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Posts Tagged ‘Honda Hybrid’

Honda Set to Kill Off Insight Hybrid

Maker shifting focus to new generation of hybrids.

by on Feb.26, 2014

Honda CEO Takeo Fukui (l) was one of those celebrating the introduction of the latest Insight hybrid.

It appears Honda finally is ready to end production of its dedicated Insight hybrid-electric vehicle as the Japanese automaker moves to address some long-festering problems.

News reports from Japan indicate Honda executives have finally pulled the plug on the latest version of the Insight, the successor to Honda’s first hybrid model originally introduced in 1999.

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The likely demise of the Insight has been the subject of rumors for months and appears to reflect Honda’s inability to generate much consumer interest in the model which was once seen as the maker’s answer to the Toyota Prius.  Toyota’s hybrid was the best -selling vehicle in California last year and dominated sales charts in Japan, as well, while the Insight was never in the hunt.

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Honda Offers First Look at Next-Gen NSX Drivetrain

Pricing to nudge high end of Porsche 911 range.

by on Nov.19, 2013

An Acura NSX prototype -- shown here in testing at Mid-Ohio Raceway earlier this year.

With development rapidly moving forward on the development of the eagerly awaited Acura NSX, Honda offered a handful of journalists a first look at the supercar’s complex, hybrid powertrain during a visit to its Tochigi R&D center.

After years of debating whether to adopt a traditional, more European approach to powering the next-generation sports car, such as going for a big V-10, the automaker ultimately decided to go with a more futuristic performance hybrid approach, it announced when showing off the first, early prototype of the Acura NSX nearly two years ago. But until now, it has revealed little else.

With functioning prototypes now running around test tracks in both Japan and the U.S.,

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TheDetroitBureau.com was able to get significantly more details about the new powertrain – notably including the fact that the Acura NSX will be the only vehicle using Honda’s new three-motor hybrid technology that also will make use of a conventional turbocharger to further boost performance.

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Honda Accord Hybrid to Come in Just over $30,000

New gas-electric model to deliver segment best 50 mpg.

by on Sep.24, 2013

Honda bests the competition - at least in the city mileage category.

Honda will price the all-new 2014 Accord Hybrid model at just over $30,000, a bit higher than comparable offerings from key competitors like Ford and Toyota, but it is hoping to win over buyers with a segment-best fuel economy rating of 50 mpg.

The new Accord Hybrid debuts a year after the launch of both the conventional, gas-powered sedan, as well as Honda’s first extended-range offering, the Accord Plug-In.

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To be offered in three grades, the new 2014 Honda Accord Hybrid will carry a base price of $29,155 plus a $905 destination fee – for a total of $30,060.  The mid-range EX-L model will come in at $31,905 plus delivery charges, the top-line Touring priced at $34,905 plus delivery.

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Honda Accord Hybrid Hits 50 – MPG, That Is

Gas-electric sedan lands bragging rights as highest city-mileage midsize hybrid.

by on Sep.06, 2013

Honda bests the competition - at least in the city mileage category.

In the battle for bragging rights in the high-mileage category, Honda has landed a solid blow against the competition, its 2014 Accord Hybrid delivering an EPA-certified rating of 50 mpg in city driving.

That’s a full three miles per gallon better than the previous king-of-the-fuel-economy-hill, the 47 mpg Ford Fusion Hybrid.  The Toyota Camry Hybrid comes in at 43 while the Hyundai Sonata Hybrid comes in at 40.

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But to put another perspective on Honda’s achievement, the 2014 Accord Hybrid gets about 10% better fuel economy around town than the first-generation Toyota Prius, a dedicated gas-electric model that used all sorts of tricks, including a super-aerodynamic, ultra-light body to maximize mileage.

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Honda to Add New Accord Hybrid for 2014

New, two-motor lithium-drive system delivers up to 49 mpg.

by on Jun.20, 2013

The 2014 Honda Accord Hybrid will adopt an all-new gas-electric drivetrain.

Honda will launch a new version of the Accord Hybrid this coming October featuring an all-new two-motor drivetrain that should deliver up to 49 miles per gallon in the city, the maker claims.

The 2014 Honda Accord will be one in a wave of new hybrids utilizing the Japanese maker’s new Earth Dreams technology which features three distinctly different gas-electric drivetrains tuned to specific driving applications.  Honda hopes the approach will expand its presence in the high-mileage market and help it challenge rival Toyota’s long-standing leadership in the hybrid segment.

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The basic look of the 2014 Honda Accord Hybrid will be familiar to those who already know the look of the sedan as redesigned last year. Features distinct to the gas-electric model will include a blue-accented grille and light lenses, LED daytime running lights, unique wheels, a decklid spoiler and hybrid badging.

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Honda Will Build Accord Hybrid in U.S.

Marysville, OH plant to add 50 jobs, 95,000 square-feet.

by on Jan.10, 2013

Honda will offer both a conventional hybrid and this plug-in version of its latest Accord sedan.

Honda’s oldest U.S. assembly plant will take on production of the maker’s newest gas-electric model when the Accord Hybrid goes into production in Marysville, Ohio later this year.

The move comes as part of a major shift in strategy by Honda, which like its Japanese rivals has traditionally retained production of its most technologically advanced models for its home island plants.  The Accord Hybrid Sedan will become the third of Honda’s latest gas-electric vehicles to go into production in North America, following the Civic Hybrid and Acura ILX Hybrid models.

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Honda will spend $23 million to upgrade the Marysville plant and add an estimated 50 new “associates” to handle the new model. The factory will add a new 95,000 square-foot facility specifically for the Accord Hybrid.

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Hybrid Owners Unlikely to Buy Another

One-and-out, says new study.

by on Apr.09, 2012

Toyota hopes its expanded Prius line will improve the otherwise dismal loyalty rate among hybrid owners.

Hybrid sales have been surging as fuel prices take their latest run towards record levels.  But the news might not be nearly as good as it would seem if a new study by R.L. Polk is any indication.

Despite previous sales surges tied to past petroleum price hikes the U.S. hybrid vehicle market hasn’t been able to maintain its momentum and the Polk study apparently explains why. After living with the high-mileage technology, nearly two of three hybrid owners wind up returning to a more conventional vehicle when it’s next time to trade in.

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“Having a hybrid in the product lineup can certainly give a brand a competitive edge when it comes to attracting new customers,” noted Brad Smith, director of Polk’s Loyalty Management Practice.   “The repurchase rates of hybrid vehicles are an indication that consumers are continuing to seek alternative solutions to high fuel prices.”

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Honda Makes Belated, Reluctant Move Into Plug-Ins and EVs

After fast start, maker slow to embrace battery power.

by on Jul.21, 2010

Honda's FCX fuel cell vehicle tanks up at a solar-powered hydrogen station.

It was the first to launch a battery-powered vehicle in the U.S. market, but Honda Motor Co. has been surprisingly reluctant – until now – to embrace the evolving electrification of the auto industry.

While its competitors have pushed into more advanced hybrids, plug-ins, extended-range electric vehicles and pure battery-electric vehicles, or BEVs, Honda has stuck with the “mild” hybrid technology it first introduced a decade ago.

But that’s about to change, the Japanese maker says.  It is getting ready an array of battery vehicles that will cover a gamut of applications, says the maker’s CEO, declaring the move “our highest management priority.”

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Power Up!

But will Honda be able to regain the lead it briefly held in the green automotive sector with the launch of its first-generation Insight, a 2-seat hybrid?  Recent offerings, including a new, 4-door version of the Insight, have fared poorly in the U.S. market, despite growing demand for battery-based vehicles.

“Our highest management priority is to establish a corporate structure that ensures a profit while we develop and commercialize advanced environmental technologies,” says Honda President and CEO Takanobu Ito.

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Honda Says Quality Not Issue at CR-Z Hybrid Debut

Japanese maker aims to regain momentum in hybrid segment.

by on Feb.26, 2010

Honda is launching its latest dedicated hybrid, the CR-Z, and insisting it won't run into the hybrid braking problems of Toyota's Prius.

Just what impact the safety scandal at Toyota will have on the rest of the automotive market is uncertain, but the Japanese maker’s arch-rival, Honda, is working to ensure it won’t be tainted, as well.

“Product quality is extremely important to us,” asserted Honda CEO Takanobu Ito, as the maker officially debuted its latest gasoline-electric hybrid model, the CR-Z, during a Tokyo news conference.

Initial sales reports hint that Honda may be picking up Toyota buyers, especially in the U.S. market, where the safety crisis has been widely covered by the media.

But, like other makers, Ito avoided any appearance of gloating over Toyota’s ongoing woes.  If anything, he appeared to take a cautious position about growth and the potential it brings to start making mistakes.

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Ito spoke just days after his Toyota counterpart, CEO Akio Toyoda, was grilled by an American Congressional Committee.

But it was only a few weeks earlier that Honda had to expand the recall of products including the 2001 and 2002 Accord sedan, Civic compact and Odyssey minivan because of faulty airbags.  Since the first defect announcement, 15 months ago, the number of vehicles on the callback list has grown to 437,000.

The Japanese maker did make a point of emphasizing that the 2011 Honda CR-Z uses a different braking system from the 2010 Toyota Prius and, Honda promised, would not suffer the same problems — in which brakes can unexpectedly release when a Prius hits a bump or a slick patch of road,

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First Look: 2011 Honda CR-Z Sport Hybrid Coupe

All-new hybrid model goes on sale in the U.S. this summer.

by on Jan.11, 2010

The exterior's wedge shape originates from its low-slung hood to form a broad forward stance.

The all-new 2011 Honda CR-Z sport hybrid coupe made its U.S. production debut at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit today. CR-Z maintains the sleek styling of previous concept versions, while bring what Honda calls sporty handling to the hybrid segment.

Due in dealer showrooms during the late summer in the U.S., the CR-Z is powered by a 1.5-liter i-VTEC engine with Honda’s compact Integrated Motor Assist (IMA) hybrid-electric system. The two-passenger CR-Z introduces a new three-mode drive system that allows the driver to select between Sport, Econ (Economy) and Normal driving modes.

“CR-Z is the first hybrid designed to maximize style and fun, in addition to efficiency and economy,” said John Mendel, executive vice president of sales for American Honda.

CR-Z is the sixth unique version of Honda’s original IMA technology since the launch of the 2000 Insight in December 1999, the first hybrid vehicle available in North America.

CR-Z’s hybrid powertrain is a 4-cylinder, 16-valve, single overhead cam engine with “intelligent” Variable Valve Timing and Lift Electronic Control (i-VTEC) that receives additional power from the IMA system’s DC brushless electric motor.

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Hybrids!

The i-VTEC system controls the opening and closing of one intake valve per cylinder to enhance combustion at low RPMs. The 10-kilowatt electric motor assists in acceleration and acts as a generator during braking or coasting to capture kinetic energy that recharges the 100-volt IMA nickel-metal hydride battery pack. The gasoline engine can automatically turn off during vehicle stops to improve efficiency.

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