Honda's new Insight looks quite familiar

In early September, DailyTech first brought you news of Honda's new Insight Concept Hybrid. With the demise of the original, two-seat Insight hybrid vehicle, the new concept marks Honda's second foray into a hybrid-only vehicle design.

Honda previously stated that Toyota's Prius gained fame and huge sales numbers due to its unique shape compared to other vehicles on the road. Honda's Civic Hybrid is often overlooked because of its plebian styling which is shared with the standard Civic -- the new Insight aims to change this, however.

Unfortunately for Honda, aerodynamics play a huge part in designing an ultra-fuel efficient vehicle, so the new Insight looks remarkably similar in its overall design theme to the already slippery Toyota Prius. This detail was noticed by many when the first pictures of the Insight were released, but was further confirmed when new shots showing the rear of the vehicle were revealed.

The new Insight is also very close in external dimensions to the Prius and is within three inches in all directions.

Honda confirmed that the production Insight will use a 1.3-liter gasoline engine paired with a next generation Integrated Motor Assist (IMA) hybrid system. Honda cost-reduced its latest IMA design in order to bring the Insight to the U.S. with a sub-$19,000 price tag. For comparison, Toyota's Prius starts at over $21,000.

Other new information revealed at the Paris Auto Show is that the new Insight will have fuel economy ratings identical to the Honda Civic Hybrid – 40 MPG city, 45 MPG highway (for comparison, a Prius gets 45/48). The identical fuel economy ratings to the Civic Hybrid with its more conventional shape, however, may raise some eyebrows as to the efficiency of the Insight’s aerodynamic shape.

Honda expects to sell 200,000 of its next generation Insight globally each year. 

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