The Civic Del Sol (renamed simply Honda Del Sol for the 1995 Model Year) replaced the Honda CRX in 1992. It was a direct competitor to the Toyota Paseo and Hyundai Scoupe, which were only available as a coupe. The Del Sol was discontinued in 1997 without a direct replacement. The 2010 hybrid coupe Honda CR-Z is considered to be its spiritual successor.
Honda Del Sol Overview
The Honda del Sol, known in many parts of the world as the Honda CR-X del Sol, was a compact, sporty, two-seater car produced by Honda in the 1990s. Its name, “del Sol,” translates from Spanish to “of the sun,” underscoring its removable roof feature which allowed for open-air driving.
Like its predecessor, the del Sol was built on a variant of the Honda Civic platform. It was a 2-door roadster-like vehicle with a unique feature: a removable targa top, allowing for a convertible-like experience without a fully retractable roof. An additional unique feature was its electrically operated rear window, which could be lowered or raised irrespective of the roof’s position.
The del Sol came with various engine options over its lifespan. In the U.S., base models had a 1.5L SOHC engine, while the sportier Si version came with a 1.6L SOHC VTEC engine. The range-topping VTEC model was powered by a 1.6L DOHC VTEC engine. Buyers could choose between a manual or automatic transmission, though the performance-oriented VTEC model came exclusively with a manual gearbox.
Although the del Sol was positioned as a successor to the CRX, it leaned more towards the luxury and comfort end of the spectrum, especially when compared to the sporty, lightweight nature of the CRX. Some enthusiasts felt that it didn’t quite capture the raw, athletic charm of the CRX, even though the del Sol had its own merits.
The Honda del Sol, over time, has gained a cult following. Its unique combination of compact dimensions, a removable roof, and Honda reliability makes it a cherished model among many car enthusiasts. Like the CRX, it’s remembered as a distinctive offering in Honda’s history and is popular in the car modification and tuning community.
Honda Del Sol Sales Figures
The del Sol was popular among those looking for a sporty, fun-to-drive car with the flexibility of open-air driving. Its unique design set it apart from many competitors. Production of the del Sol ended in 1998, and it wasn’t directly replaced by any other model in Honda’s lineup.