Why? You ask. Well, the Insight is the first gasoline-electric hybrid vehicle sold in the US. The electric motor powers the front wheels and it also takes place of a conventional starter. But this is not entirely an electric vehicle. Yes, it uses fuel, but inside it has a fuel cut mode which lets you move without fuel burning. The best type of fuel recommended by Honda is "regular," which is an 87-octane gasoline. You cannot rely on just the electric motor to powering the car because it has a battery pack called nickel metal hydride (NiMH). If you run out of fuel, you will need to refuel it!
The Insight also reduces the carbon dioxide, which is one of the greenhouse gases that have ties to fuel burning. Regular cars will burn more fuel because it does not have the "help" from an electric motor.
At a stop, the engine will shut off itself; this is called idle-stop feature, when you want to go it will start up on its own.
The aluminum body saves the amount of energy used to accelerate the car. It is 47 percent lighter that a car with a metal body. That helps out with the aerodynamics of the car:
Pictures used by permission of Honda of Lawrence, (Lawrence, Mass.)