By on January 15, 2015

1995 Acura Integra VTEC engine

Honda announced Tuesday it would invest $340 million into its Anna, Ohio engine plant to help increase production of its family of fuel-efficient engines.

Bloomberg reports the automaker added a new assembly line at the plant for production of its new VTEC turbo-four engine family. The engines, which increase efficiency with variable valve technology, are set to arrive in vehicles later this year.

Other clean-vehicle projects in the works by Honda include the production version of the FCV Concept seen at this year’s Detroit Auto Show for 2016, the Acura NSX hybrid exotic car due later in 2015, and both a PHEV and an EV by 2018.

Get the latest TTAC e-Newsletter!

Recommended

44 Comments on “Honda Investing $340M For Increased Fuel-Efficient Engine Production...”


  • avatar
    kosmo

    Kind of sad to see Honda heading further down CAFE’s turbo rabbit hole. I wonder if Toyota will be next?

    • 0 avatar
      Tosh

      Kind of sad to realize that Honda is spending billions on Formula One, where a turbo V6 is today’s engine. That’s real money that will NOT be spent on better road cars for any of us. I’m sure Honda is expecting Toyota to follow them into F1 for the second time.
      (only on my second Honda product since 1992, so yes, I’m a fanboy)

      • 0 avatar
        CJinSD

        I’m sure the F1 effort was a much larger percentage of Honda’s R&D budget in the ’80s and early ’90s, as well as the ’60s for that matter. They used the rapid development cycles to train engineers, which seemed to pay off in the quality of the cars they produced at the time. I’m not sure if the crazy engine-freeze rules in place today make the sport as valuable of a training resource.

        • 0 avatar
          MBella

          I don’t get the engine freeze concept. The whole idea of F1 is to push the technological envelop. How are engines frozen for ten+ years helping push anything forward.

          • 0 avatar
            CJinSD

            It is mind-blowing just how stupid the engine manufacturers and teams participating in F1 were to agree to the idea of an engine freeze. It was inevitable that someone would get it right and everyone else would be playing catch-up. Oh wait. They agreed not to play catch up, but instead to continue to spend hundreds of millions of euros to serve as supporting cast in a traveling Mercedes-Benz commercial for years to come. Never assume the Europeans have a clue what they’re doing. When they don’t self destruct, it is dumb luck.

  • avatar
    EAF

    VTEC turbo four engine family! Finally. The “tuner” scene will be ecstatic. This is the “boost” Civic sales needed.

    The “purists” may initally be upset but they’ll soon get over it.

    • 0 avatar
      JMII

      As I said in yesterday’s post regarding this:

      Honda NEEDS turbos, their engines have always been torque less wonders. Look at what VW does with a boosted 4 banger, we are talking crazy power levels. If Honda does this I might actually consider owning one again.

      • 0 avatar
        GMat

        I’m still impressed at BMW efforts to TC their humble little M10 straight-4 SOHC piston engine produced 1962-88 in their domestic sedans (saloons) with 80 HP 5700 RPM. It was used as the basis for the turbocharged BMW M12 motorsport engine. The 1986 engine was said to produce about 1,400 hp (1,044 kW) in qualifying, that being the most powerful figure of all the turbo-charged engines in F1.

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n9XQE3nY9kY
        Gm

    • 0 avatar
      NoGoYo

      The local crowd stancing Jettas and tuning the sh*t out of WRXes will be ecstatic.

  • avatar
    thornmark

    I was was skeptical when Honda went the CVT route but they seem to get the best reviews.

    I’m still skeptical about turbo fours, but Honda may by able to do what what Ford hasn’t been able to do w/ its Ecoboosts (&CVT’s).

    • 0 avatar
      EAF

      Mark, why are you skeptical? Turbo-4’s are everything and anything but new.

      My MOTHER owns a 2014 Accord with CVT. I’m uncertain as to its long-term durability but I tend to agree with said reviews. I don’t find any faults with drivability that are not inherent to all non-manuals.

      • 0 avatar
        thornmark

        Ford’s turbos produce good EPA numbers but show just about the poorest MPG/performance mix. That is, they are both thirstier and slower than larger engined non-turbo competitors in reviews.

        • 0 avatar
          EAF

          My fault Mark, I misinterpreted what you had written. What you elude to makes for a very interesting debate. When my friends and I have this debate we usually remain split. Real world MPGs, reliability, maintenance, etc.

          The only factor we agree upon is that forced induction is more fun to tinker with especially if you are into voiding dealer warranties and increasing horsepower “tuning.”

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    What exactly does “TURBONETICS” mean? And why does that engine cover need fake gold carbon fiber?

  • avatar
    Krivka

    Turbonetics Inc. a turbocharger supplier and the engine cover looks great.

  • avatar
    Fordson

    Obviously false. Honda would never turn to turbocharging. We’ve been assured by several authoritative sources that turbochargers are not reliable.

    • 0 avatar
      blppt

      I know you are being sarcastic, but Honda already made a turbo engine for the last gen RDX in the U.S.

      • 0 avatar
        Lie2me

        Lol, well it wasn’t a very good engine because they replaced it with a V6 that’s more efficient

        • 0 avatar
          CoreyDL

          LOL I hope the resale of those RDX models with turbo reflects the poorly nature of that engine.

          Also, I found the RDX to look outdated even at introduction. Something about the front is too similar to the RSX which got discontinued years prior.

          • 0 avatar
            CJinSD

            The RSX was produced through 2006 with the RDX replacing it in the lineup for 2007.

          • 0 avatar
            mik101

            @CJinSD, the real RSX replacement was a combination of the CSX (also replacing the EL) and Honda’s Civic Si (which became a coupe and a sedan and gained 37hp). Look north of the boarder. The RDX was a me too into the CUV market.

    • 0 avatar
      MBella

      No matter what anyone says, these new turbo engines are going to be less reliable. On tuner Civics, this will be fine. On family Accords, it will lead to more money being spent on maintenance. As I have said many times before, I love turbos on performance cars, but they don’t belong on the average appliance. Those people don’t want no hassle. I’ve heard that there a pretty decent number of turbo failures on the 1.4 Turbo Cruzes. That was one of the earlier cars to come out with this new style small turbo engine. Once the rest of the group gets a bit older they will follow.

  • avatar
    wmba

    Like tweaking the Acura beak forever, Honda persists in using outdated VTEC technology. Everyone and his dog uses variable phasers on the cams, and some even have variable lift mechanisms like BMW and Infiniti as well. But no, Honda sticks to VTEC, a mere two position overlap and lift strategy. It’s as if they enjoy banging their heads on a brick wall, just to see how much it hurts.

    Compared to removing the outdated valve system and updating it, requiring all new cylinder heads, adding a turbo is a walk in the park.

    • 0 avatar
      duffman13

      Honda has been using variable phasers on cams since the introduction of the K series in 2002. All K-series motors have VTC on the intake cam.

      You’re thinking of traditional performance VTEC which is applied in conjunction with the phasers on certain applications (Civic Si and the like).

      • 0 avatar
        stuntmonkey

        Yep. Not just that, but eve the humble Civic engine as well. All iVTEC engines have variable phase on the intake side. Dual-mode cam lift I’d something you only see on the higher models nowadays. IVTEC is an economy implementation, it lifts one valve at low rpm and 2 at higher.

        Going back to classic VTEC, it wasn’t originially supposed to be “vtec kicked in yo”. You can set the cam crossover point so that the torque curves transition in a smooth way; soon after Honda discovered that people liked the VTEC Rush and ran with it.

      • 0 avatar
        EAF

        +2

        The only other manufacturers with systems that can control not only overlap but duration and lift are: BMW Valvetronic, Mitsubishi MiVec, and Fiat Multi-air.

        I could be mistaken, but these are the only systems I can think of, I don’t understand why/how vtec is outdated?

    • 0 avatar
      MBella

      You’ve been talking this crap for ever, and we’ve been disproving it. The variable lift setups you talk about are similiar in concept to what Honda’s VTEC. The BMW setup improves it a bit, but we will see how well it works long term.

    • 0 avatar
      sportyaccordy

      Honda’s engines are still competitive with these “outdated” technologies. For example Honda’s nearly 20 year old V6 is more powerful and efficient than the crop of high tech 2.0Ts with the technology you name. Cheaper and more reliable too. Tech for tech’s sake isn’t always a good thing.

  • avatar
    sportyaccordy

    As a former DOHC VTEC owner and theoretical fan, a recent car buying experience has “awakened” me to the folly of those old powerplants.

    The flat torque curves of those DOHC VTEC motors made for pretty inflexible street driving. Max grunt was only available in the lowest gear possible, and highway merging meant whizzing up to the 8-9K redlines. I.e. unlike in a car with a fast spinning motor with HP and torque, winding up the engine was a necessity, not a choice or indulgence.

    The flat torque curve also made for weirdly disorienting uneventful acceleration… you just waited for the engine to get up to operating speed and rode out a relatively weak surge of forward momentum. I felt like I was always waiting for a blast of power that never materialized.

    I was recently in the market for a practical replacement to my 350Z… I looked at a few enthusiast approved rides like the GTI, which was fun but just too expensive and too much of a crapshoot, as well as the 8th gen Si (the best of the Civic breed). The K20 checked all the DOHC VTEC buttons… smooth operating and high revving. But man despite it having the ability to accumulate speed quickly, cruising on the street it didn’t have much more punch than the regular Civic, and it was also a good bit thrashier and choppier riding. So the regular Civic is what I went with. Quick enough to commute and cruise on the highway at cop friendly speeds, supple enough to commute comfortably 2 hours a day, but still frisky and light enough to be fun when driven in anger. Pretty much the successor to the 1990-1997 Accords (hence the screen name).

    I think Honda is wise to jump on the turbo bandwagon. As great as thrashy fast spinning engines are to wind up on the perfect drive, in the real world midrange is king and gas mileage matters. I think Honda learned a lot from the 2.3 failure in the RDX and will come out strong with these new lumps. If they can pony up the cash for cam phasing on the exhaust valves they will have a real contender for performance and efficiency.

    • 0 avatar
      Sceptic

      Accordy, your message describes exactly my experience owning last gen 5sp manual Prelude for 7 years. I also have great hopes for Honda’s future. For a while the product looked so unattractive that I abandoned the brand for Toyota/Nissan. I have to say, current Accord looks mighty delicious.

      • 0 avatar
        sportyaccordy

        I have an aversion to large cars, but I think the current Accord is a better looking 5 series than the current 5 series. It’s a sharp car, and quick too- 14 second quarter mile with the 4 banger is no joke. I’m not a fan of the current Civic’s looks, but we will see what they do next go round. Will be cool to see what they do with the turbo engines.


Back to TopLeave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Recent Comments

  • Igloo: That bright shinny thing in the last picture is the touch screen I take it. Interesting rake angle. Should be...
  • speedlaw: I did the same with leaving the full Distronc package whenI got the current ride. I know when Im changing...
  • jack4x: Is the Camaro really that much harder to see out of than a Vette though? I feel like it’s just held to...
  • speedlaw: Having never ever seen a well drivenRogue I agree
  • apl: I like the design. It is different. But if it was sold only in Japan, why are the controls marked with English...

New Car Research

Get a Free Dealer Quote

Staff

  • Contributors

  • Timothy Cain, Canada
  • Matthew Guy, Canada
  • Ronnie Schreiber, United States
  • Bozi Tatarevic, United States
  • Chris Tonn, United States
  • Corey Lewis, United States
  • Mark Baruth, United States
  • Moderators

  • Adam Tonge, United States
  • Corey Lewis, United States