Honda is discontinuing its Insight hybrid after more than a decade of lackluster sales.
Sales lagged far behind the Toyota Prius, which is now the industry benchmark for dual-powered cars. According to Toyota said it has sold 3.19 million Prius hybrids since its introduction compared to 280,629 for the Insight. In November, Honda told its dealer network that production of the vehicle would stop this month, Honda spokeswoman Yuka Abe told Bloomberg.
The Insight is technologically less advanced than the Prius and returned less impressive fuel economy. It uses Honda’s Integrated Motor Assist (IMA) system that requires the engine to be running at all times to power the car. Honda also stopped selling the Insight in 2006 but brought it back in 2009.
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It isn’t clear if Honda plans to introduce a new Insight to replace the discontinued model. But if Honda chose to do so, it could be a much more efficient and competitive product. The 2014 Accord Hybrid uses a two-stage hybrid system that can run without using the onboard gasoline engine to return much better fuel economy. In total, the company has five hybrid models.
[Source: Automotive News]
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