European 2011 Honda Jazz Hybrid – Click above for high-res image gallery

Despite the fact that Honda has no plans – at least not yet – to export its 2011 Honda Fit (Jazz) Hybrid to the U.S., we've still kept a close eye on the automaker's subcompact gas-electric. From the rumors that swirled around back in 2006 to its on-stage debut at the Paris Motor Show, we've never lost sight of the Fit Hybrid and its overall importance in the gas-electric segment. Now, as the vehicle launches in Japan, we're pleased to note that Reuters is reporting that Honda has kept its promise and priced the Fit Hybrid at a mere 1.59 million yen ($19,310 U.S. at current exchanges rate). This makes it the cheapest gas-electric car available in Japan.

Honda reports that pre-orders in Japan for the bargain-priced hybrid have reached nearly 10,000 units. Toppling the nation's best-seller, the Toyota Prius, though, will require even more consumer interest than that. Under Japanese testing methods, the Fit Hybrid receives a 70.6 mile-per-gallon fuel economy rating, equal to that of the company's Insight.

[Source: Reuters]

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