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Old 12 Nov 2012, 11:31 pm
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Default Honda previews trio of hybrid systems for different driving characteristics

Filed under: Hybrid, Technology, Honda

Looking to make up some much-needed ground to Toyota and Ford in the world of hybrid vehicles, Honda is introducing a new and more advanced gas-electric architecture called Honda Sport Hybrid. The system may arrive as a direct replacement to the aging Integrated Motor Assist series, and it's actually comprised of three different systems: Intelligent Dual Clutch Drive, Intelligent Multi Mode Drive/Plug-In and Super Handling - All Wheel Drive. Why three different systems? Because their capability, complexity and cost will vary depending on the size of the vehicle and its intended purpose.

We have already tested the Sport Hybrid Intelligent Multi Mode Drive/Plug-In on the 2014 Honda Accord PHEV. This system features a hybrid-specific engine and an electronic CVT with two built-in electric motors, and it sounds like this setup will be offered with and without plug-in capabilities. With this system, drivers will be able to use three different drive modes (EV, Engine and Hybrid) depending on the conditions and the desired dynamic. EV Drive mode maximizes use of electricity to propel the car, Hybrid Drive uses the engine to generate electricity for the motors and Engine Drive is for higher speeds where EV and Hybrid modes wouldn't be as efficient.

Debuting on the forthcoming Acura RLX flagship sedan, the Sport Hybrid SH-AWD system uses three electric motors to deliver optimal performance. It also features a direct-injected 3.5-liter V6 paired with a seven-speed dual clutch transmission. Those are combined with an integrated motor used to power the front wheels and one motor at each rear wheel. The rear motors work independently of one another for better handling and torque distribution. Honda says this system will deliver V8-like performance with the fuel economy of a four cylinder. If all of that sounds familiar, that's because we drove a prototype of the architecture in a Honda Accord mule back in December of 2011.

Finally, the Sport Hybrid Intelligent Dual Clutch Drive uses the same seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox as the SH-AWD system, but this application will focus on improving the efficiency of small cars rather than worrying about performance. This transmission will be mated to a 1.5-liter Atkinson-cycle engine, and Honda claims combination will be 30-percent more efficient than current one-motor hybrid systems. We don't know just yet which car this system will debut in, but the diagram released by Honda shows it being use on what looks like a hatchback (like the Fit) or small crossover. This is also a likely candidate for use in cars like the CR-Z, Insight and Civic.

Scroll down to read the official press release from Honda.Continue reading Honda previews trio of hybrid systems for different driving characteristics

Honda previews trio of hybrid systems for different driving characteristics originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 12 Nov 2012 16:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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