By Mark Kleis
Thursday, Apr 28th, 2011 @ 3:08 pm
 
As Shelby does for Ford products, Mugen is sure to add a dose of aftermarket fun to many of Honda's models, and this time around Mugen has worked its magic on the CR-Z hybrid.

Leftlane reported in March that Mugen had something in the works for the CR-Z, but now we have learned more details on the car, including the fact that power has been boosted from 125 to 197 total horsepower thanks to an added supercharger, according to performance outfit.

The power change actually represents a 50 percent increase to horsepower from the 1.5-liter i-VTEC engine that it is now force feeding, while the 13 horsepower, 58 lb-ft of torque electric motor output remains unchanged. Torque received a modest bump as well from 107 lb-ft to 123 lb-ft of torque, before the addition of the electric motor's healthy dose of torque.

Mugen says it has beefed up aspects of the engine's internals to properly and safely handle the added boost, and of course special tuning was required in order to deal with the hybrid powertrain. To do this, Mugen developed something it dubbed "iCF," which is a system intended to ensure a consistent and smooth power delivery throughout the rpm band between the gas and electric motors.

"The idea was to use the significant advantage of the early torque provided by the Honda IMA electric motor, then increase the torque available from the petrol engine gradually, to first maintain and then increase this," said Colin Whittamore from Mugen Euro. "A supercharger and complementary electronics allow us to very neatly map the IMA to the extra power and torque of the engine in a unique package, giving a smooth and integrated powerful driving experience."

Other upgrades include larger disc brakes and four-pot monobolic calipers on all four corners, as well as 17-inch forged alloy lightweight Mugen GP wheels that are lighter than the factory wheels. Mugen also added front and rear under spoilers, side skirts and a rear wing.

Unfortunately, Mugen says that as of now there are no production plans for the car, and that it was created as a one-off prototype. Look for the official debut of the car to occur at the Goodwood Festival of Speed this July.