Here’s a hot piece of rumour, but we can’t yet vouch for is legitimacy. Apparently, a hybrid Honda Jazz Type R is in the works for a 2015 debut, as intimated by Australian-based site Motoring. It will be based on the third-generation Jazz and could take aggressive styling cues from the hatch’s Mugen parts bin.
If true, that would grow Honda’s Type R portfolio back up again, positioned under the 280 PS Civic Type R that has been confirmed for 2015. Unlike its turbocharged sibling however, the smaller Type R is rumoured to use hybrid propulsion to give it a performance boost.
The Fit/Jazz RS that is part of the third-generation launch lineup in Japan is powered by a 1.5 litre direct-injection DOHC i-VTEC engine with around 132 PS. A petrol-electric combination on top of that motor could boost power up to 190 PS, while maintaining an efficient 27.8 km per litre.
Not only will it be the first hybrid-powered Honda Type R, the hot Jazz is said to feature the new one-motor Sport Hybrid i-DCD (Intelligent Dual Clutch Drive) system employed in the current range-topping third-gen Fit/Jazz Hybrid. That means it will have a two-pedal DCT drivetrain.
With the next Civic Type R already confirmed to have a turbocharger, these are yet more deviations from the classic Type R formula. We will have to wait and see if they could survive the wrath of the sceptics and Type R traditionalists.
As it is, Honda isn’t the first company to turn to hybridisation for extra performance. The latest hypercar trio from Ferrari, McLaren and Porsche are all hybrids, and both the Nissan GT-R and Toyota 86 have been rumoured to get electric assistance too.