The 2011 Honda CR-Z hasn’t even hit U.S. showrooms, but rumors are already circulating about the automaker possibly crafting a larger, more powerful hybrid sports coupe.
Honda’s new CR-Z sports hybrid combines a small 1.5-liter gasoline engine and an electric motor to put out a total of 118 horsepower — not too much for a sports car.
A Honda insider told Motor Trend, however, that a larger hybrid sports coupe is planned for the near future with CR-Z-crushing performance. Details of the powertrain are still iffy, but the source says a car was originally conceived to mate a V-6 with a hybrid system. Now, engineers are considering using a more efficient 2.5-liter I-4 instead of the six-banger. The V-6 system is still being considered for use in U.S.-spec minivans and SUVs.
Honda’s planned hybrid sports coupe is reported to be around the same size as the current Accord Coupe, providing seating for four. Although it will vastly outperform the CR-Z, the car will still be very efficient. One Honda engineer hinted that there are driver-selectable settings to aim for either performance of fuel economy.
In addition to a new hybrid sports coupe, the source also mentioned that Honda is working on a series-hybrid system, much like the Chevrolet Volt. One difference in the system, however, is that Honda would incorporate a capacitor that could power the electric motor once the battery runs out of juice, furthering the car’s electric-only range. This range-extending hybrid system may be destined for the company’s larger cars and SUVs, including the next-generation Accord.
Source: Motor Trend