After releasing preview photos of the Hybrid concept the CR-Z earlier this month Honda just announced at the Tokyo Auto Show its plans to put the car into production. Their hope is that the car will make it into production just as it is now, but very few cars make it from concept to production without changes. While the representatives for Honda at the auto show were vague on a time-line for production unnamed sources have indicated that the car could make it to market some time in mid-2009 or early 2010.
With the introduction of the CR-Z and other hybrid concepts Honda has coming down the line they expect to be selling a 1/4 million hybrids a year by 2009. That number would ofcourse double how many hybrid cars they have sold EVER. So that is either some great optomism by the popular car maker or a clear indication of where they see the future of hybrids. As they stated in their announcements, Hybrid cars are going to be moving away from being a niche market and into being a part of the mainstream car market.
The CR-Z is an interesting concept that we have stated before has its heritage in the 1980’s CRX design. Another point of influence from that 80’s hatchback will be the fuel savings. While the 80’s version did not have all the emissions controls that we use in todays cars it was certainly a fuel sipper for its day. The CRX was known to up to 40+ mpg in a time when gas was cheap (compared to todays prices) and few worried as much about fuel mileage.
Â The cross-eyed stare of the Honda CR-Z may not please all buyers, but I am surprisingly pleased with the design of the concept. The sloped hood, wide-mouth grill and narrow windows come together into a very interesting package. There is little point in studying the interior as the concept interior package will see an overhaul before it reaches production. However the steering wheel and gauge cluster may survive the engineers harsh CAD strokes.
Â Below are some photos of the Honda CR-Z taken from the Tokyo Auto Show. What are your impressions of Honda’s newest Hybrid creation?