In March, Honda
unveiled the Small Hybrid Sports concept
(above). The big deal with this car is that it would be offered only as a hybrid
- every time you see one on the road, you know it's a hybrid car
. This is the same realization you get when you see a Prius
driving by. There is no diesel
or non-hybrid version of the Prius, and this instant identification has helped Toyota
sell bunches of the popular car. In a new article about the show-off factor of hybrids, Newsweek calls this "Prius envy." As one person interviewed for the article
says, "If I'm driving a hybrid, I want people to know it."
Toyota obviously has a huge lead in this fight, but Honda is working hard on a comeback, Newsweek says (and we've been reporting here for a while), and other automakers are gearing up, too. Toyota, for its part, wants to move the Prius brand even further forward, creating an entire line-up of Prius-badged vehicles.
[Source: Keith Naughton / Newsweek, thanks to Dan K.]