Mopar, AMG , SVT, and TRD – all names synonymous with factory performance with balanced characteristics and an intact vehicle warranty. Yet with these great names in manufacturer-approved performance parts, one automaker was suspiciously absent from the scene despite having a huge aftermarket following: Honda .
That’s about to change with Honda’s new Honda Performance Development, or HPD division. Roll out will be quite slow, however, as the division builds a name for itself within the Honda brand. HPD’s first project is the slow-selling Honda CR-Z hybrid .
Owners of manual-transmission CR-Zs can now have Honda install a 200,000 rpm Rotrex centrifugal traction-drive supercharger mated to a Griffiths air-to-air intercooler. A respectable 57-horsepower increase is expected, bringing total horsepower to 187 ponies, while fuel consumption remains at 42 mpg. Other modifications to the CR-Z includes a performance exhaust, suspension upgrades, a wheel and tire package, and a big brake kit. Not bad for a hybrid.
Philip LaPointe, manager of HPD Street Performance, told Automotive News in an interview that, “We’re sticking our first toe in the water. We didn’t want to start with too high volume. We need to know who’s going to build the parts and distribute them. We need to get our dealers and logistics up to speed."
LaPointe continued saying the performance parts for other Honda models would go on sale over the next few years. Buys will likely be waiting till the all-new 2016 Civic rolls out before a full-on HPD kit would be available from the dealer showroom, however. “The dream scenario is to have performance parts available at [new-product] launch,” he said.
Although the factory warranty would remain, HPD-outfitted cars would likely see their warranties reduced by years and mileage. The traditional five-year/60,000-mile warranty would fall to three-years/30,000 miles. Reason being that Honda’s durability testing for new cars doesn’t include the extra strains of “spirited driving” and “high-speed loading” typically seen on modified, performance-oriented versions of its vehicles.
Click past the jump for more on the Honda CR-Z by HPD