Twin-motor hybrid set-up for new Honda HR-V
HONDA'S new HR-V compact SUV will come as standard with a twin-motor hybrid powertrain when it goes on sale later this year, writes William Scholes.
It uses a two small electric motors connected to a 1.5-litre petrol engine, for system outputs of 129bhp and 187lb ft of torque.
The company says the hybrid set-up features three drive modes which are automatically selected "for the prevailing driving requirements".
"For ultimate efficiency, the HR-V pulls off in electric mode, seamlessly changing to hybrid mode when the engine is under high-torque demand, with the petrol engine used when driving at higher, more constant speeds," says Honda.
The driver can also select the level of energy regeneration they prefer - a feature normally associated with pure-electric cars.
The new model is a sleeker looking machine than the current car, though Honda insists the coupe-like overtones haven't affected its "class-leading interior space".
Honda says the interior has stepped up in quality to give a "solid, premium SUV feel".
It also talks about a ventilation system that creates "a curtain of fresh air beside and above passengers", apparently made using L-shaped vents in the top corners of the dashboard. In Honda-speak, this is called an 'air diffusion system'.
"This new system addresses a disparity in traditional vent configurations, where passengers often feel uncomfortable with air flowing directly onto them," it explains.
"The system subtly directs a stream of air along the front side windows to the roof, creating a vortex of air beside and above occupants.
"The effect of these new vents does not impact directly on passengers but creates a comfortable internal environment for all."
Good news, too, for fans of the current HR-V's practicality. The new model retains the trick 'magic seats' in the back, which can fold in a more useful variety of ways than you'll find elsewhere.
There is no information yet on prices but the new HR-V will reach Europe by the end of the year.