Friday, April 13, 2012

2013 Honda Crosstour Concept Unveiled

The 2013 Crosstour Concept, was unveiled April 4th at the New York Auto Show. This vehicle, although a concept, offers a peek at what's in store for this incredibly innovative midsize crossover.

The Crosstour makes a strong statement right from the start with a more rugged look staring you down from the enhanced grille and headlights. The aggressive profile, however, belies the refinement waiting inside, including convenient features like Pandora® internet radio interface[1] and SMS text message function[2].

Under the hood, the Crosstour gives you two highly efficient engines to choose from. Pick the 2.4-liter i-VTEC® inline four-cylinder option, or go for the re-engineered 3.5-liter V-6 powerplant with Honda's Variable Cylinder Management™ (VCM®).

The 2013 Crosstour will also join the 2013 Accord in introducing some new advanced technology offerings including the visibility enhancing LaneWatch™ blind spot display[3] – a Honda exclusive that uses a camera system mounted on the passenger mirror for an enhanced view of the passenger-side roadway – and two active safety systems: Forward Collision Warning (FCW)[4] and Lane Departure Warning (LDW)[5]

Since launching in 2010, the Crosstour has proved to be one of the most versatile and dependable vehicles in its class. In fact, J.D. Power and Associates named it the "Highest Ranked Midsize Crossover/CUV in Initial Quality"[6] in their 2011 study. We expect that kind of acclaim to follow the 2013 Crosstour when it goes on sale this fall.

[1] Compatible with select Apple® iPhone® devices only. Your wireless carrier's rate plans apply.

[2] Compatible with select phones with Bluetooth® only. Your wireless carrier's rate plans apply. State or local laws may limit use of texting feature. Only use texting feature when conditions allow you to do so safely.

[3] Display accuracy will vary based on weather, size of object and speed, and the display may not show all relevant traffic. The display is not a substitute for your own direct visual assessment of traffic conditions before changing lanes.

[4] FCW cannot detect all objects ahead and may not detect a given object; accuracy will vary based on weather, speed and other factors. FCW does not include a braking function. Driver remains responsible for safely operating vehicle and avoiding collisions

[5] LDW only alerts drivers when lane drift is detected without a turn signal in use. LDW may not detect all lane markings or lane departures; accuracy will vary based on weather, speed and road condition. Driver remains responsible for safely operating vehicle and avoiding collisions.

[6] Honda Crosstour received the lowest number of problems per 100 vehicles among midsize crossover/SUVs in the proprietary J.D. Power and Associates 2011 Initial Quality StudySM. Study based on responses from 73,790 new-vehicle owners, measuring 234 models and measures opinions after 90 days of ownership. Proprietary study results are based on experiences and perceptions of owners surveyed in February-May 2011. Your experiences may vary. Visit

Thursday, April 12, 2012

100% Electric. Not a Drop os Gas. This is How the New Honda Fit EV Makes it Happen

Distinctly Fit
The Fit EV has a familiar shape but adds aerodynamic touches like a rear roofline spoiler.

A Rolling Statement

The aerodynamic 15-inch alloy wheels and its exclusive color give the Fit EV a unique look.

Something Different

You’re right; the rear bumper is missing something: a tailpipe.

A Battery Breakthrough
Lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries have been used in consumer electronics for more than a decade. In that time, the capacity and durability of these batteries has increased dramatically. Case in point the 20kWh battery module inside the Fit EV.
Compared to most other Li-ion batteries currently in use, the Fit EV battery can be charged quicker, has twice the number of charge cycles and can operate in a much wider temperature range. So if you were waiting for a battery breakthrough before getting an electric vehicle, your wait is over.
Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation with Voice Recognition and Rearview Camera
The standard navigation system in the Fit EV includes unique features designed specifically for EV life.  Concentric range circles indicate, in real time, an estimate of how far you can travel on the battery’s current charge.  If you need to charge up, simply push the TALK button on the steering wheel and say “Find the nearest 240-volt charging station.”
3-Mode Drive System
The 3-mode drive system lets YOU decide how the car should perform.  Sport mode for power, ECON mode for efficiency or Normal mode for a perfect balance of the two.  The gauges will illuminate green in ECON, blue in Normal and Red in Port mode.
Normal Mode: Start your Fit EV and you’ll be in Normal mode, which provides standard settings for all systems.
Sport Mode: Switch to Sport mode, and the Fit EV will use the electric motor more aggressively, providing quicker acceleration and throttle response.
ECON Mode: To maximize your range, use ECON mode. This will optimize vehicle power and accessory load for maximum efficiency. ECON mode can increase your driving range by as much as 17 percent compared to driving in Normal mode. (The Fit EV's 123-mile range was internally calculated using Normal mode).
Automatic Climate Control
Is 68 degrees your comfort zone? How about 71? With the Fit EV’s Automatic Climate Control, simply set it and forget it!
EV-Centric Gauges
As you’d expect, the gauges on an electric vehicle are going to be a little different instead of a fuel gauge, there’s a state of charge indicator.  Front and center sits the range meter, which fluctuates depending on how you drive, what mode you drive in and various other factors, like if you have the air conditioning on.
Connect With your Car: The Fit EV includes an advanced HondaLink™ system as standard equipment. With this system and the Fit EV app, you can communicate with your vehicle from a smartphone using the Android or iOS operating system, a personal computer or the interactive remote. It allows you to monitor its state of charge, commence charging, and find out what the current range estimate is or how long it will be before the car is fully charged. You can also set the charge timer to take advantage of off-peak charging, and start the climate control system using electricity from the grid rather than the car's battery.
Interactive Remote:  The Fit EV also includes an interactive remote control for those who don't use a smartphone. The remote works within 100 feet (30 meters) of the vehicle and allows you to start or stop charging, as well as see its current state of charge. Want to pre-cool the cabin on a hot day? Use the remote to turn on the air conditioning.
Gear Selector
The floor mounted gear selector may look like one you’d find on your typical automatic transmission-equipped vehicle, but the Fit EV doesn’t have gears.  You’ll only find positions for Park, Reverse, Drive and, for those who enjoy aggressive regenerative braking, a “B” position.  The “B” position is perfect when driving down a long hill since it will not only slow the vehicle but also provide extra braking energy regeneration to the battery.
Bio Fabric Seats
The environmental thinking behind the Fit EV even extends to the origin of the plant-based seat fabric.  Honda engineers decided to use a sugarcane based material to avoid increasing the demand for a nutritional crop like corn.
A Powerful 92kW Electric Motor
Think EVs are slow? Not this one. Using the same 92kW high-density coaxial electric motor as the much larger FCX Clarity, the Fit EV’s powerful acceleration is a treat for driving enthusiasts. Consider this: The gasoline engine in the Fit produces 106 lb-ft of torque. The Fit EV? Try 188. That's a 77% increase.
Choose Your Own Adventure
Like the CR-Z Sport Hybrid, the Fit EV features a 3-mode drive system, allowing you to tailor the driving experience to your preference. Looking to stretch the miles between charges? Keep it in ECON[1]. Need to pass a slow-moving truck? Push the SPORT button. The Fit EV lets you decide how to drive.
The Fun One
The Fit has always been known for its nimble handling and the Fit EV is no exception. The Fit EV's low center of gravity and independent rear suspension provide an entertaining, all-electric ride.
We believe all vehicles should adhere to high safety standards. The Fit EV is certified to the same government safety standards as every other new passenger vehicle available for sale. Six airbags, Vehicle Stability Assist™ (VSA®)[1] and Electronic Brake Distribution (EBD) all come standard.
The Fit EV is also equipped with LATCH (Lower Anchors and Tethers for CHildren) connectors in two second-row seating positions that provide a simple and convenient way of attaching child seats.

An Advanced Compatibility Engineering™ (ACE™) body structure enhances occupant protection and crash compatibility in frontal crashes. Front airbags and front-side airbags with passenger-side Occupant Position Detection System (OPDS) help protect you and your passengers.
The lithium-ion battery is designed to be non-reactive in any crash or puncture and is encased in a steel jacket. 
Honda's Safety Philosophy
Honda is committed to providing safety for everyone–that means crash protection not only for our own drivers and passengers, but also for the occupants of other vehicles, and injury mitigation for pedestrians. We are dedicated to identifying and implementing advanced designs and features that help enhance the safety of vehicles on the road.
EV Plus
 Research for a Honda electric vehicle initially began in 1991. After years of development, a prototype was produced in 1995 using a nickel-metal hydride battery – the first of its kind for a major automaker. The production version was manufactured between 1997 and 1999 and was available for lease in California.
For three decades, Honda has played a leading role in meeting environmental challenges.
Efficient, Even for an EV
It figures that the company named "Greenest Automaker" by the Union of Concerned Scientists for the fifth consecutive time[1] also makes one of the most efficient electric vehicles in its class[2]. In typical Honda fashion, the Fit EV uses less energy to do more. Its battery may be of similar size to other EVs, but it’s how the energy is used that lets Honda offer an internally-estimated 76 miles[3] of EPA-combined range.
 No tailpipe. Period.
The Fit EV produces zero emissions. Not a single drop of gas is used to propel the car. Plus, the source of electricity for many charging locations may include energy from renewables like hydro or wind and more and more homeowners are installing solar panels that could also provide a clean energy source of power for the Fit EV.
Environmentally Responsible, Inside and Out
The environmentally conscious thinking behind the Fit EV goes all the way down to the type of plant used to make the seats: sugarcane. Why sugarcane? Because using this non-essential crop does not add to the demand for a nutritional food source like corn or soy.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Honda has Earned the 'Best Value Brand' and 'Most Trusted Brand' in 2012 Kelly Blue Book Brand Image Awards

Honda has earned the Best Value Brand and Most Trusted Brand categories in the 2012 Kelley Blue Book Brand Image Awards. Based on consumer perception data from the company's Brand WatchTM study, the Kelley Blue Book Brand Image Awards honor the automotive brands that have most successfully captured positive consumer attention.
American Honda's Executive Vice President of Sales John Mendel accepted both awards yesterday at the New York Auto Show from Kelley Blue Book President Jared Rowe. "We are honored to accept two awards that point so directly to Honda's core tenets," Mendel said. "With Honda constantly striving to earn trust by providing the finest overall ownership value, it's inspiring to see those efforts resonating with consumers."
"With standout vehicles, memorable marketing and positive word of mouth, the winners of Kelley Blue Book's 2012 Brand Image Awards have secured enviable positions in the minds of in-market shoppers," said Jack R. Nerad, executive editorial director and executive market analyst for Kelley Blue Book's
In commenting about Honda's 2012 Most Trusted Brand award, Kelley Blue Book's noted "Without surprising anyone, our inaugural Most Trusted Brand award goes to a name that's practically synonymous with reliability and dependability.  Honda's vehicles enjoy a decades-deep reputation as the smart choice in so many of the categories in which it competes."
The editors of Kelley Blue Book's had an equally savvy comment on Honda's 2012 Best Value Brand award. "Many car buyers assume a vehicle's sticker price is the most significant monetary factor when choosing a car. While it's certainly an important consideration, Honda's reputation for superb resale value, exceptional quality and legendary dependability continues to raise the bar in respect to automotive value."
This marks the fifth year Kelley Blue Book has awarded auto manufacturers the Brand Image Awards, and the second consecutive year Honda has been awarded the Best Value Brand. For more information about the 2012 Kelley Blue Book Brand Image Awards, please visit