Regular readers of these pages know that we tend to be big fans of modern diesel engines. Most of the past demons that had plagued oil burners over the years have been exorcised, including rough running, nasty smells, loud operation and narrow power bands. Sadly, though, for whatever reason, modern clean diesel powerplants have never taken hold in the United States.
According to the Nikkei in Japan (via Reuters), we can add Honda to the list of global automakers that have abandoned plans to move further into the diesel realm. Instead, Honda will continue to puts all of its eggs in the hybrid basket, developing a new system for use in larger vehicles. Currently, Honda's Integrated Motor Assist technology is used in the Civic Hybrid and the Insight. We can only hope that Honda's next hybrid system will expand its current IMA tech, which has been unable to match the fuel efficiency and performance of rival automaker Toyota. Toyota's system is able to operate on the electric motor alone for longer stretches.
In addition to halting development of clean diesel tech, Honda has also put the brakes on the new microcar plant in Japan that was to build future Kei cars for the automaker's home market.