The Straits Times Car of the Year 2016

League of Legend

The Honda Legend Sport Hybrid has a century sprint of 5.9 seconds.
The Honda Legend Sport Hybrid has a century sprint of 5.9 seconds.PHOTO: ST FILE

The new Honda Legend is the longest Honda here, measuring 5m front to back. At about $350,000, it is also the most expensive Honda here, after the NSX supercar (about $900,000).

It is not exciting to look at, but looks can be deceiving. The car is powered by a 3.5-litre naturally aspirated V6 aided by three electric motors (like the NSX).

Like most Honda engines, its V6 is a gem. It loves to be revved and, at higher speeds, behaves like it can summon another engine in reserve to continue to propel the car.

For a nearly 2-tonne car, its 5.9-second century sprint is more than respectable. Pressing an inviting "sport" button on the shift gate sharpens the car's steering response and delays gear shifts.

The Legend is intelligent enough to toggle between powering the front, rear and all four wheels, depending on how it is driven. This gives it predictable handling whether at high speeds, around bends or in wet conditions.

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  • Price: On application

    Engine: 3,471cc 24-valve V6 with motor assist

    Power: 308bhp at 6,500rpm

    Torque: 369Nm at 4,700rpm

    Transmission: Seven-speed dual-clutch with paddle shift

    0-100kmh: 5.9 seconds

    Top speed: 210 kmh

    Fuel consumption: 7.2 litres/100km

    Agent: Kah Motor

If the way the Legend drives is not enough to tempt buyers, its bells and whistles might. It has a head-up display system, which allows drivers to customise information projected on the windscreen, and a two-screen infotainment system with Bluetooth and navigation.

An arsenal of tools is available to keep occupants safe. The car warns its driver if he is too close to the car in front of him, when he strays off lane or if there are vehicles lurking in his blind spots. There are radars, cameras and sensors to help avert crashes.

Rear passengers will enjoy limousine-like legroom and a superb 14-speaker sound system. The car has excellent fuel consumption too, recording about 9 litres for each 100km over a 120km test-drive.

The Legend has everything except a sizeable boot. Its 340-litre stowage is smaller than even that of the Honda City.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 10, 2016, with the headline 'League of Legend'. Print Edition | Subscribe