Honda still updates slow selling CR-Z hybrid for 2016 model year

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The third largest Japanese automaker has just released the first pictures and details on the 2016 model year CR-Z mild hybrid that comes to the market with a series of tweaks. The CR-Z had already been upgraded some months ago back home in Japan and now the company has decided a refresh was in order on the US market as well. You might understand why the sporty model has had a lackluster welcome since the carmaker itself describes the modifications as giving it a “more chiseled look.” We can see a refreshed angular radiator grille, blade-like front diffuser and a sportier appearance thanks to the triangle-shaped fog light well. There are also some full-length design lines on the side for a more pumped up appearance and the back area has received its own range of mild revisions – including a new design for the bumper. Going inside the cabin, there’s a new brush metallic finish available throughout and now a flagship EX-L Navi trim brings forth heated and leather seats with contrasting stitch patterns. There’s also a center console modification with a new armrest and deeper storage compartment. Now standard are available push button start/stop and smart entry as well as an electric parking brake. Every 2016 CR-Z will receive the 7-inch Display Audio touchscreen and the top trims will also come equipped with LaneWatch, and the EX-L Navi also has the Honda Satellite-linked navigation with support for digital traffic and voice recognition. Under the hood sits the unmodified 4-cylinder 1.5-liter engine mated to an electric motor powered by a lithium-ion battery pack. The combined power sits at 130 bhp (97 kW) and 140 lb-ft (190 Nm) or 127 lb-ft (172 Nm) with the optional CVT. Prices go from $20,295 for the entry-level LX trim with manual transmission and go up to $25,090 for the EX-L Navi mated to the CVT.