By on June 22, 2010

You can test drive a CR-Z for yourself starting on August 24, and goodness knows we’ll be lining up for a crack at it. Early reviews from Europe confirm the impression left by the stat sheet: the CR-Z is neither the re-birth of the CRX, nor the re-birth of the Mk1 Insight. And starting at $19,200, it’s not exactly cheap either [press release here]. Yes, it offers AM/FM/CD/USB audio system with six speakers, automatic climate control, power windows and door locks, remote entry, and cruise control at that base price, and quite a bit more in the $20,760 CR-Z EX, but is there a market in the US for a hybrid that’s smaller than a Prius but less efficient? And didn’t the Mk2 Insight already answer that question? We’ll wait to put the CR-Z through its paces before we pass (further) judgment, but this has the look of a Fiero-style “commuter car” rather than a legitimate sports coupe.

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23 Comments on “Honda CR-Z Priced Starting At $19,200...”


  • avatar
    mjz

    Another in a series of design duds for Honda/Acura.

    • 0 avatar
      SVX pearlie

      Oh, c’mon. This isn’t worse than the current Insight. Nor the Crosstour. Nor the Accord. Nor the Acura shield. Nor the Acura naming.

      It’s not like Honda doesn’t make any fun cars like the Prelude, S2000, NSX, or Integra…

      Cut Honda some slack!

  • avatar
    FleetofWheel

    Honda appears to be using this car as a real world exercise in what is apparently a major future trend for small sporty cars.

    That is not to say it’s some kind of half-baked beta test but they need to have actual products like this in real customer’s hands to continue further development.

    Since the price is not bleeding edge like many other hybrids or EVs discussed here, it should present a fair value to it’s target group.

    Think of it as a second generation HDTV. We all knew the forthcoming generations would perform better and be more cost effective but the TV makers didn’t spool up research/development and release the mature 4th gen for the initial public debut.

  • avatar
    civicguy

    While I don’t see it being a leader in sales, it will sell enough to justify its existence. It is the best looking hybrid ony vehicle I’ve seen yet and for a cheap-ish price, remember you are also buying Honda quality with this, it will move.

  • avatar
    340-4

    Honda has jumped the shark.

  • avatar
    educatordan

    Fiero-style “commuter car” rather than a legitimate sports coupe.

    Hey, hey, hey now. If GM dusted off the Fiero’s tooling and dropped the ecotech in it and priced it at the level of the Cobalt. I’d buy one. Anyway by the time they cancled the car it was a legitimate sports coupe. But yes it was a case of classic GM, kill it when it gets good.

    I wish Honda luck. I actually like the idea of the CR-Z but not the execution.

  • avatar
    psarhjinian

    I don’t think this car would have received quite the same scathing reviews if it was called the “Insight” rather than the “CR-Z”**. That would have allowed Honda to sell the current Insight as, oh, I don’t know, the Civic Hybrid Crosstour or something.

    ** I’m also sure the Accord wouldn’t have been the subject of comments about bloat if it was called the Inspire.

  • avatar
    carguy

    I don’t think the name is the main problem (although it does set expectations). There are three issues:

    1. The concept looked great – the production sheet metal is lame.

    2. It’s not fast enough to be a sports car and not economical enough to satisfy the “my Prius is saving the planet more than your Insight” demographic.

    3. You could have achieved more fun and similar economy with a diesel motor.

    • 0 avatar
      psarhjinian

      #1 is true, but #2 and #3 aren’t, necessarily:

      2. It’s a stick-shift hybrid, and it’s supposedly reasonably fun to drive. I like hybrids, but I also like a little more driver involvement, so this car appeals to me. Unfortunately, for Honda, there are likely not a lot of customers like that.

      3. This is going to net me another “Psarj hates diesels” comment, but nowhere does it say diesels are fun, or more fun than a well-tuned gas/electric hybrid. Personally, I find the low redline, reluctance to rev and turbo lag of your average diesel to be decidedly unsporting and every small European diesel I’ve driven has, to a fault, seemed to be among the small number of cars that do better as automatics. The city economy wasn’t so good, and the emissions were noticeably worse.

    • 0 avatar
      carguy

      psarhjinian – I drove a BMW 123d hatch in Germany and it was an absolute blast.

  • avatar
    Conslaw

    Pontiac sold almost 137,000 Fieros the first year. If the same sales figures wouldn’t put the CR-Z in the top-10 today, then it would come awfully close.

  • avatar
    forraymond

    The Fiero was a great looking car. It was not a sports car, but a good looking car – it took a while to get it right, but the style was nice. There should be good looking, affordable cars that hit 0-60 in about 8 sec. It is so not necessary to hit 60 in sub 5 sec. for most drivers. A good looking car that is dead reliable is important to most folks. Unfortunately, this CR-Z is not attractive.

  • avatar
    cmoibenlepro

    If at least the CRZ had a back seat, then I could consider it.

  • avatar
    Demetri

    Not as bad as Honda was suggesting, but still, 20 grand with destination. I’m just not convinced that it’s much better than a Fit. The performance and economy gains are pretty negligible and it costs a lot more money.

  • avatar
    talkstoanimals

    What a disappointment this thing turned out to be. The concept looked great, and the original idea, a sporting hybrid in the spirit of the CRX, was perfect for our times. Instead we get, well what, exactly? A slightly more enaging Insight – talk about setting the bar low – with diminished utility and so-so looks? Sigh.

  • avatar
    AdamYYZ

    I had some interest in this car. But it’s heavier and less powerful than my Civic. And I’ll bet it will start out at $26,000 Canadian.

    EFF That. I’m still getting a 2011 Mustang “Value Leader”

  • avatar
    wsn

    Based on the unfavorable comments on TTAC, this car will sell well.

  • avatar
    daga

    CR(a)Z(y)

  • avatar
    Tosh

    The Civic 5 door hatch looks like a spaceship compared to most other cars, but the US is not worthy of it? But we get the CRZ? Who asked for this? The dozen original Insight owners? What a goofy looking pile!

  • avatar
    Revver

    Speaking of the first-generation Insight, that is a car TTAC should really retro test. OK, OK, yeah it has a reputation of being the car of choice to those who displayed “Earth First is for Pansies” bumper stickers, but I always thought they were engineering masterpieces.

    3 throbbing pistons putting out 65 bhp of fun. What’s not to like?

    C’mon TTAC, I double dare ‘ya.

    • 0 avatar
      ajla

      https://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/review-1999-honda-insight/

      There are also a few “Hammer Time” articles by Steven Lang that talk a lot about the original Insight.

  • avatar
    shaker

    I wonder if the lack of a “real” back seat would cause the insurance rates to be higher; if so, major fail.

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