Home / Car Profiles / The CR-Z Honda Should Have Built
Screen Shot 2016-07-25 at 9.56.33 PM

The CR-Z Honda Should Have Built

The deceased Honda CR-Z never lived up to the lofty expectations of the automotive community. When the CR-Z was first unveiled Honda drew heavily upon its heritage of building fun to drive hatches like the legendary CRX to market this new car.

The promise of sporty hatchback to bring Honda back to its roots of building cars that blended sporty dynamics in an efficient package showed a lot of potential. However, the CR-Z did not delivery on any of these promises; it was too slow to be considered sporty, not efficient enough to justify the hybrid power train, and to make matters worse only sat two people. Nothing could make the CR-Z a desirable car for anyone, until the KR-Z came around. The team at LHT Performance takes a CR-Z, removes all the hybrid nonsense, and swaps in the high revving K20 engine and drive train from the 8th generation Civic Si to finally delver the sporty hatch we were promised. With affordable used CR-Zs and an established builder it has never been easier to construct the perfect CR-Z.

The recipe for a KR-Z build is actually very simple 3-step process:

Step 1 – Buy a used CR-Z

The steep depreciation associated with the CR-Z makes it a very affordable canvas for a build of this type; you can now buy a good one for around $7,000. When planning a full swap it does not matter if you chose to purchase a CVT or 6-speed model, make sure you chose one with a solid body and no rust. Once you have possession of your used CR-Z its time to make some changes.

Step 2 – Ship it the LHT Performance 

A swap of this caliber requires a high level of expertise to perform correctly, the added risk of working with a hybrid powertrain, and tight tolerances in the CR-Z’s small engine bay add up. LHT Performance will complete a KR-Z build including labor, parts, and a CR-Z for $17,500. This may seem like a lot of money initially but, the man-hours required to perform this full swap with factory like usability and reliability is no easy task. Couple that with the high quality parts used to ensure your KR-Z can live up to performance expectations and this swap is a bargain. The full swap includes a custom exhaust header, full trans swap, and a dyno tune to produce over 210 whp power in this sub 2,500 lb package, you can check out the swap in detail on the  LHT Performance Website .

Step 3 – Enjoy what the CR-Z should have been

The CR-Z showed a lot of promise when it was first released but never reached its full performance potential. This light chassis was the perfect fit for Honda’s rev happy K20 engine, which offers a hot hatch driving experience that cannot be had on the new car market. Thanks to the team at LHT Performance and the steep depreciation of used CR-Z’s it’s more affordable than ever to build the Honda hot hatch of your dreams.


About Chris Okula - Contributor

Chris was raised on Top Gear and automotive magazines, which still dominate most of his free time today (he is not a fan of the new TopGear). After he graduated from Desales University, Chris started his career in the pharmaceutical industry, but missed writing which lead him to the creation of his own automotive blog. This blog lead him to work with Road & Track and now as a contributor here at Shifting Lanes. In his free time, Chris is constantly on the popular automotive auction site, Bring a Trailer, as well as Craigslist looking for ways to destroy his savings account and skip student loan payments.

Check Also


The Maserati Coupe GT Is A Bargain Ferrari And An Absolute Steal

With the steep appreciation of any Ferrari with a manual transmission, the chances of owning …

Leave a reply

Simple Share Buttons