It’s the season of teaser photos, with automakers releasing shots to key up support ahead of this month’s Frankfurt Motor Show. Not to be left behind, Honda has released a new photo of its 2012 Insight, which will receive some design and engineering tweaks to keep the aging hybrid looking fresh and staying efficient.
Judging by the sole official photo released thus far, the Insight wears a subtly restyled front fascia, which incorporates headlights styled after those on the 2012 Civic. While we’ve yet to see a shot of the car’s tail, Honda says it worked to reduce the size of the rear spoiler, wiper, and tailgate garnish — which in turn allows for better rearward visibility. These tweaks are more than just cosmetic — Honda claims they also help improve aerodynamics, although by what margin remains to be seen.
Mechanically, the new car is almost identical to last year’s model. The 1.3-liter I-4 is still paired with a electric motor and coupled with a CVT, but engineers strived to improve the system’s efficiency. Internal friction within the engine has reportedly been reduced, while minor revisions for CVT and air conditioning systems may also help improve the car’s fuel economy figures.
Honda says it’s added more features to the interior, but is otherwise mum on exactly what it’s changed. Our best guess is that the car might receive a multi-information display placed next to the speedometer, much like the 2012 Civic. If so, expect the screen to work with infotainment systems, Bluetooth phone connectivity, and if so equipped, the navigation system.
While these changes certainly apply to the European-spec Insight, there’s a very, very, very good chance these same revisions will be applied to the U.S.-spec car, which should launch by the end of the year. That’s not too surprising, considering the Insight itself was designed to be a veritable world car.