March 1, 2011
The Geneva Motor Show is the European motor show debut of the revised Honda Jazz and marks the return of a CVT automatic transmission to the endlessly flexible B-segment hatchback.
When Honda's engineers set about revising the popular Jazz model, one of the priorities was to give Jazz customers an automatic transmission that would not impact on fuel economy or CO2 emissions. The solution they came up with was to combine a Continuously Variable Transmission, similar to that seen in the first Jazz, with a torque converter unit. The torque converter replaced the start clutch arrangement of the previous CVT unit, giving improved parking speed drivability and better highway fuel economy. It meant customers could benefit from the smooth, low stress driving experience of an automatic, without compromising its environmental performance.
The exterior of the Jazz has been given a makeover with the front lights given a subtly different shape, which are complemented by a new matt black mesh grille in between. The front bumper has also been re-profiled to enhanced aerodynamics and appearance. At the rear of the car the lights now have red sections at the top and bottom, with the centre section remaining white.
The interior has seen a total change of dashboard color, with a much darker plastic now used, giving a completely different ambience to the cabin. Chrome rings have been added to the climate control display and air vents, to contrast with the new dashboard. The seat fabrics have been given a new blue and black pattern to compliment the new surfaces of the dashboard areas. All illuminated areas of the dash are now lit in a soft amber color, unified across all instruments and complimenting the new interior materials.
The interior retains the legendary practicality which is made possible by the unique central fuel tank layout of the Jazz.
The Jazz's Magic Seats are a key feature of the interior, with the ability to drive down into the floor of the vehicle, giving a completely flat load bay, with a very low floor. Alternatively, the bases can be flipped up through 90 degrees to give a tall load space from the floor to the ceiling for carrying a huge variety of items, from bicycles to pot plants. The rear seats can now recline a few degrees, to allow rear seat passengers the possibility to adjust the seat pitch to their liking.
The Jazz's exterior dimensions establish it firmly as a B-segment hatchback, but its enormous 399 liters of boot space (including underfloor area), which can be extended in seconds to a cavernous 1320 liters with the seats folded, endow it with more load volume than some C-segment vehicles.
Detail revisions to suspension and steering settings have yielded significant improvements in both ride and handling for the new Jazz. Engineering teams in Germany and the UK, where a significant percentage of Jazz models sold in Europe are produced, spent time refining the already impressive chassis on a variety of roads. To allow drivers to enjoy the improvements, the engineers increased the torque around the centre position of the steering wheel, to give the driver more feeling.
The Jazz Hybrid will go on sale in March 2011 in many markets and is shown in full production specification at the Geneva Motor Show, further demonstrating Honda's continuing commitment to petrol-electric hybrid technology.
The launch of the latest addition to the practical Jazz line-up marks the first time a parallel hybrid vehicle has been available to B-segment consumers. Importantly the Jazz Hybrid will not lose any of its practicality, with the compact nature of the Honda IMA system allowing the B-segment car to retain its ultra-flexible "Magic Seats" and 300 liters of boot space.
The IMA battery pack and power control unit have been integrated in the area under the boot floor, retaining the normal boot area and allowing the "Magic Seats" to fold in the same manner as non-hybrid versions. This means that the seats still fold entirely flat to provide a surprising 1320 liter of space or the seat bases can be folded up to sit vertically, so as to accommodate tall items within the car.
The IMA hybrid system is shared with the Insight and CR-Z hybrids, taking advantage of the proven reliability of this important technology. With almost two decades of development and 10 years of sales behind it, the Honda IMA system has proven itself to be a flexible and dependable system, with over half a million vehicles on the road benefitting from its combination of low emissions and fuel economy.
The new model features the same IMA system as in the Insight hybrid, using the same 1.3 liter i-VTEC engine as its dedicated hybrid model sibling. The IMA system is combined with a CVT gearbox in the Jazz and with emissions of just 104 g/km of CO2 it has the lowest CO2 output of any automatic car in the B-segment. As a petrol-electric hybrid, the new derivative has ultra-low levels of other exhaust emissions, not just taxable elements.
Visually the Jazz Hybrid is distinguished from the current Jazz range with revised headlights, which have a blue surround, clear rear lights, new front grille, restyled bumpers and a chrome tailgate garnish. The new hybrid will be available in a range of existing colors plus a bespoke Lime Green metallic.
Inside the cabin is given a fresh look with a darker single color dashboard, which contrasts strongly with the blue lighting of the dials and centre console. The new hybrid model, like the petrol range, is also available with leather trim, the first time this has been available as a factory fit option for the Jazz n Europe. The dashboard integrates a version of the Eco Assist function, which uses the ambient lighting of the speedometer to advise the driver on how their driving style is impacting on their fuel economy. The Eco Assist function aides drivers in getting the maximum economy from their car in everyday situations and gives users real-time feedback on how their use of the brakes and throttle affects their fuel bills and environmental impact.
While respecting the unique features of the car, a range of Genuine Accessories will accentuate its hybrid character even further. Decoration items, such as doorstep garnishes, a variety of exterior and interior stickers, B-pillar garnishes and alloy wheels can be fitted according to the driver's personal taste. A Solid State Drive navigation, hands-free Bluetooth® and rear entertainment system are set to provide extra technological comfort. A complete range of Genuine Accessories is available for those customers that want to add in even more functionality and style.
The Jazz Hybrid will go on sale in European markets in the early part of 2011, prices and full specifications will be announced in due course.
The revised Honda Accord sedan and Tourer models make their debut at the Geneva Motor Show. Both cars receive a host of changes with the styling, emissions, ride and handling all enhanced for 2011.
Both the sedan and Tourer have benefitted from small but noticeable changes to the head lights and bumpers to complement the changes under the skin. The head lights have been given a cleaner, crisper appearance with the previously amber indicators now in a clear finish. On top grade cars the lights are now bi-HID (xenon high and low beam) and feature Active Cornering Lights to improve night time visibility. The grille has been subtly remodelled with the two central spars finished in the same chrome material as the outer grille, for a sportier look. The cooling duct and fog light recesses on all models have been re-profiled with the taper of these areas given a more aggressive line, giving the car a more planted appearance.
The rear of the sedan model has been subtly enhanced with the rear lights having a light red finish for the reversing light and indicators to match that of the fog light, giving a balance to the rear styling. The exclusive styling of the sedan is rounded off with a light chrome garnish above the rear licence plate on most models and a dark chrome finish on Type S grade cars. The new exterior design cues are finished off with three new colors consisting of Alabaster Silver, Graphite Lustre and Celestial Blue Pearl added to the line up.
The exterior styling changes have been complemented by a number of subtle changes to the interior with most grades having new seat materials and door linings, changing the ambience of the cabin. Type S models have exclusive half leather, seats in a dark grey finish and a black head lining to further distinguish the top grade. The metal-look finish interior trim that covers the hand brake, gear lever surround, steering wheel garnish, door inlays, with a red background and sweeps up across the centre of the dash is now in a darker hue, to complement the new interior fabrics. The footwells of the majority of models are now illuminated blue if the headlights are on and red on Type S models.
The refined 2.2 liter 150 PS i-DTEC diesel engine has had internal frictional losses reduced to improve fuel economy and emissions. The result of these changes is an 9 g/km drop in CO2 emissions for the sedan with the 6-speed manual transmission and an 11 g/km reduction for the automatic variant. These internal changes have been combined with a host of underbody aerodynamic aids, including a larger front air dam, underfloor and a rear subframe cover Honda's engineers have also put effort into reducing the frictional losses in the wheels and tyres with low friction wheel bearings and reduced rolling resistance tyres. Accords equipped with Automatic transmission have also benefitted from minimised frictional losses in the gearbox and optimised ratios to improve economy and emissions.
The already impressive NVH performance of the current Accord has been further improved with the adoption of higher density foam in the under bonnet and dashboard areas. The underfloor noise insulation has also been revised and teamed with additional sound deadening shields on the DPF and exhaust manifold cover of the diesel engine. The suite of noise reductions techniques is completed with a small 0.9 mm increase in the thickness of the rear window glass, improving the rear passenger experience.
One of the most visible changes to the top of the range Accords is the addition of Active Cornering Lights, which provide enhanced illumination when the vehicle is turning. Additional lights units have been subtly integrated into the existing lights units, casting all of their light to the side of the vehicle to help the driver in low visibility conditions. The light unit on the relevant side will be illuminated when the driver activates the indicators in that direction or turns the steering wheel more than 90 degrees. When the vehicle is in reverse, both lights will be activated to give a good view to either side of the driver.
Another new lighting technology for Honda is the High Beam Support system, which is fitted on vehicles with the bi-HID (xenon high and low beam) headlights. This system is controlled by a CMOS camera fitted to the windscreen in the area of the driver rear view mirror. The camera detects oncoming headlights or the taillights of a vehicle in front and automatically dips the headlights onto their normal setting if they are on high-beam. This allows the driver to fully concentrate on the road conditions, without having to manually control the high-beam setting.
The new Accord goes on sale across Europe from April this year.
Honda has brought the all-new Honda EV Concept electric vehicle and the platform for a midsize plug-in hybrid vehicle to the Geneva Motorshow. The concepts are displayed as part of Honda's "Road to Zero Emissions", showing the current technology of hybrids alongside near future technology of plug-in vehicles and the ultimate goal of the Fuel Cell Electric Vehicles, like the FCX Clarity.
Both vehicles are integral to the Honda Electric Mobility Network, the company's comprehensive approach to reducing CO2 emissions through innovative products, energy-management and energy-production technologies.
The Honda EV Concept hints strongly at the direction and styling for Honda's upcoming production battery electric vehicle, which will be introduced to the U.S. and Japan in 2012. The all-new plug-in hybrid platform showcases Honda's next-generation, two-motor hybrid technology set to debut in 2012.
"Honda's long history with electromotive technologies has enabled us to understand customer requirements," said Takanobu Ito, Honda Motor Co., Ltd. President and CEO. "In Honda's view, an electric vehicle must offer great utility and be fun to drive. Honda EV Concept's urban commuting capability will be a perfect addition to the full-function mobility of the plug-in hybrid and FCX Clarity fuel cell electric vehicle."
The Honda EV Concept is designed to meet the daily driving needs of the average metropolitan commuter and utilises the same 5-passenger layout found in the popular Fit hatchback (known as Jazz in Europe). When the Honda EV Concept production model is introduced, it will be powered by a lithium-ion battery and coaxial electric motor.
The high-density motor, derived from the FCX Clarity fuel cell electric vehicle, delivers excellent efficiency and power while remaining quiet at high speeds. The Honda EV Concept will have a top speed of 144 km/h (90 mph).
The Honda EV Concept will achieve an estimated 160 km (100 mile) driving range per charge using the US EPA LA4* city cycle (112 km when applying EPA's adjustment factor). Driving range can be maximised by use of an innovative 3-mode electric drive system, adapted from the 2011 Honda CR-Z sporty hybrid.
The system allows the driver to select between ECON, NORMAL, and SPORT to instantly and seamlessly change the driving experience to maximise efficiency or improve acceleration.
The 3-mode electric drive system uses the same principle as the 3-mode drive system in the CR-Z hybrid, which allows drivers to optimise the vehicle for their preferences or traffic conditions. While in ECON mode, practical driving range can increase by as much as 17 percent, compared to driving in NORMAL mode, and up to 25 percent compared to driving in SPORT mode. Acceleration improves significantly when in Sport mode, generating performance similar to a vehicle equipped with a 2.0-liter petrol engine.
In addition to the 3-mode E-Drive system, the Honda EV Concept will include several interactive coaching systems to assist the driver in maximising battery range.
A special meter display advises the driver when to shut off air conditioning and other accessories to conserve battery power.
To help the driver manage the electric vehicle ownership experience, the Honda EV Concept will have a standard connectivity system that allows the driver to stay connected through a smartphone and personal computer, or the Honda-exclusive interactive remote, while away from the vehicle. The pocket-friendly, interactive remote provides connectivity to the vehicle without the need for an internet connection or mobile phone signal. Through the connectivity system, drivers will be able to remotely view the vehicle's state of charge, initiate charging and activate the air conditioning, even while connected to the grid, to reduce the drain on the battery at start-up. The mobile application and website also offers the ability to set charging notifications and alerts to optimise utility rates, and provides 24-hour roadside assistance, along with a public charging station locator. The Honda EV Concept will come equipped with a standard Honda Satellite Linked Navigation System™ that includes a public charging-station locator capability.
The Honda EV Concept is designed to be easy and convenient to charge. Battery recharging can be accomplished in less than 12 hours when using a conventional 120-volt outlet, and less than six hours when using a 240-volt outlet.
The Honda EV Concept displayed at Geneva features an exclusive Deep Clear Blue Pearl exterior color and distinctive five-spoke aluminium-alloy wheels with blue inserts. The Concept has unique LED headlights, a chrome front fascia, aerodynamic bumper, clear LED taillights and EV decals. Inside, the Honda EV Concept is outfitted in an eco-friendly grey bio-fabric on the seating surfaces.
Displayed alongside the Honda EV Concept at the show is a prototype Honda charging stand. To begin charging, the driver swipes a card in front of the screen and then connects the charger to the vehicle. The Honda charging stand provides a glimpse at the future of an electric-charging infrastructure that is easy to use and intuitive for consumers.
Honda also unveiled a plug-in hybrid platform, which showcases Honda's next-generation two-motor hybrid system. Integrated into a mid-size sedan platform, the plug-in hybrid is designed to be compatible with daily driving habits, allowing for short, frequent trips in all-electric mode, while providing long-distance driving capability when needed. The Honda two-motor system continuously moves through three different modes to maximise driving efficiency: all-electric, petrol-electric and a unique, engine direct-drive mode. The plug-in hybrid also uses regenerative braking to charge the battery.
In all-electric mode, the vehicle uses a 6kWh lithium-ion battery and a powerful 120 kW electric motor. The all-electric mode achieves a range of approximately 16-24 km (10-15) miles) in city driving and a top speed of 100 km/h (62 mph). Fully recharging the battery will take 2 to 2.5 hours using a 120-volt outlet and 1 to 1.5 hours using a 240-volt outlet.
The vehicle can also run in a petrol-electric hybrid mode, the platform features a fuel-efficient 2.0-liter, i-VTEC inline 4-cylinder, Atkinson cycle engine, paired with an Electric Continuously Variable Transmission (E-CVT). An onboard generator adds to the battery powering the electric motor.
For more efficient high-speed cruising, the vehicle can engage in a direct-drive mode, in which only the engine drives the front wheels.
Honda will launch an Advanced Technology Demonstration Program in the USA this year to provide real-world testing of its new vehicles, as well as research into customer behaviour and usability, public charging infrastructure planning and sustainability initiatives. Partners in the program will include Stanford University, City of Torrance, Calif. and Google, Inc.
Together, the Honda FCX Clarity fuel cell electric vehicle, the Honda EV Concept and the future plug-in hybrid vehicle, are a part of the company's comprehensive approach to reducing CO2 emissions. Honda is unique in its efforts to create both environmentally-responsible products and the renewable energy solutions to power them. Honda is currently producing and marketing thin-film solar panels in Japan, and an installation has recently been completed at three sites including the Honda Akademie in Erlensee, Germany, the Honda UK Manufacturing plant in Swindon, UK and the Honda Nordic head office in Malmö, Sweden.
Honda is also using innovative ways to produce and distribute energy through sustainable methods, such as using solar power to produce hydrogen fuel from water. Additionally, Honda is developing home energy-management systems that utilise micro-cogeneration technology and solar cell modules to power and heat homes as well as charge electric vehicles. The Honda Electric Mobility Network joins clean vehicle technology, renewable energy production and energy management solutions for the benefit of customers and society.
The FCX Clarity is displayed alongside the two concept vehicles demonstrating its position as the ultimate solution to zero emissions mobility. The world's first production fuel cell electric vehicle has been available to lease in the US and Japan since 2008, and has been delivered to customers including, actress, Jamie Lee Curtis and ice hockey player, Scott Niedermayer.
The FCX Clarity is fundamentally an electric vehicle, with a hydrogen fuel cell stack providing the electricity from a reaction between hydrogen and atmospheric oxygen. This reaction has only one emission, utterly pure water (H2O) in the form of vapour. The FCX Clarity can be refuelled from empty to full in less than four minutes, just like a fossil fuel car, and has a range of 460 km (288 miles). The FCX Clarity has ample space for four full-size adults plus luggage and combines this with a whisper quiet, 160 km/h (100 mph) top speed. Honda's fuel cell electric vehicle shows that a vehicle with no harmful emissions can be practical, comfortable and fun to drive.
In 2010 the FCX Clarity has been all over Europe to demonstrate the potential of fuel cell electric technology to politicians, key decision makers and infrastructure projects. Demonstrations this year have included a visit to a European Youth Parliament event and the World Hydrogen Energy Conference in Essen.
For further details, specifications, video and high-resolution photos, please visit www.hondazeroemissions.eu
The Honda EV Concept and a plug-in hybrid sedan will be introduced to the U.S. and Japan in 2012, joining Honda's diverse line-up of environmentally-responsible vehicles, which include the FCX Clarity fuel cell electric vehicle, the Civic GX compressed natural gas-powered sedan (U.S. only) and four distinct petrol-electric hybrid models: Civic Hybrid (US only); CR-Z sporty hybrid; Insight hybrid and Jazz Hybrid (Japan and Europe only).
*The EPA LA4 test mode is the standard US government testing mode for electric vehicles and what most automakers use for comparison purposes. Calculations under New European Drive Cycle conditions are not currently available.
The 2011 Honda Insight on the stand at Geneva features a revised interior, with the dashboard and seat trim now a darker hue for the new model year. The latest car also features revised suspension components and settings, specification changes and two new exterior colors.
The most noticeable difference is the change to black in the upper section of the dashboard of the Insight, significantly altering the ambience of the hybrid's cabin. There are now two interior color combinations available; the first being an entirely black dash, combined with black seats, door panels and centre console.
Alternatively, a grey lower dash section, seats and centre console can be selected, giving a lighter appearance to the cabin. For the first time leather seats are available on the Insight and these can be combined with either of the new dashboard and trim color schemes.
Complementing the interior color choices are some trim revisions with chrome rings for the air vents and heating controls to contrast against the darker interior. On top grade models with the black interior a silver metallic appearance trim is applied to the door grips.
In response to customer feedback the Insight has also seen revisions to the suspension, with settings and components altered to improve the ride, stability and handling of the 5-door hybrid. The changes include changing the shape of the V in the suspension brace, altering the rear camber, adjusting the recoil rate of the springs, changing the front suspension knuckle and increasing the size of underbody aerodynamic parts.
Two new exterior colors have been added, with Dynamic Blue Pearl replacing Neutron Blue and Carnelian Red Pearl replacing New Red Pearl. For the first time parking sensors are made standard on top grade cars to enhance customer convenience.
The Insight utilises the efficient, compact and proven 1.3 liter i-VTEC engine, combined with an electric motor. This engine and motor combination is shared with the new Jazz Hybrid and both models benefit from the ability to run on electric power alone under some speed conditions. CO2 emissions remain at 101 g/km and fuel consumption just 4.4 l/100km.
The combination of an ultra-aerodynamic body and a parallel hybrid powertrain gives the Insight impressive environmental performance with low overall exhaust emissions, not just CO2. The Insight has been developed to offer excellent fuel economy and emissions all of the time, not just in official tests. The Eco Assist encourages and assists drivers in achieving good fuel economy every day with the coaching function and ECON button.
Importantly the Insight is manufactured in a plant where zero production waste ends up in landfill and a suite of energy saving techniques are used to reduce overall impact. At the end of the vehicle's life the Insight is designed to be highly recyclable and recoverable and the batteries can be easily recycled through any Honda dealer.
The world's first 6-speed manual hybrid coupe, the Honda CR-Z is gracing the stand at the Geneva Motor Show. In its first half year of sales the car has smashed sales predictions in Japan and starred in the Live Every Litre social media activated documentary.
With CO2 emissions of just 117 g/km and fuel economy of 5.0 l/100km, the CR-Z shows being green doesn't mean sacrificing being sporty.
The one-motion wedge coupe offers something unique to motorists who are looking for a lower emission, or hybrid vehicle. The combination of 2+2 coupe styling, with a 1.5 liter IMA enhanced engine and a manual gearbox has changed perceptions of hybrid vehicles.
The overall power output of the engine and IMA system is 124 PS and a healthy 174 Nm of torque.
The peak torque figure is identical to that of the 1.8-liter Civic and arrives at just 1500 rpm, a level where previously only turbocharged engines deliver their maximum. Even with torque levels directly comparable with a Civic, the CR-Z emits 35 g/km** less CO2 than its conventionally powered cousin. Other harmful exhaust emissions are also very low and the Nickel Metal Hydride battery pack can be recycled through Honda dealers, at the end of the vehicle's life.
**Based on EU combined figure for both vehicles
A CR-Z Genuine Accessories range has been developed in four themes to enable Honda's dealers and customers to easily identify their individual requirements. The Carbon theme includes floor carpets and door-step garnishes, interior panels, body skirts and a 17" alloy wheel. The Metallic theme covers a front sports grille, door mirror covers, air-intake garnishes, pillar decorations and speaker rings. The Illumination theme gives a cool, blue luminescence to the interior of the CR-Z, while the Coloured theme offers tailgate garnishes and body styling graphics. The CR-Z Genuine Accessories range offers customers a wide variety of options to individualise and enhance their vehicle.
More details can be found at www.hondasportyhybrid.com
Joining the Accord in the safety zone of the Geneva Motor Show stand is the CR-V equipped with the Euro NCAP award-winning Collision Mitigation Brake System, the Honda-developed autonomous emergency braking system.
The CR-V was revised at the beginning of 2010 with changes to the suspension, styling, interior and specification. With these enhancements building on an already strong base, the CR-V has continued where its predecessor left off, with strong sales across Europe.
The introduction of the i-DTEC engine and the option of a diesel automatic version has proven popular with customers wanting a combination of fuel economy and superb ease of use.