Honda Inspire

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This article incorporates information from the equivalent article on the Japanese Wikipedia.
Honda Inspire
2008 Honda Inspire 01.JPG
Overview
Manufacturer Honda
Also called Honda Vigor (1989–1995)
Honda Saber (1995–2003)
Acura TL (1995–2002)
Honda Accord (2003–2012)
Production 1989–2012
Assembly Sayama, Saitama, Japan (Honda Sayama Factory)
Marysville, Ohio, USA (Marysville Auto Plant)
Body and chassis
Class Mid-size
Body style 4-door sedan

The Honda Inspire is a luxury sedan introduced by Honda in 1990 derived from Honda Accord chassis. The first Inspire debuted in 1990 as the Accord Inspire, a sister nameplate to the Honda Vigor, but sold at different retail channels in Japan, known as Honda Verno for the Vigor/Saber, and the Inspire at Honda Clio stores. The Inspire was developed during what was known in Japan as the Japanese asset price bubble or "bubble economy".

In 1995 the Inspire was updated by the second generation model, on a platform it shared with the Honda Legend, and exported to the US as the Acura 3.2 TL, while the Vigor nameplate was replaced with the Honda Saber. The longitudinal 2.5 L straight-5 engine layout and platform remained and was sold as the Acura 2.5 TL.

In 1999 these cars were replaced by the third generation TL that was based on the US-spec Accord platform, and largely designed and engineered in the US by Honda R&D Americas, Inc. in Raymond, Ohio. Manufactured in the US, these were imported into Japan as the new Inspire and Saber.

In June 2003, the fourth generation Inspire was introduced in Japan derived from the North American Honda Accord V6. This Inspire marks the first time Honda introduced their Variable Cylinder Management technology. In October 2005, the fourth generation Inspire received a mild restyle, with new headlights, new taillights, revised interior and new colors. The Inspire targeted the Nissan Teana, the Toyota Mark X and numerous other entry level luxury cars from Japan.

In October 2007, the fifth generation of the Inspire was previewed at the Tokyo Auto Show. It is essentially a rebadged 2008 North American-market Accord with minor exterior and interior modifications.

September 2012, at the end of the fifth generations production, the Inspire was no longer offered in Japan after 23 years.

First generation series CB5, CC2 & CC3 (1989–1995)[edit]

Honda Inspire
Honda Accord Inspire 001.JPG
Overview
Also called Honda Vigor
Acura Vigor
Production 1989–1995
Body and chassis
Body style 4-door hardtop
Layout Longitudinal front-engine, front-wheel drive
Powertrain
Engine 2.5 L G25A1 Straight-5
2.0 L G20A1 Straight-5
Transmission 4-speed automatic
5-speed manual
Dimensions
Wheelbase 2,805 mm (110 in)
Length 4,690 mm (185 in)
(G20 engine)
4,830 mm (190 in)
(G25 engine)
Width 1,695 mm (67 in)
(G20 engine)
1,775 mm (70 in)
(G25 engine)
Height 1,355 mm (53 in)
(G20 engine)
1,375 mm (54 in)
(G25 engine)
Curb weight 1,270 kg (2,800 lb)
(G20 engine)
1,440 kg (3,170 lb)
(G25 engine)
1st-gen Honda Inspire

On October 12, 1989, the Honda Inspire was introduced. The platform was shared with the Honda Vigor, a JDM Honda Accord derived five-cylinder luxury sedan available only at Honda Verno dealerships. The Inspire was introduced before the recession developed in Japan in the early 1990s (known in Japan as the "bubble economy"), and Honda wanted a car that would compete with the Toyota Cresta and Nissan Laurel, with the unique inline 5-cylinder Honda G engine, in a front-wheel-drive configuration. This 5-cylinder engine was also used in the JDM Honda Rafaga, which was a shorter sedan shared with the second generation Honda Ascot. In Japan, the smaller G20A engine used regular grade fuel, while the larger G25A engine used premium grade fuel.

The bodystyle was a 4-door hardtop, but it wasn't a true hardtop, using a "B" pillar between the front and rear passenger compartments, and instead it used frameless doors. The Inspire was available in two versions; a shorter and narrower version with the G20A 2 liter engine that was in compliance with Japanese vehicle size requirements for cars classified as a "compact", and a longer and wider version with the G25A 2.5L engine, similar in dimensions to the first generation Legend, with the Inspire having a 5-cylinder engine.

The Inspire offered a luxurious approach to the interior as a lower price alternative to the top level Legend, and both vehicles were sold at Honda Clio dealerships. Interior appearance was provided by the Japanese furniture company, Tendo Mokko, offering unique leather interior and a choice of genuine wood inserts for the dashboard and center console.

The SOHC 4-valve-per-cylinder G20A Straight-5 cylinder was all new, with a choice of 2.0 L or 2.5 L engine displacement.

The transmission is attached behind the engine, with a driveshaft that sends power to the front of the car to an asymmetrically installed limited-slip differential which then supplies power to the front wheels using half shafts; this allowed the powertrain to remain slightly behind the front wheels. This also gave the car a 60:40 front to rear weight distribution. The turning radius of the Inspire also was not as tight as its competitors due to the use of Constant-velocity joint installed on the front axle half shafts, but the Inspire did have an advantage in adverse traction conditions.

Second generation series UA1 through UA3 (1995–1998)[edit]

Honda Inspire
Honda Inspire.jpg
Overview
Also called Acura 3.2 TL
Acura 2.5 TL
Honda Saber
Production 1995–1998
Body and chassis
Body style 4-door hardtop
Layout Longitudinal front-engine, front-wheel drive
Powertrain
Engine 3.2 L C32A5 V6
2.5 L G25A1 Straight-5
2.0 L G20A1 Straight-5
Transmission 4-speed automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase 2,840 mm (111.8 in)
Length 4,840 mm (190.6 in)
4,870 mm (191.7 in) V6
Width 1,785 mm (70.3 in))
1,800 mm (70.9 in) V6
Height 1,405 mm (55.3 in)
1,415 mm (55.7 in) V6
Curb weight 1,360 kg (3,000 lb)
1,430 kg (3,150 lb) V6
Honda Inspire

The second generation Inspire was almost identical in its dimensions to the first generation 1986 Honda Legend, with that vehicle having been updated and enlarged to better fit the role of flagship for the Honda and Acura brands. The second generation Inspire was available with the Type I 3.2 L V6 offered in the Legend on July 6, 1995, while still offering the straight 5 in both 2.0 L and 2.5 L versions. The profile of this vehicle was reduced somewhat to 1,405 mm (55.3 in). The luxury approach was enhanced. A carryover from the previous generation saw marginal increases in length, width, and height dimensions for vehicles installed with the V6 engine, but the smaller dimensions were not in compliance with Japanese government regulations concerning dimensions and maximum engine displacement, thereby giving buyers an incentive in interior accommodations when purchasing the V6 model.

The Inspire, sold at Honda Clio dealerships, was also known as the (Japanese: Honda Saber) and sold at the Honda Verno sales network, and mechanically identical to the UA1-UA3 Inspire. Starting with this generation, all Inspire and Saber vehicles were manufactured at Honda's Marysville Auto Plant in Ohio, USA.

November 8, 1996 saw the introduction of dual airbags for front seat passengers and anti-lock brakes as standard.

This version of the Inspire competed with the Toyota Camry Gracia, Mark II, Cresta and Chaser, the Nissan Cefiro and Skyline, the Mazda Millenia and the Mitsubishi Diamante.

Third generation series UA4 and UA5 (1998–2003)[edit]

Honda Inspire
3rd generation Honda Inspire.jpg
Overview
Also called Acura TL
Honda Saber
Production 1998–2003
Body and chassis
Body style 4-door sedan
Layout FF layout
Related US-spec Honda Accord
Powertrain
Engine 3.2 L J32A1 VTEC V6
2.5 L J25A VTEC V6
Transmission 5-speed automatic
4-speed automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase 2,745 mm (108.1 in)
Length 4,840 mm (190.6 in)
Width 1,785 mm (70.3 in)
Height 1,420 mm (55.9 in)
Curb weight 1,520 kg (3,350 lb)
Honda Saber

The third generation Honda Inspire/Saber was introduced October 15, 1998, and was the first Honda designed and built in the USA and exported to Japan. It was based on the CG series, US-spec Honda Accord sedan. In North America, this vehicle was sold as the Acura TL, while in Japan it was the second model that accompanied the flagship Honda Legend at Honda Clio Japanese dealerships. The Saber version of this car was sold as the top level sedan at Honda Verno. Honda's internet-based navigation system Internavi was introduced with this generation.

The Inspire no longer offered the Straight-5 engine, and instead offered the 3.2 L J32A V6 and 2.5 L J25A V6 with VTEC, and a choice of a 4- or 5-speed automatic transmission. The bodystyle was changed from hardtop to sedan as a result of the USA-spec Accord having been upgraded to meet USA requirements for improved side impact protection. A cabin air filter, also known as a pollen filter is introduced with this generation and is located behind the glove compartment for all vehicles sold internationally.

The Honda Saber was discontinued April 2003 along with the consolidation of the Honda Japan sales networks Primo, Clio and Verno.

Fourth generation series UC1 (2003–2007)[edit]

Honda Inspire
2005-2007 Honda Inspire.jpg
Overview
Also called Honda Accord (US-spec)
Production 2003 - 2007
Body and chassis
Body style 4-door sedan
Layout FF layout
Related Acura TL
Powertrain
Engine 3.0 L J30A5 i-VTEC V6
Transmission 5-speed automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase 2,740 mm (107.9 in)
Length 4,805 mm (189.2 in)
Width 1,820 mm (71.7 in))
Height 1,455 mm (57.3 in)
Curb weight 1,580 kg (3,480 lb)
2005–2007 Honda Inspire

The fourth generation was introduced June 18, 2003. This vehicle was built at the Saitama Prefecture facility in Sayama, Japan. The bodystyle and appearance was aligned with the North American Accord.

This is the first vehicle that showcases Honda's "VCM" technology, on the 3.0 L J30A V6 with i-VTEC with a 5-speed automatic transmission. "HiDS" also made the options list. Honda also made available its "IHCC", the collision avoidance "CMBS", "C-MOS", which utilized a front-mounted camera to assist in unwanted lane drifting. An Internet based navigation service called Internavi is available for drivers in Japan.

A styling update appeared on November 4, 2005, changing both the front grille and rear tail lights. LED was introduced for the rear tail lights.

In September 2002, a straight-4 DOHC i-VTEC 2.4 L K24A engine was made available on the USA-spec vehicle only.

Seventh generation Honda Accord in Malaysia.

This model was also sold in parts of Southeast Asia as the Honda Accord with the 2.0L, 2.4L and 3.0L I-VTEC engines.


Fifth generation series CP3 (2007–2012)[edit]

Honda Inspire
Inspire2007.jpg
Overview
Also called Honda Accord (US-spec)
Proton Perdana
Production 2007–2012
2014- (Proton)
Body and chassis
Body style 4-door sedan
Layout FF layout
Related Honda Crosstour
Acura ZDX
Powertrain
Engine 3.5 L J35A7 i-VTEC V6
Transmission 5-speed automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase 2,800 mm (110.2 in)
Length 4,940 mm (194.5 in)
Width 1,845 mm (72.6 in))
Height 1,475 mm (58.1 in)
Curb weight 1,620 kg (3,570 lb)
Honda Inspire

The fifth generation Honda Inspire was released on December 19, 2007 in Japan. Honda technologies such as "CMBS", Adaptive Cruise Control, called IHCC, and HDD navigation with Honda's telematics subscription service Internavi is included. The power steering is now electric power assisted to reduce power demands on the engine, thereby improving fuel economy.

The Inspire has over the previous generations grown in all dimensions in that it is larger than the first and second generation Honda/Acura Legends built between 1985 and 1996, with a larger and more powerful V6 engine. It matches the dimensions of the fourth generation Honda Legend/Acura RL.

There are few exterior and interior differences between this Inspire and the Southeast Asian Honda Accord. In Japan, the Inspire competes with the Toyota Crown, and the Nissan Fuga.

Sales of the Inspire ended September 2012 in Japan but will continued on 2014 as Proton Perdana in Malaysia


External links[edit]