April 27, 2015
Last week, Honda unveiled the Step WGN at the Japan Auto Show. While we will not be seeing this vehicle in North America, this reveal also showcases the all-new Honda family of powertrains ready to be released. Honda first announced the new family of powertrains back in January, but the Step WGN gives us a chance to see them up close.
The Step WGN features the 1.5-liter direct-injected VTEC Turbo four-cylinder engine, producing 148 HP at 5,500 RPM and 150lb of torque between 1,600 and 5,000 RPM. The new CVT was developed specifically for the 1.5-liter VTEC Turbo engine.
The only other vehicle that we know will have one of the new powertrain family is in the next-gen Honda Civic. The engine will be the same 1.5-liter VTEC Turbo with the horsepower of a 2.4-liter engine with better torque and fuel economy.
The new Honda Civic Type-R will have a higher power engine – a 2.0-liter VTEC Turbo producing 310 HP at 2500 RPM and 295lb of torque. This engine allows the Type R to go from 0 to 62 MPH in 5.7 seconds with an outstanding top speed of 167 MPH.
The new powertrain family is part of the Earth Dreams Technology lineup. The engines will not only deliver better performance and power, but they will also see an amazing fuel efficiency. Even the “racecar for the road” Type-R is expected to get better fuel economy than competitors with the new VTEC Turbo engine.
In addition to the engines, Honda is releasing all-new fuel-cell vehicles to continue their goal of creating low-carbon technologies by 2018. These vehicles include the plug-in hybrid model called PHEV and the battery-electric vehicle called BEV.
The new four cylinder VTEC Turbo engines will be produced at the Ohio Honda plant. Honda has already invested $340 million into the plant for the production of this new powertrain family and are adding a third assembly line for the engines and other manufacturing. The various engines in the family will be introduced by the end of this year in various Honda vehicles, some in North America and some in other areas around the globe.