Spring Cleaning: What's in store for MY 2010. Part II - Honda
Date: April 24, 2009 12:00
Thanks to the release of the all-new Insight, there are now already 2010 model Hondas on the streets. The biggest remaining news for the 2010 model year at Honda would have to be the launch of an all new nameplate, which will be attached to an all-new CUV. Other than that, we expect things to be fairly quiet at Honda this autumn, with little else to talk about apart from the sad departure of the S2000 from the lineup.
|Accord Launched as a 2008 model, minimal changes are expected until its MMC in 2011. Don't expect much beyond color palette tweaks for 2010.|
Summary: Few changes are expected until 2011 MMC.
Watch For: Could a 6AT be a part of the 2011 MMC?
|Civic As the current body style debuted in the 2006 model year, the Civic received its MMC last year. In other words, minimal changes are expected for 2010. For those who are counting on the Civic getting an FMC next year, think again. The Civic has generally been on a 5-year model cycle, which means the FMC (full model change) would normally be expected for the 2011 model year, but we have heard through several sources that the 8th generation Civic's model cycle has been stretched a year and the introduction of the 9th generation Civic has been pushed back to the 2012 model year. The good news is, this gives Honda another year to consider bringing the brilliant Japanese-spec Civic Type R over, but will they? Sadly, the answer is likely "no".|
Summary: Few changes until 2012 FMC.
Watch For: 6-year cycle for 8th generation Civic. Also watch for people expiring due to prolonged holding of breath waiting for a proper Civic Type R to make its way to our shores.
|CR-V Going into its fourth year of the current model cycle, the CR-V should be seeing an MMC this year. No details are known at this point.|
Summary: Due for an MMC this fall.
Watch For: USB, bluetooth, engine update?
|CR-Z Honda's trying to channel some of the CRX's banked mojo with their upcoming eco-oriented sportster. We've heard that it will handle extremely well, but based upon what we've heard about the powertrain (roughly 140hp total system power) and the vehicle's expected weight, we're not anticipating a lot of excitement coming from underhood. It has been confirmed for a US introduction but there has been no official comment with respect to the exact timing of its introduction. Sources tell us that it should be arriving in US showrooms in the spring of 2010, but things can change.|
Summary: Honda is firing up the hype machine with the CR-Z. Let's hope it's hype-worthy.
Watch For: 2010 Launch
Available: Possible US introduction in Spring.
|CrossTour We've heard whispers of this product for so long it seems that it's been under development forever. We don't have any confirmation on the name yet, but Honda recently registered the CrossTour name, so at the moment it makes the most sense. A flurry of spyshots of a cleverly disguised test mule for this vehicle provided plenty of fodder for internet discussions over the past year or so, but we're still waiting to catch a glimpse of how it will look in production sheetmetal. So far, those spy photos have eluded us. We don't know a lot about this vehicle but there is at least some consistency in the rumors that we've been hearing. First of all, it will be based upon the Accord platform. It will be larger than a CR-V, yet smaller than the Pilot, and priced accordingly (one source tells us it will be equipped to match the Venza for the most part, yet it will undercut it in price). Drivetrains are expected to also be borrowed from the Accord, which would most likely mean you'll get your choice of 4-cyl or 6-cylinder power. Since it will supposedly be equipped to take on the Venza, our guess is that the CrossTour will also offer VTM-4. We've heard a tentative launch date of November, 2009, but we're also told that it could be moved up slightly or even pushed back to early 2010; the decision will be based upon Honda's inventory levels and the overall state of the economy as those dates get closer. UPDATE 1.May.09: We've recently heard that the CrossTour's intro date will most likely be in the April 2010 timeframe, as a 2011 model. It's also been suggested that the CrossTour and ZDX will share platforms.|
Summary: Honda's long-rumored Accord-based crossover will finally be reaching showrooms soon.
Watch For: Spyshots of camo'd test vehicles to begin surfacing soon.
Oct/Nov '09 OR early 2010 We're now hearing April, 2010 is the most likely intro date
|Element The Element received an MMC in 2008, and the only real news for 2010 is the "Dog-Friendly" accessory package that was recently announced at the 2009 New York International Auto Show. We've heard for a while that Honda has been working on a next-generation Element, but whether it comes in 2011 or beyond is unclear at this point.|
Summary: With the departure of the S2000 from the lineup, the Element becomes the Senior Citizen of the portfolio.
Watch For: FMC in 2011 (or later?)
|FCX Clarity The FCX Clarity has been available to pre-selected customers in Southern California since late last summer. Deliveries have been trickling out at a single digit monthly rate, but that should be on the increase soon.|
Summary: The world's only "mass produced" fuel-cell vehicle is a truly groundbreaking and game-changing product.
Watch For: Groups protesting its pure H2O emissions.
Available: Only if you're on the "list"
|Fit The Fit just saw its FMC last year so we're not expecting any changes of note for 2010. Honda is working on a Fit hybrid but as of this point we don't have any firm confirmations that it will be offered in the US market.|
Watch For: ??
|Insight The Insight went on sale several weeks ahead of its official Earth Day launch date, and the early returns have been pretty good. Honda aims to sell 100,000 of these each year in North America, and if demand holds up, they may be required to ramp up production.
Summary: The Insight is Honda's first 2010 model in the showrooms and the most affordable hybrid currently offered for sale in the USA.
Watch For: Intense competition from the all-new 2010 Prius.
|Odyssey The Odyssey's been keeping a low profile at Honda for the past year or so. The MMC happened in the '08 model year so we're not expecting to see any dramatic changes until its FMC. We're not sure at this point whether or not the Odyssey will follow a "standard" 6-year model cycle, but if it does, the all-new one should be arriving next year as a 2011 model.|
Summary: Honda's roomiest people mover marches on with few expected changes for 2010.
Watch For: FMC in 2011(?)
|Pilot The Pilot was redesigned for the 2009 model year, but the timing of its release was a bit unfortunate as it largely coincided with all-time record high gas prices and generally sour market conditions for SUVs. Sales have been off the pace, yet steady, but the chances of it ever reaching its original annual targets aren't looking too good.|
Summary: Expect few changes and great deals on 2009 and 2010 Pilots.
Watch For: 6AT in the future?
|Ridgeline The Ridgeline was quietly updated for the 2009 model year. The changes were worthy but to the average buyer, most of them were largely invisible. We've heard that Honda is working on a next-generation Ridgeline, but it wouldn't surprise us much if the project were put into a state of limbo due to market conditions.|
Summary: Expect mostly carryover from 2009.
Watch For: FMC in 2011(?)
|S2000 The S2000 had a 10-year run and in our opinion it ranks right up with the NSX as one of the world's finest sports cars. Unfortunately, even good things must come to an end, and the time has come for the S2000. What's even more unfortunate is that there is no clear successor to the S2000 or even a clear plan for Honda to cultivate the immense brand equity that the S2000 was able to develop. |
Summary: Sayonara, S - Ni Sen.
Watch For: Legions of Honda fans to be sobbing in their pints.
Available: Get an '09 now, because it's your last chance
Last edited by JeffX on
May 29, 2009 14:22