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Honda confirms hybrid timing

Sporty hybrid: The Honda CR-Z hybrid coupe is expected to lob on the Japanese market in February.

The CR-Z coupe and Jazz hybrid launch countdown commences, but Australians must wait

13 Jul 2009

HONDA will be a hive of hybrid activity next year, starting with the February arrival in Japan of the CR-Z coupe.

This is to be followed by the petrol/electric version of the Jazz/Fit light car that is slated for a release in that country by the end of 2010.

However, as Honda Australia has yet to finalise the timing of either model, the middle of 2011 is looking increasingly likely as the earliest availability date for these cars in this country.

Honda Australia spokesman Mark Higgins confirmed that mid-2011 was probably the likely launch date.

“It depends on production capacity and demand,” he said. “But there is no schedule in place at this stage.” This leaves the long-awaited Insight small car as the only new Honda hybrid to be launched in Australia next year. Until then, the aging Civic Hybrid sedan is the company’s only riposte to the Toyota Prius.

15 center imageLeft: Honda Jazz.

The CR-Z Hybrid debuted as a concept almost two years ago at the 2007 Tokyo motor show, prompting reports that Honda was set to resuscitate the spirit of the late and lamented CRX sports coupe of the 1980s, but with a green twist.

Since then Honda has referred to the upcoming production version as a “sporty hybrid” rather than an all-out sports car.

The CR-Z and petrol/electric Jazz/Fit will bring the number of Honda hybrids to four, although more new models are on their way, with the firm saying it “…is currently developing a new hybrid system which is intended to be installed on mid- to large-size vehicles”.

Meanwhile, strong global demand for the Insight has prompted Honda to add another production line at its Suzuka production facility in Japan.

Read more:

Insight to lead Honda's Aussie hybrid assault

Honda to have the cheapest hybrid

Dedicated Honda hybrid to imitate Prius

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