Honda Motor Co. (7267), the first automaker to sell gasoline-electric cars in the U.S., said production of Insight hatchbacks ends this year amid its plan to add other types of fuel-efficient vehicles to its lineup.
Sales of the Insight, which went on sale in the U.S. in 1999 before Toyota Motor Corp. (7203)’s Prius, will end this year as production stops in “summer 2014,” the carmaker said yesterday in a statement. Tokyo-based Honda didn’t say whether the model, last fully revamped for 2009, would eventually return.
The company will add new “advanced technology environmental” vehicles to its U.S. lineup over the next three to four years, expanding use of more efficient gasoline engines and transmissions and “electro-motive” technologies it didn’t identify.
U.S. sales of the model that Honda touts as the lowest-priced hybrid in the market totaled 4,802 cars last year, compared with 234,228 for Toyota’s Prius line.
Honda’s U.S. sales unit is based in Torrance, California. The company’s American depositary receipts fell 1 percent to $36.05 yesterday in New York. They’ve fallen 13 percent (HMC:US) this year.
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