The new Honda HR-V is a fascinating car. Like the bigger CR-V, it has a no-gearbox hybrid powertrain that sees the 1.5-litre act as a generator for the electric motors most of the time, directly driving the wheels at higher speeds via a locked-up clutch pack.
Well, if you’re a geek like us that’s interesting, anyway. What the HR-V certainly isn’t, however, is quick - that unusual series hybrid setup makes a combined 129bhp and 187lb ft of torque. Which hasn’t stopped Mugen Motorsports revealing a bunch of tuning parts for the car.
Founded by Hirotoshi Honda, the son of Honda Motor Company founder Soichiro Honda, Mugen is legendary for the tuning parts it makes for the brand’s cars. That goes beyond the fast Type R fare, as there’s a decent amount of demand in Japan for go-faster bits on more normal cars.
For the HR-V (known as the Vezel in Japan), this involves a new lower bumper section, a grille insert, side skirts, a rear diffuser and not one but two rear spoilers. Red stripes and 18-inch wheels further spice up the exterior, while on the performance front, Mugen offers a new exhaust silencer and an air filter. You know, to really let that 1.5-litre generator breathe.
Otherwise, it’s all as standard under the skin, meaning you’re still looking at a 0-62mph time of around 10 seconds and a top speed that might just nudge a little over the 100mph mark. But hey, it does look weirdly great with all those go-faster bits, making us wish Honda was to make a Type R version of the HR-V. Which it won’t. Sorry.
We don’t have any prices for the parts at this stage, but Mugen components tend to be catastrophically expensive. To give you some idea, the last Mugen offerings we looked at involved a range of carbon fibre Civic Type R body parts, including a £12,000 bonnet and a £12,500 rear wing. Yikes.