The Weekend Post - Motoring - - Front Page -

HONDA has pumped up the In­sight as an af­ford­able and fru­gal fam­ily car – and it looks like the ma­jor mar­kets agree.

It hasn’t yet been on sale for a month in the UK and it has al­ready out­sold the Toy­ota Prius – 229 sales to 198 – while in the US, Ja­pan and Europe it has a wait­ing list. Honda UK sold 79 Civic Hy­brids in the same three-week pe­riod.

Good news for Honda but it means sup­ply can’t match de­mand in its prime mar­kets so Aus­tralia may have to wait.

Honda Aus­tralia spokesper­son Melissa Cross says it will be launched in 2010. “But we can’t tell you if it’s in the first or sec­ond half,” she said.

The In­sight is cheaper than the Civic Hy­brid with which it will share the Honda show­rooms. Later, the CR-Z coupe will join the pair.

Part of the suc­cess of the In­sight in the UK is the gov­ern­ment’s pro-ac­tive 15 per cent an­nual road tax re­duc­tion. On top of its un­of­fi­cial US fuel con­sump­tion of 5.2 litres/100km, it has a high fore­cast resid­ual rate of 44 per cent and is ex­empt from Lon­don’s Con­ges­tion Charge.

Honda has in­di­cated the US econ­omy may be in­cor­rect, stat­ing that it will match the Civic Hy­brid

Exclusive ap­peal: The lim­ited edi­tion HSV W427 su­per­car, at $170,000, is in a class of its own.

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