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Honda Insight
Honda Insight to be priced from $18,200

For years, it seemed as though the Toyota was the darling of the "green" automotive movement with its popular Prius (currently in its third generation). The hybrid in its current form has an EPA combined fuel economy rating of around 50 mpg and has a price tag that starts in the low 20s and explodes from there.

Honda has tried to mirror the success of the Prius with its second generation Insight, but hasn't had much luck. The Prius continues to crush it in sales despite the fact that the Prius is priced higher across the board. Even with this evidence clearly presented to Honda, the company is moving forward with an even cheaper version of its Insight.

A new model, called simply the "Insight", will join the Insight LX and range-topping Insight EX. The base Insight is priced at $18,200 compared to $22,800 for the base Prius. While you get keyless entry and a USB port for your audio player/smartphone at that price, don't expect features like cruise control or even something as basic as floor mats -- you'll have to step up to the higher trim levels to get such features.

And while the base Insight includes the aforementioned USB port for your MP3 player, you'll be blasting music through just two speakers instead of four that you would get on the LX and EX.

What hasn't changed, however, is the performance and fuel economy seen on the higher trim models. The Insight will still be rated at 40 mpg in the city and 43 mpg on the highway (41 mpg combined). The combined figure still puts it at about 9 mpg less than the popular Prius.

But it's not just the Prius that Honda has to worry about these days -- there is competition coming from both hybrid/electric vehicles priced much higher and more conventional gasoline-engined vehicles that are priced lower. Nissan and General Motors are coming to the market with the Leaf EV and Chevrolet Volt -- the vehicles are priced at $32,780 and $41,000 respectively before a $7,500 federal tax credit.

On the lower end of the pricing spectrum, new compact vehicles like the 2011 Chevrolet Cruze Eco, 2011 Hyundai Elantra, and upcoming 2012 Ford Focus are putting up impressive EPA figures without the use of a hybrid system.



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This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled

By ebakke on 12/1/2010 1:36:24 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
But the bottom line is they really don't "need" the vehicle they use, for what they mostly use it for. Maybe that's what the original poster was talking about.
Well Jesus folks. By that logic we could say they don't really "need" a vehicle at all, right? I mean, she could've bought her kids each a bike. Or they could just walk.

There are two gaping flaws in the OP's logic (and your attempt at explaining it). First, you're making the assumption that you know what/why/how an individual uses their vehicle based on one snapshot of their use. So you see some guy driving to the office in an F-150, but you don't see him hauling construction materials on weekends for his side job. And second, even if some guy's only using a truck to commute, there's only one person who can determine if that meets his needs, and that's the guy driving it. Giving someone else the power to determine what you or I need or don't need is the exact opposite of freedom.

quote:
Personally I feel you should be able to have whatever vehicle you want. But people are still entitled to be annoyed...
Be annoyed, sure. Try to force me into doing anything differently, absolutely not.


"What would I do? I'd shut it down and give the money back to the shareholders." -- Michael Dell, after being asked what to do with Apple Computer in 1997














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