Honda officially unveils CR-V Hybrid Racer with Indycar engine

Honda CR-V Hybrid Racer 1

Following its announcement last week, Honda finally reveals the CR-V Hybrid Racer, which packs an Indycar engine that makes as much as 800 horses.


  • What powers the Honda CR-V Hybrid Racer?

    The Honda CR-V Hybrid Racer is powered by a 2.2-liter twin-turbocharged, electrified Honda V6 Indycar power unit.
  • When will the Honda CR-V Hybrid Racer make its public debut?

    The Honda CR-V Hybrid Racer will make its public debut from March 3 to 5 at the NTT Indycar Series opening season-opening Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, Florida.
  • According to American Honda, the CR-V Hybrid Racer is equipped with a 2.2-liter twin-turbocharged, electrified Honda V6 Indycar power unit. To note, the said engines are still to make their debut in the NTT Indycar Series next year.

    Honda CR-V Hybrid Racer 4

    It runs on Shell’s 100 percent renewable race fuel and features world-leading Skeleton Supercapacitors and Empel MGU hybrid motor technology.

    Honda CR-V Hybrid Racer 5

    “This project vehicle is an Indycar ‘beast’ in Honda CR-V ‘sheep’s clothing.’ The CR-V Hybrid Racer is our ‘rolling electrified laboratory’, to investigate where the talented men and women of HPD (Honda Performance Development) and Honda could go with electrification, hybrid technology, and 100 percent renewable fuels. It epitomizes Honda’s fun-to-drive ethos, showcases electrification and it just rocks our car culture roots and racing heritage! We present the CR-V Hybrid Racer – aka ‘The HPD Beast’!” said HPD President and Technical Director David Salters.

    Responsible for keeping the Indycar engine in place is the Chromoly steel tube chassis of the Honda CR-V Hybrid Racer, which is wrapped in “hybrid” bodywork designed by the North America Auto Design Division (NAAD) of American Honda.

    Honda CR-V Hybrid Racer 2Honda CR-V Hybrid Racer 3

    The folks from NAAD call it “hybrid” since they cut the body of the standard production sixth-generation CR-V in half from the beltline up and used the part that had the steel body, the glass windshield, windows, and even the sunroof.

    The lower half of the said “hybrid” body is made with carbon-composite material, which includes the massive front splitter and louvered, flared fenders. An equally large rear wing and butterfly half-cut doors on either side for the driver and passenger complete the bodywork.

    “When the Design Studio learned about this project, we had already established a great relationship with HPD through other projects, including the Acura ARX-06. So this was – pardon the pun – ‘Right in our wheelhouse.’ It became a ‘what if?’ of keeping the CRV as is, but adding some serious attitude with parts indicative of an Indy car. Then it was back to my childhood of never building model cars right out of the box, by manipulating areas with DTM or Japanese Super GT cars in mind. I basically mocked up the idea in 3D then our amazing Digital Modelers made it work,” explained Acura Executive Creative Director Dave Marek.

    Honda CR-V Hybrid Racer 6

    Finally, the livery worn by the Honda CR-V Hybrid Racer was made by Honda Senior Exterior Designer Lili Melikian. The eye-catching design contains a variety of “easter eggs” including ghosted images of the powertrain and Indycar Series circuits.

    “The graphics were inspired by the hybrid powertrain, radiating from Honda Hybrid Blue to Honda Racing Red to symbolize the duality of the drivetrain. While the ‘speed squirkles’ add a dynamic fun layer and showcase the playful side of Power of Dreams. Throughout the wrap, we have also sprinkled easter eggs like ghosted outlines of Honda-sponsored tracks and an overhead view of the engine that powers the Honda CR-V Hybrid Racer,” Melikian stated.

    The Honda CR-V Hybrid Racer will make its public debut from March 3 to 5 at the NTT Indycar Series opening season-opening Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, Florida.

    Photos from Honda

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