TOKYO -- Honda Motor Co. has a new and greatly improved one-motor hybrid system for small cars. But engineers for the next Civic are leaning toward the more powerful and fuel-efficient two-motor system that debuted in the mid-sized Accord Hybrid that went on sale last fall.
Honda has not said what kind of gasoline-electric drivetrain the next-generation Civic Hybrid, expected around 2016, will get. But Hiromitsu Ishibashi, chief engineer for the one-motor system at Honda R&D Co., said engineers are considering the two-motor layout.
Honda has doubts about how the one-motor system's dual-clutch transmission will be accepted in America, Ishibashi said on the sidelines of Automotive World, an annual technical conference here. And the two-motor system would deliver better fuel economy.
The newly developed one-motor system, deployed in the Fit hatchback and the Fit-based Vezel subcompact crossover, pairs a 1.5-liter engine with an electric motor with a dual-clutch transmission.
Hybrid versions of both cars already are on sale in Japan, but there are no current plans to bring the gasoline-electric versions to the United States.
The two-motor Accord Hybrid uses a continuously variable transmission.