Honda For 2000
By Carey Russ
Honda builds on its heritage for 2000. It first came to prominence in the automotive field with the CVCC Civic in 1974, a car that combined fuel economy and low emissions. This year sees the introduction of the Insight, the first gasoline-electric hybrid, and the S2000 high-performance roadster. Most other Hondas are clean enough to be in the "Low Emissions Vehicle" (LEV) category.
A hybrid vehicle combines multiple power sources. Hybrid vehicles with gasoline engines and electric motors may be what we all drive in the future because of their low exhaust emissions, high fuel economy, and long range. The Honda Insight is the first hybrid vehicle offered for sale in this country. It uses Honda's "Integrated Motor Assist" (IMA) system, which combines a 1.0-liter three-cylinder gasoline engine and an ultra-thin electric motor. It's the world's cleanest, most fuel-efficient gasoline-powered vehicle. Extensive use of aluminum for the body and chassis keeps weight to a minimum. Low aerodynamic drag increases efficiency. The Insight runs on gasoline like a normal car, as the batteries are recharged during driving.
"High performance" was once synonymous with low fuel efficiency and high emissions levels. That was before Honda engineers came up with the S2000 roadster. Not only does its 2.0-liter engine make 240 horsepower, the highest specific power output (power for size) of any street-legal unsupercharged engine ever sold in the U.S., it's clean and efficient enough to achieve LEV status. A lightweight and very rigid chassis and fully-independent double wishbone suspension allow the S2000 to take full advantage of the engine's performance.
The second-generation Odyssey minivan gets an available DVD-based navigation system
All versions of ever-popular Accord sedan and coupe have dual-stage inflation front air bags this year. V6 models and four-cylinders with leather seats get side air bags, too.
The medium-size Passport SUV has freshened styling.
Civic sedan, coupe, and hatchback models continue as before. The quick Si coupe continues as well.
The CR-V, Honda's entry in the small sport-utility field, is unchanged.
The sporty Prelude coupe is unchanged.