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2010 Honda Insight

Honda CR-Z

2010 Toyota Prius
Honda still can't find the magic recipe to beat the Prius

When it comes to hybrid vehicles, it appears that Honda just can't catch a break. Its first generation Insight hybrid was the first such vehicle to hit American soil a decade ago, however, the vehicle was a sales failure. Honda went on to develop a Civic Hybrid which hasn't exactly been a Prius competitor in terms of sales and the company's Accord Hybrid, like the Insight before it, failed in the marketplace.

Honda looked to go after Toyota's Prius again with a larger, second generation Insight. However, Honda again ran into a brick wall. Honda managed to undercut the Prius by a few thousand dollars, but also did so with a much smaller vehicle that was not as fast, not as tech-laden, and not nearly as fuel efficient as the third-generation Prius. When it comes to actual vehicle sales, the numbers don't lie. Honda sold roughly 20,500 Insights during 2009 in the U.S. -- Toyota, on the other hand, sold nearly 140,000 Prius hybrids.

"Are we happy with how sales are going? No, we're not happy," said American Honda executive VP John Mendel.

Faced with the prospect of another dud in the hybrid marketplace, Honda chief Takanobu Ito is calling on his engineers to develop a vehicle that will "Out Prius" the Prius according to Automotive News. Ito wants a hybrid that will be able to exceed the stellar fuel economy ratings of Toyota's crown jewel. Toyota's Prius is rated at 50 mpg (city/highway combined) while the smaller Insight is rated at just 41 mpg (city/highway combined).

"We want to develop and expand our hybrids," said Ito earlier this month in Detroit. "We made some major sacrifices to shift people and resources to do that."

While Honda looks like it will have its hands full developing a vehicle to topple the Prius, it has also just launched a new "sporty" hybrid aimed at enthusiasts. The CR-Z can be had with a manual transmission, but fuel economy junkies should be warned -- choosing to the manual will result in a serious hit to city fuel economy. A CR-Z equipped with a continuously variable transmission (CVT) will be rated at 36/38 mpg (city/highway). Opting for the six-speed manual transmission, however, will cut those numbers to 31/37 mpg.

For comparison, a Mini Cooper (six-speed manual) gets 28/37 mpg without the need for hybrid components.





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How about...
By R6Raven on 1/25/2010 8:35:12 AM , Rating: 3
Honda: How about you stop trying to beat a single car and focus on building more cars people want in general. For starters, stop discontinuing cars like the Prelude, s2000 and RSX.




RE: How about...
By Levish on 1/25/2010 9:27:33 AM , Rating: 5
Honda is a business.

You can bet if enough people bought those cars (or those types of cars) for them to be even somewhat profitable, they'd still be produced.


RE: How about...
By steven975 on 1/25/2010 9:51:36 AM , Rating: 3
no matter how good those cars are/were, you're right.

I have a S2000 myself, but realize they just didn't sell well past 2003 or so. Of course, most of that is due to Honda's 10-14 year product cycle on sports cars.

The RSX was great, but didn't stand up well compared to more powerful cars with similar or lower prices. The latest Prelude was, IMO, just too heavy to have an I4 at the price they were asking.


RE: How about...
By vapore0n on 1/25/2010 10:00:18 AM , Rating: 2
This seems to hold truth. The problem is that Honda is trying to cash on the same cow Toyota has for a while, the hybrid cow. So they dropped the whole fun/reliable/innovation ball and now are playing with the hybrid ball, and not too god at it either.


RE: How about...
By The0ne on 1/25/2010 10:23:48 AM , Rating: 2
Yep, shame they are doing it but they are a business. How they are going to "catch" up to Prius is unsure but it entails "convincing" consumers that going green or maybe even as far as "greener" is a better choice. Their Leaf was getting attention but even here in San Diego where the test was suppose to begin it's all quiet. The recent rain might have washed and blown them away like....leafs :)

IMO, chasing after a known market is rather risky. I would rather much focus on potential markets or stable markets. What happens when the market fails? You fail completely, as I've seen many companies go through. And what happens when someone else shift directions and/or comes out with something new? You're left in the dust because you've concentrated most if not all of your resources into getting a piece of the competitors 1/4 pie. Just my opinion base on failed failed companies in the past.


RE: How about...
By dubldwn on 1/25/2010 12:20:20 PM , Rating: 5
The Leaf is a Nissan. Just FYI.


RE: How about...
By ZHENDHIDE4 on 1/28/2010 8:43:52 PM , Rating: 1
http://www.brand-bar.com
sneaker: airmax 90, 95 etc $35-42 free shiping.
Jeans : polo etc $35-49 free shipping
T-shirts : A&f etc $12-18 free shipping.
handbags: Ed hardy etc $35-68 free shipping
Caps: red bull etc $12-15 free shipping
Watches:rolex etc $80 free shipping
http://www.brand-bar.com


RE: How about...
By Keeir on 1/25/2010 1:48:30 PM , Rating: 2
It seems during the earlier 2000s, both Honda and Toyota both made the choice to transition away from sports cars as thier Halo products to "Hybrids".

This probably makes sense in Japan. And to a certain extent it seems to have worked for Toyota in the US.

Cars such as the Acura RSX (which sold great btw) or the Toyota MR2 can be very successful for the brand without large sales.

However, it was felt that Hybrids would make a better Halo product and although the sports cars could have continued to make healthy sales and profits (And halo effect most likely), RD money was no longer spent on them (for the US market) and thus sales went away.


RE: How about...
By CHAOQIANG on 1/25/10, Rating: -1
RE: How about...
By Iaiken on 1/25/2010 10:45:00 AM , Rating: 2
I can't imagine why the S2000 didn't sell...

- It costs MUCH more than a typical sports car
- It's marginally more nimble than a typical sports car
- It's slower to 60 than a typical sports car

The biggest problem with these little beauts was that they had NO torque at any RPM range and only marginally better handling than say, a Mustang.

For it was just a crappy car once the $40k price was factored in.


RE: How about...
By Durrr on 1/25/2010 11:02:58 AM , Rating: 2
guess you never drove one, when you're comparing it to a mustang.


RE: How about...
By Iaiken on 1/25/2010 1:52:58 PM , Rating: 2
I've driven one and I prefer my 06 Mini JCW hands down any day of the week. Out of the box, it was quicker in the turns, faster off the line and faster down the straights.

Don't get me wrong, I was in the market for an S2000 when I was looking for my fun car, but it is a RWD cab with a gutless power/torque curves that make me laugh. I was deliberately trying to break the back end loose and the car just wasn't able to even after I disabled the TCS and DSC.

So I guess your right about the mistaken handling comparison, as it handles more like a Civic because no matter what you do the car understeers. Though I'd also counter that you haven't driven a Mustang in a while...

When you look at other sports offerings in the same price, the S2000 is a loser, no contest:

- Genesis Coupe GT
- New Camaro
- Mini Cooper JCW Cabrio
- 2005+ Mustang
- BMW Z4 3.0

The only car it actually (barely) beats for performance is the Miata and the Mazda came in at over $12,000 less. Even then, the little Mazda has enough torque that you can have a little fun in the turns.

You don't have to look very far to see that the 600 or so people who bought S2000's in 2009 got taken for a ride.


RE: How about...
By steven975 on 1/25/2010 2:03:12 PM , Rating: 2
you should be comparing the early models. Honda nannied the S2K in 2006+ and completely changed the way they handle. The early models have extremely neutral handling, and oversteer is very easy to induce.


RE: How about...
By Keeir on 1/25/2010 2:04:06 PM , Rating: 2
No one could really fault you for disliking a 1999 in 2007-2009.

Honda choose not to put the RD money to keep the S2000 compeditive.

However, this doesn't change the facts that between 2000-2004, the S2000 really -was- a good sports car.


RE: How about...
By FITCamaro on 1/25/2010 2:15:58 PM , Rating: 2
Its not bad for Autocross but beyond that its worthless. Not enough power to keep up in the straights. Hell a buddy of mine who autocrosses his GTO beats them easily with nearly twice the weight. Course he's also beaten some well driven G37 Coupes.


RE: How about...
By Keeir on 1/25/2010 3:17:03 PM , Rating: 2
I assume your talking about the 2005 GTO with the LS2 engine?

No offense, Fit, but your proving my point.

Honda -had- a good sports car, that they just stopped caring about.

In 2000, a ~237 hp 2.0 Liter natural aspirated 4 was an amazing thing.

In 2005, not so much so.

Today, yawn.


RE: How about...
By omnicronx on 1/25/2010 2:15:00 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
However, this doesn't change the facts that between 2000-2004, the S2000 really -was- a good sports car.
Compared to what? It was a 50k+ sports car in the same market as other high end imports in which it did not really compete with.

And as I said with my other post, what the **** was up with the carpet center console? Carpet does not belong in the center console of a 50k vehicle PERIOD!


RE: How about...
By steven975 on 1/25/2010 2:17:57 PM , Rating: 2
They were $32K at intro. 2 years later the console wasn't carpet anymore and the back window wasn't plastic anymore.

carpet is softer than hard plastic, anyway.


RE: How about...
By omnicronx on 1/25/2010 2:30:50 PM , Rating: 2
Man, I didnt realize the variance was so huge compared to Canadian pricing. I know we always pay more for cars, but the difference is 15k+.. The S2000 sold for over 50k in Canada in 04-05..

That being said, who cares if carpet is softer than hard plastic, a sponge is softer than carpet and I don't see too many sponge based center consoles.

Unless its a caddy from the 70's/80's or you are a pimp, carpet has no place in this portion of a car.


RE: How about...
By steven975 on 1/25/2010 2:14:08 PM , Rating: 2
the 2009 mini JCW, from rsportscars.com, has the following straight-line stats...

0-60 6.2 secs
0-1320ft 14.5 secs

S2000 from Motor Trend
0-60: 5.4
0-1320ft 13.8 secs @101mph

Don't think TCS and DSC are ever totally disabled on the 2006+ models, so that doesn't shock me.


RE: How about...
By Iaiken on 1/25/2010 3:11:26 PM , Rating: 2
Way to cherry pick your numbers. :P

The 6.2 second 0-60 on both rsportscars.com and Motor Trend are both manufacturers estimates .

The 2009 JCW Clubman as tested by Motor Trend was ripping along in 5.7 and it's the exact same power plant in a 400lb heavier car.

The generally accepted stock 2009 JCW 0-60 run time from Alta and M7 Tuning is 5.1-5.2 seconds.

Next time try to understand what you read...

Even my old 06 factory JCW was hitting the 5.4 mark.

Finally, there are different JCW's... Factory JCW and the Cooper S JCW upgrade.
The JCW upgrade offers about 10hp less and 12ftlbs fewer than the Factory JCW. The factory car also includes the JCW aero kit, JCW suspenssion, JCW by Brembo brakes and the light weight JCW challenge wheels which have to be purchased separately on the Cooper S upgrade.

The presence or absence of the panoramic moon roof (400lbs of glass and metal and reinforcements) can also mess with the 0-60 times.

I'll buy that the TCS and DSC cannot be totally disabled, my Minis DSC has 3 modes (On, light & off) and you have to hold down the DSC toggle while you are starting the car to actually turn it all the way off.


RE: How about...
By Spuke on 1/29/2010 12:26:11 PM , Rating: 2
All stats from Car and Driver. Trying to make it as close to apples/apples comparison as possible.

2004 Honda S2000
0-60: 5.4 sec
1/4: 14.1@97mph

2004 Mini Cooper S JCW
0-60: 6.4 sec
1/4: 14.7@95mph

You really should compare similar model year cars but I'll throw in some other Coopers and S2000's for sh!ts and giggles.

2006 Mini Cooper S John Cooper Works GP
0-60: 5.9 sec
1/4: 14.5@98mph

2008 Honda S2000 CR
0-60: 5.7 sec
1/4: 14.4@99mph

2009 Mini Cooper S JCW Convertible
0-60: 6.3 sec
1/4: 14.9@96mph

The cars can be close depending on the models chosen. The Mini's problem seems to be off the line traction most likely because of FWD weight transfer. Regardless, the S2000 won't run away from a Cooper S.


RE: How about...
By Spivonious on 1/25/2010 4:07:25 PM , Rating: 2
Who cares about straight-line speed? Cars are more fun in corners.


RE: How about...
By lelias2k on 1/25/2010 6:27:02 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
I was deliberately trying to break the back end loose and the car just wasn't able to even after I disabled the TCS and DSC.


Seriously? I had a 2004 RX-8 which was completely anemic when it comes to torque and I went through my rear tires in less than 4k miles... I could run doughnuts all day with it without a problem.

That said, it handled superbly and I would never in a million years exchange it for a Mustang...

Maybe you test drove a lemon?


RE: How about...
By omnicronx on 1/25/2010 2:10:01 PM , Rating: 2
The S2000 was not in the same market as a mustang, it was comparable with vehicles such as the Audi TT and Porsche Boxter. It was inferior to pretty much every vehicle in its class, and while the pricetag was marginally cheaper, it definitely lagged behind other vehicles of the time.

Heck the first S2000 had a CARPET middle section on all models, it was the ugliest interior I have ever seen in any car let alone a sports car.

Now of course it was hands down one of the best cars to mod and upgrade, but I would not be caught dead driving a stock S2000 over an Audi TT Quattro or a Porsche Boxter S..


RE: How about...
By steven975 on 1/25/2010 2:22:27 PM , Rating: 2
it was more than marginally cheaper than any of those 2. It was at least $10K less than either of them, and at the time, performed virtually identical to the Boxster S.

The TT Quattro really wasn't a sports car with the front-biased "AWD" and the Boxster S, had, gasp, a plastic window.
For the time of its release, it was just as well equipped as the competion was.

When I had my 2001 S2000, a leather console was $100. It diched the carpet and plastic window in 2002 anyway.


RE: How about...
By SamOfSiam on 1/25/2010 1:14:15 PM , Rating: 2
Hmm, if my memory serves me correctly, when the S2000 first came out, it beat a Porsche (I think Boxster)


RE: How about...
By Iaiken on 1/25/2010 1:58:12 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Boxster


I've driven a base Boxter... Ferdinand should be ashamed that it has his name on it... His cause of death was never reported, but we all know it was the Boxter that did him in.


RE: How about...
By steven975 on 1/25/2010 1:58:54 PM , Rating: 1
If you go by magazine numbers only, that's a pretty narrow view. A car's handling is more than grip and slalom numbers that are not even directly comparable unless it is the same course on the same day. When you say it has marginally better handling than a Mustang (bottom barrel of sports cars in that respect) you lost any real credibility.

This car basically dominates the A class in autocross. The only cars even close are those such as the WRX STI and EVO in that respect. Mustang...uh, yea.

5.4 to 60 and 13.8's in the quarter @100+ compares pretty well to contemporary sports cars (only a few ticks less than a V8 Mustang actually). Of course, straight-line is not what this car is for (whereas with a Mustang, it's the only redeeming attribute).

For a 2.0L to 2.2L, the engine's torque is unmatched without forced induction. Name one NA engine that size that has more? The transmission is most consistently mentioned as the best manual on any car...ever.

Even compared to a Solstice GXP or Sky Redline it compares favorably almost a decade later...while these have torque, they are not faster because they are a good bit heavier.


RE: How about...
By Iaiken on 1/25/2010 2:44:05 PM , Rating: 2
Trust me, you don't want to bring up AutoX Class A competition to a JCW driver.

My Mini club always has 2-3 members running faster than the fastest A Class drivers on the exact same course the same day. I've since moved over to the STX class after some minor modifications to the crank/SC pulleys etc...

I'm not a nostalgic guy and I drove only the 2006 S2000 so I cannot comment on the pre-2000 setup, but the car they were trying to sell was VERY disappointing.

If I had to have a roadster, I'd rather have a Z4 3.0i for the same price. Until then, I'm gonna motor around in my JCW until something a lot better comes along or I break it. :P


RE: How about...
By Spuke on 1/29/2010 12:47:42 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
If I had to have a roadster, I'd rather have a Z4 3.0i for the same price.
Are you talking a used one cause the Z4's been redesigned and the name's been changed slightly. Softer and heavier car from what I've read but never drove the new one.


RE: How about...
By deeznuts on 1/25/2010 2:11:14 PM , Rating: 2
Dude, you forgot the Integra. The 90-93 models were the best


RE: How about...
By steven975 on 1/25/2010 2:25:54 PM , Rating: 2
The RSX was the Integra everywhere but North America.

I think the 94-01 (g3) was the better car. The North American front was pretty strange looking, though. The Japanese model looked gorgeous as the front was different.


RE: How about...
By zodiacfml on 1/26/2010 2:35:38 AM , Rating: 2
I agree. I have some knowledge of mechanical design of cars and hybrids and thought that Toyota's design of the Prius is the best of the thousand ideas out there.
No one could have done better for the same price and at this point in time.

I also believe that the point of buying a Prius is not largely based on fuel efficiency.


Someone needs to get a clue
By dgingeri on 1/25/2010 10:04:42 AM , Rating: 1
The current generation hybrids are failing for many reasons:

1. batteries use up extra energy. Get rid of the batteries and you'd improve the efficiency. Use an operational Amplifier instead.

2. use regenerative braking and idle stops to charge capacitors for better take off.

3. stop using piston engines. A Tesla Turbine engine would be much lighter, and thus, more efficient. They are weak on torque, but better on overall horsepower per pound. This combined with #1 would produce a much better hybrid car.

with this, we could have a Corvette with 50mpg and 0-60 in 3.4 seconds, or a Civic with 80mpg and 0-60 in 7 seconds.




RE: Someone needs to get a clue
By dgingeri on 1/25/2010 10:22:59 AM , Rating: 1
Oh, I forgot to mention one more thing:

instead of a single electric motor driving a classic drive train, move to 4 smaller motors on all 4 wheels, preferably inside the wheel hub with the brakes, and you get a cheap, electronic controlled AWD system that also avoids the mechanical inefficiency of the classic drive train and differentials.


RE: Someone needs to get a clue
By HercDriver on 1/25/2010 11:00:38 AM , Rating: 2
You mean like the Michelin Active Wheel System? To be used on the upcoming Venturi Volage, recently demonstrated at the North American International Auto Show. I think you'll see more of this idea coming to fruition in the future, for the reasons you mention.


RE: Someone needs to get a clue
By GruntboyX on 1/25/2010 12:10:30 PM , Rating: 5

1. I have no idea what you think an Op Amp does, but a Battery is a storage device and a Op amp is an integrated circuit. Getting rid of batteries and replacing them with OP-Amps will do nothing to make the Hybrid drive train work. I think you need to clarify that statement. Its like saying Get rid of batteries and add broccoli to improve efficiency.

2. Capacitors don't have the Energy Density to sustain the lengthy power requirements that the Motors need at start-up. The few laboratory examples that do are prohibitively expensive and non manufacturerable.

3. Although a Turbine would be more efficient in the delivery of Horsepower. You are ignoring how important low end torque is. The acceleration lag would be tremendous. So your idea that a Corvette would do 0-60 in 3.4 seconds is ridiculous. Furthermore, A Tesla Turbine has not been used in propulsion Machines. Theoretically possible; however, the materials to sustain the temperatures are not cheep and affordable. Also, the device requires the use of high temperature steam.


RE: Someone needs to get a clue
By Sahrin on 1/25/2010 12:34:37 PM , Rating: 3
To be fair, Broccoli would increase efficiency at least 17%.


RE: Someone needs to get a clue
By dgingeri on 1/25/2010 2:03:32 PM , Rating: 1
1. batteries lose power through heat generated from internal resistance, both charging and discharging. only about 70% of power put into Li-ion batteries actually gets back out. Operational amplifiers would allow for adjustable voltage, giving better torque under high stress conditions and better efficiency during cruising conditions. Yes, this means the gas engine would be running all the time, and nothing off batteries, but that is actually a good thing. The "Hybrid" part of the name is that it is a gas/electric hybrid, not a gas/battery hybrid. batteries = loss of energy = bad.

2. capacitors wouldn't need it. it wouldn't need as much capacity, and capacitors would discharge faster, giving just a boost to off the line power, but also reclaiming some of the energy lost to braking. Capacitors could also take on almost any form, so they could be integrated into the body panels, frame, or anywhere else they could be fit.

3. the operational amplifiers and capacitors would both offset this. it would not be directly driving the car, only supplying the power to a generator to drive the car. The acceleration lag would not even be seen with the right set up. In addition, the power generated by the Tesla turbine would be non-synchronous with the speed of the car. it would spin down a bit while cruising, then spin up faster to charge the capacitors for the next take off while sitting at a stoplight.


RE: Someone needs to get a clue
By Sureshot324 on 1/25/2010 7:07:30 PM , Rating: 2
Turbine engines are would be very fuel inefficient for a car. They are efficient at their optimal rpm, but efficiency drops off very quickly after that, and they have horrible idle efficiency. They are also very expensive to manufacture, since they are more complex than piston engines and need to be made of more heat resistant materials since they run at higher rpms and thus hotter.

They have a great power to weight ratio, but this has a negligible effect on the weight of the entire car. The Mazda RX8 has horrible fuel efficiency despite it's very light rotary engine.

Capacitors have far lower energy densities than batteries. The main advantage of capacitors is very fast discharge, but cars with battery powered electric motors already have plenty of off the line torque, so this is a non issue.

Not sure where you're going with the op-amp thing. Amps amplify an electrical signal (such as an audio or data signal) but require energy to do so. They are not a source of power, so I don't see how you think they are a replacement for batteries.


RE: Someone needs to get a clue
By dgingeri on 1/25/2010 8:15:33 PM , Rating: 2
I'm not talking a regular turbine or a rotary engine, I'm talking a Tesla Turbine:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tesla_turbine

it's totally different.

the capacitors would be used for regenerative braking to enhance startup and regain some of the energy lost to braking. It's as simple as that. It's not totally a replacement for batteries (which would not be in my design) but just a temporary storage for the energy from regenerative braking.

The op amp can be used to turn a normal AC power into a "spikey" DC power for better motor use.

(Basically, run through an op amp in a slightly different way than just a signal, AC power at 12 volts turns into DC power with spikes from 24 volts to 240 volts, with current semiconductor technology, depending on the value of a certain resistor, which would be adjustable by the accelerator pedal. Then it is run through a transformer, yes DC power can be used this way as long as it in not constant DC, and turned in to 24,000 volts, which would be better utilized by the special electric motors.)


Yum
By Spivonious on 1/25/2010 9:58:19 AM , Rating: 2
I'm liking how the CR-Z looks. Let's hope it performs.




RE: Yum
By eddieroolz on 1/25/2010 2:26:31 PM , Rating: 2
Reminds me of a CR-X. Guess that's the intention?


RE: Yum
By walk2k on 1/25/2010 2:45:02 PM , Rating: 2
Guess you didn't see the stats posted a couple weeks ago..

122 total hp, nearly 2900 lbs, torsion beam rear axle...

Such a shame.


RE: Yum
By Spivonious on 1/25/2010 4:03:53 PM , Rating: 2
Don't know enough about cars to know what a torsion beam rear axle means, but those numbers are pretty weak for such a small car. Where does all of the weight come from?

Although, my 03 Focus ZX3 has 130hp, and probably weighs almost as much, and is a total blast to drive, so you can judge a book by its spec sheet.


RE: Yum
By Keeir on 1/25/2010 6:29:17 PM , Rating: 2
1. Curb Wieght a ZX3 was around 2600 lbs.

2.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Torsion_beam_axle

Highlights

"Oversteer"
"Not very easy to adjust roll stiffness"

Torsion beams are ... okay ... but for handling purposes are inferior to Double Wishbones or MacPherson Strut type suspensions

3.

If a 2003 ZX3 is your comparison point, the CRZ might satisfy. (Remember though the CRZ is 2 seat only, not a 2+2)

The JDM reports a 0-62 mph time in the 9.7 second range. The choice of suspension/wheels/etc don't really promise much more than a standard handling experience.


RE: Yum
By Spuke on 1/29/2010 1:12:05 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
torsion beam rear axle...
It has a torsen beam axle too? Guess it was a cost cutting move but, seriously, a good IRS doesn't cost much. GM did a really good one on the Solstice/Sky and the intro price on those cars was $19k.


RE: Yum
By Spuke on 1/29/2010 1:17:44 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
torsion beam rear axle...
It has a torsen beam axle too? Guess it was a cost cutting move but, seriously, a good IRS doesn't cost much. GM did a really good one on the Solstice/Sky and the intro price on those cars was $19k.


RE: Yum
By Spuke on 1/29/2010 1:31:24 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
torsion beam rear axle...
It has a torsen beam axle too? Guess it was a cost cutting move but, seriously, a good IRS doesn't cost much. GM did a really good one on the Solstice/Sky and the intro price on those cars was $19k.


Finally.. I blocked those Green link popups!
By krichmond on 1/25/2010 9:18:12 AM , Rating: 5
IE users can simply add the following to their restricted sites list. In IE, navigate to Tools, Internet Options on the menu, then select the Security Tab, select Restricted Sites, click 'Sites' button and add the following and reload your pages:

*.intellitxt.com
*.vibrantmedia.com
*.kontera.com




RE: Finally.. I blocked those Green link popups!
By dgingeri on 1/25/2010 10:05:36 AM , Rating: 4
or...

use firefox with noscript and ABP and just keep those scripts blocked. That's what I do.


By 3minence on 1/28/2010 10:39:16 AM , Rating: 2
I couldn't figure out what he was talking about then I realized I was also on FF with ABP and noscript. I had actually forgotten about those stupid popup ads.


By RandomUsername3463 on 1/25/2010 10:53:22 AM , Rating: 3
The Reason Why The Insight Doesn't Sell:
If gas was > $5+ a gallon, the Insight would sell like crazy. With US gas down below $3 a gallon, people don't really worry about fuel costs too much. People who buy hybrids are NOT buying them to save money, they're buying them to make a statement. The Prius is more recognizable & so it makes this statement better than the Insight.




RE: Honda doesn't understand the hybrid market
By The0ne on 1/25/2010 11:23:45 AM , Rating: 2
I still think it was marketing that gave Toyota the lead with Prius though. Insight was driven by many of my engineering colleagues back but Honda just never continued or driven the message to consumers. Toyota on the other hand did so and look at their sales figures now. It's not late by an chance but Honda needs to do something "different" rather then follow. If they follow, I'm pretty confident they will fail.


By Penti on 1/25/2010 3:12:23 PM , Rating: 2
Cars are lifestyle, that's why the Prius sells better. Sell lifestyle instead of the car :)


New Insight
By marvdmartian on 1/25/2010 8:47:18 AM , Rating: 2
While the points made are true, one of the things that also hurt the Insight's sales is the fact that it was named after the original hybrid of the same name. To the government, that made it a second generation vehicle, and not really eligible for much (if any) of a tax break, since it had been on the market for so long. Giving it a new name would have given a bigger tax break, and possibly increased sales (at least a little). However, it still wasn't a well thought out or designed vehicle, especially for Honda, who normally pride themselves in that area.

Oh, and a 17% hit in city economy probably won't prevent most enthusiasts from getting the manual trannie.




RE: New Insight
By Pneumothorax on 1/25/2010 9:06:28 AM , Rating: 2
by marvdmartian on January 25, 2010 at 8:47 AM
Oh, and a 17% hit in city economy probably won't prevent most enthusiasts from getting the manual trannie.

No, but it's anemic performance might... This car is a sporty poseur hybrid. Even for a "green enthusiast" there are better alternatives... Let's see a VW TDI get's the similar fuel economy without hybrid drawbacks, is cheaper, holds 5 people instead of 2, and it's even faster...


By Lord 666 on 1/25/2010 9:21:43 AM , Rating: 2
1. Start with a diesel around 1.8 - 2.0 liters. Maybe go for the 2.4l diesel to save time.

2. Connect it to an improved version of Honda's hybrid configuration that can drive the vehicle entirely on battery up to 40 miles per hour

3. Put # 1 and #2 in an Accord body.

For extra credit, dump the newly introduced cross over.




By Penti on 1/26/2010 7:05:31 PM , Rating: 2
Volkswagen actually did have the VW Lupo 3L that sold between 99 and 2005 and only used 3 liters per 100 kilometers or 78 miles per US gallon. Building a fuel efficient car is not that hard. Now days the Volvo V50 DRIVe diesel use 3.9 liters per 100 km. The Fords do just as well in Europe with diesel the focus is on the same platform as the C30/V50 even (as it's the same engine basically which is also found in Peugeot, Citro├źn and Mazda).

The Prius is what? 50 miles per US gallon combined, gasoline of course, so diesel would be 11% more energy rich which should be factored in. To get the same efficiency on diesel you should at least have ~60 mpg. The European diesels do around that. But the Prius do better in city driving. So it would be better for Smog and local pollutants.

Most of the world wouldn't need 2-2.4 liter engines. In Germany for example the Golf is the most sold car and one of the most sold cares in the world (which is a better representation of Europe then my country where Volvo V70 sells best). Cars like Combi Opels might have 1.6l in none economic engines, 1.3l for their ecoflex models. A hybrid engine is a engine by it's own. It's in the engine the hybrid drive is integrated. The Accord isn't a extremely large car, it shouldn't need more then 1.8l. But I would guess (rightly) the civic is way more popular any way. The real world uses more of those :)


How is Chevy supposed to compete?
By HighWing on 1/25/2010 5:42:56 PM , Rating: 2
I'm surprised this hasn't been said already, but if Honda is having trouble competing against Toyota then how well can Chevy really expect to do with their offering?

I only say this because it's seems Chevy is banking all their money, and arguably their ability to be profitable, on the success of the Volt. Yet right here we see another company that is doing better financially but still struggling to even post numbers half as good as Toyota in the Hybrid market.

We already have reports that the Volt has some limitations that will most likely hurt it's sales in the mid west, ( see heat problems). So one could argue that right out of the door it already is already less appealing to many consumers then the Prius.

Considering all this, the Volt seems to have some tough hurdles to over come if it is to be considered a success. And does Chevy really have the funds to move forward if the first generation does not sell well?




RE: How is Chevy supposed to compete?
By Penti on 1/26/2010 6:11:01 PM , Rating: 2
Volt is not meant to be a success. It's a showpiece on the road.

It also don't compete with the Prius, which is a Series-parallel hybrid and not a plug-in series hybrid. Prius is also a mass produced cheap car that has sold more then 1.43 million units.

And the Chevrolet Volt might begin in the scales of 10 000 vehicles a year. They will sell every car of the first generation. As said it's just a showcase, and they just plan to scale it up to 60 000 vehicles a year at the Chevy plant. However in which scale Opel and Vauxhall will produce them is another question. It's very much a showpiece as said and not meant to be any thing else, and it's not like any other company has a plug-in series hybrid ready for mass production. Series-parallel/Parallel hybrids are a whole different beast. You pretty much just drop in a engine that has a small battery and electric motor attached to it. Not designing whole new batteries and integrate them into the chassi. Like with the Volt.


Ironically...
By Freezebyte on 1/25/2010 5:53:49 PM , Rating: 2
I've been a dedicated Honda owner and fanboy for years after owning 5 of them from a CR-V, 3 Accords and now a Civic, but im honestly thinking of ditching Honda all together and getting the sexy new Hyundai Tuscon, I was very impressed with it after a test drive a few weeks ago.

Can't believe im considering it, but Hyundai is building cars that look cooler to me and have more features that I want with a longer warranty. As much as I wanna get a CR-V, I still hate the design of that damn rear window, it looks so clownish and stupid. The new Tuscon looks infinently more aggressive and cool vs the CR-V so hence my goal to get a more pratical vehicle this year may cause me to end up leaving Honda. So much for being a die hard Honda fanboy I guess....




RE: Ironically...
By Freezebyte on 1/25/2010 6:01:15 PM , Rating: 1
I also drove a Honda Insight earlier last year and I was not impressed with it at all. If I wanted to get a Hybrid, the Prius is just better built, designed and laid out in every way. I just wanna slap Honda execs across the head and say "Well fucking duh!" of course its not doing well. Building a hybrid for the masses when the masses themselves don't even know what they want most of the time, not to mention especially when their is a better and more proven vehicle to purchase in a certain segment, a.k.a "Prius"

Now there ditching all plans for any V8's and high end V6's in their vehicles and also leaving the F1 scene, the very foundation of their company. Plus, they don't believe Americans will go for diesel powered vehicles. Honda, Honda....my beloved Honda....what has become of you?

The CR-Z does really intrigue me as a techno computer geek but now that im pushing 30, I really need and want a more practical vehicle for my standard of living and the Hyundai Tucson is calling to me big time instead of the CR-V


By nofumble62 on 1/26/2010 12:31:49 AM , Rating: 2
You ditched us. Go to hell.

My next vehicle, Subaru Forester Diesel.




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