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New Honda Earth Dreams Technology 1.6L diesel in Civic to deliver CO2 emissions of 95 g/km

1.6-liter i-DTEC. Click to enlarge.

Honda’s new 1.6-liter i-DTEC engine in the new Civic will deliver CO2 emissions of 95 g/km, according to Honda Motor Europe’s President, Manabu Nishimae, in his presentation at the Geneva Motor Show. This is a 15-gram drop (13.6%) from the 110 g/km emissions of the enhanced 2.2L i-DTEC introduced in September 2011 at the Frankfurt show. (Earlier post.)

The 1.6-liter i-DTEC offers maximum power output of 118 hp (88 kW) at 4000 rpm, and 300 N·m (221 lb-ft) of torque at 2000 rpm). The new 1.6-liter i-DTEC engine is the first of Honda’s new Earth Dreams Technology engine series (earlier post) to be introduced into Europe. It will be manufactured at Honda’s UK manufacturing facility in Swindon from the end of 2012.

Honda Civic 1.6 i-DTEC Earth Dreams. Click to enlarge.

The application of new high-strength material in the cylinder head has enabled Honda to deliver the world’s lightest aluminium open deck 1.6-liter diesel engine.

By downsizing from the outgoing 2.2L engine and extensively reducing mechanical friction in each section, a friction level equivalent to present gasoline engine models was achieved.

The engine features an optimized thermal management system due to improvements in the cooling system. A compact, high-efficiency turbocharger and weight reduction in the reciprocating sliding section realizes a sporty and nimble ride, according to Honda.

Honda will also renew our entire European engine line-up, with a new engine series called Earth Dreams Technology. With these engines we aim to be Number 1 in fuel economy in each sector within 3 years.

—Manabu Nishimae


Thomas Pedersen

What a sweet engine for a B-segment car! I read from a journalist who drove it that it is great to drive.

I have a 2.0 TDI with 140 hp and 320 N·m in a Golf (similar car), and I would happily switch. I don't desperately need the extra 22 hp as much as good engine characteristics and fuel economy.

I'm interested to learn more about the new VW 1.6 TDI. Supposedly BMW are putting a 1.6 diesel on the market as well, although there is some confusion with their 2.0 litre labelled as x16d...

Renault has a 130 hp 1.6 diesel, which is also supposed to be great to drive.

Best of all, those new 1.5/1.6 litre diesels have nearly the same torque as the previous generation of two-litre diesel, though not as many horse power. The 300+ Nm is what makes the diesels so great to drive under everyday conditions.

The discrepancy in power - if you need to go 200 km/t on the Autobahn - can be remedied with improved aerodynamics and low-resistance tyres (not too wide - tyre wind resistance is very noticeable at high speed)


This may be one of the possible solution for Honda to catch up with Toyota and Hyundai fuel economy cars and increase sales in EU.


The Fiat and Renault 1.6 engines already offer similar - or better - specific performance and similar fuel economy. So, if Honda wants to catch up with someone – or overtake – they should aim at these two competitors. Maybe they have but did not quite make it. Toyota has nothing to offer in this engine segment. Both the Honda and Toyota 2.2 liter diesel engines are far, far behind the European competitor’s engines of similar size. If we scale down one class-leading 2-liter engine (e.g. BMW 123d and 525d) to 1.6 liters, single-turbo and twin-turbo versions should put our 147 and 174 hp respectively. As Thomas pointed out, torque is more important for everyday driving but this example shows that also the power level of many 2-liter engines in the past (i.e. just a few years ago) could be achieved by a 1.6-liter engine. A couple of recent examples have shown that downsized high-tech gasoline engines are accepted by (European) customers, so why should not a downsized high-tech diesel engine gain acceptance. One example of “anti-downsizing” philosophy, or should we call it “lack of recent development effort”, has been demonstrated by VW on their 1.6-liter diesel engine. The maximum power level of this engine is only 105 hp. I cannot recall any other engine family of this size where the most powerful version does not have more than 105 hp, i.e. everybody is ahead of VW. As contrast we can note that the VW group used to lead diesel engine development in the early 1990’s and many years thereafter.

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