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Honda Insight in blue, Toyota Prius in red  (Source: Motor Trend)

Toyota Prius interior

Honda Insight interior
Honda's Insight brings a knife to a gunfight

Honda has been touting its second generation Insight as a worthy competitor to the Toyota Prius. In the real world, however, sales aren't quite backing up those statements.  The Insight is indeed a worthy competitor to the second generation Prius, but Honda is quickly finding out that it doesn't quite have the firepower to go up against the new third-generation Prius -- at least in the U.S. market.

According to the Los Angeles Times, Honda sold just 2,079 Insights during the month of June in the U.S. while Toyota was able to move a whopping 12,998 Prius hybrids. Since the Insight's introduction in March of this year, Honda has sold a total of 7,524 vehicles -- Toyota, however, has managed to move over 40,000 of its “green” icon. Honda is not expected to meet its sales goal of 90,000 Insights for 2009.

"We're all pretty disappointed. We thought we had the next hit on our hands," said Don Marino, Honda of Santa Monica's General Manager.

"Honda just hasn't had a cogent hybrid strategy at all," added Eric Noble, president of research firm Car Lab.

Honda's Insight does have a few characteristics which can win over consumers. It has a lower price tag than the Prius and more nimble handling. However, the Prius offers better fuel economy (50 mpg combined for the Prius versus 41 mpg combined for the Insight), is larger (the Prius is rated as a midsize vehicle, the Insight is a compact), is faster in acceleration runs, and offers more technology/options to pamper its driver and passengers.

Things are expected to get even worse for Honda when Toyota introduces its "stripper" Prius later this year. The current base Prius has an MSRP of $22,000 compared to $19,800 for the Insight. However, the price of entry for the Prius will drop to $21,000 with the new model in September making the price delta even smaller.

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$2,200 difference
By KingstonU on 7/30/2009 10:10:38 AM , Rating: 5
Will get you 9 MPG more, more performance, more comfort, more room. Though I like the interior of the Insight more, I think I would go with the Prius as well.

RE: $2,200 difference
By omnicronx on 7/30/2009 10:38:57 AM , Rating: 1
Its not even that 41MPG for 'real hybrid' is terrible. There are some larger non hybrids that get better mileage. Whats the point of making an small and ugly aerodynamic car if it is not going to achieve a much higher MPG. Total failure on Honda's part IMO.

RE: $2,200 difference
By namechamps on 7/30/2009 10:52:18 AM , Rating: 2
what vehicle is larger than an Insight and gets 42+ MPG?

RE: $2,200 difference
By Lord 666 on 7/30/2009 11:46:53 AM , Rating: 1
VW Jetta TDI

RE: $2,200 difference
By Alexstarfire on 7/30/2009 1:48:42 PM , Rating: 2
EPA 35 MPG does not beat EPA 41 MPG. As it has been pointed out many a time before, you can't use real world numbers. I'm not saying that you can't get 50+ MPG out of the TDI, but comparing real world numbers to EPA numbers just doesn't work. You can easily get 50+ MPG out of the insight and all models of the Prius.

RE: $2,200 difference
By The0ne on 7/30/2009 2:16:09 PM , Rating: 2
Real world driving conditions the Prius 2010 has even achieved, rather the driver, 70+MPG. And this just from one review, it's appears consistent with most. Of course, hardly anyone is going to be conservative nor drive like the old day grandma so it's not a fair assessment.

RE: $2,200 difference
By Lord 666 on 7/30/09, Rating: -1
RE: $2,200 difference
By Alexstarfire on 7/30/2009 4:07:55 PM , Rating: 2
LOL, just LOL. You don't understand very much at all. The whole point of a test is to reproduce results. You can't do that with real world results. That's why we have synthetic benchmarks for computer applications. Granted for games it's a bit different since you can usually use the actual game for the benchmark. We have the EPA to attempt to reproduce real-world scenarios. Obviously that's impossible since it's going to vary from person to person. Their objective is to produce an average real-world scenario so that it can be repeated for every vehicle.

Ohh and BTW, EPA numbers come from the manufacturer. The government just sets up the standards that they have to abide by, and sometimes confirm results.

And why bring up GW? No one is talking about that in here. It has nothing to do with what we are talking about.

RE: $2,200 difference
By Lord 666 on 7/30/2009 6:11:55 PM , Rating: 2
Its widely accepted the new EPA test favors hybrids versus diesel. While the manufacturer is well aware of what a vehicle is capable of, they can only advertise EPA approved numbers. This is why VW got an independant firm to test the Jetta TDI. Its also why Honda can say the Civic Hybrid can perform much better than it really does.

I'm all for reproducable testing, but as long as common users can actually reproduce themselves. In my experience of owning 20+ vehicles, my TDI is the first to routinely exceed the mpg estimates. Check out, there are several Prius equivalents.

While I'm slightly biased towards German diesels, also a fan of Priuses and look forward to driving Ford's hybrids. However, safety comes first the Jetta is the only current car to meet all of our requirements.

Brought up GW because like hybrids versus diesels, it is extremely polarized with no definitive answer.

RE: $2,200 difference
By Alexstarfire on 7/30/2009 9:03:58 PM , Rating: 2
I've beat EPA in all of my vehicles, which include a '99 Isuzu Rodeo, 1st Gen Prius, and 2nd Gen Prius. I'm only 22 hence the lack of owned vehicles. Wouldn't even have that many if it weren't for other idiot drivers. I'm glad the Jetta fits your bill and you exceed EPA. Would be interesting to know if they could make the Jetta into a diesel hybrid. Would probably be nearly $30k, but I think the MPG would be off the charts.

RE: $2,200 difference
By mcnabney on 7/30/2009 9:36:29 PM , Rating: 2
The EPA ratings essentially require 'full-usage' of the vehicle.

That means the A/C is on, drive normally (no slow-starts or coasting), and all velocities used (not just a 25mph stroll or a two hour commute going 55mph on the highway). So anyone who puts a little effort forth can beat those strict numbers. However a regular consumer will likely have similar results.

RE: $2,200 difference
By Alexstarfire on 7/31/2009 12:11:54 AM , Rating: 2

RE: $2,200 difference
By Fireshade on 7/31/2009 4:22:04 AM , Rating: 2
I'm all for reproducable testing, but as long as common users can actually reproduce themselves.

It seems you still fail to understand the purpose of the EPA tests for ratings.
"Common users" will never be able to reproduce them, no matter how simple the test procedure, because each "common user" drives differently.

The goal of the EPA is to give consumers a rating of products based on a standardised test. Testing all products in the same way gives you an objective measure.
The result is only an indication of the performance between products, e.g. "A is more energy-efficient than B and C". That's all.

RE: $2,200 difference
By mmcdonalataocdotgov on 8/3/2009 8:11:48 AM , Rating: 2
Wow, the medication must have kicked in between that first post and the second.

My Camry hybrid routinely gets higher than the EPA estimate (33/34) at about 38mpg. That's just me, of course.

RE: $2,200 difference
By DLeRium on 8/6/2009 4:53:54 PM , Rating: 2
Interesting because the camry Hybrid used to be rated at like 38/40 right? Heh.

RE: $2,200 difference
By Samus on 7/31/2009 11:55:52 AM , Rating: 2
VW Jetta TDI

Increase your injector nozzle size ($300) and upgrade your ECU ($400) and you'll get well over 50MPG in a Golf TDI. The Jetta will likely be closer to 40MPG, however, I've witnessed 650 miles per tank on my friends Golf TDI with said upgrades during a roadtrip to California, which averages out to 50MPG AND WE WERE GOING 80-90MPH THE WHOLE WAY.

Big fan of deisel. My next car definately will be one. I also like how quiet and low reving they are.

RE: $2,200 difference
By ExarKun333 on 7/30/2009 11:47:24 AM , Rating: 1
TDI Jetta.

RE: $2,200 difference
By NARC4457 on 7/30/2009 12:08:04 PM , Rating: 1
Jetta TDI for one. My in-laws have one and routinely get 50+mpg.

RE: $2,200 difference
By NARC4457 on 7/30/2009 12:08:30 PM , Rating: 2
Teach me not to refresh before posting.

RE: $2,200 difference
By DigitalFreak on 7/30/2009 12:28:16 PM , Rating: 1
Ford Fusion Hybrid

RE: $2,200 difference
By Alexstarfire on 7/30/2009 1:33:10 PM , Rating: 2
I think you missed the part where he said NON-HYBRID.

RE: $2,200 difference
By bhieb on 7/30/2009 2:05:37 PM , Rating: 2
'real hybrid'

Think you missed the point. The fusion hybrid was an after thought by Ford that does as well. The OP's point is that the insight was designed from the ground up as a hybrid, and I agree as such it sucks. When Ford can just throw a package into an existing platform, and do as good, what was the point of engineering the insight as full hybrid?

RE: $2,200 difference
By Alexstarfire on 7/30/2009 2:13:50 PM , Rating: 2
Probably cost. It's only like $5-6K cheaper than the Fusion. Apart from that I couldn't tell you. This new Insight is appalling compared to the old one. Doesn't matter than the old one was only a two seater, it's still far better at it's job than this new one.

RE: $2,200 difference
By Jedi2155 on 8/2/2009 6:32:26 AM , Rating: 2
Having driven a Ford Fusion Hybrid and numerous other vehicles, I would have to say its ranks almost up there with a Lexus in terms of luxury and general quality.

Sadly, I've yet to try an insight, or a 3rd gen Prius, but I'm betting the Insight is closer to a Civic/Fit so you'll be getting a lot of extra bang for that buck on a the Fusion.

RE: $2,200 difference
By ElFenix on 8/3/2009 12:30:31 AM , Rating: 2
ground up? it's the same global small car platform as the fit with a slightly different body. honda didn't start with a clean sheet for the current insight just as toyota didn't start with a clean sheet for the current prius (which rides on the same platform as the corolla).

RE: $2,200 difference
By consumerwhore on 7/30/2009 1:46:06 PM , Rating: 2
I find it quite telling that you got three replies but only one answer.

RE: $2,200 difference
By Mr772 on 7/31/2009 9:19:24 AM , Rating: 2
I average about 48 mpg in my 09 TDI sportwagen with mixed highway and city driving. The TDI is slightly more expensive than the honda.

The other factor that isn't being talked about is the fun factor. If they think the honda handles well they wouldn't know what hit them if they drove a Jetta it blows the doors off both honda and toyota when it comes to handling and drive dynamics.

RE: $2,200 difference
By Major HooHaa on 7/31/2009 12:52:23 PM , Rating: 2
The upcoming Mk6 Golf GTD (the diesel equivalent of the petrol Golf GTI) has a combined average of 53 MPG. That would be Imperial gallons.

While our 2.2 litre Diesel RAV 4 is also currently showing 47.3 MPG.

RE: $2,200 difference
By Fritzr on 8/3/2009 6:28:31 AM , Rating: 2
EPA uses US gal of .8 Imperial gal.

So if your mileage is 53 miles per ImpGal that converts to 42.4 miles per USGal and 47.3 MPIG becomes 37.84 MPG

Since the default MPG worldwide uses the standard (US) gallon for comparison purposes you get
Golf GTD 47.3 MPG
2.2L diesel RAV4 37.84 MPG

Were those measured using the US EPA test rules? If not then we would need the numbers of some other vehicles tested under both sets of benchmarking rules to establish a conversion ratio from one to the other. Hopefully they will yield results that can be converted by a simple ratio. If not then results of the two benchmarks cannot be compared head to head.

RE: $2,200 difference
By michael67 on 7/31/2009 12:33:45 AM , Rating: 2
Though I like the interior of the Insight more

Hmmm, I am not a big fan of the Prius interior, it is ok do, but it is a smart design, by being so different i think they sold a lot of people on the idea that this is new and better.

The Honda do looks to me like a pinball machine, compared to the Prius

By Iridium130m on 7/30/2009 10:28:36 AM , Rating: 5
I own an 07 honda civic hybrid that I've put 45K miles on and have also driven several Priuses (or is it Prii?)as rentals for a couple thousand miles. Toyota's technology wins hands down and is worth the price premium: Higher mpgs were easily obtained with the Prius without even trying, I was getting consistently around 45mpg driving it like I would drive any normal car.

My civic hybrid its a constant, concerted and frustrating effort to try to maintain 40mpg. And on the highway, trying to maintain 70mph in 95 degree weather with the A/C on is about impossible with the civic, the prius handles this with ease. My highway mileage in these conditions drops to 33mpg. prior V6 Honda Accord 6 speed with 240hp consistently got 30 on the highway, and maintained 75 - 80 without breaking a sweat.

I originally bought into Honda's mild technology mainly because of its simplicity over the competitions, thinking less to go on, but after having the equivalent of a $1600 repair to replace a sensor in the electric motor, I was wrong about this as well.

In the end Honda's mild hybrid tech just can't keep up with the strong hybrid technology. Honda truly has a mountain to climb here with their hybrid technology against the competition.

By acase on 7/30/2009 11:56:19 AM , Rating: 2

By steven975 on 7/30/2009 12:03:53 PM , Rating: 2
My S2000 can also maintain 30mpg on the highway at 70 with the engine turning 4000rpm with the AC on (and, no, it is not terribly loud or bad for the is probably it's most optimal RPM range for economy).

I think Honda's mild hybrid strategy was the better one...10 years ago. I also think they would have better US fuel economy with a larger displacement engine, too. Of course, that drives up taxes outside the US.

Honda's basically bet on fuel cells, and they're probably the furthest along of all MFRs...but that's a big bet as I don't see H2 fuel stations happening any time soon.

IMO, I think Toyota's got a new battery tech up their sleeve that will blow Li-Ion away.

By FITCamaro on 7/30/2009 2:01:50 PM , Rating: 2
Damn 4K at 70 mph? I mean yeah I know it revs to like 11K but still.

By mcnabney on 7/30/2009 9:43:26 PM , Rating: 2
No kidding. I know the S2000 revs high, but I would guess around 2300-2600 at 70. I don't think I have ever owned any vehicle that travels slower than 90 at 4000.

By Jimbo1234 on 7/30/2009 10:48:06 PM , Rating: 2
I test drove an S2000 in 2002, and it had no power whatsoever until it got up to 4K RPM. It was like driving with a realy poorly designed turbo engine, minus the turbo. I like my torque at any RPM. The S2000 required constant shifting to make it drivable. My S4 twin turbo on the other hand... pick a gear, any gear, mash on the gas, and hold on.

By Sazabi19 on 7/31/2009 3:52:07 PM , Rating: 2
I have an '08 Saturn Aura and i still get 30ish mpg doing 70 (about 2.5k rpm) and i still have another gear somewhere after about 80 or 85 (only get it when i step on it to pass some slow person on a contry bumpkin road). I only paid about 24k for it (4 cyl. 2.4L) and i think i get pretty good mileage on it, about 28mpg avg with 70 city/ 30 hwy. I try not to floor it and i do coast quite a bit and flutter the pettle, but i do love my car and it drives very well (also has a slight luxury feel with the 'wood grain' and nice colors and other accessories i got with it). I'm just not sure paying the extra money for it being a hybrid will pay for the gas, i only plan on having a car for about 3-5 yrs at a time. If you want to go 'green' though i have no problem with it, it's a good idea and has the potential to save money/gas/emissions. It's a step in the right direction but i personally think its just a tad bit too expensive for the trade-offs. Lower the prices on them and i bet they sell a whole lot more.

By bludragon on 7/30/2009 2:02:09 PM , Rating: 2
That 33 mpg figure for the hybrid is suprising as I can almost match that in my si. I've not done a specific test at 70 with ac, but on a long trip with ac and whatever speed traffic allows up to around 70, I typically get around 31 mpg. I wonder what is making it so low?

By Alexstarfire on 7/30/2009 2:24:14 PM , Rating: 2
IDK, but looking at the EPA MPG estimates I'd say it's his car. The 33 MPG he's getting is far below the 45 MPG rating for the car. That just doesn't seem right considering the new EPA standards. I just got back from a 800+ mile trip to Texas and going at 70MPH /w AC on the whole time results in about a 48 MPG average. It varies a bit based on terrain and wind.

By Lord 666 on 7/31/2009 9:10:06 PM , Rating: 2
Its really not his specific car, but the current generation Civic hybrid as a whole. That's why there was a class action lawsuit against Honda.

I've driven both and the Prius easily wins in overall drivability and fuel economy. Just a perfect example of Toyota having a better product.

Now only if Honda imports their diesels...

By Alexstarfire on 7/31/2009 11:36:16 PM , Rating: 2
Hmm, my dad doesn't have that problem. If true that really sucks.

By Iridium130m on 7/30/2009 3:33:52 PM , Rating: 2
Its caused by the high load on the puny barely 1.4L combustion engine. Almost Every hill I climb requires revs to 4500 RPM and assist from the electric motor, and I will still drop to 65mph. This, in turn requires recharging the battery pack on every downhill and flat run, not allow the engine to ever really get a break.

One thing people don't realize is Recharging the battery with the engine is inefficient...1/3 of the power that is generated to recharge NiMH batteries gets turned to heat. So constantly recharging the batteries from using them to climb every hill is an extreme waist of fuel. This is why Toyota moved to the larger displacement engine in the 3rd gen allow the engine to bear to brunt of the load on the highway while using aggressive EGR technology to make the engine act smaller in the city.

Without the A/C load and extreme heat, i can can close to around 40mpg, but the rated 45mpg is only achieved at 70MPH without any head wind very few hills on a cool day, but not cold day. (yes, the cold chews up my fuel economy as well).

By Alexstarfire on 7/30/2009 4:22:00 PM , Rating: 2
I shall say this again, but there must be something wrong with your car. AC and cold really aren't going to have THAT big of an effect on your MPG on the highway. A nearly 20% drop in mileage is far too much. I barely even have a 10% drop with freezing weather/AC, rain, and a headwind.

By Jimbo1234 on 7/30/2009 10:52:18 PM , Rating: 2
A/C should not consume more than 7 horsepower. When I worked for a mining truck OEM several years ago, the biggest, baddest A/C compressor for the equatorial heat applications required 7hp. That thing was at least twice as big as anything I've ever seen in passenger cars.

By Solandri on 7/31/2009 2:36:13 AM , Rating: 2
A sedan cruising at 65 mph should require about 25-30 hp. A full-size pickup will need 35-45 hp. A high-efficiency model like a Prius should be able to do it at 20-25 hp or less. So even a few hp for an AC is a pretty significant hit.

By Alexstarfire on 7/31/2009 2:39:31 PM , Rating: 2
No, it isn't. Especially when you aren't even near maxing out the engine.

By Lord 666 on 8/2/2009 10:53:25 AM , Rating: 2
A modern passenger car requires about 8hp to maintain cruising speed of 65mph.

By Lord 666 on 8/2/2009 10:59:36 AM , Rating: 2
Well, the most direct solution to your fuel economy problem is moving to a flatter area.

Still, you should take your Civic to a different shop for diagnostics and further research that class action suit. No offense, I drove the Civic Hybrid the first week it was available for sale and the test drive didn't last very long.

For a real world usable car with higher mpg than you get now, cut your losses and get a 2009+ TDI Jetta. Take one for a test drive and you'll jump the Honda hybrid ship.

By 67STANG on 7/30/2009 4:25:54 PM , Rating: 2
I average 32mpg in my 3,800-pound Chrysler 300 @ 80mph (2400rpm). Could probably get better at 70mph, but that's too slow for me.

I think this begs the question, if you are a "highway commuter" do hybrids (or even compact cars) make sense? I mean sure, they destroy normal cars in city driving, but it seems that sustained highway speeds are the great equalizer...

By Alexstarfire on 7/30/2009 5:30:50 PM , Rating: 2
I can get 60 MPG or so doing 50-55 MPH, and 50 MPG doing about 70 MPH. Ohh and just FYI @ 100 MPH I get about 30MPG.

By Noya on 7/30/2009 7:56:44 PM , Rating: 1
I own an 07 honda civic hybrid that I've put 45K miles on

You sound as dumb as my hippie aunt who also bought a Civic hybrid and then bitched about the low mileage on her 30-mile each way commute in Montana. She ended up returning the car and just getting an EX model and get the same mileage on her commute.

Hybrids are made for CITY driving. Drive on the freeway at 75mph and expecting the EPA combined or city rating is about as idiotic as you can get.

By Jimbo1234 on 7/30/2009 10:54:29 PM , Rating: 2
A diesel would be the proper choice for highway cruising. The US & Europe are backwards with hybrid versus diesel.

By rudolphna on 7/30/2009 10:21:29 AM , Rating: 4
I dunno about everyone else, but the new prius is just....... BUTT UGLY!. The insight looks significantly nicer. Sheesh toyota can't you make a car that looks good?

RE: But....
By Spivonious on 7/30/2009 10:27:19 AM , Rating: 3
The new Prius looks better than the old Prius. But I agree, it's butt ugly.

RE: But....
By Davelo on 7/30/2009 11:15:52 AM , Rating: 2
It looks like from the the pictures the Prius has no dash gauges or it has a strange video game like display up high in the center. It's way too weird for me.

RE: But....
By ExarKun333 on 7/30/2009 11:57:33 AM , Rating: 2
The new Prius looks like crap compared to the old one...the new model looks like a crappy Chevy Aveo to me...

Don't forget the Fusion Hybrid
By boobot on 7/30/2009 11:50:23 AM , Rating: 2
Ford Fusion Hybrid : June 2009 - 2,244 units and I believe they are scaling much higher in the month of July in sales. 2nd best selling hybrid in June but still far behind the Prius.

It is a bit more expensive and bigger than both the Prius and Honda but rated fairly well in mpgs 41/36 city/hwy. Many reports of owners getting much more than 40mpg mix driving. Not bad Ford, not bad!

RE: Don't forget the Fusion Hybrid
By Yawgm0th on 7/30/2009 12:07:37 PM , Rating: 2
You beat me to it. The Prius and Honda are too weak and too ugly. The Fusion is a much more appealing car to me, but it needs a price drop.

And yes, everything I've seen and heard is that the average mpg is usually in the low-to-mid-forties, and higher for city travel.

I am a little concerned about how it would do in the winter here (Minneapolis/Saint Paul), between being a mid-size sedan and the catalytic converter. But I wouldn't even consider taking a Prius or Insight out on an unplowed road here.

RE: Don't forget the Fusion Hybrid
By FITCamaro on 7/30/2009 2:03:42 PM , Rating: 2
Why would the cat be a problem?

RE: Don't forget the Fusion Hybrid
By Yawgm0th on 7/30/2009 7:05:49 PM , Rating: 2
It has to run the ICE longer to heat it up and remain within emissions standards. In fact, the Fusion will do poorly on any really short trip.

At least, that is what I've read in reviews, and it makes sense.

By Alexstarfire on 7/30/2009 9:16:18 PM , Rating: 2
Really short trips kill MPG in all cars, not just hybrids. I do think hybrids have it a bit worse though.

Ohh, and while I've never driven my Prius in a Minnesota winter I have driven it when we had several inches of snow on the road. And this is in Atlanta so there's no snow plows or salt down here. Only place I had trouble handling the Prius was at an intersection where the snow had been pressed into ice. Slid for a second, but that was it. In fact, I probably drove faster than EVERYBODY else on the road. For some reason they all thought a bit of snow meant to drive 50% of the speed limit in their SUVs.

Honda saves lives.
By Morphine06 on 7/30/2009 12:01:17 PM , Rating: 4
Honda isn't responsible for the road rage that ensues when I come up on a Prius doing 45mph in the fast lane. You might be buying a better car with the Prius, but can you live with that blood on your hands?

Driving a Prius is like volunteering to be the hall monitor in grade school. Even the teachers think you're a tool.

RE: Honda saves lives.
By sdoorex on 7/30/2009 12:44:42 PM , Rating: 2
That's odd, I drive a Prius and am usually the one who is stuck behind slowpokes in the fast lane. I do a lot of long distance driving to see family and end up going over a hundred many times.

RE: Honda saves lives.
By Morphine06 on 7/30/2009 5:41:38 PM , Rating: 2
In the SF Bay Area it has become quite the cliche. You need to come here and give a seminar. "How to not die at the hands of commuters."

By rika13 on 7/30/2009 12:23:03 PM , Rating: 1
the prius is the reverse hummer, instead of a lumbering behemoth that says "look at how much i can consume" its "look at how much im saving the earth"

the serve the same function, to show the world that the owner needs to compensate

RE: yuppies
By DigitalFreak on 7/30/2009 12:31:30 PM , Rating: 2
Reminds me of the South Park episode where Kyle's dad got a hybrid.

RE: yuppies
By FITCamaro on 7/30/2009 2:02:24 PM , Rating: 1

It should be noted:
By B on 7/30/2009 1:30:39 PM , Rating: 2
"Honda has deliberately held back shipment of the Insight to the United States to meet robust orders in Japan where the model is more profitable at current currency exchange rates, making it difficult to gauge latent demand in North America."

- Source Automotive News

RE: It should be noted:
By Alexstarfire on 7/30/2009 2:11:23 PM , Rating: 2
From this article I'm under the impression they have about 90k to sell in the US, granted probably not all available at once. Am I mislead?

To be honest...
By cmdrdredd on 7/30/2009 5:14:32 PM , Rating: 2
All hybrids are boring to me. I need a car that is fun to drive. Until then give me a standard engine running on regular gas full time.

No the tesla doesn't count, it's not even reasonably priced IMO. I can spend less on a Vette and get a better car.

RE: To be honest...
By Inspector2211 on 7/30/2009 7:02:33 PM , Rating: 2
Get a Nissan Altima Hybrid.
198 hp
city 35mpg
highway 33mpg
$3250 manufacturer rebate (expires August 3rd or so)
$2350 income tax credit (at tax time)

I think it's a reasonable compromise between a fuel-efficient, but wimpy Hybrid and a decent horsepower, but gas-guzzling car.
Btw., the engine technology is licensed from Toyota.

I'm going to pick one up tonight, while turning in my 13 year old Ford Expedition to be crushed under Obama's "cash for clunkers" program.
Including the $2350 tax credit but excluding dealer fees and sales tax, my out-of-pocket cost for this Hybrid will be 16 grand and change.

42 MPG @ an alleged 87MPH average
By echtogammut on 7/31/2009 12:18:29 AM , Rating: 2
Last month I made a run from San Francisco up to my place up in the Sierras (about 6800 feet in altitude) in my slightly souped up 06 MX-5. Total distance was about 300 miles and based on my distance/time, I averaged 87MPH and got 42MPG (verified at the pump on the way up and down...I have always kept a log). Which could mean than I exceeded the speed limit in a few of the long stretches, not that I admit to anything. I am running 240x40x17s (not crappy narrow and hard rubber like on the Prius). Roughly a 1/3rd of the trip was spent climbing twisty mountain passes. I average around 25MPG in the city (where the Prius dominates), however I would like to see a Prius come even close to that kind of MPG traveling up in the mountains. Plus that little car is actually fun to drive, unlike the Priuses I have tested.

By Alexstarfire on 7/31/2009 2:42:52 PM , Rating: 2
It wouldn't it's not meant for that.

I'm still thinking Fusion
By Yawgm0th on 7/30/2009 12:02:00 PM , Rating: 3
Is it just me, or are both the Insight and Prius just unattractive. The exteriors look stupid and the interiors are cramped, cluttered, and unappealing. The dashes both look messy and ugly.

The Fusion Hybrid, on the other hand, looks like a very modern, normal car. It still gets mileage in the mid to high forties (as any Fusion Hybrid owner will probably tell you, the EPA ratings don't do the car justice), and you don't look like a eco-tool for driving it. It is roomy, attractive, and actually accelerates and handles like a good sedan should. Oh, and there's no shudder from switching between electric and ICE modes.

It just needs to come down $3,000 to $5,000 for the base model, but I might just get one anyway.

Honda's Real Mistake
By cabjf on 7/30/2009 10:47:51 AM , Rating: 2
Honda's real mistake was aiming at where the Prius was in it's previous generation. The new Prius improved almost everything about the car. They should have been aiming at where the Prius was going to be instead of where it was.

And the Insight has more nimble handling? Every review I've read labeled the new Prius as the better drive.

The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing
By oTAL on 7/30/2009 12:14:43 PM , Rating: 2
Whatever Honda does, they will not be able to displace the Prius from the 'Green Spotlight' on the American mind. According to 'The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing' (really good book) they should either accept second place and embrace it, or create a new submarket to sell to.

Insight not cost-effective
By Batty on 7/30/2009 3:02:17 PM , Rating: 2
I test drove the Insight in May and compared it to the Prius and some non-hybrid economy cars. IMHO Honda completely failed to meet its design goal for the Insight, which was, as I understand it, to make a hybrid that actually makes financial sense to buy. Honda has cars in its own lineup, like the Fit for example, that get only incrementally worse mileage and yet cost thousands less than the Insight, it simply doesn't make sense to buy the Insight.

If your main goal in buying a car is burning less oil or reducing emissions, then the Prius is a far better buy. If your main goal is monetary savings, many other economy cars are a better buy.

By nofumble62 on 7/30/2009 11:53:48 PM , Rating: 2
Honda Insight, Prius, Focus, Civic, or even a Hyundai.

To those who drive a TDI, keep it quiet because if everybody buy a diesel, you know how the diesel price will go

By 91TTZ on 8/3/2009 2:07:27 PM , Rating: 2
It doesn't matter that other car companies can make hybrids that compete with the Prius. The fact is that most people who buy hybrids are buying them for the statement and not the fuel economy. Since they're buying them for the statement, buying another hybrid isn't really an option- they're going to get a Prius. They're making an emotional, trendy decision and not really a logical one.

“Then they pop up and say ‘Hello, surprise! Give us your money or we will shut you down!' Screw them. Seriously, screw them. You can quote me on that.” -- Newegg Chief Legal Officer Lee Cheng referencing patent trolls
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