creative treatments that bring the “Less Talk, More Drive” idea to life in surprising ways, and each specific to Acura’s social platforms. With a variety of activations, “Less Talk, More Drive” will continue to be a central theme throughout Acura’s future marketing and creative.

Acura has a razor-sharp focus on expressing its Precision Crafted Performance DNA through every facet of its products, marketing and the customer experience. This means offering not only a one of a kind, exhilarating driving experience for customers, but incorporating innovation and Acura’s unique expression of performance. This focus has been highly evident in Acura marketing over the past four years, with the addition of Michael B. Jordan as the voice of the brand, buzzy music soundtracks, and bright, bold color choices that set Acura apart from other brands in the premium automotive space.

The post Acura Encourages “Less Talk, More Drive” in New Brand Campaign appeared first on Blog Honda.

Shea Racing, Honda Performance Development Expand 2017 Pirelli World Challenge Program

  • Tom O’Gorman to run 2017 Honda Civic Si
  • B-Spec champion O’Gorman moves up to TCA competition
  • Shea Holbrook, Jason Fichter will campaign Honda Accords in TC

shea_holbrook_driving_2017_honda_civic_at_25_hours_of_thunderhill_race

Honda Performance Development is pleased to announce that Shea Racing will expand the team’s Pirelli World Challenge racing effort in 2017, fielding reigning B-Spec champion Tom O’Gorman in a new Honda Civic Si in the TCA category, while continuing to run a pair of Touring Car-class Honda Accords for drivers Shea Holbrook and Jason Fichter.

The all-new 2017 Honda Civic Si, featuring exclusive racing parts developed by HPD and its partners, will also be available to Honda Racing Line customers who wish to build and race their own cars.

Shea Racing, operated by owner/driver Holbrook, is a veteran Honda racing team, having successfully run two Accords in the 2016 Pirelli World Challenge.  Holbrook is looking forward to adding the 2017 Civic Si and Tom O’Gorman to the Shea Racing stable.

“Coming up through the grassroots levels to pursue a career in professional motorsports – all in Hondas – makes us feel deeply rooted to the brand,” Holbrook said. “Honda’s passion, reliability, support and proven trackside performances have been the key reasons why Shea Racing has built a business as a Honda team for seven consecutive years. We are thrilled to continue our relationship with Honda and HPD through our Accord program, and add the 2017 Civic Si next season.”

O’Gorman joins Shea Racing after partnering with HPD last year to race a 2016 Honda Fit in Pirelli World Challenge TCB class, winning the Drivers’ Championship.

The 2017 Honda Civic Si development vehicle, which can be seen at HPD Booth 5157 at the Performance Racing Industry trade show in Indianapolis this week, came straight from its debut last weekend at the 25 Hours of Thunderhill, where it completed the grueling endurance event, despite contact with another vehicle during the overnight hours.

Development drivers Holbrook and O’Gorman, along with several HPD associates, drove the new Civic at Thunderhill, and were thrilled with the car’s performance.

“The car was amazing throughout the ’25 Hours’ race. We were able to make great strides in the car’s development, turning faster and faster laps throughout the race, and finish without a single mechanical issue,” O’Gorman said. “It was a fantastic learning opportunity and an impressive debut for the new car, I can’t wait to get behind the wheel for the upcoming 2017 Pirelli World Challenge season!”

Following the SEMA debut of the 2017 Civic Si “Body-In-White”, a bare-bones chassis that removes the costly and time-consuming process of converting a production vehicle to a race-ready car, HPD is eager to show the completed product, a race vehicle in Pirelli World Challenge competition.

“We are eager to see the 2017 Civic back on track,” says Jeff Barrow, Manager of HPD’s Commercial Motorsports group.  “Pairing with Shea Racing and driver Tom O’Gorman will give us an excellent chance to win races and gather great feedback as we continue to develop Civic racing parts for our customers.”

Shea Holbrook, Tom O’Gorman, and the Civic race development car will all be at the HPD Booth [#5157] during the Performance Racing Industry show in Indianapolis.  Holbrook and O’Gorman will make an appearance at the HPD booth at 1 p.m. on Friday, December 9.

About Shea Racing
Based in Groveland, Florida, Shea Racing is a professional team competing in the Pirelli World Challenge. In the seven years Shea Racing has competed in the series, the team has earned 11 wins, 27 podiums, seven pole positions and 11 fast laps in the touring car classes. Focusing on a strong team foundation, top performances, driver advancement and individualized marketing platforms, Shea Racing has become one of the Pirelli World Challenge’s top-tier Touring Car teams.

About Honda Performance Development:
Honda Performance Development, Inc., (HPD) is Honda’s racing company in North America and is a wholly owned subsidiary of American Honda Motor Co., Inc. Founded in 1993, HPD is the technical operations center for Honda’s high-performance racing programs. HPD specializes in the design and development of race engines, chassis and performance parts, and technical/race support. It also offers parts and race support to Honda and Acura grassroots motorsports racers, and is expanding its support of racing series and programs to make Honda racing products available to participants in all racing disciplines, from karting and Quarter Midgets to the highest levels of pro racing.

Performance Manufacturing Center: Precision Craftsmanship

Acura_NSX_Performance_Manufacturing_Center___Light_Verification_Booth_The next-generation Acura NSX is produced at the new, dedicated Performance Manufacturing Center (PMC) in Marysville, Ohio, using domestic and globally sourced parts. With trial production already underway and production start-up scheduled for spring 2016, this world-class manufacturing facility employs groundbreaking techniques in weld, body construction, body painting, final assembly and quality confirmation to ensure the highest levels of precision and craftsmanship.

More details on the unique and innovative manufacturing processes at the PMC will be rolled out over the months leading up to the start of production, but the following highlights of the new facility were shared during the 2015  Monterey Automotive Week:

  • Innovative blend of people and technology: throughout the PMC, NSX production is centered around the skills of approximately 100 experienced engineers and technicians building the NSX to precise levels of quality and craftsmanship.
  • All-glass quality confirmation center: A total quality approach to production is evident not only in the mindset of every PMC technician, but in the very design of the facility, with an all-glass quality confirmation center located in the middle of the manufacturing floor.  This allows for technicians from every department to monitor all aspects of a vehicle as it moves through the entire production process.
  • World’s first weld technology: the world’s first use of all robotic MIG welding employs eight robots to apply approximately 900 MIG welds. This surgical welding process results in a space frame that is incredibly precise, in addition to being ultra rigid and lightweight.
  • Craftsmanship: hand craftsmanship complements high tech robotic processes throughout the assembly of the NSX:
    • Every bolt on the NSX is hand started by a PMC technician
    • Exterior body panels are installed manually at the end of assembly and from the inside out to ensure 100 percent symmetrical side-to-side fitment
    • Lasers are used to find door hem edges, fenders and door gaps in order to install all exterior panels without requiring adjustments
  • Master engine builders: the NSX’s 3.5-liter twin-turbocharged V-6 engine with dry sump is hand assembled by master builders at the nearby Anna, Ohio engine plant. Each engine takes over six hours to complete and is machine balanced.
    • Each NSX power unit — engine, 9-speed dual clutch transmission with direct-drive electric motor, and front Twin Motor Unit – is bench-tested and broken-in (the engine to the equivalent of 150 driving miles) to ensure that every NSX is track-ready upon customer delivery
    • The engine build process was benchmarked against some of the company’s race engine programs to ensure the highest possible quality and performance standards were achieved

For More Information
Consumer information is available at www.acura.com. To join the Acura community on Facebook, visit facebook.com/Acura. Additional media information, including pricing, features and high-resolution photography, is available at acuranews.com/channels/acura-automobiles.

Entire Acura Sedan Model Line Earns Top NHTSA Safety Ratings as 2016 Acura ILX Sedan Achieves 5-Star Overall Vehicle Score

acura line

Acura continues to advance its leadership in safety performance among luxury brands with the 2016 ILX becoming the latest Acura sedan to earn a 5-Star Overall Vehicle Score from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) New Car Assessment Program (NCAP). The 2016 Acura ILX joins the flagship RLX luxury sedani and the TLX performance-luxury sedan in earning an NCAP 5-star Overall Vehicle Score from the NHTSA.

“As the gateway to the Acura sedan lineup, it is important the 2016 Acura ILX offer advanced safety technologies along with outstanding performance and luxury refinement,” said Michael Accavitti, senior vice president and general manager, Acura Division. “Acura has always been an industry leader in safety performance and we are proud the entire Acura sedan model line received the top safety ratings from NHTSA.”

One aspect of Acura’s safety performance leadership is the availability of the AcuraWatch™ suite of safety and driver-assistive technologies on all models. AcuraWatch™ includes features like Collision Mitigation Braking System™ (including Forward Collision Warning), Road Departure Mitigation, a Multi-View Rear Camera with Dynamic Guidelines, as well as Adaptive Cruise Control and Lane Keeping Assist System, with sensor-fusion technology that enables new capabilities, including pedestrian sensing. AcuraWatch™ can help improve the driver’s situational awareness and, in certain circumstances, can intervene to help avoid a collision or mitigate its severity. The 2016 Acura ILX offers autonomous emergency braking technology at the most affordable price point within the luxury segment.

The Next-Generation Advanced Compatibility Engineering™ (ACE™) body structure is another element of the Acura safety leadership strategy. Incorporated in the 2016 ILX, the next-generation ACE™ design utilizes a network of connected structural elements to help distribute crash energy more evenly throughout the front of the vehicle, enhancing occupant protection and crash compatibility in front collisions. Unlike most conventional designs that direct frontal crash energy only to the lower load-bearing structures in the front end, Next-Generation ACE™ actively channels frontal crash energy to both upper and lower structural elements. The front wheelhouse upper member, front pillar, side sill and front floor frame are the main areas that were reinforced to improve performance in small-offset frontal collisions on the 2016 ILX.

Reimagined for the 2016 model year with significant styling, performance and feature updates, the ILX is a part of the industry’s fastest-growing sedan lineup, with Acura sedans enjoying a 28 percent year-over-year sales increase through June 2015. The ILX caught the attention of Edmunds.com as it recently earned the 2015 Best Retained Value® model-level award and won entry luxury comparison tests from both AutoGuide and The Car Connection.

Acura to Infuse its Presence Throughout the 2015 Monterey Automotive Week with Full Display of Luxury Performance Vehicles and Motorsports Heritage

  • Next generation NSX supercar to be featured throughout the week
  • Acura to be the premier automotive sponsor of The Quail, A Motorsports Gathering
  • Championship-winning Comptech Racing Acura-Spice GTP Lights race car to make brand’s inaugural run at the Monterey Motorsports Reunion

acura racing

Acura will mark its commitment to the high-performance luxury automobile world and celebrate its motorsports heritage with a comprehensive presence throughout the 2015 Monterey Automotive Week. The performance luxury marque will feature innovative and historic racing vehicles along with the next-generation NSX throughout the most revered and popular events of the week.

“As one of the world’s most prestigious luxury and performance automobile exhibitions, Monterey Automotive Week is the ideal place to revel in Acura’s nearly 30 years of performance luxury heritage and celebrate the next-generation NSX,” said Michael Accavitti, senior vice president and general manager for the Acura Division.

Central to Acura’s presence at Monterey Automotive Week is the all-new NSX. The highly anticipated supercar, much like the original NSX that started it all, challenges supercar norms with its bespoke 75-degree twin-turbo V-6 engine mated to a 9-speed dual clutch transmission and three electric motor Sport Hybrid Super Handling All-Wheel Drive (SH-AWD) system. Blending the ultimate in exotic sports car form and supercar function enables the all-new NSX to turn heads and corners in unparalleled fashion.

The next-generation NSX supercars that will be featured throughout Monterey Automotive Week are being produced at the Performance Manufacturing Center (PMC) in Marysville, Ohio. The Acura NSX is the first supercar manufactured in the U.S. and the new, dedicated production facility allows complete control over quality of the innovative techniques in full-body construction, paint and final assembly conducted at PMC.

The Quail, A Motorsports Gathering

Acura will be the premier automotive sponsor for The Quail, A Motorsports Gathering. As the first-ever Sapphire-level sponsor for one of the week’s most esteemed events, Acura will showcase its newest luxury offering with several NSX supercars on display Friday, August 14. The next-generation NSX will be joined by examples of the first-generation NSX not far from the central display on the golf course. Additionally, guests will see two of Acura’s best-selling models, the MDX and RDX, in a special display at the entrance to The Quail Lodge & Golf Club grounds.

Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion

This year’s Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion will showcase Acura’s racing heritage complemented by the brand’s all-new NSX supercar. Acura will make its inaugural run at the “Historics” with a triple champion, the Comptech Racing Spice Acura GTP Lights race car. The fully restored vehicle is powered by a race-modified 3.0-liter VTEC V-6 engine, the heart of the first-generation NSX. Originally raced by Parker Johnstone, Acura and the Comptech team won the GTP Lights manufacturer and driver championships in 1991, 1992 and 1993, including class wins at the 1991 and 1992 24 Hours of Daytona and 1993 12 Hours of Sebring. Johnstone is scheduled to return to the cockpit to give fans an authentic taste of the car’s former glory.

The next-generation NSX and Gil de Ferran’s 2009 Acura LMP1 race car, in which de Ferran captured a climactic season-ending victory at the American Le Mans Series (ALMS) Monterey Sports Car Championships race, will also be on display at the Monterey Motorsports Reunion in the Acura garage August 13-16. Acura LMP1 and LMP2 sports racers dominated ALMS in 2009, winning both titles.

Gordon McCall’s Motorworks Revival

Acura will make its debut at Gordon McCall’s prestigious Motorworks Revival. HondaJet, the world’s most advanced light jet, will be a sponsor of the event and host a display that will include the all-new Acura NSX and a replica of the 2015 McLaren-Honda MP4-30 Formula 1 race car. This unique display by one manufacturer will make a special appearance on Wednesday, August 12 at the Revival in the Monterey Jet Center.

Carmel-By-The Sea Concours on the Avenue

Acura will kick-off the week’s activities as the premier automotive brand partner of the Carmel-By-The Sea Concours on the Avenue on Tuesday, August 11. Returning as the event’s exclusive automotive sponsor for the third consecutive year, Acura will showcase its complete lineup of performance luxury vehicles in Carmel’s historic Devendorf Park.  The first-generation NSX, which made history with its innovative all-aluminum body and first application of VTEC engine technology, will be on display alongside the all-new NSX supercar.

The 2015 Monterey Automotive Week will be held August 10-16. Visit www.montereycarweek.com for more information. More information on HondaJet can be found at www.hondanews.com/hondajet.

For More Information

Consumer information is available at www.acura.com. To join the Acura community on Facebook, visit facebook.com/Acura. Additional media information including pricing, features and high-resolution photography is available at acuranews.com/channels/acura-automobiles.

About Acura

Acura offers a full line of precision crafted performance-luxury vehicles through a network of approximately 270 U.S. dealers. The Acura lineup features five distinctive models – the RLX luxury flagship sedan, the TLX performance luxury sedan, the ILX sport sedan, the 5-passenger RDX luxury crossover SUV, and the seven-passenger Acura MDX, America’s all-time best-selling three-row luxury SUV. The next-generation Acura NSX mid-engine supercar will soon join the Acura lineup.

2014 Honda Civic Si is “Huge Bargain”

When you think of the Honda Civic, you don’t necessarily think of a sportier car with great performance. The 2014 Honda Civic Si is here to change some minds, and priced at just over $25,000 it’s a “huge bargain” according to this article at USA Today.

What makes the 2014 Honda Civic Si such a great performance vehicle?

  • A high level engine (“2.4-liter four-cylinder rated 205 horsepower at 7,000, 174 pounds-feet of torque at 4,400.”)
  • A high level chassis
  • Manual gearbox
  • “Soft engagement”
  • “The engine revs freely to deliver rich power, but has sufficient oomph to avoid embarrassing you in slug-along traffic. Its real-world fuel consumption under our heavy foot is modest: 20.2 mpg in the suburbs, 35.1 mpg on the highway.”

“The Honda Civic Si is just a fun car to drive,” said Tod McLaughlin, general manager at Apple Valley Honda in Wenatchee. “If you’re looking for a smaller, sportier car that will really give you some bang for your buck, you can’t pass up a test drive in the 2014 Si.”

According to USA Today, the 2014 “A joyous reminder of how good a stick-shift can be, and how satisfying a budget go-buggy can be.”

Stop by Apple Valley Honda, Northwest Honda, or Sims Honda dealership to take the 2014 Honda Civic Si for a test drive!

2015 Honda Fit Exceeds Performance Expectations

When people think of the Honda Fit, they generally think of exceptional functionality and interior space…not performance. Well, when people think of the 2015 Honda Fit, they may just have to think of it’s incredible performance first.

According to Torque.com, “…you’ll be impressed by the power available Via the Fits 1.5 Liter 16 valve i-VTEC 4 cylinder. Although rated at a modest 130 hp and 114 ft-lb torque, somehow through the miracle of advanced automotive electronics, direct fuel injection, drive by wire throttle and Honda’s CVT transmission, this little Honda will put your head back in the driver’s seat.”

What else is there to love about the 2015 Honda Fit:

  • Great gas mileage at about 33 mpg around town
  • Great handling
  • And nice interior that will “fit a tall cowboy”

“The 2015 Honda Fit has a lot going for it, Honda thinks it will be the next big thing and so do we,” said Tony Carter, general manager at Northwest Honda in Bellingham. “This article does a great job of point out all the usual things people love about the Fit, but also the fact that is a pretty fun sub-compact car to drive!”

Stop by Northwest Honda, Sims Honda, or Apple Valley Honda dealership today to find out how fun the 2015 Honda Fit is to drive!

Honda Performance Develops 3.5-Liter Prototype Engine

Honda Performance Development Thursday announced a new, 3.5-liter racing application for the versatile, production-based Honda V6 engine found in a wide range of Honda/Acura passenger cars and light trucks and now raced in multiple categories worldwide.

The Honda HR35TT twin-turbocharged V6 is expected to make its TUDOR United SportsCar Championship debut at the 2014 Mobil1 12 Hours of Sebring, mounted in a Riley Gen3 prototype chassis campaigned by Starworks Motorsport.

Previously, Starworks partnered with HPD to win the LMP2 class at the 24 Hours of Le Mans and World Endurance Championship in 2012, using HPD’s ARX-03b chassis and Honda HR28TT twin-turbocharged V6, which also is derived from Honda’s J35 series of engines.

Starworks becomes the second team to utilize Honda power for the new TUDOR championship. Extreme Speed Motorsports campaigns a pair of prototype class HPD ARX-03b Hondas, after a successful initial season with the same package in the 2013 American Le Mans Series.

“This is an exciting program for HPD and our customer teams in the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship,” said Steve Eriksen, HPD Vice President and COO. “Adding Starworks, a team that achieved great success with us in 2012, in a prototype machine alongside the proven HPD-Honda combination run by Extreme Speed Motorsports provides HPD with a strong, balanced attack in the inaugural TUDOR Championship.”

“It’s a fantastic feeling to be partnering with Honda once again,” said Starworks team owner Peter Baron. “No doubt we had amazing success with HPD in 2012, but unfortunately it was only a one-year program. We have had numerous conversations over the past two years about building a Daytona Prototype motor and we’re thrilled to see it come to fruition. We absolutely love working with HPD and have been in collaboration to find a new opportunity to partner with them again. We will have our work cut out with the steep learning curve to get us to Victory Lane, but HPD brings determination and success to every program it touches. Although HPD already competes in the Prototype class, we feel this is huge step for the TUDOR series and Starworks is thrilled to be part of it.”

Starworks Motorsport has compiled an enviable record in Daytona Prototype competition, with five race victories, including back-to-back wins at Indianapolis in 2012 and 2013; and a second-place finish in the Daytona Prototype team championship in 2012, with two victories and six podium finishes. That same year, Starworks became the first American-based prototype team to win an FIA World Championship since 1968, and HPD won its first world title in WEC competition.

The HPD-developed twin-turbocharged Honda engines to be used in the TUDOR championship are both derived from the Honda J35 series of production V6 engines, and include relevant twin-turbocharger technology, along with the efficiency provided by direct fuel injection.

The HR35TT is yet another competition application of the ubiquitous J35 engine. The first, the HR28TT, was designed for LMP2 competition and won in its American Le Mans Series debut in 2011. The engine has gone on to record 24 individual race victories and three series titles in the American Le Mans Series, World Endurance Championship and European Le Mans Series Competition.

Other variants of the engine have been raced in Japan’s Autobacs SuperGT Championship, the One Lap of America competitive rally and Pikes Peak International Hillclimb.

Honda Performance Development (HPD) is the Honda performance company within North America.  Located in Santa Clarita, Calif., HPD is the technical operations center for high-performance Honda racing cars and engines. The company is marking its 20th anniversary in 2013.

As an engine supplier to the IZOD IndyCar Series, Honda has scored 204 race victories in both CART and IZOD IndyCar Series competition since 1994, and powered Scott Dixon to a series-high four victories and the 2013 IZOD IndyCar Series drivers’ championship.

HPD offers a variety of race engines for track applications from prototype sports cars to karting; and showcases “fun-to-drive” products for professional, amateur and entry-level racers.

Honda HR35TT V6 Engine

  • Engine Type Aluminum alloy, twin-turbocharged, direct fuel-injected V6
  • Displacement 3.5 liters
  • Valve Train Single overhead camshaft, four valves per cylinder
  • Crankshaft Alloy steel
  • Pistons Forged aluminum, low-friction coatings
  • Connecting Rods Machined alloy steel
  • Engine Management HPD/McLaren
  • Ignition System Digital inductive
  • Lubrication Dry sump system
  • Cooling Single mechanical water pump
  • Fuel E10 100-101 octane gasoline, 10% ethanol

2014 Honda CR-Z Provides Unheard of Hybrid Performance

We like to find fresh articles and information for you, but sometimes someone else writes it so well, it’s hard to say otherwise. As such, below is a press release from Matt Castrucci Honda in Ohio on the incredible performance of the 2014 Honda CR-Z. Check it out:

“It’s official; hybrid vehicles are here to stay. With nearly every major automaker producing a hybrid vehicle in one way or another, driving down a highway and not seeing one would be a shock. What wouldn’t be a shock, however, is driving down a highway and not being able to recognize the Honda CR-Z as a hybrid vehicle.

“Hybrid vehicles are great for the environment and the wallet when it comes time to fill up, but if there was one pitfall to these gas-sipping vehicles, it would be that they lack the athleticism and style many vehicle shoppers are after. Generally easy to spot, most hybrid vehicle options feature lackluster designs where the majority of innovation gets placed into powertrain configurations. Going against the hybrid grain, the 2014 Honda CR-Z at Matt Castrucci Honda takes a completely different approach on what a hybrid should look and drive like.

“Packaged tightly into a sleek hatchback design, the 2014 Honda CR-Z features a surprisingly aggressive look for a vehicle that competes in the hybrid segment. Thanks to a sport-inspired front end design, aggressively molded side panels and a distinct rear end, the CR-Z looks more like a performance vehicle pieced together with aftermarket parts than one concealing a hybrid engine.

“Honda doesn’t just stop with changing the appearance of its CR-Z to become more athletic. An extra emphasis on its driving characteristics are also taken into consideration. Producing a more thrilling ride for its drivers, the CR-Z uses the combination of a gas-powered and electric motor to give it unheard of hybrid performance.

“The CR-Z produces a lively 130 horsepower and 140 pound feet of torque (with a six-speed manual transmission) that is controlled with Honda’s perfected science of the responsive drive-by-throttle steering system.  In addition to the responsive steering of the CR-Z, a firmer suspension has also been placed into the CR-Z to give it a driving feel unlike any other vehicle in its class.”

2013 Honda CR-Z: The First Mainstream Sporty Hybrid

In this article, the writer proposes that the 2013 Honda CR-Z is the solution to those who want a sport vehicle (which Honda is known and loved for) and meeting the world’s requirement of more eco-friendly vehicles.

And it seems to be a slam dunk, home run, touchdown, and (insert your sports analogy here) because “…the CR-Z delivers a really cracking driving experience.”

What seems to make the Honda CR-Z so cracking? It “utilizes Macpherson-strut suspension at the front end over the more performance-oriented double-wishbone suspension, is packed with safety features and electronic aids and all, that, to the hardcore enthusiast, seemingly adulterates the driving experience.”

It also doesn’t hurt that the 2013 Honda CR-Z has a 130-hp engine, 144-volt lithium ion battery, increased torque, and Honda’s amazing 6-speed manual transmission.

“Honda’s manual transmissions have always been the best and the CR-Z’s six-speed self-shifter is sniper-rifle precise, a real joy to row through and feel the snickety-snick of the gears.”

And you don’t need to be worried about any kind of weird, hybrid drivability. In fact, “it drives just like a sports car.”

As with any Honda, you can also expect the best safety features. “As expected of any modern car, the CR-Z is loaded with safety features: six airbags up front with curtain bags that span the length of the cabin, ABS-EBD brakes with Brake Assist and Stability/Traction control as standard. There’s also a lot of small details such as the drilled aluminum pedals and aluminum shiftknob for the 6-speed manual, the slots on the front seats which technically mean you can sling in a couple of four-point clubman harnesses for some track time/amateur racing activities, and the LED daytime running lamps which give a touch of class and sophistication for this modern-day lightweight warrior.”

Check out the complete, raving article about the 2013 Honda CR-Z for more details about the first mainstream hybrid sports car!