Honda CR-Z to Cost Less Than $20,000; No Si/Type R Planed

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Honda CR-Z to Cost Less Than $20,000; No Si/Type R Planed
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The new Honda CR-Z will go on sale in the U.S. on August 24th, with a starting price of under $20,000 reports InsideLine. Unfortunately the car will not be eligible for a federal tax credit. Apparently the rules state that only 60,000 tax credits for hybrids are allowed per automaker and Honda spokesman Chuck Schifsky told IL that Honda passed that mark several years ago. Honda is able to offer the car for so little because of the less-sophisticated nickle-metal hydride battery used (rather than a lithium-ion one).

At that price range Honda intents to target buyers aged 25-35, although initial reports from Japan suggest the car is a bigger hit with an older demographic.

Sadly, for performance enthusiasts who might be attracted to the CR-Z’s small size and styling, Honda says a higher performance Si or Type R model is not in the plans. John Mendel, Honda’s VP of sales wasn’t exactly forceful on the point, however, commenting that there’s “nothing official” in the product plans. There are also no plans for a pure electric model, with Honda holding the belief that for some applications EVs will work, but that for normal use in the U.S., Honda just doesn’t see an EV catching on – at least with the current range capabilities.

Honda’s new CR-Z makes 122-hp and 128 ft-lbs of torque from a 1.5-liter gasoline engine mated to an electric motor, using Honda’s Integrate Motor Assist (IMA) hybrid system. Fuel economy is expected to reach 31/37-mpg (city/highway) for the 6-speed manual and 35/39-mpg for the CVT automatic.

GALLERY: Honda CR-Z Mega Gallery

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[Source: InsideLine]

  • Mike

    Great looking car, and really too bad about the tax credit. I think this car will be very popular and probably sold out in most areas. If you look at CRZforum.com this has similar hype to the early Honda’s of 1990’s… engine swaps, body kits, lowering, etc will all be very popular. Expect this to revive the tuner-scene!! Nice work Honda.

  • disappointed hondafan

    Actually, this a sad effort by Honda–if it truly wanted to appeal to the tuners it would have not made it a hybrid. It simply is much easier and cheaper to tune a regular gasoline engine. To me tuners are talking about engine swaps because the present power train power output is so dismal and anemic that it has no place in any car that has sporty aspirations. Think of it this way, if Honda had made a gasoline only version it would have been lighter, at least $2000.00 cheaper, handled better and faster. The hybrid system in this car makes no sense as it delivers hardly any benefit to this car over a gasoline only version to justify the additional weight (which slow an already slow car down and detrimentally affects its handling) and expense. There is very little sporty about a car that is dead slow and is barely faster than a 4 cylinder Sienna and as one writer stated, ‘…but the CR-Z is far from the most agile small coupe around–a Mini or a BMW 1 series would leave it for dead on a twisting road.” This is a car that doesnt know what it wants to be and fails as a frugal hybrid and as a sporty car.

  • markman

    I disagree. Honda’s “mild hybrid” system (IMA) may not be a publicity hit like the Prius’ more complicated high MPG system, but I believe it will catch on very quickly, and in the long run prove 1) Increase MPG in all their cars, especially city mileage 2) will be reliable and simpler (comparatively to full hybrids) to service, fix or repair 3)will evolve thinner, lighter, more powerful, cheaper, etc. as Honda’s R&D does its stuff. What other ‘hybrid’ system has the potential to be implemented in all their model lineup in the near future? Who knows the company might manage a lightweight, clean, high revving 40mpg type R with lots of low end torque?

    Certainly would be more entertaining than a diesel. Or an full-electric car. Ugh. Granted, full electric might one day be good as battery tech catches up but it’ll be a long to go before we can fully recharge an electric car in less than 10 minutes. Certainly this is the future to cut down on fuel usage for the transition until hydrogen or some other alternative fuel comes along.

    When Honda’s CEO said they needed to go back to its roots, in my opinion I think he meant to take bold, unpopular/untried directions, make entertaining yet fuel-sipper cars that don’t cost too much, but of course, with modern safety and tech expectations. Looking at Honda’s very early history (1960s), they did exactly this, though the models aren’t always successful, but with each generation they just get better.