NOTE: This article will be updated soon
The Honda Insight is a peppy, 2 door (2 seat) coupe that uses its light weight (124 pound) 1 litre engine as the principal power source with additional power provided by an electric motor powered by a 120 cell rechargeable nickel-metal hydride 'D cell' (flashlight size) battery bank. Although the gas engine is always providing power when the car is in motion, it automatically turns off at stop lights and restarts itself instantly when you are ready to move.
The Toyota Prius is a roomy four door sedan with a gas/electric hybrid system, but it turns the gas engine on and off during the driving period, depending on conditions. This means it is truly a zero emission vehicle when you are prowling around your local mall looking for a parking space (the gas engine doesn't start until you are traveling about 12 mph). It is optimized for low fuel consumption and extremely low emissions in the 'around town' driving scenario, but still does a respectable 50 mpg on the highway.
These cars use regenerative braking (braking energy is turned back into electricity instead of heat) and do not need to be recharged through an electrical outlet - they run entirely on gasoline. Stay tuned as we explore this interesting new technology ...
If neither of these
cars holds your interest, check out our review of the Toyota
Camry Solara and see it connected to our OBD
scan tool. This is an LEV (Low Emission Vehicle) with some very
advanced features ...
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