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2010 Honda Insight World Premiere

New stand-alone hybrid model from Honda to get 40/43 mpg city/highway

 |  Jan 14 2009, 12:18 PM

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Honda may have beat Toyota to the hybrid game, but Toyota has certainly been beating Toyota AT it. It is for that reason that Honda has created a stand-alone hybrid model, the Insight.

Unveiled at the Detroit Auto Show without fanfare – or even without a press conference, two different Insight models sat in the Honda booth.

Marketed as a Hybrid Compact Car (the Prius is technically large enough inside to no longer be considered a compact car) the Insight is a five passenger five door vehicle powered by a 1.3-liter four-cylinder i-VTEC motor, an electric engine and a battery pack. Honda calls this system IMA for Integrated Motor Assist and it produces a combined 98hp at 5800 rpm and 123 ft-lbs of torque at 1000 rpm.

Honda will apparently continue to sell the Civic Hybrid which makes 110hp and is a larger vehicle with a 6-inch longer wheelbase.

The Insight will feature a CVT transmission, which helps the vehicle tro achieve an estimated 40 mpg in the city and 43 mpg on the highway.

A unique feature of the Insight is the Eco Assist system, which will change the background color of the speedometer to let drivers know how economically they are driving.

Honda also includes an ECON mode that can be activated by a putton on the steering wheel. Once pushed the vehicle will take steps to preserve fuel, including: increasing when the gasolie engine will stop under idle; reducing the climate control fan speed; reducing the throttle inputs and optimizing the CVT operation; and by limiting power and torque by four percent.

2010 Honda Insight

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Official release after the jump:

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Honda Set to Unveil Insight Hybrid in Detroit

Insight will look like and compete with the Toyota Prius

 |  Dec 31 2008, 4:49 PM

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Honda already makes a Civic Hybrid, but Toyota has a stranglehold on the Hybrid market do to the clever idea of building the Prius as a standalone platform. Named the “greenest automaker” by the Union of Concerned Scientists in 2007 for the fourth straight year, Honda is eager to make sure the world sees it as an environmentally responsible company. Enter, the Insight Hybrid, set to debut at the 2009 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit.

Obviously, Honda is also interested in selling more cars and the Insight Hybrid might just do the trick. Annual sales are expected to be as high as 200,000 units with 100,000 Insight Hybrids being sold in the U.S.

We expect the Insight Hybrid to use a 1.3-liter gasoline engine paired to an electric motor. Honda says it will also use the company’s new and interactive Ecological Drive Assist (Eco Assist) System.

Honda Insight Hybrid Concept:

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Official release after the jump:
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