The Honda brand had already announced the addition of another SUV, intended for a median position between the CR-V and the Pilot. The new 2019 Honda Passport is inspired by other five-passenger SUVs already on the market such as the Nissan Murano or the Ford Edge, but with a clearer orientation towards adventure.

The strategists of the Japanese brand put a lot of emphasis on the more “robust” aspect of the new model, especially because of a ground clearance one inch higher than that of the Pilot, but also because of this vector system i -VTM4 and the traction management system that allows you to select the type of driving you to want.

Coming automatically with 20-inch wheels, the new Passport does not break the conventions in terms of design. The silhouette is, we are told, similar to that of the Pilot, although the pronounced inclination of the rear window combined with this strip of plastic that crosses the pillar D still manages to give this particular look to the Passport. The shield is also more aggressive with a prominent grille and optical blocks characterized by this light-emitting diode signature, while the wheel arches are belted by these black plastic wing contours.

Inside, the Passport is rather sober with a dashboard that resembles those installed aboard the CR-V and the Pilot. Regulars of the brand will not be disoriented. And since the mission of this new model is not to contain a maximum of passengers on board, the number of seats is limited to five. Honda, however, mentioned that the interior volume, as well as the trunk volume, was the best in the category. Exactly at the back, the Passport comes with large storage under the floor, very convenient to hide valuables or just to store other car cover.

Under the hood, the newcomer takes the 3.5-liter V6 well known to all, it develops the power of 280 horses. The 6-cylinder teamed with the nine-speed automatic gearbox and during the presentation, we were assured that adjustments had been made to this unit extirpated from the catalog of the firm ZF.

It is too early to talk about Canadian prices, but the position of the vehicle in the range gives good clues about the amounts to be expected. Fortunately, we should know more soon as the arrival of the new Passport is scheduled for early 2019.

Honda partners with GAC for the production of an electric HR-V … for China!

To speed up the electrification of its fleet in the largest car market in the world, the Honda manufacturer has decided to partner with its Chinese partner, GAC, for the upcoming commercialization of a fully electric HR-V.

The new pocket utility was introduced at the Guangzhou China show and will order 170,800 Yuan (or just over 32,000 Canadian dollars based on the prevailing exchange rate) after government remittances.

Equipped with an electric motor of 120 kW and a battery pack of 53.6 kWh, the Honda Ever us VE-1 is capable of driving a distance of 340 km, in theory of course!

At the time of writing, this model exclusive to China will not be offered at home, especially since the Honda electric range in America is not very full. Indeed, only the Clarity Electric sedan can be described as pure electric, and this one is not even available in Canada, the Canadian division having privileged the rechargeable hybrid version.

But, at least, this unveiling demonstrates that it is possible to turn the small HR-V into a relatively affordable electric vehicle.

Honda injects 2.75 billion into Cruise

The Cruise Company, founded in 2013 and supported by General Motors since 2016, has received a significant boost from Honda.

Indeed, the Japanese manufacturer has announced that it will contribute financially at a rate of 2 billion US dollars over a period of 12 years, in addition to investing equitably in Cruise for 750 million additional. In other words, Honda is investing 2.75 billion in the autonomous vehicle project, which already has the support of several partners.

Last May, Cruise also received a $ 2.25 billion financial injection from the Japanese group Softbank. After Honda’s announcement, the value of the Cruise project has risen to $ 14.6 billion.

“With the support of General Motors, Softbank and now Honda, Cruise has all the resources it needs to carry out its mission of safely deploying autonomous technology around the world,” said Cruise’s Chief Executive Officer. Kyle Vogt.

The multiple investment announcements of the past few months confirm that there is industry interest in commercializing this autonomous vehicle technology as quickly as possible.

Remember that Cruise is not the only player currently working on a self-driving pilot project. We already know that Ford and BMW want their share of the cake, while the company Waylon also works on his side with a fleet of vehicles guided by the home system. The Tesla builder who gets a lot of talks these days is also involved, as is the firm Uber that has already caused the death of a pedestrian with one of his prototypes.

Honda’s investment is good news for the Cruise project, which can count on GM and Honda, two brands that already place a premium on a greener fleet. Will the new Honda Insight be added to the fleet of Chevrolet Bolt currently in testing? We’ll see in a few months.


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