The new 2019 Honda Insight hybrid was designed as a conventional-looking sedan that should appeal to a wider audience than its first- and second-generation cousins that had polarizing styling, forcing buyers to make trade-offs in the name of fuel efficiency.

Honda says the new Insight is projected to receive an EPA fuel economy rating above 50 mpg combined, "fuel economy ratings competitive with the best hybrids in the segment,” says Henio Arcangeli, Jr., senior vice president of Automobile Sales and general manager of the Honda Division, American Honda Motor Co., Inc.

The Insight features what Honda calls its two-motor hybrid system: a 1.5-liter engine that works with an electric motor and hybrid battery pack. Honda says in most conditions it will operate on electric power only, using the gasoline engine as a generator to charge the battery pack.

2019 Honda Insight Hybrid front

Like the new Honda Accord Hybrid, Hyundai Sonata Hybrid, and Toyota Camry Hybrid, the Insight has its lithium-ion batteries located under the rear seats, increasing passenger and cargo room. The extra space also allows Honda to offer optional 60/40-split folding rear seats.

Honda will make the Honda Sensing suite of advanced safety features standard on the Insight, including forward-collision warning, automatic emergency braking, lane-departure warning, and lane-keeping assist. But Honda isn’t offering a blind-spot warning system as standard, and only offers Honda LaneWatch system on EX trims and above.

Honda LaneWatch displays an image of the right side of the vehicle when the driver activates the right-hand turn signal; the left side of the car doesn’t have coverage. Consumer Reports doesn’t believe this system is as effective as a true blind-spot warning system that covers both sides of the car.

2019 Honda Insight hybrid interior preview

The Insight will sit above the Civic and below the Accord in Honda’s model hierarchy. It will offer a number of premium features, including available leather seats, an 8-inch touch screen, and a 7-inch digital LCD for the driver. Users can choose which apps and features are displayed on the customizable touch screen, and both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto functionality will be available.

Honda has struggled to find its place in the electrified car market in recent years. We’ll see later in the year whether the emphasis on conventional sedans will resonate with buyers.

Honda Insight Prototype rear