Geneva Motor Show Special: Honda reveals ‘Electric Vision’ alongside new Civic Type R
Honda Motor Europe’s President and COO, Katsushi Inoue, has revealed key details of the brand’s new ‘Electric Vision’. Speaking at the 2017 Geneva Motor Show, Inoue-san outlined Honda’s commitment to an electric future in Europe, with a specific aim to have electrified powertrains in two thirds of European cars sold by 2025.
Honda’s focus on electrification in Europe will initially be driven by a roll-out of hybrid technology across its automobile range. The first new hybrid model, which will feature Honda’s two-motor hybrid system, will go on sale in 2018. Honda will also make plug-in hybrid, battery electric and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles commercially available to European customers.
Keeping the focus firmly on this ‘Electric Vision’ Honda unveiled its NeuV all-electric concept. Pronounced ‘New Vee’, this futuristic vehicle features an intelligent powertrain called Honda Automated Network Assistant or HANA, that learns from the driver by detecting emotions behind their decisions. It can then apply what it has learnt from the driver’s past decisions to make new choices and recommendations.
A full touch-panel interface enables both the driver and passenger to access NeuV’s simple and convenient user experience. Outstanding outward visibility is afforded by a sweeping panoramic windscreen and a dramatically sloping belt line that make manoeuvring simple. Entry and exit from the vehicle is made as easy as possible, even in tight parking spaces, with a complete side panel that opens out and backwards to create a large opening. NeuV has two seats with luggage space behind, which also stores the ‘Kick ’n Go’ electric scooter concept designed for ‘last mile’ transit. The new design is powered by a detachable battery rather than a chain mechanism, and can be recharged through a connection in NeuV’s luggage space.
But far from pandering only to the green brigade, Honda also had something for the petrolhead in the form of the all new Civic Type R. Sharing the same fundamentals as the new Civic hatchback, the new Type R has been engineered from the ground up to deliver the most rewarding drive in the hot-hatch segment.
The two-litre VTEC turbo engine has been further optimised and refined and now produces 315bhp and a peak torque of 400Nm. Throttle response and driveability have improved thanks to optimised engine control settings. The smooth and precise six-speed manual transmission is further improved by a rev match control system, ensuring no compromise in the Type R’s intimate, rewarding connection with the driver. Driving modes too have been enhanced for better performance.
The new Type R takes the lighter, more rigid body shell of the new Civic hatchback and adds further use of adhesive in key areas. Compared to the previous Type R, torsional rigidity is further improved by 38%. The front Macpherson strut suspension of the standard hatchback is revised with new geometry to minimise torque steer and maximise sporty handling. At the rear, the new independent multi-link system of the standard car is improved with the use of unique high rigidity suspension arms.