2001 Honda Insight IMA 0.95 petrol from UK and Ireland
One day all cars will be built like this
Driver's side window rubber distorted, replaced under warranty.
It's hard to belive the car is only 950cc, the performance is very good.
If you take it at face value, a 2 seater economy car then you will be very pleased with it.
Covers the 140 mile daily trip to & from work with no problems at all.
Superb build quality for a low volume production car, in my opinion better than my 2002 Civic that I used to own.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 11th February, 2004
Oh, I think people asked the question. The problem is that the auto industry didn't have the answer and hybrids are simply an interim solution until someone figures it out.
What was the question? People want four things: big vehicles, horsepower, fuel efficiency, and low to 0 emissions. How do auto manufactures provide a solution?
If it's big, it's going to need and have lots of horsepower, but it's going to guzzle gas and exhale toxins by the boatload. ie - the SUV craze.
If it's fuel efficient and environmentally friendly, it's going to be small and anemic (even though power to weight will be acceptable). ie - Geo Metro (Swift, Firefly, Sprint) and various Hondas. Take the battery out of an Insight and what do you have? A Geo Metro. 1.0L, lightweight vehicle that gets 50-60+ mpg.
Look at any SUV and/or truck hybrids out there (and even the Civic and Accord hybrids) and you'll see that the fuel efficiency already drops significantly as the vehicle gets larger. Notice how city mileage is higher than highway mileage? The electric engine doesn't run at all at highway speeds, so small engines have to pull around heavy bodies relying on inertia to keep them going. Plus, the gas portion of the engine produces just as many hydrocarbons as any gas engine out there.
No, I'm sorry, but I don't believe that hybrids are around to stay (unless they're forced on us by government). They're simply a short-term solution to a problem nobody is quite certain how to solve. Basically someone needs to develop a powerplant that is small, lightweight, powerful, efficient, and can run on a multitude of fuels.
Until that happens we'll be stuck with the ever-faithful (if somewhat inefficient) internal combustion engine and a lot of trial-and-error methods.