Posts Tagged ‘mugen’

Honda Vezel by Mugen Spoiled via Stray Sales Brochure

Posted by Stephen On Friday, December 20th, 2013

As you may know, the Honda Vezel is an upcoming Fit-based crossover, which will be a much-needed addition to Honda’s lineup. The four-door Vezel aims to slot in somewhere below the CR-V, but above the Honda Fit. Almost like a Nissan Juke. Which makes sense, since every brand wants their own Juke these days.

You may remember that we first saw the production-ready Honda Vezel (above) a few weeks ago at the 2013 Tokyo Motor Show. If you have a really good memory, you’ll recall that we even seen a prequel to the Honda Vezel at the 2013 Detroit Auto Show several months before that – the Honda Urban SUV Concept.

While the Honda Vezel has yet to officially launch in its Honda’s home market of Japan (it launches on December 20th), the brand has already put their Mugen motorsport division to work on a premium model.

This is a scanned image taken from a Japanese marketing brochure, and it’s been making waves around the Internet for the past 48 hours. As you can see, there are several changes between the Tokyo Motor Show Vezel at the beginning of this post and the Vezel by Mugen pictured above…

First, the entire vehicle has been lowered closer to the ground thanks to a gray underskirt, a front under spoiler, and a rear apron. Mugen’s Vezel also gets a reworked front grille, exhaust pipes, and window shades. It also gets a slight rear spoiler and new, stylish tires to go in gray-accented wheel wells.

As far as powertrain differences, the ad in the brochure indicates that there won’t be any changes between the original and Mugen’s version. The ad says that the car pictured features a 1.5-liter direct-injection engine, while a hybrid version is available with a high-output electric motor and Sport Hybrid i-DCD.

Even though we’re seeing the Mugen spoiler before the regular Vezel has been released, it seems unlikely that we will see the Honda Vezel by Mugen make it to production anytime in the next three months. According to Japanese media sources, the waiting list for the new Honda Vezel extends all the way through March. Of course, we could be wrong here, but our best guess is that we’ll see the Honda Vezel Mugen sometime in the middle of 2014, once the initial launch-snowball has started to slow.

Either way, if you’re reading this outside of Japan, your real concern should be getting your hands on a Honda Vezel in the first place. We have no idea if or when we’ll get a Honda Vezel outside of Japan, or if it will even be called by the same moniker if/when we do. But, with the “elegance of a coupe, the functionality of a minivan and the qualities of an SUV,” let us sincerely hope that we will!


Honda CR-Z RZ’s Hot Mugen Tune-up

Posted by Stephen On Friday, October 12th, 2012

Mugen has once again worked their magic on Honda’s CR-Z 2013 model just like they did to the 2011’s model. The only difference is that this time, a simple bump in horsepower wasn’t enough. Not satisfied with Honda’s 13 horsepower boost to the base2013 CR-Z, the guys over at Mugen felt they had to give the driver a further kick in the pants. So, being the kings of tuning that they are, the motorsport experts over at Mugen gave the CR-Z even more power.

The Mugen team bolted a supercharger onto the 1.5-liter, four cylinder hybrid, taking the 135 horsepower engine up to a whopping 174 horsepower output along with 194 lb-ft of torque. Not bad for a hybrid! As if that wasn’t insane enough, the whole thing gets routed through a six-speed manual; talk about taking things to another level! (Well “Mugen” does translate as “No Limits”, after all.)

Honda CR-Z Mugen RZ

Mugen’s CR-Z Conversion Isn’t Just About The Engine

And they weren’t done there. The team had to make sure that all of that speed had some stopping power behind it so they added bigger brakes to the system. But that only makes sense because with that kind of engine running the show and the super streamlined, aerodynamic body slicing through the air, you also need to be able to brake efficiently. On top of that, you also have to be able to control the car, so a five-way adjustable suspension system was added along with 17-inch aluminum wheels. Topping of this “work of speed” is the cat-back exhaust system, giving some much needed growl to the tiger.

An adjustable boy-racer rear wing was bolted to the rear end along with side spoilers and an adjustable front spoiler to keep the car planted on the road … as well as to make sure it looks fast too. Then, if you remember what Mugen did in 2011, you know what comes next: the new grille.

Spicing Up The Interior

Inside the car, the CR-Z Mugen RZ has blue and black seats that match the steering wheel’s blue stitching. But perhaps the niftiest looking piece of kit inside the car is the carbon-fiber shift knob, making sure the Mugen’s futuristic styling has the elemental backing it needs. Of course, any force-induction kit has to have a boost gauge so you can tell how hard the blower’s working and the Mugen team didn’t forget that either. Pointless for a real driver, but just what a young Lewis Hamilton-type wants to impress his girlfriend.

For those of you out there (and that means just about every car-lover in the world) who are already drooling at the prospect of getting behind the wheel of one of these bad boys, don’t get too excited: The CR-Z Mugen RZ will only be available in Japan and there will only be 300 of them at that. But for those of you who just have to have it, we’re sure you’ll find a way! Why not send us an email and we can see what we can do – mugencrz@integrityexports.com.