When Honda first unveiled the all-new HR-V earlier this year, we were surprised by how different it looked compared to its predecessor. Also called the Vezel, the crossover now features a different front grille, restyled headlights, a less bulky rear end, and full-width taillights that gave it a sleeker appearance.
All in all, the new HR-V looks more mature than the second-generation model it replaces. But there's more to the HR-V's redesign than meets the eye. And Honda is very proud of one particular feature which can be seen (and felt) inside the car.
Honda calls it the 'Air Diffusion System', and it's actually designed to improve passenger comfort. It's part of the HR-V's air-conditioning system, and it introduces a new concept of cooling the cabin via L-shaped vents placed on the top corners of the dashboard. Honda claims that this provides 'a natural breeze to all occupants'.
“We set out to eradicate as many areas of discomfort as possible by using nature as our inspiration. This new ventilation configuration resolves a disparity in traditional vent configurations, where passengers often feel uncomfortable with air flowing directly onto them. The result is a sense of airiness, with a more comfortable internal environment for all occupants,” said Yoshitomo Ihashi, Honda Large Project Leader.
Rather than having cold air being blown directly to the passengers' faces, the Air Diffusion System discreetly creates a gentle breeze that travels on the side windows that can brush the cheeks of the front passengers. The cold air also travels towards the ceiling, creating a gentle vortex of air that doesn't impact the passengers directly. The system can also block hot air from being transmitted from the side windows as it also serves as an air curtain that forms around the front and rear passengers.
While Honda's new Air Diffusion System may look, sound and feel gimmicky, try sitting inside a car's hot interior with the aircon at full blast. While the cold blast of air towards the face provides temporary relief from the heat, the rest of the cabin is still hot. The Air Diffusion system bypasses that problem by immediately shielding the cabin from the heat that can be transmitted via the side windows. That way, the cabin can be easily cooled even during a hot day.
Should Honda Cars Philippines Inc (HCPI) bring the new HR-V, we're hoping they keep the Air Diffusion System for the local market. It would be perfect for hot summer days like we have now.