The 2016 Honda CR-Z

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The 2016 CR-Z is the continued effort to create a sporty hybrid. Honda isn’t making a great job in that matter. One of the few things we can be thankful for this model is that is the only hybrid available in the market offered with a manual gearbox, which is great. But regarding the rest of the factors in the equation, many found important problems.

The Japanese carmaker is trying to gain some advantage in the tough fight for the technological dominion at the automotive industry. With a rival like Toyota, this is a difficult task. There is a lot to do and improve in order to win terrain.

Let’s see several of the most important features of the 2016 CR-Z.

Engine and Specs for the CR-Z

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The 2016 CR-Z packs an SOHC i-VTEC 16-valve 1.5 L inline-4 as the main, gas-based engine. The hybrid layout is composed by this power plant and an electric motor, which generates up to 20 horsepower by itself. The total power output is rated at 130 hp at 6000 RPM and 140 lb-ft of torque at 1000 RPM. So, for a sports hybrid car, this is quite disappointing.

In terms of transmission, we find a highly appreciated 6-speed manual gearbox, while there is a 2-speed CVT optional configuration. The fuel efficiency is rated at 31 mpg for the city and 38 mph at the highway when the manual transmission is used. If the CVT one is onboard, numbers slightly improve to 36 mpg for the city and 39 mpg for the highway.

The sporty intentions keep short as the rack-pinion steering do not feel as athletic as intended. A strut suspension is found in the front while there is a torsion beam in the rear. For the technologies present in this model, the VSA Electronic Stability Control and side impact beams are among of plenty safety mechanism available. A sequential sport shift is also available as optional.

Changed Design

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The 2016 CR-Z features a slightly revamped design, mainly noticed in both front and rear bumpers. Changes are mostly due aesthetics. While there are three different trims available, the design features are standard in most cases. The LX, EX, and EX-L variants are differenced mostly in terms of interior composition and comfort.

The limited capacity for two passengers quickly tells us the sports intentions for the CR-Z. While this isn’t achieved in terms of performance, the overall design did make something positive about it. The 2016 CR-Z did features a peculiar sports design. For some, the actual form could be unpleasant visually but Honda is betting for a modernized, avant-garde look, which seems appropriate for a hybrid, earth-caretaker vehicle.

The 16-inch alloy wheels and the P195/55V tires at both axles are appropriate to the design as well. The LED taillights are one of the most cutting-edge details at the visual scale. When we arrive at the 2016 CR-Z interior, the glossy black finish is noticeable as the most common element. While the black leather upholstery is exclusive for the EX-L variant, the most expensive one, the other trims feature the same dark-themed decoration in other materials.

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Keyless entry and push-button start features come as standard for all the trims available. The 2016 CR-Z also packs a 6-speaker audio system with 160 watts of power without paying an extra buck. EX and EX-L trims feature one more speaker for their audio system setup, which provide a minor power up.

The Bottom Line

While the idea is kind of cool and answers a need for a hybrid sports car, the 2016 CR-Z didn’t apply as a solution. The base price for the most affordable model starts at US$21.130.

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