Given the parlous state of the auto industry, the rivalry between Honda's
new Insight and Toyota's third-generation Prius is proving to be an
enjoyable diversion. Committed to increasing sales of gas-electric models,
the companies are launching hybrid cars in quick succession-and neither one
is skimping when it comes to generating hype...
From what I've read and seen about the Insight, they seem to be going
for a Prius exterior look, but it employs the same mild hybrid IMA set-
up Honda used on the Civic, which left me totally unimpressed.
I guess you and I have very different ideas of what constitutes looking
'alike'. I've seen the Insight in a showroom, I've seen photos, and
there's one I often see on my drive to work. It has never occurred to
me that it looks anything like a Prius. Or the new Insight.
As I recall, that general aerodynamic shape is called the KAMM BACK.
Audi A2, Insight (both), Prius -- all are in that family, along with
many competition cars. Perhaps the horrific Pontiac Aztec, as well.
...hoping that Obama succeeds, but planning for an abysmal failure
Well, no. There's a mathematical description of the shape, in which the
butt truncation occurs where its cross-sectional area is equal to a
specific percentage of the maximum cross section of the vehicle (about
half, I think). It's the gestalt - the whole car.
Increasingly dubious that anyone, including Saint Barack, has any chance
whatsoever of avoiding an economic collapse, rampant inflation, and
You know what...? Whichever it is technically, I do not think the original
Insight resembled the new one, nor the Prius (which the new Insight does
resemble - shape-wise). And... why would Honda even *want* the new Insight
to resemble the old one, considering how that one fared? They need a fresh
new start with this version, which I think they're getting.
Their goal is to create a less expensive alternative. They're balancing
a good purchase cost with good, but not phenomenal, fuel economy.
Oh--and they're catering to the trendy who have to show off with a
hybrid-exclusive body style.
Prius is $3K more expensive, and for that you get better fuel economy
and more available options.
I think Toyota is going to come in with a Yaris that's smaller and
cheaper than the Honda, which means they'll bracket the Honda when all
is said and done.
Competition is great.
I've just driven the new Insight. As an owner of the current-edition
Prius since its release in October 2003, my opinion of the Honda entry
is of course mostly shaped by my Prius experience. I've also driven the
Accord and Civic hybrids, though. Nice cars, but seem to be playing
catch-up. They all run much like a series hybrid rather than the
remarkable Toyota parallel system.
Few will drive Insight and Prius and choose the Honda, as it's simply
less of a car. When the new Prius reaches the market, the difference
Yeah, Ike, I guess it is a matter of perspective. I have an HCHII, the
reasons I bought it are many, first I did not want to tell the world "look
at me I have a hybrid" it is more like a car not a video game with an
overall better look and feel.
I have driven the Prius 1,000 miles in 4 days, not fun...less headroom,
seating position too upright, I HATE the video game screen, I HATE the a/c
controls, the bar across the back, the seating position is too high & too
upright, less headroom odd console, cup holder, pushbutton start, shift
knobbie on the dash to bang my knee on the list goes on and on, yes I know
it has more interior room than the Civic but in the cargo area, not in the
passenger area where it counts....so, while my Civic may not be a Prius, I
am thankful for that every day, yeah, I get 1 less mpg than my friend with a
prius but, who cares, at least I have a car I am comfortable in and does not
have a top heavy skitterish ride.
I does look like the 2010 prius has fixed most of my issues, I am sure the
seating position has not been fixed because for me Toyotas (generally)have
the most uncomfortable seats on the market and I see the bar across the back
is there too (a major fault on the insight too, sadly).
Everyone will evaluate the features and size against the price for each
vehicle, and will make his own choice.
Not everyone wants or can afford the Prius. While they might have
otherwise bought a Corolla, now that the Honda is out many will go that
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