Honda to preview new hybrid in Paris

Honda's plans to regroup its hybrid efforts are well documented. In addition to a new Civic hybrid, the automaker revealed that a production hybrid based on the sharp CR-Z concept is also in the works. We also know that a third hybrid model is being developed from the ground up, and we'll get to see it this September at the 2008 Paris Motor Show. This third hybrid will be smaller than the Civic Hybrid and Toyota Prius, the benchmark for hybrids the world over, and use a new version of Honda's "mild hybrid" Integrated Motor Assist system that can aid the car's gas engine in acceleration but not power the car on its own. In addition to great fuel economy, Honda is also targeting lower carbon-dioxide emissions than gas- or diesel-powered competitors. As has been noted before, Honda is betting that selling hybrids at a lower cost will create the demand it never saw for the relatively expensive Civic Hybrid. Its new hybrid will have an estimated base price of €16,000 to €20,000 (the Prius starts at €24,000 in Europe, the Civic Hybrid at €23,800). Production plans call for 200,000 units to be produced annually, with half earmarked for North America.

[Source: Automotive News, sub. req'd]

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