On April 23, Honda Motor Company announced that it will release their all-new fifth-generation Step WGN on the 24th. The Step WGN underwent its first full makeover since 2009 with the engine updated from a naturally aspirated 2.0-liter system to a 1.5-liter direct-injected turbo.
This is also Hondaâ€™s first production model to feature a turbo version in Japan since 1991. This so-called downsized turbo engine generates torque equivalent to that of a 2.4-liter system. Its fuel-efficiency of 17.0km/liter is the best in its class, and is a 13% improvement from the 15.0km/liter for the previous model.
Although the length and height of the new Step WGN has been extended from its previous model, the fuel-efficiency ranks higher than other minivans of the same class equipped with 2.0-liter engines. Moreover, the motor vehicle tax was reduced from previous Step WGN models due to reduction of the engine displacement.
Honda Research & Developmentâ€™s Project Leader, Hitoshi Hakamada said, â€œHonestly, I wasnâ€™t sure if loading a 1.5-liter engine on a 7 or 8 passenger minivan would work at first, but there was no need to be concerned about that. You can feel the smoothness and power of its acceleration inside the vehicle, so Iâ€™d like to create as many opportunities as possible for people to take it out for a test drive.â€
(Translated by Travis Yamabata)