The highly anticipated hybrid sports coupe made its second local motor show appearance today, taking centre stage on the Honda stand at the 2011 Australian International Motor Show in Melbourne.
Honda Australia finally confirmed the CR-Z will arrive in local showrooms in late-2011. It will be positioned slightly above fellow hybrid, the Insight VTi-L, meaning a starting price of around $35,000.
The CR-Z is powered by a hybrid drivetrain similar to the Insight’s, which utilises the brand’s tried and tested Integrated Motor Assist (IMA) system. A 1.5-litre four-cylinder petrol engine is teamed with an electric motor to produce 91kW of power and 174Nm of torque. The electric motor boosts torque down low, meaning the CR-Z achieves its peak between a very usable 1000-1500rpm.
Unlike most hybrids, which only come with a continuously variable transmission (CVT), the Honda CR-Z is available with a six-speed manual gearbox, adding to its sporting credentials and driving enjoyment.
The manual achieves a tidy fuel consumption of 5.0 litres/100km on the combined cycle, and the CVT betters it at 4.7 litres/100km.
Owners can select between three driving modes – Normal, Econ, Sport – to suit the conditions and their mood. All three alter the responsiveness and operation of the throttle, steering, climate control and the level of assistance provided by the IMA system.
Switching between modes also changes the ambiance inside the cabin, with interior lights glowing blue in Normal and Econ modes, green when the car is driven economically, and red when in Sport mode.
Full pricing and specification details of the 2011 Honda CR-Z will be revealed closer to the vehicle’s Australian launch later this year.
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