Mugen has announced that its CR-Z will use a supercharged version of the standard 1.5-litre i-VTEC petrol engine. The engine internals will be beefed up considerably to handle boost pressure, while the Integrated Motor Assist electric motor will remain unchanged, providing extra power.
Mugen says the supercharged 1.5-litre will boast figures of around 147kW of power and 245Nm of torque. This will put the little CR-Z into the same league as the John Cooper Works MINI Cooper S and the Renault Clio RS 200 Cup, in terms of power and weight. Colin Whittamore of Mugen Europe, recently announced,
"The idea was to use the significant advantage of the early torque provided by the Honda IMA electric motor, then increase the torque available from the petrol engine gradually, to first maintain and then increase this.
“A supercharger and complementary electronics allow us to very neatly map the IMA to the extra power and torque of the engine in a unique package, giving a smooth, integrated and powerful driving experience.”
The Mugen CR-Z will be unveiled at the Goodwood Festival of Speed in the UK in July. Even though Honda currently has no plans to sell the vehicle as a part of its line-up, upgrades are likely to become available from Mugen as a separate package.