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Old 12-03-2008, 01:30 PM   #1
darknightohio
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Default Honda reveals 2009 Insight ahead of Detroit debut



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Honda took the wraps off its Insight hybrid earlier this year at the Paris Motor Show, but the model on display was merely a pre-production prototype. However, Honda has now released an image of the production Insight, giving us our first true look at Honda’s Prius fighter.

“The original Honda Insight pioneered hybrid technology in the U.S. and remains a symbol of Honda’s commitment to innovative technology and fuel efficiency,” said Takeo Fukui, Honda CEO. “This new Insight will break new ground as an affordable hybrid within the reach of customers who want great fuel economy and great value.”

Priced below the Honda Civic, this Japanese-built hybrid will carry over much of the hatchback styling from the FCX. Inside, the Insight appears similar to the Prius with a flat floor and large space, as well as a futuristic dashboard.

In addition to recycling the Insight name, Honda will equip the new hybrid with the same 1.3-liter Integrated Motor Assist system found in the current-generation Honda Civic Hybrid. However, further development of the system will cut the IMA’s cost by about 50 percent in the new hybrid.

Although the new Insight will be loosely based on the Fit, it will measure in at 3 inches longer and 1 inch wider than the Fit, which Honda said will also be available with a hybrid powertrain in the near future.

One Honda insider told Edmunds the Insight’s fuel economy would be “insane,” with some Japanese sources predicting mileage as high as 71 mpg. Actual mileage will likely be lower when it hits our shores, but should still be impressive.

And if those lofty fuel-economy numbers weren’t enough to cause an instant waiting list for the new hybrid, the next-generation Insight will list from under $18,500 – undercutting the Prius by thousands of dollars.

Although Honda will not be holding a press conference at the 2009 Detroit Auto Show, the Insight will makes its debut at January’s show.

Honda hopes to build 200,000 units annually, with half of that production to be sold in the United States.
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Old 12-03-2008, 02:52 PM   #2
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If it get 71mpg in Japan, then it's no Prius-beater. Doesn't the Prius get 90+ mpg in Japan already? This will probably get less than 40mpg on "our shores" due to the California factor. If only I could tax California every time I fill up at the pump or buy a car with an extra $1,500 worth of emissions BS that I don't need! Maybe with this economic crisis that state will finally fall into the ocean and we'll be free to get the 100+ mpg that we should be getting with vehicles such as the Insight...
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Old 12-03-2008, 03:09 PM   #3
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For under $18,500 it will beat most other cars in its price range and probably still do well on the highway compared to the prius. The only other vehicles in that range right now are gas-engined cars. If it doesn't need alot of options to be palatable, such as linking the stability control with the navi system ala the Fit.

The insight will be using Honda's assist driveline, so it never runs fully on battery power like the prius.

It will all depend on pricing for this car. If Honda manages to position the entry level model between the Civic and Accord, I think they will have a hit on their hands. I don't know where that leaves the civic hybrid, though.
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Old 12-03-2008, 03:24 PM   #4
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i just wanna know 1 thing: when will they stop making butt ugly affordable hybrids...?
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Old 12-03-2008, 04:29 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JuggernautTCW View Post
i just wanna know 1 thing: when will they stop making butt ugly affordable hybrids...?
When your sense of style meshes with the reality created by the laws of physics.

Hint: One is based on the environment and changes all the time.. the other is the environment and never changes.
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Old 12-03-2008, 04:39 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by snowcat View Post
If it get 71mpg in Japan, then it's no Prius-beater. Doesn't the Prius get 90+ mpg in Japan already?
If it's pricing slots in where Honda says it will, it most certainly is a Prius-beater; because it will eliminate much of the price premium currently asked to get into a hybrid car.
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Old 12-03-2008, 04:46 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Skunkers View Post
If it's pricing slots in where Honda says it will, it most certainly is a Prius-beater; because it will eliminate much of the price premium currently asked to get into a hybrid car.
...although I wonder if a premium will be asked by dealerships here due to demand. I hope not.

-Mike
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Old 12-03-2008, 05:20 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by ghibli99 View Post
...although I wonder if a premium will be asked by dealerships here due to demand. I hope not.

-Mike
Well, there inevitably will be. That's the way of our car market though, and it's really out of Honda's hands. Supply and demand and all that.
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Old 12-03-2008, 05:36 PM   #9
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Looks better than the Prius (though I agree not great) and for the price and mileage, Honda has another hit on their hands. They're like the Led Zeppelin of car companies.
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Old 12-03-2008, 05:37 PM   #10
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So this car will offer up 80%+ of the efficiency of something like the Chevy Volt, but cost HALF as much and will be available next year?

Ummm.... yea, GM is screwed.
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Old 12-03-2008, 06:56 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by JuggernautTCW View Post
i just wanna know 1 thing: when will they stop making butt ugly affordable hybrids...?
you can always add stickers
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Old 12-03-2008, 09:18 PM   #12
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Why can't Honda make something like the 1992 hatchback it had that got 50-55 MPG highway?
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Old 12-03-2008, 09:34 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Angelus911 View Post
Why can't Honda make something like the 1992 hatchback it had that got 50-55 MPG highway?
Because they make cars you won't instantly die in if you're hit by a modern SUV nowadays.







Just sayin'.

Last edited by Skunkers; 12-03-2008 at 09:44 PM.
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Old 12-03-2008, 10:02 PM   #14
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Because they make cars you won't instantly die in if you're hit by a modern SUV nowadays.







Just sayin'.
Second that. Even though I enjoy my 93 VX that gets those range "during the summer though"
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Old 12-03-2008, 10:46 PM   #15
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they look too much alike


matter of fact they look like they came off the same assembly line

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Old 12-03-2008, 11:15 PM   #16
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Honda says it's a coincidence due to aerodynamic constraints. Of course, they also said Americans want their hybrids to look distinctive. (And they do, judging by sales data).

In the end, I can't tell what it looks like from the driver's seat.

I can see a few quick and cheap aero improvements though: Those wheels look quite turbulence-inducing, for instance.

Last edited by Chromer; 12-03-2008 at 11:31 PM. Reason: stupid apostrophes...
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Old 12-03-2008, 11:20 PM   #17
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Looks like they can undercut toyota because they let toyota design the car for them. Therefore, they have no development costs to recoup.

Thats a joke btw.
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Old 12-03-2008, 11:22 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Angelus911 View Post
Why can't Honda make something like the 1992 hatchback it had that got 50-55 MPG highway?
ya they did. That was in 92, now close to 2009... no one is going to buy a $18,000 92 hatch.
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Old 12-04-2008, 12:05 AM   #19
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Why can't Honda make something like the 1992 hatchback it had that got 50-55 MPG highway?
Something something emissions, crash, and safety regulations along with a minimum of expected equipment.
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Old 12-04-2008, 09:45 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chromer View Post
Honda says it's a coincidence due to aerodynamic constraints. Of course, they also said Americans want their hybrids to look distinctive. (And they do, judging by sales data).

In the end, I can't tell what it looks like from the driver's seat.

I can see a few quick and cheap aero improvements though: Those wheels look quite turbulence-inducing, for instance.
hondas high mpg cars have had the same aero design for a while now (kammback)


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Old 12-04-2008, 10:11 AM   #21
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I wonder if it is any more fun than driving the Prius. The Prius definitely has some fun-factor because of its novelty but that quickly wears off and then it sucks...and gas is cheap now :-|.
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Old 12-04-2008, 10:16 AM   #22
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If GM released this car, everyone would be more critical of its ugly looks, period.

Its sad the original Insite was so much better looking.
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Old 12-04-2008, 11:54 AM   #23
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The looks are pretty inoffensive, but far from stylish. These cars will sell like hotcakes, especially when we start seeing gas on the upswing (and potentially skyrocketing beyond summer '08 levels) next year. Lots of Civic/CRX/Prius in there. The Insight was attractive at the time, but it's far from practical, and when I see them on the street now, they just look awkward.

-Mike
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Old 12-04-2008, 12:03 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Beaverboy View Post
When your sense of style meshes with the reality created by the laws of physics.

Hint: One is based on the environment and changes all the time.. the other is the environment and never changes.
spoken like a true layman.

perhaps his sense of style merely needs to mesh with the attitudes of self-righteous hybrid drivers.

Aerodynamics dont mandate that the cars look like gym shoes. There are other cars with similar drag coefficients that look quite different from the Insight/Prius. Honda claiming that the car is shaped (coincidentally!) similaraly due to aerodynamics and not to trying to cash in on hybrid hype is laughable.

Honda's own market research showed that the people who drive hybrids want it to be immediately obvious that they are doing so. Remember, Honda already offers a perfectly acceptable Civic Hybrid. The green-minded american wants to drive a car which is good for the environment...as long as everyone else knows about it.
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Old 12-04-2008, 01:26 PM   #25
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The green-minded american wants to drive a car which is good for the environment...as long as everyone else knows about it.
Agree. That's really dumb and the main reason why I don't want or drive one (now).
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