Honda Insight Prototype is ready for Detroit prime time

Isaac Cain
January 12, 2018

More news about the 2019 Honda Insight should be made available in the near future.

The new 2019 Honda Insight will use the third-generation version of the company's 2-motor hybrid system, which allows the auto to run on electric power much of the time.

Honda didn't release full specs but said the sedan will slot between the Civic and Accord in the automaker's hybrid lineup, and it will offer seating for five.

There's no hybrid in this FC generation of Civic, so the new Insight will play that role. The hybrid batteries located under the rear seats provides for a full-size trunk with the flexibility of available 60/40 split and folding rear seats, according to Honda.

Actually, the look of the Insight, Accord and Clarity are all very similar and the size differential between the three cars isn't substantial, which could cause some buyers to have to think long and hard about which of the three to buy because of the similarity.

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It will also come with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration and Wi-Fi-enabled over-the-air system updates. In terms of occupant protection, the Honda Sensing suite of safety and driver assistance features is standard; it includes auto emergency braking, lane departure warning, road departure mitigation, adaptive cruise control with low-speed follow and new traffic sign recognition.

Oddly, Honda's LaneWatch system is used for the Insight, revealing what's in the car's right blind spot on the infotainment screen.

Under the hood will be an Atkinson-cycle, 1.5-litre four-cylinder engine paired with an electric motor and a lithium-ion battery pack.

Honda says the Insight will offer "class-leading" power, but does not define what that is. The company says that the motor will work as a generator in nearly all conditions, empowering a form of its very much respected 1.5-liter turbo four backed by another two-engine hybrid system, that will convey fuel economy in excess of 50 miles for every gallon. In the Clarity, this powertrain delivers a combined output of 212 horsepower-103 hp from the gas engine and 181 from the electric motor-but the Insight could hierarchically be slightly less powerful. Most important, though, is the economy, with Honda suggesting an EPA combined rating of more than 50 mpg, despite "class-leading power" from the Insight. By 2030, Honda expects two-thirds of all sales will consist of electrified vehicles.

Rolling off the same IN production lines as the Civic, its maker was careful to say that it used parts sourced "both domestically and globally".

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