|Tokyo, June 18, 2003 --- Honda
Motor Co., Ltd. has announced a full-model change for the Inspire, integrating
its Saber and Inspire sedans to create a luxury passenger car that combines
refined styling with a sporty ride. Loaded with intelligent technology and
other equipment sure to boost its appeal, the fully remodeled Inspire will
make its debut on June 19, 2003 at Honda car dealerships across Japan, priced
on par with its predecessor at 2.7 to 3.5 million yen.
Offering enhancements in the three key areas of sedan performance-driving,
turning, and stopping-the fourth-generation Inspire was developed around
the concept of a "New Intelligent Tourer", employing Honda's unique, cutting-edge
technologies to provide optimum driving pleasure and ensure a ride of unparalleled
comfort and quality.
The all-new Inspire features the world's first Collision Mitigation Brake
System*1 (CMS) and Honda's E-Pretensioner*1,
two technologies on the forefront of pre-crash safety that help prevent
collisions through risk assessment and driver warning functions, and mitigate
the impact on occupants and vehicle damage in the event a collision occurs.
The Inspire's new 3.0-liter V6 i-VTEC engine features Honda's newly developed
Variable Cylinder Management System, which idles three cylinders during
cruising to achieve a combination of ample power and fuel economy of 11.6
km/L*2, on par with that of a 2.4-liter in-line
4-cylinder engine*3. The environment-friendly
Inspire meets both Japan's Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, and Transportation
requirements for Ultra-Low Emissions and 2010 fuel economy standards, making
it the only 3.0-liter class sedan to offer a level of environmental performance
to qualify for the Japanese government's Green Tax incentives.
The Inspire employs a specialized suspension system and a highly rigid,
lightweight body to provide superior passenger comfort and ride quality.
An interior design that blends fine quality with the latest advancements,
coupled with a variety of amenities to support comfortable long-distance
travel, create a space in which occupants can enjoy their ride in any setting,
from highway to city driving.
||Standard on the Avanzare
||Fuel consumption when driven in 10-15 mode (Ministry of Land, Infrastructure,
and Transportation test value)
||Compared to an Accord sedan 2.4-liter engine, which achieves fuel
consumption of 12.0 km/liter when driven in 10-15 mode
Main Features of the Inspire
Innovative power train
3.0-liter i-VTEC Engine
- The new V6 3.0-liter i-VTEC Engine features Honda's Variable Cylinder
Management System, which switches between six-cylinder operation and
three-cylinder operation depending on driving conditions. When the system
determines, through analysis of factors such as vehicle speed, engine
speed, and throttle opening, that the vehicle is at cruising speed,
it idles the intake and exhaust valves for the rear bank of three cylinders
and halts fuel injection to those cylinders. The idled cylinders remain
sealed, reducing pumping losses due to engine respiration by approximately
65%. This enables the V6 3.0-liter engine to supply ample power with
a fuel efficiency of 11.6 km/L*1, on par with
the fuel economy of a 2.4-liter in-line 4-cylinder engine*2.
- The new engine delivers high power and torque performance at the top
of its class, with an output of 184 kW (250 PS), and torque of 296 Nm
(30.2 kg.m) on regular unleaded gasoline.
- The Inspire is certified as an Ultra-Low Emissions Vehicle by the
Japanese Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, and Transportation. It also
conforms to 2010 fuel economy standards, making it the only 3.0-liter
class sedan to offer a level of environmental performance to qualify
for the Japanese government's Green Tax incentives.
- The Inspire is also equipped with a Drive-By-Wire (DBW) electronic
throttle control system that works in concert with the Variable Cylinder
Management system to significantly enhance the smoothness of the ride
and boost fuel economy.
||Fuel consumption when driven in 10-15 mode (Ministry of Land,
Infrastructure, and Transportation test value)
||Compared to an Accord sedan 2.4-liter engine, which achieves
fuel consumption of 12.0 km/L when driven in 10-15 mode.
automatic transmission (S-matic)
Advanced danger prediction
and lane identification features
- The Inspire's 5-speed S-matic
automatic transmission delivers improved acceleration when passing,
while inhibiting torque reduction during changes in the number of active
- Shift Hold Control reduces
unnecessary gear changes during performance driving.
||Honda Intelligent Driver
Support System (HiDS) assists in highway driving (standard on the
- The LKAS (Lane-Keeping Assist System) identifies the vehicle lane
based on images captured by a C-MOS camera mounted inside the front
window. The system applies the appropriate amount of torque to the vehicle's
electric power steering to assist the driver in maintaining the vehicle
in its lane.
- The IHCC (Intelligent Highway Cruise Control) vehicle speed and distance
control system assesses driving conditions using data from a millimeter-wave
radar unit built into the front grill of the vehicle that measures the
distance to the vehicle ahead, along with data from speed and yaw rate
sensors. In addition to maintaining the vehicle at a set speed, this
cruise control system automatically regulates vehicle speed and distance
depending on whether or not there is a vehicle in the same lane ahead.
- The two systems work together to reduce the burden of highway driving,
providing increased comfort and safety.
||World's first Collision
Mitigation Brake System (CMS) and E-Pretensioner (standard on the
- Honda's pre-crash safety technology assesses collision risk and mitigates
occupant impact and vehicle damage by combining the first-ever Collision
Mitigation Brake System, which warns the driver to help avoid collisions
and regulates the brakes to reduce vehicle speed, with the E-Pretensioner,
which automatically retracts the seatbelt before a collision occurs.
- The system uses millimeter-wave radar to detect vehicles within a
range of about 100 meters ahead, assessing collision risk based on inter-vehicle
distance, relative vehicle speed, and estimated vehicle trajectories.
As assessed collision risk rises, audio and tactile warnings alert the
driver and prompt preventative action. The system also works to reduce
occupant impact and vehicle damage in the event a collision is unavoidable,
by providing braking assist if the driver's foot pressure on the brake
pedal is deemed insufficient, along with seatbelt control that increases
passenger restraint and pre-impact brake control designed to reduce
vehicle speed before a collision occurs.
- The E-Pretensioner is designed to operate whenever the driver brakes
suddenly and the brake assist functions, tightening the seatbelt to
secure the driver even if the CMS has not been activated.
||Active control engine
mounts significantly reduce transmission of engine vibration
- Front and rear active control engine mounts are designed to cancel
out engine vibration, which increases when cylinders are idling. The
mechanism estimates the vibration caused by fluctuations in the engine
crank rotation and absorbs vibration by compressing and extending an
actuator at the bottom of the fluid-sealed mount in same-phase, same-period
motion, resulting in a quieter interior that keeps passengers from noticing
when cylinders are idling.
||Active noise control cancels
cylinder idling drone
- Active noise control is used to generate sound opposite in phase to
the engine drone produced when cylinders are idling.
- The frequency to be attenuated is determined based on engine revolution
pulses, and a signal to cancel the frequency is generated via an audio
speaker, thus reducing the drone. Sound picked up by a microphone in
the vehicle is continually analyzed, and the canceling signal is instantaneously
updated to provide a virtually quiet environment.
Chassis and body
- A high-performance chassis provides superior comfort and handling
- Double-wishbone suspension in the front delivers superb straight-line
stability and comfort.
- A 5-link, double-wishbone suspension in the rear delivers superior
- VSA (Vehicle Stability Assist) supplements ABS and TCS with sideslip
- Torsional rigidity has been improved by 27% over the previous model.
Superior static and dynamic rigidity ensure responsiveness in the front,
stability in the rear, and a more comfortable ride.
- Approximately 50% of the body frame is made of high tensile steel, which boosts rigidity
while significantly reducing vehicle weight.
* Standard on the Avanzare and 30TL.
||An exterior design with a classy, aggressive feel
- A high deck and flowing form impart a sense of spaciousness and a sporty image.
- Large-diameter left and right exhaust pipe finishers that appear integrated with the
bumper and an integrated high-mount brake light built into the trunk lid create a rear view
of refined intensity.
- Thin, oblong high-intensity discharge (HID) low-beam headlights provide a unique front
view with different looks for day and night. In addition, a wide field of illumination
enhances visibility at night to reduce the burden on the driver.
||A clean interior design with emotional appeal
- The interior is designed to appeal to the senses, demanding to be seen, to be touched, and
to be used.
- The instrument panel features a wrap-around design that extends to the left and right door
lines and a center module with audio and climate controls conveniently located for
- Blue interior illumination lights up when the small lamps are turned on to create a sense
- The four round dashboard gauges feature luminescent white and blue dials that float atop
a black face. In the center is a multi-information display that provides information on
driving conditions and the operating status of the HiDS, CMS, Variable Cylinder
Management, and other vehicle systems.
||Lower center panel lights standard on all models. Lighting at the foot of the front seats and front seat pockets standard on the Avanzare.
Packaging and interior
- The Inspire features a cockpit area designed to make the driver feel relaxed and at ease.
- The front seats are shaped to naturally draw occupants in, providing a hold that envelops
the entire lower back and hips. Central portions that contact the legs and back are soft,
while the outside portions are stiff, providing both seating comfort and a secure hold.
- An electric driver's seat height adjustor*1, eight-way power driver's seat*2, electric-
powered lumbar support*2 and a tilting and telescoping steering wheel mechanism
combine to allow the driver optimal control over his or her driving position, for reduced
- The rear center seat is equipped with a headrest.
- The trunk room is a capacious 495 liters (491 liters on the Avanzare). *3 In addition to a
rear seat armrest through-hole to the trunk, the rear seats are also equipped with a fold-
down mechanism for transporting long, oversized luggage.
- Front windows outfitted with UV-blocking glass that absorbs high-intensity heat rays and
blocks infrared rays are standard on the Avanzare.
- An electric sunshade*4 blocks strong sunlight, increasing rear seat comfort. The sunshade
automatically retracts when the shift lever is placed in reverse to ensure an unobstructed
view through the rear window.
- The fully automatic air conditioner features independent right- and left-side temperature
*1 Standard on the 30TE.
*2 Standard on the Avanzare and 30TL.
*3 Based on Honda in-house testing according to VDA formula.
*4 Standard on the Avanzare, available as a factory-installed option on the 30TL.
Equipment for advanced functionality
- Equipped with the Honda Smart-Card Key System*1. An ultra-slim card key enables users
to lock and unlock the doors, open the trunk, and operate the ignition.
- Outfitted with Honda's DVD Navigation System with voice recognition, which features a
large-screen, 8-inch-wide monitor and a DVD-ROM, and supports Honda's InterNavi
Premium Club*2. Touch panel and voice recognition functions further improve operability
and ease of use.
||Standard on the Avanzare and 30TL. Available in a package with rain-sensing wipers as a factory-installed
option on the 30TE.
||Available as a manufacturer's option on all models.
- The world's first electronically controlled brake assist*1 automatically sets the assist set-
point and intelligently adjusts to the driver's brake operation. Control is integrated with
the CMS and E-Pretensioner safety technologies.
- The driver's seat is equipped with a Seatbelt Reminder that prompts the driver with a
warning light and buzzer if the seat belt is not buckled when the car is in motion.
- Honda's original G-CON (G-force Control) technology is incorporated to create a new
body with enhanced crash safety. It is capable of withstanding a 55km/h full-frontal
collision, a 64km/h front offset collision, 55km/h side collision, and a 50km/h rear
collision. To further improve safety in real-world collisions, Honda has implemented its
own vehicle-to-vehicle collision testing program with its own independently-established
research standards*2. This collision testing is much more demanding than conventional
tests in which the car is crashed into a fixed barrier. The Inspire's safety design meets
even these stringent testing requirements.
- The vehicle body employs an impact-absorbing design to reduce head and leg injuries to
pedestrians in the event of a vehicle-pedestrian accident.
- The interior is designed to protect occupants' heads in a collision, and front seats are
designed to alleviate shocks to the neck.
- The side-curtain airbag system*3 deploys over a wide area extending across nearly the
entire side window. The system, with a rapid deployment of 0.015 seconds, significantly
reduces occupant head injuries in the event of a side collision.
- An SRS dual front airbag system is standard equipment.
- ISO FIX compatible child seat anchoring bars and tether anchors (left and right rear seats)
are also standard.
||Standard equipment on the Avanzare and 30TL.
||Testing involves a 50% front-offset collision with a 2-ton class passenger vehicle, both vehicles traveling
at 50 km/h.
||Standard equipment on the Avanzare. Available as a factory-installed option on the 30TL and 30TE in a
package with the front seat i-side airbag system (with passenger-side occupant position detection function).
An Inspire ALMAS (30TL and 30TE) equipped with a passenger-side swivel seat will debut
on July 25, 2003 at Honda automobile dealers throughout Japan.
- Atmospheric pollutants (HC, NOx) in the exhaust gas have been greatly reduced. The
Inspire achieves high environmental performance, clearing government emissions
regulations for 2000 by a substantial margin. As a result, the Inspire has earned Japanese
Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport certification as an Ultra Low-Emissions
- Honda's Variable Cylinder Management System and high-efficiency fuel combustion
technology contribute to a fuel economy of 11.6 km/L, which complies with government
regulations for fuel economy for 2010*1. In addition to being certified as an Ultra-Low
Emissions Vehicle, the Inspire is the only 3.0-liter class sedan to qualify for Japan's Green
- Almost all interior injection-molded parts are made of olefin resin for superior
recyclability. This and other measures result in an overall vehicle recyclability of over
- Lead usage has been reduced to less than 10% of 1996 levels.
- The use of high-temperature heating and quenching of the molds during the manufacture
of the instrument panel and other molded surface parts has been eliminated, reducing the
amount of energy required.
|| Fuel consumption when driven in 10-15 mode (Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, and Transportation test
||According to independent Honda measurement standards
The Inspire ALMAS features a passenger seat that can be rotated with a simple operation to
enable a caregiver to help a passenger in and out of the seat. The seat is the same high-
comfort model featured on a standard Inspire, with the addition of a front/rear slide function.
Installation performed by Honda Tokuso Co., Ltd.
| Inspire ALMAS 30TL (Option equipped vehicle)
The ALMAS derives its name from the Spanish word "alma", which means "spirit", and
represents the wholehearted spirit Honda incorporated in the development of its ALMAS