Video: Honda CR-Z engineers say Mini, VW Scirocco, Lotus Elise were benchmarks

Judging by the comments you made on our 2011 Honda CR-Z Detroit Auto Show debut post, you guys don’t seem too impressed by Honda’s new hybrid hatchback. We haven’t driven the CR-Z (and probably won’t for a while), but we’re praying that its better than the Insight we drove last month.

Nonetheless, Honda seems pretty keen on letting people know that the CR-Z will be fun to drive hybrid. In a new video released today, Honda engineers let us know what their inspirations were when producing the CR-Z hybrid.

Some quotes in the video that may surprise you:

  • “We therefore wanted to realize the agile handling of the Mini…”
  • During the development of the CR-Z we have driven many cars and have also bought several cars for comparison and benchmarking – the Mini, the Scirocco, but also a Lotus Elise.”
  • …”and set the body stiffness at a similar level to that of a Civic Type R.”

Check out the video for more.

Refresher: The 2011 Honda CR-Z is powered by a 1.5L i-VTEC mated to Honda”s Integrated Motor Assist hybrid system. It produces a total of 122-hp and a maximum torque of 128 lb-ft when mated to manual transmission (123 lb-ft for CVT models). Fuel-economy is estimated at 31/37 mpg (city/highway) for the manual model and 36/38 mpg for the CVT model. Sales begin in the second half of 2010.

2010 Detroit: 2011 Honda CR-Z:

2010 Detroit: 2011 Honda CR-Z 2010 Detroit: 2011 Honda CR-Z 2010 Detroit: 2011 Honda CR-Z 2010 Detroit: 2011 Honda CR-Z

2010 Detroit: 2011 Honda CR-Z:

All Photos Copyright © 2009 Stephen Calogera ““ egmCarTech.

– By: Kap Shah