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Toyota Prius vs. Honda Civic Hybrid v. Honda Insight v. ?



  • oldboyoldboy Posts: 59
    The CNG Civic may indeed be the cleanest car, but there are serious reasons why it is impractical at this time. First, there is little infrastructure to support it. Where are you going to get compressed natural gas to refuel it? A 200 mile range may be okay for local commutes, but most people don't want to stop to refuel that often. Is the car even available at your local Honda dealer? These same things apply to hydrogen fuel cell cars. The government is wasting taxpayer dollars to promote hydrogen vehicles, when it still needs basic research to make it practical. Diesels are another matter. We have clean diesels in Europe, and when we finally get ULSD fuel here in the US, they will make sense here too. I'm looking at what makes sense while I am still alive; not at something that is about 20 years off in the future.
  • ------------------------------------------------------------------ ---------------
    #127 of 129 Re: [ateixeira #126] by gagrice Jun 19, 2004 (1:15 am)
    That is a good question and I have found the answer. It looks like they have about a 200 mile range.

    Even if this is 250 or 300 miles, it is unacceptably low for a family car.

    That, combined with the fact that half the trunk is eaten by the large cylinder of CNG fuel.

    THis delegates the CNG civic to fleets of largely city cars, delivery vehicles, police cars and the like. Or ast best as second, commmuting cars. Not Family cars.
  • SylviaSylvia Posts: 1,636
    There is a new NG discussion in the board - please continue all posts on this issue there.
  • gagricegagrice Pahrump, NevadaPosts: 31,417
    I cannot argue with anything you say. I am looking for a small car to run around town in that is economical over 10-15 years. I don't drive a lot of miles. My Suburban is 6 years old w/45k miles. Our Lexus is 15 years old with 80k miles. They both run great but are overkill for shopping at the grocery store 3 miles away. I would buy a small diesel like the VW TDI if they were available in CA. I am 1 mile from a SOCO that sells ECD-1 diesel. I really want a small economical PU. Nothing is available that gets much better than my 13-14 mpg around town Suburban. When I looked into converting my 1993 Chevy 3/4T PU to LNG or CNG I could have bought a device that ties into my Gas line into the house. Then you charge the CNG over night. It was expensive (about $4500) in 1996. CNG lends itself to PU trucks better than sedans. The high pressure tank can go in the front of the bed easier than the trunk. I just don't believe the hybrid is the answer to our problems. Good for a few not the masses.
  • eheadingeheading Posts: 26
    You guys are amazing! You think we should consider CNG cars, when there is no NG available for easy fuel up. You think we should use fuel cell cars, where there is NO infrastructure for fueling them available today. And besides can you imagine everyone driving around with a tank of compressed hydrogen in their car?? And we hear people raising questions about the "high voltage" in today's hybrids! That's nothing to everybody and their brother handling and filling cars with liquie hydrogen!! Talk about potential explosions.

    Sure today's hybrids aren't perfect, and someday down the road they will be made obsolete by some version of power, maybe the ones you're discussing. But today, it is a wonderful way to reduce emissions and gasolene consumption with no infrastructure problems at all!

    Ed Headington
  • I certainly never promoted FUEL CELL cars anywhere. They are 20 years away, IF AT ALL.

    I used to be a big fan of Hybrid tech, but when i saw that they DO NOT Deliver their EPA promises, I am far more sceptical.

    I support CNG MAINLY for FLEET Vecicles that are always close to a CNG pump, and do not need a long range.

    IF you really worry about ... CNG ëxplosions", perhaps you should also Dump all these fancy gas and hybrid cars and switch to a MODERN (NOT the ones you remmeber from the 80s) DIESEL runing on extra-low Sulfur, non-combustible Diesel Fuel.

    AND pay 25 cents less per gallon, AND get 25% MORE MPG.

    THAT is the answer, not the silly hybrids.

    EUROPE has understood that.

    Oh, and besides, is ANY manufacturer finally making a TRUE profit on ANY of the Hybrids they make>

    Toyota CLAIMS they now do, on the prius, BUT I suspect they DO NOT include the major R&D costs they spent developing it.
  • gagricegagrice Pahrump, NevadaPosts: 31,417
    I certainly never promoted FUEL CELL cars anywhere. They are 20 years away, IF AT ALL.
    I am not sure how fuel cells got into this conversation. I don't see how they can gain over CNG ICE's. They still will require Natural Gas.
    I am in total agreement with your assessment of the hybrid cost to manufacture. When the government quits handing out cash and incentives. The manufacturers will pull the plug just as they did with the all electric vehicle. That brings us back to diesel as the only logical way to save energy. The technology is available to bring emissions to reasonable levels. The only way to totally eliminate pollution is to run everything on nuclear energy, and that will not happen.
  • "Toyota CLAIMS they now do, on the prius, BUT I suspect they DO NOT include the major R&D costs they spent developing it."

    I believe they do include the R&D costs. Consider licensing the technology to Ford and Nissan as well as short development time of THS(HSD was renamed for 2nd gen). Project G21 start in 1994. In three years, they designed, developed, tested, manufactured and sold such a complex automobile, the likes of which had never been produced by Toyota (or any other manufacturer).

    For more info, read page 4 of the pdf.

  • I am in total agreement with your assessment of the hybrid cost to manufacture."

    Current gas-electric manufacturers are doing without major government help such as HOV access and some tax break.

    "That brings us back to diesel as the only logical way to save energy."

    I guess you missed out the 80mpg Super Car project during Clinton administration. The big 3 came up with diesel-electric concept cars until the government(Bush) pulled the plug on it. You will not believe how much of our tax dollars went into that project. It was well documented and written in 3 parts at You will need to register but it is worth the read.

    Maybe you can access this and see if that interest you without registering. graphicstory.htmlstory

  • rfruthrfruth Posts: 630
    >> When the government quits handing out cash and incentives for hybrids ?

    The government wants to encourage new technology and I think they should, not sure about how much or for how long but does anyone think the U.S. gov will cut out incentives now that the big 2.5 (detroit) are starting to show up for the hybrid party ? Would it be a good thing to reward the Japaneese but not GM & Ford ? Yea its a global economy but still.
  • gagricegagrice Pahrump, NevadaPosts: 31,417
    Giving money to the auto manufacturers seems so "Pork Barrel" to me.
    Offering tax credits to those that purchase these fuel saving and environment saving vehicles is a much more direct approach. It is not as expensive to the tax payer and it goes directly to the consumer that is helping to save energy and the environment. When we give tax breaks to corporations it all ends up in some executives pocket and very little trickles down to research and development. Giving money to Universities for R&D is probably a bit safer. If you give someone a $3000 tax credit for purchasing a Prius that costs Toyota say $3000 more to build than a conventional car. The money ends up where it is spent on R&D and higher manufacturing costs. If Ford spends a $billion
    on R&D for X car and it is a flop. So what, they did that with the Edsel and many other failed projects. If the auto makers think they will get reimbursed for every penny they spend on R&D, you know the fraud factor is going to be there.
  • blueiedgodblueiedgod Posts: 2,798
    I have not looked into the Current Civic GX, but the previous model year GX retained the gas tank. If you were out of CNG, you could pull up to a gas station and fill up with gasoline. There was a switch on dashboard to go from gas to gasoline and back.
  • gagricegagrice Pahrump, NevadaPosts: 31,417
    That makes it useable for longer trips. Thanks for that info.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Now *that* is cool, you actually would extend your range on trips.

  • "The number of each type of hybrid electric vehicle tested, the total miles accumulated, and average fuel economy to date include:
    * 4 Honda Civics, 284,000 miles and 38.0 mpg
    * 6 Honda Insights, 347,000 miles and 46.0 mpg
    * 6 Toyota Prius (model years 2002 and 2003) 380,000 miles and 41.1 mpg, and
    * 2 Toyota Prius (model year 2004) 16,000 miles and 44.6 mpg"

  • Honda Civic Hybrid

    Acceleration 0-50 mph 100% SOC: 11.7 seconds
    Driving Cycle Range w/o Accessories Fuel Economy: 48.8 mpg
    Driving Cycle Range w/Accessories Fuel Economy: 35.6 mpg

    Honda Insight

    Acceleration 0-50 mph 100% SOC: 11.3 seconds
    Driving Cycle Range w/o Accessories Fuel Economy: 56.2 mpg
    Driving Cycle Range w/Accessories Fuel Economy: 42.7 mpg

    Toyota Prius(Classic)

    Acceleration 0-50 mph 100% SOC: 10.4 seconds
    Driving Cycle Range w/o Accessories Fuel Economy: 49.5 mpg
    Driving Cycle Range w/Accessories Fuel Economy: 39.8 mpg

    HCH Fact Sheet:
    Insight Fact Sheet:
    Classic Prius Fact Sheet:

    According to those results, the classic Prius is faster and more fuel efficient than HCH.

  • Toyota Prius v. Civic Hybrid

    I prefer the Civic. I like the stick shift better. It feels like you're really accelerating (even the CVT feels faster). I like that the Civic operates like a normal car in all aspects, except one extra meter (Battery).

    Prius has too many "quirks" for my comfort. Can't use 10W-30 or warning lights will come on. Can't jumpstart it, because the 12V battery is hidden in the trunk. When driving, you feel disconnected from the road. Even the gear shift is strange (no park).

  • xcelxcel Posts: 1,025
    Hi All:

    Boy did this one pop out of nowhere …

    USB, if you are still around, you posted the CVT based Insight numbers? Anyone interested in FE knows the 5-speed is much faster and receives much better FE due to the transmission and lean-burn.

    Honda Insight 5-speed

    Acceleration 0-60 mph 100% SOC: 10.6 seconds
    Acceleration 0-60 mph 0% SOC: 11.9 seconds
    Fuel Economy: Do you even have to ask with an Insight running at a 92.5 lifetime mpg? A Prius will never reach that number …

    Good Luck

    Wayne R. Gerdes
  • tempusvntempusvn Posts: 119
    "Prius has too many "quirks" for my comfort... Can't jumpstart it, because the 12V battery is hidden in the trunk"


    There are jump points under the hood by the engine like on every other car.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,922
    Reply to your duplicate post in another discussion:

    backy, "Toyota Prius v. ??? (fill in the comparison)" #343, 10 Mar 2005 4:54 pm
  • Wrong again! 5 W-30 oil is the regular recommended oil but 10W-30 is allowable(page 283 of the owners man.). Seems that Toyota feels that 5W-30 is the better choice for highest MPG'S. Seems a little picky to me.
    Culliganman(I hesitate to use "STP" for fear it will compromise my mpg's)
  • If the civic gx really only has a 200mile radius, i wonder what that would be expanded to if they used the hybrid technology on it. maybe i'm dreaming, but a CNG-elecetric hybrid would be cool.
  • Because it's a toy, not a car, and the "CHECK ENGINE" light will turn on & the car turn off. I've seen the TSB report.

    Stupid Toyota. They designed a car that has hypertension disease. The more I hear about the prius (problems/weird quirks), the more glad I am I didn't buy it.

  • midnightcowboymidnightcowboy Posts: 1,978
    One poster earlier, John Fargunat,a staunch Prius advocate who owned a Prius I and now a Prius II, once stated that the "Check Engine" light came on when a person didn't tighten the gas cap 'so that the person could meet the Toyota Prius Service department and begin to feel comfortable with them' end quote.

    On the new Honda Accords, if you leave you gas cap loose accidentally when you fill-up with gas a message 'Check Gas Cap' appears.

    I don't know about you, but I like the clearer more direct message better.

    I enjoy your comments Electrictroy, keep on truck'n


    P.S.- Is this one of the software glitches the Prius owners are just now starting to complain about ???
  • Actually, "gas cap loose" is a common problem with most cars. It's part of the Evaporative Emissions System required by law.

    But yeah, I do think it's dumb the Prius suffers from hypertension disease, and can't use any other oil except 5W-30, else it will break down.

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    CR rates Prius as reliable.

    What you observe on boards like these is very unscientific because someone with a problem will seek out boards like for solutions.

    When asked if they'd buy the same car again Prius earned the highest score of any car, so it's not like anyone has buyer's remorse. Much to the contrary, actually.

  • midnightcowboymidnightcowboy Posts: 1,978
    But no one has had to pay for a new battery yet or tried to sell their car when it gets close to the 8yr, 100,000 mile (CA= 10yr, 150,000 mile) limits and the residual value assymptotically approaches zero.

    And actually "reliable" isn't really a CR rating; the Prius is rated CR's top rating a red circle=excellent. But then again the car is made of Toyota parts and the tranmission is simpleier.

    Also user satisfaction is rate excellent, but I wonder if this is poartially "fad" and "emperor new clothes" syndrome.

    What is funny the FUD about the Prius microcomputers and software. All cars in the last ten years have sensors, microprocessors, software. In this aspect the Prius is not different from other cars. So it controls the HSD ysstem; big deal! Next time you hear "drive by wire" think computer software controlling my throttle!.

    It is not that boards such as Edmuunds are unscientific , it is just that they are made of reader's opinions and typically tend to be skewed making them not a statistically accurate sample set.

    Juice, didn't you use to be an active participant on the AOL: auto boards before they were over-moderated to death ? :)

    6-speed an loving it,

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    The batteries would certainly be my main long-term concern. 8 years is a long time (3rd owner by then perhaps?), unless you drive hi-miles and would hit the mileage limit early.

    New clothes may be a fad, sure, but among every new model it still ranks the best. Credit where credit is due, I think.

    not a statistically accurate sample set = unscientific

    Aren't we saying the same thing?

    I was on in the mid 80s, remember that place? But since then it's been mostly Edmunds.

  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 4,098
    "What is funny the FUD about the Prius microcomputers and software. All cars in the last ten years have sensors, microprocessors, software. In this aspect the Prius is not different from other cars. So it controls the HSD ysstem; big deal! Next time you hear "drive by wire" think computer software controlling my throttle!."

    It is a big deal, because of the computer control of electronics is more integrated due to the electric motors and generators. A lot more room for software errors than an ICE-only car. The Prius has all the computer software of a normal car, plus additional software... BTW, I started a topic for Prius software problems:
  • mistermemisterme Posts: 407
    The battery replacement was a major factor in deciding in a HCH, vs Prius.
    I try to keep my cars 10 years, at that time I'll have more than 320,000 miles.
    My battery warranty goes away @ 150,000.

    If it goes flat before the car is finished I'll have some options.

    1.Buy the OEM battery pack.
    2.Other aftermarket, lower cost, guaranteed battery packs may become available.
    3.Test for bad cells & individually replace then.
    4.Drive the car with lower performance. On a personal note, I should still get EPA estimates for the car.

    Why did I choose HCH over Prius?
    One reason is I don't think option #4 is possible.
This discussion has been closed.