According to a newspaper report, Honda is planning to release a new hybrid car at a price of $16,570, making it the cheapest hybrid in Japan. Based on the Honda Fit, the new hybrid will cost one fifth less than the cheapest hybrid on the Japanese market, being ready for sale this autumn.
The Nikkei Business Daily said the car will cost about 200,000 yen more than Honda’s popular gasoline-powered Fit compact car and about 400,000 yen less than the Insight. “Lower prices are good for consumers but not for shareholders,” said Yoshihiko Tabei, an analyst at Kazaka Securities.
With just one liter of gasoline, the new hybrid car will be able to travel about 30 kilometres, compared with the Fi’s 24km per liter mileage. There is a real competition between Honda and Toyota in the growing hybrid car market, since the launch of the Insight hybrid in February 2009, followed by the Toyota Prius hybrid, the cheapest car ever.
“With prices in the popular range of 1.5 to 1.6 million yen and with the performance of a conventional gasoline-powered vehicle, hybrids will be increasingly popular even without tax incentives,” Tabei added.