Honda announced that the 2009 Insight hybrid will be priced below $19,000, meaning it will get the same fuel economy as the larger Civic Hybrid but will cost less ($23,500).
The Insight also will sport a 1.3-liter, four-cylinder engine and lightweight aluminum wheels, although it will drop the aluminum body panels used in the Insight’s earlier two-seat incarnation.
Honda President Takeo Fukui announced the details today while unveiling a concept version of the five-door, five-passenger hatchback at the Paris Auto Show. The revived Insight will cost less than the Civic Hybrid, thanks to cost cuts in its battery, motor and electronic control unit. Its fuel economy will mirror the Civic Hybrid’s, at 40 mpg city/45 highway.
Although the new Insight will undercut the current Prius’ pricing ($22,000), it does not beat the current Prius’ 48 city/45 highway millage. This becomes even more important as the 2010 Prius will likely widen the millage gap even further with better fuel economy. So the future hybrid champion may be decide by lower cost of better millage.