Honda's New Hybrid Laps the Field

Inside and out, the new gas-electric Civic is a lot like the other Civics -- but with phenomenal gas mileage for a five-seater

One thing I've always liked about Honda is its not-so-subtle way of poking a finger in the eye of its bigger, better-known competitors. In mid-January, the Japanese carmaker broke ranks with much of the rest of the industry when it told a congressional committee that making vehicles smaller and lighter in the interest of saving fuel doesn't necessarily make them less safe. The industry's standard line is that the higher Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards that Congress is seeking will ultimately result in more traffic deaths.

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