Feeds
75%
Honda Insight

Honda Insight five-door hybrid

Less pious than the Prius?

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

High performance access to file storage

Urban economy is helped by a very efficient stop/start system, just keep your foot on the brake and the engine switches itself off. Take your foot off and the engine starts.

Honda Insight

A true family-sized five-door, five-seater

The Insight's CO2 emissions are rated at 105g/km, which is enough to get you into the VED Band B £15-a-year car tax bracket but is a higher emissions figure than the 104g/km that Volvo claims to get from its new DRIVe 1.6 turbo diesel C30 and V40 models. Register Hardware has driven both those cars and managed to get a very similar fuel consumption figure to the Insight's. Frankly, both felt faster and where rather more fun to drive. Unlike Honda, Volvo thinks car buyers after an eco-ride will put up with visually challenging low-drag wheel trims.

Of course, when it comes to CO2 the Prius goes one better and only pumps out 89g/km. That means Band A and no car tax.

Whereas Toyota's Synergy Drive system allows the Prius to operate in a low-speed EV or electric-only mode with the petrol engine wholly out of the equation, that's not a trick the Insight's Integrated Motor Assist system can pull off. This is down to the Insight having a simpler - and thus cheaper - drive train than the Prius.

While the Insight is capable of running on battery power alone, the transmission is still turning the engine over as it does so. While this is happening, the Variable Cylinder Management (VCM) system closes the cylinders so no fuel is being burnt but in terms of engine noise you don't notice the difference between low-speed driving using the petrol engine and low-speed driving using the electric motor. The upside of this is that the transition between petrol, electric and hybrid drive is totally seamless. The downside is that the engine is still imposing drag on the system and so draining the battery faster than is strictly necessary.

According to Honda, battery-only drive only occurs when you're cruising at below 50kpm (31mph). During our test, we only managed to obtain reliable and long-term battery motoring while stuck in a slow-moving tailback on the M6 and travelling at around 15mph. A shade under two miles was the best be managed before traffic speed picked up and the engine kicked in.

Honda Insight

There's a cubbyhole in the boot - but no spare wheel

On one rare occasion, we saw the dash indicate battery-only propulsion at a shade over 50mph, which shouldn't be possible. That may have had something to do with the fact that it was one of the odd instances on the open road when the battery was showing a 100 per cent charge, so presumably the system was looking for ways to use the charge effectively and not run the risk of having to 'waste' energy from the regenerative brake generators.

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Elon Musk's LEAKY THRUSTER gas stalls Space Station supply run
Helium seeps from Falcon 9 first stage, delays new legs for NASA robonaut
Solar-powered aircraft unveiled for round-the-world flight
It's going to be a slow and sleepy flight for the pilots
Russian deputy PM: 'We are coming to the Moon FOREVER'
Plans to annex Earth's satellite with permanent base by 2030
KILLER SPONGES menacing California coastline
Surfers are safe, crustaceans less so
LOHAN's Punch and Judy show relaunches Thursday
Weather looking good for second pop at test flights
New FEMTO-MOON sighted BIRTHING from Saturn's RING
Icy 'Peggy' looks to be leaving the outer rings
Discovery time for 200m WONDER MATERIALS shaved from 4 MILLENNIA... to 4 years
Alloy, Alloy: Boffins in speed-classification breakthrough
Curiosity finds not-very-Australian-shaped rock on Mars
File under 'messianic pastries' and move on, people
Top Secret US payload launched into space successfully
Clandestine NRO spacecraft sets off on its unknown mission
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
HP ArcSight ESM solution helps Finansbank
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.