Steane Klose | Aug 14, 2008

2009 is shaping up to be an interesting year for the hybrid market. As we reported earlier, Honda is set to debut an all-new dedicated hybrid vehicle at this year's Paris Motor Show. Reports now indicate Honda will have the new hybrid in dealerships by April 2009, with a clear intention of beating the next-gen Prius to market.

Toyota has selected the Detroit Motor Show to unveil its new Prius, which should generate a lot of buzz in a market that has thoroughly embraced 'the little hybrid that could'. As yet, there's no word on when the new model Prius will hit dealers but you can be sure that Honda will be doing its very best to beat it.

While initial sales forecasts of 100,000 units will not be enough to take top honours from Toyota, Honda has another three hybrid models on the way in an effort to reclaim the top spot it held back in the 90's with the Insight.

The good news for us is that as hybrids proliferate, the cheaper they'll become, and in the process we just might get something that offers real performance and doesn't look so damn... well... plain.

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