Published on November 16th, 2018 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez2
Meet the Honda CR-V Hybrid, will it come to Malaysia?
With the 2019 National Automotive Policy (NAP) in process to get it right this time around (the 2018 NAP benefited more luxury car buyers), car manufacturers in Malaysia are waiting to decide which direction they need to go in order to benefit from import and local assembly tax benefits. We believe that the 2019 NAP will benefit car manufacturers who have ‘clean’ green vehicles and this is why this CR-V hybrid might be coming to Malaysia.
Hybrid system controls
The drive selector controls for the new Honda CR-V Hybrid are positioned in the centre console, with a design that uses a compact switch-style transmission selector rather than a conventional lever. Drive, Park and Neutral functions require a button push, while Reverse requires a pull-up action. A bespoke ‘Sport’ mode, which can be activated via the drive selector, enables a more responsive throttle input for the hybrid system. If there is sufficient charge in the battery, a short-range pure EV mode is also available at the touch of a button, providing a zero-emissions range of around 2 km (1.2 miles) depending on the driving conditions and battery charge.
Driver Information Interface
Ahead of the steering wheel sits an all-new instrument binnacle, featuring a large full-colour 7-inch TFT-LCD Driver Information Interface (DII) central display, flanked by battery charge status and fuel-level gauges on the hybrid models.
The Honda CR-V Hybrid’s DII includes a large digital speedometer and linear power gauge with a charge status indicator. Integrated into the lower half of the DII is a ‘content zone’, which the driver can scroll through to choose from a variety of information, including navigation instructions, audio track information, smartphone contacts, all-wheel-drive system status, and smart vehicle maintenance information. For Honda CR-V Hybrid, it also features a graphic of the current power flow, indicating the vehicles power source and if the battery is being charged, and an ‘ECO Guide’ to suggest more efficient driving techniques In addition drivers can monitor their efficiency over time with a drive cycle score, earning points depicted by leaf icons in the display, increasing or decreasing as a different stage of fuel economy is achieved.
Honda Hybrid Performance brings new levels of refinement, responsiveness and efficiency
In a first for a Honda SUV in Europe, the all-new Honda CR-V is available with advanced hybrid powertrain technology. The Honda Hybrid Performance system is enabled by Intelligent Multi-Mode Drive (i-MMD) technology, comprising two electric motors, a power control unit, an Atkinson-cycle petrol engine, lithium-ion battery and an innovative fixed gear transmission delivering high levels of refinement, responsiveness and efficiency.
The Honda CR-V Hybrid is equipped with an efficient 2.0-litre i-VTEC Atkinson-cycle petrol engine, with peak power of 145PS at 6,200 rpm, and a powerful 184PS electric motor with torque of 315Nm. The petrol-electric powertrain can propel the CR-V Hybrid from zero to 100 km/h in 8.8 seconds in FWD guise, and in 9.2 seconds for the AWD model. The top speed of the hybrid is 180 km/h.
The front-wheel drive Honda CR-V Hybrid has achieved CO2 emissions of 120 g/km (correlated NEDC), with official average fuel economy of 5.3 l/100km (53.3 mpg). The four-wheel drive Honda CR-V Hybrid achieved CO2 emissions of 126 g/km (correlated NEDC) and average fuel economy of 5.5 l/100km (51.4mpg).
Intelligent driving modes
Honda’s unique i-MMD technology is so-named as it intelligently and automatically switches between three driving modes to provide the highest possible efficiency when driving. These modes comprise: EV Drive, where the lithium-ion battery supplies power to the electric propulsion motor directly; Hybrid Drive, where the engine supplies power to an electric generator motor, which in turn supplies it to the electric propulsion motor; and Engine Drive, where the engine is connected directly to the wheels via a lock-up clutch.
In most urban driving situations, the CR-V Hybrid will shuffle between Hybrid Drive and EV Drive for optimum efficiency. In Hybrid Drive, excess power from the petrol engine can also be diverted to recharge the battery via the generator motor. EV Drive permits pure-electric propulsion and gives the CR-V a zero-emissions range of around 2 km (1.2 miles) depending on the driving condition and battery charge. The Engine Drive mode is the most efficient set-up for cruising at higher speeds and it can be supplemented by an on-demand power ‘boost’ from the electric propulsion motor to supplement engine torque under certain conditions
At a 60 km/h cruise, the Honda CR-V Hybrid will typically run in EV Drive for more than half of the time. At 100 km/h, it will be in EV Drive for approximately one third of the time.
To reach maximum speed the Honda CR-V Hybrid will run in Hybrid Drive.
The software ‘brain’ of the i-MMD system decides when to shuffle between these modes to maximise efficiency, without disturbing the driver or requiring any further thought or input from them.
The 2.0-litre engine, propulsion motor, generator motor and power control unit are located under the bonnet, while the lithium-ion battery pack is housed under the boot.
Innovative fixed-gear transmission
Rather than using a conventional transmission, a single fixed-gear ratio creates a direct connection between moving components, resulting in a smoother transfer of torque. This format means Honda’s system is more compact than a planetary eCVT typically found in other hybrid vehicles, as well as being more refined.
Engineers on the CR-V Hybrid programme have worked hard to ensure that the transfer between power sources – including the engine stop-start function – is virtually imperceptible to the occupants. The smooth transfer of torque means there is no driveline shunt or undesirable feedback through the pedals or steering wheel, and the near-silent powertrain means the Honda CR-V Hybrid boasts outstanding NVH management.
The fixed-gear (picture above shows a missing gear shifter for this CR-V hybrid) format of Honda’s i-MMD system has been specifically tuned for the European market to provide a linear feel through acceleration, with optimised calibration between throttle input and powertrain response, to ensure the engine sound matches the driver’s expectations. In addition, the first application of Active Sound Control to CR-V also enriches the drivers experience delivering the natural sound of acceleration relative to the engine speed.