2009 Honda CR-Z Concept - Click above for high-res image gallery

One of the most highly anticipated new model releases scheduled to debut at the upcoming Tokyo Motor Show would have to be the production version of Honda's CR-Z hybrid hatchback. First unveiled at the Tokyo show back in 2007 in concept form, the sporty two-passenger vehicle is slated for production early next year in Honda's home market of Japan. We expect the CR-Z to hit the States sometime thereafter.

Underhood will be a 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine mated up to Honda's proprietary Integrated Motor Assist technology. Also on the menu will be a six-speed manual gearbox that will surely be a more entertaining partner for driving enthusiasts than the CVT automatic transmission used in the Insight hatchback.

While Honda is still calling the Tokyo-bound CR-Z a concept, don't expect the attractive sheetmetal to be altered before the car hits the showroom floor. That's fine by us – the car's wedge-shaped lines are very attractive and call to mind the seminal CRX from the early 1980s, though with a modern flavor reminiscent of the current Insight. See for yourself in our gallery below.



[Source: Honda]

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