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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Japanese raise stakes in hybrid race
Toyota, Honda and Subaru versions court average buyers
By Jeff Plungis / Detroit News Washington Bureau

DETROIT — Japanese automakers are using the North American International Auto Show to escalate a race to expand fuel-efficient, gas-electric hybrids in the United States.

Honda Motor Co. announced Monday it would build a hybrid gas-electric version of its flagship Accord midsize car this fall. Toyota Motor Co.p. showed off a hybrid Highlander SUV and will unveil a production RX400H sport utility hybrid today. Subaru unveiled a hybrid in a concept roadster.

The introductions illustrate the auto industry’s determination to push fuel-sipping hybrid vehicles into the mainstream despite concerns that they are too expensive to build and may not appeal to the mass market.

Honda’s decision to build a hybrid version of the Accord — the fourth-best-selling vehicle in the United States — is one of the most ambitious moves to date to commercialize hybrid technology and likely will add to the perception that Detroit’s automakers lag the Japanese in hybrid technology.

“This is prime time,” Honda spokesman Andy Boyd said. “We really want to make it available to the widest number of people possible.”

(Full story here)
 

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Well.. at least GM's not totally out of the Hybrid arena with that Subaru concept.
Maybe that will be the new 9-4X.... HAHAHAHA :roflmao:

Come on.. That Subaru looks pretty sweet!
 

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GM needs one PR vehicle it can point to for hybrid tech, and I'm not talking about a pickup sold to fleet buyers that gets 8% better fuel economy. Or an S-10 hydrogen prototype that uses the whole bed for a fuel cell.

What happened to the plans to make a GM hybrid vehicle with Suzuki? I haven't heard about that for a year or so. The Chevrolet Cruze would seem a good candidate.

Suggestion - bring hybrid tech to the Saturn VUE and Chevy Equinox in some capacity. Did they cancel the plans completely for a hybrid VUE?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Originally posted by Ming@Jan 6 2004, 10:40 PM
GM needs one PR vehicle it can point to for hybrid tech, and I'm not talking about a pickup sold to fleet buyers that gets 8% better fuel economy. Or an S-10 hydrogen prototype that uses the whole bed for a fuel cell.
Indeed- this is very true. The hybrid race scares me-- it seems like it could be such a big deal for image, and I fear that GM is falling behind. I know that they are focusing on the future of hybrids in different ways. They are making a strong hydrogen push for the future-- but I'm not sure if this will pay off. They already speak of how much fuel is saved with their hybrid busses, but does this really make a large enough impression on the public?
 
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