Monday, April 10, 2017

Used Car Review - Honda CR-Z (2013-2016)

This discontinued model has a unique story to tell.

2013-2016 Honda CR-Z


Stereotypes say that hybrids are fuel friendly but are boring and bland as vanilla and sports cars should be fun but wastes fuel in the process. Honda's engineers thought that, why not combine two characteristics in one body to please both sides as well to throw in an extra pair of back seats and a manual transmission option.

And so, the CR-Z concept was first displayed ten years ago at the Tokyo Motor Show in October of that year with a revised version shown two years later and leading to a production model in 2010 through a North American International Auto Show debut. The CR-Z acronym means 'Compact Renaissance Zero', which brings up a renaissance in the design of concept cars from fresh ideas. The production model is intended to be sporty, efficient, and affordable - something Honda aims to be. Despite a refresh for 2016, it was announced in June 2016 that it will be discontinued at the end of the year to make way for other hybrids in the brand (although some say that poor sales play a role).

Although it was first displayed at the 2012 Philippine International Motor Show, it was officially available in the country a year later. When it was first launched, there were three models to choose from: a standard model, Modulo, and Mugen. A 2016 update resulted to just one model, with the IMA Final Edition released in July of the same year until it was removed in the line-up this year. All variants can be ordered with either a manual or a CVT.

Value and Costs
Costing a hundred grand less than the lowered priced Toyota Prius C, the CR-Z is the cheapest hybrid vehicle that can be purchased brand new, with the standard manual back in 2013 can be had at P1.39M and the most pricey variant pegged at P1.9M for the Mugen CVT. Second hand prices can be obtained between P920,000 to P1.1M for newer models. Our safest bet would be units purchased from the second half of 2014 and later so you can take advantage of the remainder of the warranty.

Since this is a hybrid, prepare yourself to spend a little bit on maintenance especially when it comes to its components while its fuel consumption isn't that far off compared to sub-compact sedans. Since this car is just a few years old, we have no idea when it comes to the hyrbid power-train reliability but it will last long if taken care of.

Exterior and Interior
Remember the CR-X from the 80s? Well this vehicle will remind you of its exterior design spiritually, since the concept doesn't stray off from the original. Additional items from the standard model include body kits for the Modulo and Mugen (as standalone models) with the latter having daytime running lights, which was later trickled on to the updated 2016 model. IMA Final Edition models are distinguished by their black accents.

If you plan to bring along three of your friends for a long drive, look for other options as this isn't for you. With a driver biased interior and a snug interior, this is one car that you can feel comfortable in since the steering wheel and shifter are within driver's reach. Depending on the variant, seat colors can vary that complements a futuristic looking interior. Changes for 2016 includes an electronic parking brake (old models use a lever type), a navigation system, and a reverse camera, something needed for a car with a poor rear visibility.

The L engine series had seen usage from different Honda vehicles, but this one is rather unique especially that it has a hybrid component. The LEA 1.5 hybrid has varying power figures, depending on the transmission, with manuals having 134hp at 6,600rpm and 190Nm at 4,800rpm while two pedal models get 133hp at 6,600rpm and 170Nm at 4,800rpm. Fire this vehicle up and there's some burble, quite unusual for such type of car.

Driving Impressions
Since this is a hybrid, do not expect that kick that Hondas (from the B engine series) are known for. Rather, when you are on the move it is light on its feet and can get to your destination quickly, provided you are on sports mode. Three driving modes exist which include the following: Eco which is tuned for frugality and economy, Normal for the best balance, and Sport for more aggressive driving. Gearing is great, with smooth shift transitions complemented with a confident handling and quick braking. Fuel consumption, for a hybrid, may leave you disappointed but for a car with a sporting nature, you wouldn't mind.

Saying that two things (that even contradicts) can't be combined is impossible, Honda did something that the competition didn't. While it may not have some fans, it was a bold move for them.

The Good:
  • Guilt free
  • Exciting
  • Looks good
The Bad:
  • Noisy ride
  • Limited rear visibility
  • Unknown reliability of hybrid components
The Pick: Any, but stick to the base

Engine: 1,499cc LEA I4 gasoline hybrid
Power: 134hp @ 6,600rpm (manual), 133hp @ 6,600rpm (CVT)
Torque: 190Nm @ 4,800rpm (manual), 170Nm @ 4,800rpm (CVT)
Fuel Consumption: 8-10km/L (city), 10-15km/L (highway) (*estimated and varies)
Transmission: 6-speed manual, Continously Variable Transmission
Suspension: Front McPherson strut, rear torsion beam axle

Price (New): P1,390,000-P1,950,000
Price (Now): P920,000-P1,100,000
On Sale: 2013-2016

Honda Cars Pasig - (02) 988-1288

No comments:

Post a Comment