Undecided on choice?
You've decided to purchase a hybrid car, but are confused about which brand and which make to choose. There are several companies that produce hybrid cars--Ford, Toyota, and Honda, among others. In this article, we will go over Honda's hybrid cars. After reading this article,—hopefully you'll have enough information to help you make an educated decision.
Obviously Honda is a highly respected, well known “big player” motor manufacturer however, they have only been producing hybrid cars since 1999 when they manufactured the first Honda Insight hybrid. Since then, they have gone on to produce two other hybrid cars. These are the hybrid Honda Civic and hybrid Honda Accord, which were both first produced in 2003.
Over the past few years, Honda's share of the American market has greatly increased. Presently, it sits at 13.2% with some of this increase probably being partially attributed to Honda’s production of hybrids and also its reputation for producing quality cars across a broad spectrum of price ranges.
Honda plans on developing even more hybrid cars in the future, although they currently haven’t announced the names of the new models.
A Brief Background into Honda's Hybrid range from the start
The Honda Insight was first produced in 1997 in Japan. In 1999, it was produced in the USA. The Insight was the first mass-produced hybrid in the United States. Based on EPA standards, the 5-speed manual transmission of the Insight makes it the most fuel-efficient mass-produced car sold in the United States.
The Honda Insight features a 3-cylinder engine and a brush less electric motor located on the crankshaft of the car. There are a set of 144 V NiMH batteries. When the car has heavy acceleration, the electric motor provides the additional power. During deceleration, the motor acts as a generator and recharges the batteries.
A Honda Insight achieved over 46 mpg in the city and roughly the same on the highway.
Unfortunately Honda stopped manufacturing Insight hybrids in September of 2006, although there may be some stock around. They plan on producing a replacement car that is even smaller in 2009.
First produced in 2003, the Honda Accord is one of the most popular hybrid cars. It features both a gas and an electric V-6 engine.
The Honda Accord is very environmentally-friendly as it meets the standards for low emission. It is also very fuel efficient, achieving over 40 MPG.
For some people however one drawback to the Accord can be its price. A 2007 Honda Accord hybrid costs around $31,000 however it is worth taking into consideration some of the tax breaks currently available in the US for hybrid cars. The Honda Accord is a hybrid that qualifies and the tax break, can be as much as $4,000.
The Civic is, in many ways, a cheaper, smaller version of the Accord. First produced in 2003, this is a very good, fuel-efficient hybrid car. It features a 110-hp, 8-Valve SOHC i-VTEC® 4-Cylinder Engine and Continuously Variable Transmission.
A Honda Civic gets around 40-50 MPG, making it a great choice for those looking for lots of mileage on one gallon of gas. The Honda Civic hybrid retails for $22,000.
As with the Accord, the Honda Civic qualifies for a tax break. The amount of tax break that a hybrid owner can receive depends on the state in which they reside. However, tax breaks for the Civic have been reported to be as high as $4,000. To check these tax breaks out you need to talk to the tax department.