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3/4 Front Glamour 2013 Honda CR-Z

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Expert's Rating

4.6Excellent

MPG 31 City / 38 Highway
Pros
  • Sporty and stylish
  • Fun to drive
  • Excellent fit and finish
  • Only stick-shift hybrid on market
Cons
  • Mileage not as good as other hybrids
, Automotive Editor -
The Honda CR-Z debuted in the2011 model year as the spiritual successor to the CRX of 1980s and 1990s fame. Unlike the CRX, the CR-Z is a hybrid vehicle that was designed to give you spirited driving with good fuel economy, but it has since struggled to live up to its hype.

Introduction

The 2013 model year brings about a refresh for the CR-Z, as Honda tries to recapture the fanfare that it received during its debut. The 2013 refresh is headlined by a new front fascia and rear diffusor that give the CR-Z and even sportier look. Also revised was the hybrid drivetrain, which is increased from 122 horsepower and 128 foot-pounds of torque up to 130 horsepower and 140 foot-pounds of torque on six-speed manual equipped models. When you opt for the available CVT, it drops to 127 foot-pounds of torque. Also added in for the2013 model year is the Plus Sport System, which allows the CR-Z to use extra battery power for a quick boost to performance.

The Honda CR-Z comes in two trim levels for the 2013 model year: Base and EX. The CR-Z Base is actually relatively well equipped, as it features things like 16-inch alloy wheels, auto on-off headlights and Bluetooth integration. The EX trim level adds in an upgraded exterior lighting package, and some extra comfort and convenience items inside the cabin. The EX trim level does have an optional Satellite-Linked Navigation Package, which adds in Honda’s Satellite-Linked Navigation System with voice control, multi-angle rearview camera, SMS text messaging, illuminated steering-wheel-mounted audio, phone, MID and navigation controls, and Pandora radio.

Sporty and fuel-efficient cars are becoming more common each day, so there is plenty of competition for the CR-Z. The first competitor is the 2013 Mini Cooper, which comes standard with a 1.6-liter engine that puts out 121 horsepower, 29 mpg city and 37 mpg highway, and a six-speaker sound system. Next up is the 2013 Hyundai Veloster, which comes in with a 1.6-liter engine with 138 horsepower, is rated 27 mpg city and 37 mpg highway, and has a six-speaker sound system. The Final competitor is the 2013 Ford Fiesta, which comes standard with a 1.6-liter engine with 120 horsepower, is rated 29 mpg city and 39 mpg highway and has a four-speaker sound system.

The competition may not blow your doors off in this class, but it is certainly a fierce battle nonetheless. The CR-Z definitely has some impressing to do to pull customers into its new-age technology.

Which Style To Buy?

2013 Honda CR-Z
Starting price
$12,888

2013 Honda CR-Z Base

Recommended for: Buyers that want a sporty model with over 30 mpg city.

The CR-Z Base is not nearly as cheap as many other base models on the market, as it features a wide range standard amenities. A standard set of 16-inch alloy wheels and LED brake lights set off the already sporty body. Also included on the outside are power mirrors for easy adjustments, auto on-off headlights to keep you safe in low-light situations, keyless entry, anti-lock brakes with brake-force distribution for steady stopping and stability control. Inside the cabin, the CR-Z keep its passengers entertained with a standard 160-watt AM/FM/CD stereo with six speakers and a USB interface. Standard Bluetooth integration keeps you connected but not distracted. Lastly, a standard rearview camera helps you see what’s behind you clearly before backing up.

2013 Honda CR-Z
Starting price
$12,888

2013 Honda CR-Z EX

Recommended for: Buyers that want sport, comfort and economy all rolled into one package.

The EX trim level is the top level for the 2013 Honda CR-Z. With all of the features already found in the base model, there is not too much to add in. On the outside, you get the added safety of upgraded lighting, as the EX includes LED daytime running lights, HID headlights with auto on-off and standard fog lamps. Inside the cabin, a touch of luxury is added in with the addition of a leather-wrapped steering wheel and an aluminum shift knob with leather. Also added in is a 360-watt premium audio system with seven speakers, one of which is a subwoofer for extra-deep bass.

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