Honda is getting set to bring back the Insight badge for an all-new hybrid model it will reveal in January as a prototype at the Detroit auto show.
The Japanese automaker says the new car will be positioned above the Civic in its vehicle range, where it will combine "premium style and (a) spacious five-passenger" cabin with the brand's latest two-motor hybrid drive system.
The Insight name has a checkered reputation, having been first applied to a nifty two-seat hybrid coupe that achieved cult status following its late 1990s debut, and then to an unloved four-door hatchback that bowed in 2009 and (somehow) survived until 2013.
But this car looks more promising, thanks to a look that borrows cues from the handsome 2018 Honda Accord and a nicely-sorted hybrid system first used in the last-generation of that mid-sizer. Renderings of the car's interior show a cabin that also owes a lot to the new Accord, but scaled down to a size closer to that of the 2018 Honda Civic.
Honda's press release calls back to the 2017 Detroit auto show, where it announced a plan to electrify two-thirds of its vehicles by 2030. The Insight will be the next step in that plan when it debuts in 2018 as a 2019 model, to join the larger Clarity PHEV and latest version of the Accord Hybrid in Honda showrooms.