Honda has confirmed it will start selling a standalone hybrid model next year, along with a production version of the CR-Z concept, a new Civic hybrid and a hybrid version of the Jazz.The new car will be a five-door hatchback with five seats, and Honda expects to sell 200,000 examples a year. It will be based on a new platform that will also be used as the basis for the forthcoming hybrid sports car based on the CR-Z.Honda’s bespoke hybrid will not use lithium-ion batteries, under development by most car manufacturers for the next generation of electric cars; the firm’s engineers are said to be concerned about their reliability and longevity. Instead it will use conventional nickel-hydride batteries.However, Honda has managed to slim down the battery pack to reduce weight and make the car cheaper to produce.The battery and power control unit (the module that controls the charging and the amount of power needed to propel the car) will be fitted at the rear of the vehicle, under the boot. The accompanying petrol engine is said to be the 1.4-litre four cylinder used in the Honda Civic IMA.There¹s no word on pricing yet, but Honda said the car will be “affordable”. That could mean that it will undercut the next Prius, also due to be launched next year; expect Honda’s prices to start at around £16,000.