Honda had initially pledged to electrify two-thirds of its lineup, but now it’s going all-in. Tom Gardner, senior vice president of Honda Motor Europe, told the motoring press in Geneva: “Since we made that first pledge [for electrification] in March 2017, the shift towards electrification has gathered pace considerably. Environmental challenges continue to drive demand for cleaner mobility. Technology marches on unrelenting, and people are starting to shift their view of the car itself.”
So, if there is a Type R for sale in Europe in 2025, it too will have hybrid power. And it would be logical to expect a hybrid powerplant even sooner, in 2021, when production of the next-generation Hatchback and Type R is expected to begin in Honda’s North American manufacturing facilities instead of at the Honda plant in Swindon, UK, which is slated to be closed by then.
It will be only the latest step in assisted engines for the Type R; the model which started out as naturally aspirated VTEC finally embraced turbocharging in its latest iterations. And of course it has a hybrid performance precedent in the NSX.
As well as Type R electrification, Honda’s European sales will also feature the E Prototype’s eventual production version. Honda states there have been 15,000 registrations of interest so far for the electric city car with a 125-mile range.
Another electrified Honda that’s expected to rack up sales is the CR-V Hybrid, launched earlier this year. Honda says the hybrid version already amounts to 60 percent of CR-V sales in the UK.