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Honda announces 30% more efficient hybrid powertrain

SPORT HYBRID Intelligent Dual Clutch Drive is based on a 1.5-litre Atkinson cycle petrol engine and seven-speed dual-clutch transmission, rather than the continuously variable transmission (CVT) featured in IMA. It’s the first time Honda has offered a hybrid system capable of being driven just using the electric motor with the petrol engine decoupled.

Power is supplied by a lithium ion battery, recharged using energy regeneration from the motor while decelerating. Honda said the system also offers sportier acceleration off the mark, while using the engine to sustain power at higher speeds.

The new drivetrain joins a new family of hybrid systems developed under Honda’s Earth Dreams Technology programme. These include a two-motor system designed for plug-in hybrids, set to debut in the North American Honda Accord from January, and a three-motor setup with all-wheel drive. The latter is claimed to offer V8 performance with four-cylinder efficiency.

Alex Grant

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