Electric Vehicles

Does CR-V Hybrid mean an electrified Odyssey, Pilot on the way?

The Honda CR-V Hybrid plays into the company's larger plan to sell more electrified vehicles.

Photo courtesy of American Honda Motor Co., Inc

Earlier this year, the 2020 Honda CR-V made its debut with a new powertrain variant. Dubbed the CR-V Hybrid, the model will likely be able to go around 500 miles between fill ups, when optioned in its lightest variant in optimal driving conditions.

With the addition of the CR-V Hybrid and Honda's recent commitment to electrify two-thirds of its global automobile unit sales by 2030, it's reasonable to assume that the clock is ticking on electrified versions of two of the company's most popular U.S. models, the Odyssey and Pilot.

2020 Honda CR-V Hybrid red back rear tailgate trunk Honda has introduced the CR-V Hybrid for the 2020 model year.Photo courtesy of American Honda Motor Co., Inc

With electrification, there are a few ways for manufacturers to go. There's a more traditional hybrid, with a battery attached to one to four motors that uses mostly gasoline in combination with an electric power boost. There is also a plug-in hybrid electric (PHEV) powertrain, which allows customers to plug in their car's battery to an outlet and receive electric power to be used instead of gasoline while allowing the customer to retain their gasoline fuel tank for use for when the electric power runs out, or to supplement power availability at high speed.

Many futurists see PHEVs as being a good next step for buyers looking to have the best of the EV and gasoline-powered world.

"AutoPacific's data suggest that Odyssey customers would really respond to a plug-in hybrid powertrain," said Kim. "Our 2019 New Vehicle Satisfaction data show that 41 percent of 2019 Odyssey owners are willing to consider a plug-in hybrid powertrain next time, compared to just 24 percent of all new vehicle buyers this year. Honda has long had a reputation for powertrain efficiency and innovation, so a high-tech fuel efficient PHEV powertrain for Odyssey could make for an excellent brand fit."

2019 Honda Pilot Place your bets on Honda offering electrified powertrain options for the Pilot and Odyssey in the not too distant future. Photo courtesy of American Honda Motor Co., Inc

Honda builds the Odyssey, Pilot, Passport, and Ridgeline beside each other at Honda Manufacturing of Alabama. The current Pilot generation was launched first, in 2016. It underwent a facelift for the 2019 model year. The Ridgeline was re-introduced in 2017 and the current Odyssey generation debuted in 2018. Passport was added back to the Honda lineup in 2019.

Consumers are likely about three years away from seeing a redesigned Pilot and even further from a redesigned Odyssey, but could be closer to seeing new powertrain choices introduced as the company pushes hard to that 2030 goal. This would be a similar formula to what Honda has done with the CR-V, which had its current model introduced in 2017 and got a refresh this year.

"We are expecting a mid-cycle refresh for [Odyssey in] the 2021 model year," said Ed Kim, Vice President, Insights, AutoPaciifc. "We think the PHEV powertrain is likely to come out with the mid-cycle change, so a fall 2020 introduction wouldn't be impossible."

The Pilot and Ridgeline have a flat load floor that sits relatively high off the ground. This type of setup allows for slightly easier electrification design, because the battery pack can be situated along the bottom of the vehicle. However, the Odyssey only has 4.5-inches of ground clearance which, on the surface, seems like an impediment.

"A minivan actually makes really good sense for implementing a plug-in powertrain," said Kim. "Due to the lower sliding door tracks, the floor is a bit higher, and that leaves room under the floor for batteries. This is exactly what Chrysler did with the Pacifica Hybrid, mounting its batteries where its Stow-n-Go second row seats would normally go under the floor. It's easy to imagine Honda doing something similar with Odyssey; like the Pacifica, Honda should be able to incorporate a battery pack under the floor in a way that doesn't impede on interior space. And, in a minivan, interior space is of course extremely important."

Chrysler already sells a PHEV version of the Pacifica, the Pacifica Hybrid, so it makes sense that Honda would be exploring electrified versions of its minivan.Photo courtesy of American Honda Motor Co., Inc

There are significant fuel-saving and quickness advantages to driving hybrid or PHEV vehicle. Honda says that the 2020 CR-V Hybrid, "brings quicker off-the-line performance and is anticipated to achieve a 50 percent higher city fuel economy rating than the non-hybrid CR-V." These advantages are likely to carry over into any future Honda vehicle development.

It's important to note that Honda designs its vehicles unlike most manufacturers, from the inside out. This means that customers are likely to see benefits from hybrid or PHEV powertrain adoption rather than the sacrifices, like the higher-riding rear seats and diminished cargo space, some automakers force consumers to make should they want to choose an alternative powertrain. However, hybrid and PHEV models tend to come at a higher price than traditional gasoline-powered models.

Currently, Honda sells the electrified Accord Hybrid, Insight, and Clarity in the U.S.

When contacted about this story, a spokesperson for Honda said, "We don't comment on future products."

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Nuts & Bolts

 
 

Plug it in to get 42 miles of all-electric range.

Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc.

At last year's LA Auto Show, Toyota debuted the 2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime, a plug-in variant of the best-selling SUV in the U.S. Now that the model is about to go on sale, the Japan-based automaker has revealed how much it will cost.

The plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) will have a starting MSRP of $38,100. Toyota will offer the model in just two grades: SE and XSE. Those two trim levels denote the SUV's underlying sporty drive characteristics according to traditional Toyota nomenclature.

2021 Toyota RAV4 Hyrbid New Toyota RAV4 plug-in is the 2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime. Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc.

While most PHEVs are designed to sacrifice power for range, the RAV4 doesn't. Its power plant is able to achieve 302 horsepower and can get to 60 mph off the line in 5.7 seconds. Toyota says that time makes the RAV4 Prime the quickest four-door model in their lineup.

The RAV4 Prime has 42 miles of all-electric range. Americans travel, on average, about 30 miles per day to run errands around town so theoretically whomever owns the SUV would be able to do all their errands without using a drop of gasoline. This range also gives the SUV the distinction of having the highest all-electric range of any plug-in hybrid electric (PHEV) SUV on the market.

Toyota estimates that the SUV will achieve 94 MPGe combined. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, the 2020 Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid, which is also a PHEV, gets 90 MPGe. The 2020 Land Rover Range Rover Sport PHEV gets 42 MPGe and the 2020 Volvo XC60 PHEV gets 57 MPGe. Each model listed comes standard with all-wheel drive.

All Toyota RAV4 models come equipped with standard Toyota Safety Sense 2.0.

2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime SE

The SE trim level has a unique front grille and lower front spoiler. Piano black exterior accents are featured throughout the body. The SUV rides one 18-inch painted and machined alloy wheels.

Its standard equipment list is fitting for its price point and includes heated front seats, eight-way power-adjustable driver's seat with lumbar support, a 7-inch multi-information display in front of the driver, blind spot monitoring and rear cross traffic alert technology, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob with red stitching, power hatchback, 8-inch infotainment touch screen, Amazon Alexa, Android Auto, and Apple CarPlay.

The car also comes standard with a 3-kilowatt-hour on-board charger.

The available Weather & Moonroof Package (+$1,665 upgrade) features a number of upgrades including a heated steering wheel, heated rear outboard seats, and rain-sensing windshield wipers with de-icer function.

2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime XSE

The 2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime XSE starts at $41,425 and builds on what is offered in the SE model. It's available with a two-tone paint scheme that pairs a black roof with select colors, including the Supersonic Red paint that joins the RAV4 lineup for the first time.

Toyota's list of features for the RAV4 Prime XSE includes 19-inch two-tone alloy wheels, vertical LED accent lights, paddle shifters, a moonroof, SofTex seats, wireless charging, ambient interior lighting, automatic dimming rearview mirror with HomeLink universal transceiver, and a 9-inch infotainment touch screen.

Toyota is also offering the model with a Premium Audio package that includes dynamic navigation and a JBL speaker system.

Available options for the XSE grade include:

  • Weather Package (+$815)
    • Heated Steering Wheel
    • Heated Rear Outboard Seats
    • Rain Sensing Wipers w/Wiper De-Icer
  • Weather and Audio Package (+$2,435)
    • Weather package plus:
      • JBL Premium Audio
      • Dynamic Navigation with 3 year trial
      • Destination Assist with 1 year trial
  • Weather with Audio and Premium Package (+$5,760)
    • Weather and Audio package plus:
      • AC (6.6kW) Enhanced Charger
      • Digital Rearview Mirror
      • 120V/1500W AC power outlet in cargo area
      • Panoramic Moonroof
      • Kick-Type Power Back Door
      • SofTex®-trimmed seats with sporty red accents and stitching
      • Bird's Eye View Camera
      • 4-way power adjustable front passenger seat with seatback pocket
      • Smart Key System on all doors
      • Perforated Heated & Ventilated Front Seats
      • Parking Assist with Automatic Braking
      • Adaptive Front Headlight System
      • Head-Up Display

Prices are manufacturer's suggested retail prices (MSRP) excluding the delivery, processing and handling (DPH) fee of $1,120. The DPH fee for vehicles distributed by Southeast Toyota (SET) and Gulf States Toyota (GST) may vary. RAV4 Prime customers also may qualify for an $7,500 federal tax credit. Individual states have additional incentives that can be either be applied at time of purchase or via a rebate program, depending on the state. Individual state incentive information can be found at https://afdc.energy.gov/laws/state.

The 2021 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid goes on sale this summer.

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Nearly every brand has a YouTube channel full of vehicle how-to guides and walkarounds.

Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Company

When you get the keys to your new car, it's easy to zone out when it comes to the instruction the dealership is trying to give you about things like how to change the rearview camera view or turn off that annoying beeping sound you think is made by the safety system.

Often, automakers fill their YouTube channel with a selection of videos that share the highlights of the vehicles and give how-to advice for the various tech systems in them. Not all videos are created equal, however. Some automakers do a better job than others.

Most of the links on this list go to a playlist for a certain automobile created by an automaker. However, some manufacturers mix it up, offering model overviews separate from technical tutorials.

If the videos aren't able to help with your particular query, head to your local dealership for a tutorial, something most offer for no charge.

Acura

2020 Acura TLX Photo courtesy of American Honda Motor Co., Inc

Aston Martin

2020 Aston Martin DBX

Photo courtesy of Aston Martin

Bugatti

Bugatti Chiron Pur Sport

Photo courtesy of Bugatti

Dodge

2020 Dodge Charger Photo courtesy of FCA US LLC

Note: Dodge does not currently have any how-to or walkaround videos on their YouTube channel.

Ferrari

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Fiat

2020 Fiat 500 Trekking

Photo courtesy of FCA US LLC

Kia

2020 Kia Niro FE Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

Lexus

2020 Lexus NX

Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A., Inc.

Model Overviews:

Technical Tutorials:

Lincoln

2020 Lincoln Navigator

Photo courtesy of Lincoln Motor Company

Vehicle Overviews:

Technical Tutorials:

Lotus

Note: Lotus does not currently have any how-to or walkaround videos on their YouTube channel.

Maserati

Maserati Ghibli

Photo courtesy of FCA US LLC

Model Overviews:

Technology Tutorials:

Mazda

2019 Mazda Mazda6 Photo courtesy of Mazda North American Operations

Vehicle Overviews:

Technology Tutorials:

MINI

2021 MINI John Cooper Works GP Photo courtesy of MINI

Mitsubishi

2019 Mitsubishi Outlander Photo courtesy of Mitsubishi Motors

Pagani

Photo courtesy of Pagani Automobili

Note: Pagani does not currently have any how-to or walkaround videos on their YouTube channel.

Tesla

Tesla Model 3

Photo courtesy of Tesla

Vehicle Overviews:

Technology Tutorials:

Volvo

2020 Volvo XC60

Photo courtesy of Volvo Car USA

Vehicle Overviews:

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