Can Honda Finally Build a Hybrid That Will Steal Potential Prius Buyers from Toyota?

Honda was the first automaker to launch a hybrid powered vehicle in the US with the Insight in 1999. Even though Honda managed to beat the Toyota Prius to market, the automaker has continued to lose market share in the hybrid segment.

Honda failed to realize that potential hybrid buyers not only wanted the vehicles for their increased gas mileage, but also for the status that the hybrids gave the hybrid owners. Honda hybrids with the exception of the slow selling Insight look almost exactly the same as the non-hybrid powered versions (Civic and Accord). Therefore drivers of Honda hybrids do not receive the same image/ status as drivers of the Toyota Prius.

Honda hopes to change that by 2010. Honda is working on a hybrid model that will not share its overall shape and styling with any other Honda vehicle. (It may draw some styling cues from the concept pictured above) Honda also claims that the vehicle will be cheaper than the Toyota Prius, while getting better gas mileage. Expect the new Honda hybrid to have quirky styling to make it distinct.

Full Story: Motor Authority

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