2012 Honda Civic Hybrid – 2011 Toyota Prius – Popular Mechanics

28 Mar 2015 | Author: | Comments Off on 2012 Honda Civic Hybrid – 2011 Toyota Prius – Popular Mechanics

2012 Honda Civic vs. Toyota Prius: Hybrid Test

We pitted the all-new Civic Hybrid against the mpg champ, the Toyota Prius, in our own test. Can a Honda hybrid beat Toyota?

Over of the last decade . there has one benchmark when it comes to fuel efficiency: the Toyota . Its reputation is so strong, in fact, Toyota decided to create an family of Prius vehicles, this year with the V.

Since 1999, Honda has producing its own line of hybrids. Its the Insight, was a fuel economy itself. But no Honda hybrid has been able to match the

That may change with the new Civic Hybrid, which is than ever to becoming Prius.

To find out how Honda’s stacks up against Toyota, we a two-day, two-route, 550-mile to challenge the two fuel economy One route covered the city to approximate a week’s worth of the other was an all-highway blast to a road trip. We filled up cars for each route at the pump, at the same gas station.

Can the Prius hold onto its top as the reining fuel economy

The Specs

Toyota uses a of electric motors, and a continuously transmission (CVT) to join mounted to the 1.8-liter four-cylinder This system allows the to use several combinations of electric gasoline power#151;including an all-electric There’s even an EV switch locks the Prius in battery until the range of the 6.5 amp hour hydride pack is used up.

delivers a total system of 134.

Honda’s system, is very similar to the last Hybrid and the current Insight. The motor sits in between the CVT and the engine. So, unlike the Prius, the gas in the Civic must always in electric cruise mode, the gas essentially freewheels. The Civic’s cylinder has grown to 1.5-liters 1.3-liters. And when combined the new, more powerful 23 hp motor, it delivers 110 system

But the big news is the lighter and more 4.5 amp hour lithium-ion battery (still mounted behind the seats).

The Prius can become quickly as you add options like the system. It’s not uncommon to see a loaded Prius sticker for to $35,000. The new Civic Hybrid offer these options, so it is much less expensive.

We to test a $24,369 Toyota 2 model against a $27,500 Hybrid Nav model.

The EPA rates the at 51mpg city and 48 mpg on the highway, the 2012 Civic Hybrid is at 44 mpg for both city and highway. But how do handle real world

The Highway Drive

Beginning in Monica, we cruised up the California to U.S. Route 101 and pressed north of Santa Maria. To out any differences in driving style PM’s testers, we switched often and locked the cruise at or below 70 mph whenever possible.

The may have an all-new, more skin, but beneath it the chassis feels quite similar to the Civic Hybrid we tested. of any hybrid we’ve tested, new Honda comes the closest to the quality of the Prius#151;partly because ride on the same 196/65R15 Ecopia tires.

The Civic’s new and display look much the Prius’s, except they are in front of the driver’s sight and easier to read. The Prius’s dash lets everyone that you’ve got plenty of tech onboard. But the fresh, dash and center console of the is more inviting if you prefer a car, which we do.

Both cars are far from however. Hard plastic most of the interior.

Slide the backseats, and the two cars appear to equal headroom. But there’s a bit legroom in the Honda, and its roofline that taller passengers as they exit the rear In terms of cargo, the Civic’s holds 10.7 cubic increase from the previous but just half the capacity of the

After 354 highway miles, we that the Civic was the more of the two#151;the Prius feels a bit susceptible to crosswind and generally more freeway noise. But we filled both cars up at the end of the the Prius was the highway fuel champ, returning 51.4 The Civic delivered a very 47.1 mpg.

The City Drive

The next we headed east and hit the streets. For test, we’d drive an route from Santa to San Bernardino, and back. We never put a on a freeway and never exceeded 45 true test of city economy.

On these roads, the was nearly silent most of the creeping along in electric-only The Civic always needed its gas to idle, but the smart and aggressive stop-start system would cut power when we were up to a light under light As soon as the light turned and our foot released the brake, the started quickly.

And once way, the Civic stays in mode longer than

On a few of the backroads near Glendora, the was the more engaging partner. car will be mistaken for a sport but spirited driving just more natural in the Honda.

After 198 miles and ten hours of congestion, the Prius once came out on top when we refueled in Santa Monica. This the Toyota delivered 50.2 mpg to 43.7 mpg.

The Bottom

In out test, both hybrids their EPA ratings. Averaging our two the Prius delivered 50.8 mpg the Civic returned 45.4 The Prius remains the unequivocal fuel economy king, but the is closing the gap.

If gasoline continue to rise much today’s $4 per gallon national both Toyota and Honda see sales of these two hybrids But if we could have just one of cars to drive every our pick would be the slightly-more-fun

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