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Honda Insight Vs. Toyota Prius: Separated At Birth?

Illustration for article titled Honda Insight Vs. Toyota Prius: Separated At Birth?

It's hard not to think the new Honda Insight hybrid and the Toyota Prius look like kissing cousins. But, while both are five-door hatches sharing similar profiles, cut lines and green-tinged halos... they've got vastly different designs. Below the jump, we've detailed seven of the literally tens of differences between the two happy hybrids. And yes, we're even including the big "H" on the front of the 2010 Honda Insight.

Illustration for article titled Honda Insight Vs. Toyota Prius: Separated At Birth?

Difference #1: Instead of going with the stylized T, as on the Prius, the new Insight has a very defined H above the grille. This is a difference of 11 letter positions in the alphabet and a sign that Honda is the true Maverick in this race. Difference #2: The Toyota Prius is very noticeable from the rear because of its squarer clear taillights housing red LED lights. The engineers from Honda have focused on a more angular look for their clear taillights with red LED lights. Difference #3: Honda stepped out with some fairly trick split five-spoke wheels that look much hotter than the boring seven-spoke Prius design. We're not sure if these will make it from concept to reality. Difference #4: The Prius has been faulted for its bland nose and utilitarian look, which Honda has countered with a more Honda CRZ-inspired front; it's more dramatic, modern and captivating in its vanilla quasi-Dave look. The design makes the new Insight look like a more expensive car than the Prius. Difference #5: Toyota engineers love boxes and Honda deviated wildly from this path by introducing a round fuel access cover. That's change you can not only believe in, but it's change that signals the outside-the-box thinking you've come to expect from Honda. Difference #6: As opposed to headlights that wrap upwards from a sharply curving grille, the Insight's lights curve outward from a sharply curving grille. It's so different — like apples and pears. Difference #7: One of the features that differentiates the Prius from other cars on the road, visually, is that little window behind the A-pillar and ahead of the mirrors. The low belt-line of both of these cars necessitates such a move but Honda hides it, using a cheater panel aft of the mirror and a supporting strip behind the mirror. It's a smart design change that'll really help separate it from the crowd. So there you have it — two totally different vehicles. No matter what your eyes tell you.

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advantages are:

Maintenance is considerably reduced

Engine life-expectancy is much longer

Development potential is remarkable

The number of parts is reduced 80%

Tuning-up is almost eliminated

Low-temperature starting difficulties are eliminated

No warm-up period is necessary

Antifreeze is not needed

Instant heat is available in the winter

The engine will not stall with sudden overloading

Engine operation is vibration-free

Operates on wide variety of fuels

Oil consumption is negligible

Engine weight is reduced

Exhaust gases are cool and clean

Think this is describing a modern hybrid?

Think again, this is a description from a 1963 Chrysler turbine. In a sense an early flexy/fuel hybrid.