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TOKYO MOTOR SHOW: Honda wants small engine boost

Honda confirms research of turbocharged small engines for future models
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Speaking to assembled journalists during the 42nd Tokyo Motor Show press day, Honda executives confirmed they are researching the potential of small-capacity engines combined with turbocharging.

Well aware of the success Volkswagen has enjoyed via its twin-charge technology applied to engines with capacity around a 1-litre (1.2-litre options in Australia), Honda is prepared to apply a similar formula to its engine development according to the company's director, Takanobu Ito.

"We realise this is something that we need to research further, and it is certainly feasible to us," said Ito. "It is a technical direction we want to pursue when considering future powerplant development.

"But it is just one of the alternatives we are researching. It moves us from larger displacement engines for smaller engines; ones with less cylinders but equivalent power. And if the size of an engine is reduced we gain benefits in weight.

"This is where efficiency kicks in, and it is definitely an attractive challenge for us," added Ito-san.

Honda demonstrated several 'green car' options on its stand at Tokyo, including the plug-in Jazz and electric vehicle STER, but Ito also reiterated Honda's focus on furthering efficiencies in its current petrol engine range.

"It is a fact that our current business remains focussed on gasoline engine technology," said Ito. "It allows us to develop and offer sporty models..."

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Published : Thursday, 1 December 2011

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