2010 Honda Insight - Click above for a high-res image gallery

We had to wait years for someone to give us a hybrid-only alternative to the Toyota Prius, but Honda finally did it with the Honda Insight. Initial interest in the under $20,000 40+ mpg vehicle was high in Japan, but that is not necessarily translating into sales in the U.S. Honda was initially hoping for 90,000 sales in North America in its first year, but it looks like the Japanese automaker may not hit its sales goal. American Honda Vice President John Mendel reportedly told Bloomberg that the company isn't going to hit 90,000, but the company "will be just fine" with 50,000 to 60,000 sales. Honda expects global sales of the Insight to hit 200,000 units, and hopes for about half of that volume to come from North America.

The revised sales forecast comes as Honda is keeping more Insights in Japan due to brisk demand and unfavorable exchange rates in the U.S. Low gas prices are also likely to be hurting sales of Honda's new hybrid, though the price of petrol has been steadily heading north over the past few weeks. The recession is also hurting Insight sales, as U.S. sales have been historically poor so far in 2009.

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[Source: Reuters]