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With such delicious body lines as these, the HSC already looks
the part of a supercar.

Honda HSC

All-aluminum frame. Aluminum and carbon-fiber body panels. Sleek bodywork. Midmounted V6 engine. What does this call to mind? Acura NSX, anyone?

Introduced 14 years ago, the NSX is one of the few Hondas that doesn't adhere to the company's practice of redesigning its cars every four to five years - it's still basically the same car it was back in 1991. Though still exhilarating to drive by any reasonable standards, this $90,000 supercar is no match for the similarly priced Viper or Corvette Z06, while comparatively inexpensive cars like the Nissan 350Z and Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution make it seem way overpriced for what you get. Though few details were given at the Tokyo show, the HSC seems to be a glimpse of a long-overdue successor to the NSX.

Honda says the HSC "delivers output in excess of 300 horsepower," which is a must for a supercar in this day and age. Shifts are made with either an "easy-to-operate" dial shifter or paddle-shift levers - we would assume this indicates the use of a sequential manual transmission rather than a conventional manual gearbox. Indeed, press literature suggests that the HSC is a car that makes its high-performance threshold accessible to drivers of varying abilities. The cabin bears no signs of deceased Preludes and appears fully modern and driver-oriented with individual gauge pods, heavily bolstered seats and liberal use of carbon fiber, aluminum and nubuck.

Why Should You Care? Will the NSX finally get a redesign? The HSC seems to be a hazy picture of the direction the company might take with its supercar. A future production version could pick up this concept's styling cues and, perhaps, a sequential manual transmission

Somewhat industrial in appearance, the cockpit is strongly
driver-oriented with readily accessible gauges and heavily bolstered seats.

Honda F1 sets land speed records at Bonneville

All week long, the Honda Racing F1 team has been out at the Bonneville Salt Flats pursuing a lofty goal: setting a new Formula 1 car land speed record over the Bonneville flying mile with an average speed of 400 kph. Honda simply called the mission the Bonneville 400.

The instrument being used to make the attempt was a V10-powered Honda 007. For the runs out on the salt, the car was outfitted with an upright rear fin instead of the standard wing, and also employed the use of a parachute to help slow itself at the completion of each attempt. Driver Alan van der Mewe was behind the wheel for all the early-morning record runs, and through the course of the week, Alan, the team, and the car have broken F1 class records three times.

During today's final set of attempts, the Honda produced two land speed records for Formula 1 cars. Over the Bonneville flying mile, the car hit an average speed of 397.360kph (246.908mph). The second record set was over the flying kilometer, where it averaged 397.481kph (246.983mph).

The magic 400 kph average remained out of reach, though earlier this week, the car did hit 400.454 kph on one pass of the measured mile. It wasn't able to match the feat on the return trip, unfortunately.

While disappointed that they didn't set the record at 400, all parties involved deemed the week a success. Given the time and effort that they put into the event and the challenges they faced running an F1 car on the salt flats, you can't help but agree.

Sales of HondaJet Off to Impressive Start After 3-day NBAA Convention

Honda Aircraft Company today announced that it received well over 100 individual customer orders with deposits for the $3.65 million HondaJet during the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) convention in Orlando, Florida. The company began sales of its advanced light jet on October 17 and has experienced demand in excess of expectations over three days of sales.

"We are extremely pleased with the early customer response to HondaJet. In addition to the strong demand we have experienced from individuals, we are negotiating with a number of fleet customers as well," said Michimasa Fujino, president & CEO of Honda Aircraft Co., Inc. "Due to this overwhelming response, we are now considering an increase in our production plan to meet the needs of our customers."

HondaJet will be produced by the Honda Aircraft Company at a dedicated manufacturing facility in the United States. Toward this end, on October 11 of this year, the company submitted its application for type certification of HondaJet with the Federal Aviation Administration.

Setting new standards for performance, quality and comfort, HondaJet introduces a series of new technologies that signify a revolutionary departure from conventional light jet designs. Its most unique and recognizable feature - the over-the-wing engine mount (OTWEM) configuration - liberates precious fuselage space for increased room in the cabin and cargo stowage, while significantly reducing aerodynamic drag at high speeds for major improvements in performance and fuel efficiency.

HondaJet features a class-topping cruise speed of 420 knots with an IFR range of 1180 nautical miles , and a 30-35 percent gain in fuel efficiency at cruise speed versus other jets of comparable performance. HondaJet's luxuriously-appointed cabin is about 1-foot longer than even larger light jets and features a fully-private lavatory.

"Clearly, our customers understand that HondaJet creates new value by combining class-leading speed, comfort and fuel efficiency... matched by the promise of Honda's reputation for the highest quality," said Fujino.

A sales network incorporating five regional sales groups has been established for sales of HondaJet - HondaJet East, HondaJet Southeast, HondaJet Midwest, HondaJet Southwest and HondaJet Northwest - operating 14 offices around the country to provide HondaJet customers with a superior sales and ownership experience. The company will also establish a network of service facilities within 90-minutes flight time from any location in the U.S.

Honda Develops Advanced VTEC Engine Combining High Power and Environmental Performance

TOCHIGI, Japan 09/25/2006
Honda Motor Co., Ltd. has further advanced its VTEC (Variable Valve Timing and Lift Electronic Control System) technology with the development of the Advanced VTEC engine, which achieves high performance along with outstanding fuel economy and lower emissions. The new engine combines continuously variable valve lift and timing control with the continuously variable phase control of VTC (Variable Timing Control). Honda plans to release a production vehicle equipped with the new engine within three years.

This new system permits optimum control over intake valve lift and phase in response to driving conditions, achieving improved charging efficiency for a significant increase in torque at all engine speeds. Under low to medium load levels, the valves are set for low lift and early closure to reduce pumping losses and improve fuel economy.

In combination with optimized intake components, these advances in control technology result in world-class dynamic performance along with approximately 13 percent* improvement in fuel economy. The new engine is also exceptionally clean, with exhaust emissions that meet both U.S. Environmental Protection Agency LEV2-ULEV regulations and Japanese Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport requirements for Low-Emission Vehicles, with emission levels 75 percent lower than those required by the 2005 standards (based on Honda calculations).
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