Honda CRZ Luxury review
Joel Helmes has filed this Honda CRZ Luxury review.
Last year I had the keys to another hybrid Honda the Insight and must admit I was a little disappointed.
It felt fragile, tinny and a bit flimsy and on the highway especially it really just didn’t cut the mustard.
So I was a little apprehensive when I got behind the wheel of the new two door hybrid Honda CRZ, but I’m happy to report it’s a complete joy.
It’s a two door, sporty, city car with four seats, albeit the rear seats really couldn’t be there for any other reason than comedic value – there is simply no head or leg room back there at all!
It looks great, really nice front and side profile – the rear however is probably a bit of an acquired taste but not unpleasant, overall it really has a sporty feel about it.
Under the bonnet you’ll find a 1.5 litre petrol/electric hybrid engine mated to a seven speed constantly variable automatic transmission.
The hybrid system in the Honda CRZ is controlled via three settings eco, normal and sport.
On the road I spent a bit of time in all three settings, each really does change the feel and characteristics of the CRZ.
In eco it’s restrained but that doesn’t mean it can’t keep up with the traffic, in fact with the help of the electric engine even in eco mode acceleration is pretty good.
The sports mode gives the car a livelier feel but there’s a certain harshness from the engine in this mode that turned me off.
When you push it hard the engine becomes quite noisy and unrefined and for all this huffing and puffing the acceleration isn’t really that much better than the normal mode.
Normal mode is the pick, nippy acceleration and excellent fuel economy; it’s the mode that the car feels most suited to.
Speaking of fuel economy I easily managed a very respectable 6 litres per 100 in the city; on the highway expect that to drop somewhere down to about 4.5 litres per 100.
I also have to give the Honda CRZ a big wrap for its engine start/stop system, its much less intrusive than a few of the cars I have reviewed that have this technology.
In some cars it takes a good two or three seconds to get the engine going again and this means you are holding up traffic, not so with the Honda it really did get going again very nicely.
Another wrap for the CRZ is the steering and handling, it really feels glued to the road and on a nice sweeping bend it brings a smile to your face, best of all this nice handling doesn’t come at the expense of a pleasant ride, the CRZ soaks up potholes extremely well.
So it’s good on fuel, looks great, drives nicely and has a 5 star ANCAP safety rating.
A couple of things I was little disappointed in, when the engine does cut out at the lights you can feel the temperature in the car rise.
The air-conditioning is still running but the air is nowhere near as cold.
Also the sat-nav system in the luxury model is extremely hard to use and program – so hard in fact I gave up.
But really aside from that I was really impressed, if you’re looking for a car that delivers some excitement, great looks, great economy and nice creature comforts this could be the one for you.
The Honda CRZ starts at $34,990 for the entry level manual, the luxury auto will cost you $40,790.