Honda CR-Z gets a modest upgrade for 2013 (pictures)

Despite a lukewarm reception by enthusiasts, Honda hasn't given up on the CR-Z hybrid sports coupe. For the 2013 model year, the CR-Z gets a styling update and a modest power bump.

Caption:Photo:Antuan Goodwin/CNET
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A bit more power please

Honda has boosted the output of both the gasoline and electric elements of the CR-Z's IMA hybrid power-train. The 1.5-liter gasoline engine outputs 7 more horses than previously for a new maximum of 119 horsepower. Along with the electric motor's contribution, the CR-Z now makes a total of 137 horsepower and 140 pound-feet of torque.

Updated:Caption:Photo:Antuan Goodwin/CNET
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Fuel economy

Fuel economy hasn't been adversely affected by the boost in power, sitting at about 45 mpg combined on the European test cycle.

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Styling updates

The styling upgrades are also subtle, including tweaks to the front bumper, the grille, and the addition of LED daytime running lights to the headlamp cluster.

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Purple power

The 2013 model also gains this new deep purple color option and new 17-inch alloy wheels.

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Interior

Viewed from the inside, the changes to the 2013 CR-Z are even more difficult to spot, but there's one new feature to be found here that's rather cool.

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Drive modes

Like the previous model year, the 2013 CR-Z still features Normal, Econ, and Sport drive programs accessible from this bank of buttons.

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S+ kicked in, yo!

Check the CR-Z's steering wheel and you'll spot a new round, silver button. Pressing this S+ button activates a 10-second electric motor boost that improves acceleration. The S+ button only works, however, when the CR-Z's battery pack is charged to 50 percent or more.

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Shifting gears

The CR-Z will be available with Honda's CVT automatic transmission, but we're most pleased to see the six-speed manual transmission make a return appearance.

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Dashboard tech

Cabin tech remains unchanged. Drivers will have a choice between this basic rig or a touch-screen navigation system. Check out our full review of the previous generation Honda CR-Z for an idea of what to expect.

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Early 2013

The ever-so-slightly more powerful Honda CR-Z will go on sale in January 2013.

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