Today was Day 1 of 2010 Detroit Auto Show, and Toyota took the wraps off of their new “dedicated hybrid” concept car. The Toyota FT-CH concept hybrid may end up eventually wearing the Prius badge – it’s 22 inches shorter than the Prius, and is expected to get higher gas mileage and be cheaper than the current Prius.
Honda meanwhile is showing off the production model of their CR-Z two-seater sports car hybrid. At earlier shows, Honda’s presented different designs for the CR-Z – but the model they’re showing now is the one that will hit dealers this summer. Mileage isn’t great for a small hybrid – 36 city / 38 highway are the numbers that have been thrown around, but Honda is emphasizing the sporty aspect of the CR-Z. As John Mendel, the executive vice president of sales for American Honda said, “It’s the first hybrid designed to maximize style and fun, in addition to efficiency and economy.” The CR-Z combines a 1.5 liter i-VTEC gas engine with Honda’s Integrated Motor Assist hybrid system. Overall, the CR-Z will give you 122 horsepower, and you can get it with a six speed manual transmission, which is a first for a hybrid, or a continuously variable transmission (CVT). Pricing hasn’t been announced yet.
If you want to keep up with the latest news out of the Detroit Auto Show, the New York Times provides a roundup of highlights and news from the Associated Press.