By on October 8, 2010

When Honda first launched its current Insight hybrid, it was the cheapest hybrid on the Japanese market, and it quickly became the best-selling car in the country. Then everyone realized that the Prius was infinitely better for not much more cash, and the Insight dropped off. Now, Honda is trying to recapture its budget-hybrid mojo by releasing the car it probably should have made instead of the Insight: the Fit Hybrid. And they’ve priced the 1.3 liter IMA hybrid Fit at just $19,310 (1.59 million Yen), according to Automotive News [sub]. But this time, Honda’s not trying to take on the Prius directly. Says Honda CEO Takanobu Ito

They are totally different cars. Their price ranges are different and they look different. So I don’t consider the Prius as the Fit’s direct competitor. We just want many more people to own the Fit by expanding our line-up.

No word yet on possible US-market availability.

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7 Comments on “At $19,310, Honda Fit Becomes Japans Cheapest Hybrid...”


  • avatar
    psarhjinian

    And this will work about as long as it takes Toyota to kick out it’s Yaris-sized Prius, and then Honda will be back at square one.  While this is a better idea than the Insight because the Fit is a better car than the Insight, it’s still a hamstrung attempt.
     
    I like Honda.  I like the Fit.  I like hyrbids.  Even I wouldn’t buy a Honda Fit hybrid if Toyota has a smaller, HSD-based Yaris one instead.  IMA, simple as it is, just isn’t that good.

    • 0 avatar
      YYYYguy

      I disagree, respectfully.  Regardless of IMA’s pluses/minuses, the Fit is a better car than the Yaris hands down.  It’s much more practical, spacious, and doesn’t feel as cheap as it is.    Unless the Yaris is redesigned to do all that the Fit can, I think Honda still wins on this one.   One downside to the Insight, is that there really isn’t much usable cargo room.  Attempt to cart around anything larger than a shoebox and boy, it sure becomes difficult.

      So I think Honda beats Toyota because Fit beats Yaris, not because HSD beats IMA.  Toyota has beaten Honda in the past because frankly, Prius beats Insight, no question. I guess I’d argue that space and functionality beats the marginal fuel efficiency you’d get from an HSD at that level.

  • avatar
    stryker1

    So… why do we still have the insight?

  • avatar
    Adamatari

    Honda has been talking about a “new generation” of hybrids, but so far they haven’t shown anything on the level of Toyota’s hybrids. Hopefully the Fit is well done, but I wonder if and when they are going to up their game. IMA is not looking like the best technology right now.

  • avatar
    tparkit

    I find myself wondering how Honda has buggered this latest try at a hybrid. Already-obsolete design goals, technology, and components? Cheapthink? Taking the customers for fools? Introducing a new car that from the getgo badly lags the competition, or that offers no real benefit?

  • avatar
    niky

    A Fit hybrid should be successful. The Honda Fit is already a better car than the CR-Z (similar fuel economy, FASTER, more cargo space, would be just as much fun to drive with the CR-Z’s steering rack), a Fit hybrid would make it obsolete.
    A Yaris hybrid would simply be too small. Even if it had a superior drivetrain, it simply can’t match the Fit for utility or fun.

  • avatar
    John Horner

    Yeah, the Civic and Accord Hybrids were such big successes that we should expect the Fit Hybrid to knock it out of the park :).
     

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