CleanMPG Reviews the 2008 Honda Civic Hybrid

Discussion in 'Reviews' started by xcel, Aug 28, 2008.

  1. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    [​IMG] Highway driving is its strength.

    [xfloat=left][/xfloat]Wayne Gerdes - CleanMPG - Aug. 28, 2008

    The 2008 Honda Civic Hybrid -- EPA rated at 40mpg City, 45mpg Highway, and 42mpg Combined.

    Since the first generation Honda Civic reached our shores 35 years ago, the perennial compact favorite has grown in size, performance and amenities while still achieving admirable fuel economy, excellent reliability, and resale value most accurately described as “Best in Class.” In this iteration, the Civic is the safest compact available on the road today.

    Given the attributes and history, is it any wonder this eighth generation Honda Civic is the number one selling compact in the US? Through July of 2008, it is actually outselling the recently released 2009 Toyota Corolla by a good margin (234,086 as compared to 228,926 vehicles purchased). This shows just how popular the Civic is with the American public.

    The first hybrid Civic was launched in late 2002. This first generation Honda Civic Hybrid (HCH-I) came with a 1.3L engine (rather than the 1.7L engine that was standard in US Civics at the time) coupled with a third generation Auto Stop/Start and Assist/Regenerative braking system known as Integrated Motor Assist (IMA) -- first seen in the 2000 Honda Insight.

    With the release of the eighth generation 2006 Civic, Honda launched the second generation Honda Civic Hybrid (HCH-II) utilizing an improved iVTEC and fourth generation IMA system. This system introduced the ability to cruise on its electric motor alone under light load conditions.

    Improved Engine and IMA

    The Civic Hybrid-II’s engine uses a 3-Stage i-VTEC system with an additional high output valve timing mode allowing a 9 percent increase in HP. Additionally, the engine features 4-cylinder deactivation vs. the 3-cylinder deactivation capable HCH-I -- this change alone reduced total pumping losses by 66 percent.

    The fourth generation IMA motor in the HCH-II includes a new, more efficient internal permanent magnet with a 50 percent increase in HP and 14 percent increase in torque compared to the 2005 Civic Hybrid IMA motor.


    A wide array of standard safety technologies includes Honda’s latest safety advance known as the ACE Body Structure which enhances front collision safety between vehicles of different sizes.

    Along with improved structural safety, the HCH-II is equipped with side curtain airbags, driver's and front passenger's side airbags with a passenger-side Occupant Position Detection System (OPDS), and dual-stage, dual-threshold driver's and front passenger's airbags (SRS) -- all standard.

    Active safety features include active front seat head restraints designed to reduce the likelihood of neck injury in rear collisions, an anti-lock braking system (ABS), Electronic Brake Force Distribution (EBD), and front seatbelts with automatic-tensioners and load limiters. Again, all of this is standard equipment.

    New for 2009, the HCH-II includes Vehicle Stability Assist (VSA) and Brake Assist (BA) -- once again, standard.

    2008/2009 Honda Civic Hybrid Pricing

    2008 HCH-II Base -- MSRP of $22,600
    2008 HCH-II with Navigation -- MSRP of $24,350 as reviewed.

    2009 HCH-II Base -- MSRP of $23,550
    2009 HCH-II with Leather -- MSRP of $24,750
    2009 HCH-II with Navigation -- MSRP of $25,550
    2009 HCH-II with Leather and Navigation -- MSRP of $26,750

    A destination charge of $670 is an addition to the above vehicles MSRP.

    2008 Honda Civic Hybrid exterior and interior

    HCH-II on an Illinois prairie.

    Front driver’s view.-------------------------------------------------------Rear seat interior.

    2008 Honda Civic Hybrid Specifications

    The HCH-II’s full specifications can be viewed at the following location: 2006 – 2009 Honda Civic Hybrid specifications

    2008 Honda Civic Hybrid Performance

    The HCH-II was not meant to be a stop light to stop light performer for either pep or great Fuel economy. 0 to 60 mph in 12 seconds is a bit on the slow side while 60 to 0 panic stops in approximately 135 feet are normal for the class. Where it shines however is on the highway in steady state cruise at reasonable speeds. With extremely wide ratios available from the HCH-II’s CVT, 60 mph can be achieved at an incredibly low 1,691 RPM! This is just one aspect of the HCH-II’s great highway fuel economy.

    What else is in the HCH-II’s fuel economy repertoire? A properly setup HCH-II, with its tall ratios and the ability to hold SAHM mode (see below) up to 60 mph, is a relaxed highway cruising dream. How does the HCH-II handle Chicago area commuting chores? Truly excellent results are described below. :)

    2008 Honda Civic Hybrid Ride and Handling

    Ride was reasonably comfortable even at MAX Sidewall -- an expected attribute of any Civic. Where the HCH-II fell apart was when entering into a smooth sweeper. There is little feedback due to an over boosted Electric Power Steering (EPS) system and under-steer is readily apparent. Unfortunately, this is not the only issue for those using advanced techniques. The steering input is manageable for approximately 5 seconds into a FAS -- then the EPS comes back online. When it does, you go from a somewhat tense steering input to a quick transition that feels very much like over-steer. Even knowing it was coming didn't give me the confidence to let it go unheeded. A standard Glide mode into sweepers with the light but controllable under-steer ended up being the best approach for this type of roadway.

    The HCH-II is not a performance compact and with that idea firmly planted, take it easy in the curves and it will reward you with high fuel economy and a comfortable ride for many years to come.

    2008 Honda Civic Hybrid Interior Ergonomics, Utility and General Comfort

    Driver ergonomics are excellent! The driver's seat, accelerator/brake pedal, and standard tilt/telescopic steering wheel position are comfortable for many sizes and shapes.

    A couple of negatives did appear in this well executed interior, however. Since there is no adjustable Lumbar support, Honda includes a deep push into the lower/middle back with a standard driver's seat curve. Over longer distances you may find yourself squirming for more comfortable positions. The second item has to do with the left foot rest (dead pedal). It is installed at a relatively vertical angle and I never found a truly comfortable resting position.

    Front seat ergonomics – poor dead pedal angle but good room for rear seat passengers with the front seat back to the stops.​

    Amenities - A number of storage spaces are available including front beverage holders, center console with sliding armrest and storage compartment, front and rear door pockets, and seat back pockets.

    2008 Honda Civic Crash test ratings

    NHTSA Crash test ratings: 5 - 5 - 4 - 5 - 4 Stars.

    IIHS Crash test ratings: Best available Good Ratings across the board.​

    2008 Honda Civic Hybrid Instrumentation and Controls

    Instrumentation – The OEM i and aFCDs are both very well designed and easy to read. The only issue is the resolution of the iFCD. The range appears to be 120 mpg but with only 0, 50 and 100 mpg demarcations, I am still not sure what the peak iFE is?

    Controls – Honda designers are masters of user friendly controls and they did a wonderful job in the HCH-II. A/C controls are simple, well thought out, and easy to control well beyond the simple Auto temperature setting. This HCH-II was equipped with Navigation and to move from one end of the radio spectrum to the other involved holding down the tune toggle vs. spinning a dial. Simple and easy to learn but time consuming in some instances.

    2008 Honda Civic Hybrid Fuel Economy Results

    The HCH-II performed well for the week in a 25% suburban/75% slower speed highway mix with minor reservations.

    DateOdoTrip A milesTrip B miles (Tank total)Trip A Segment FCD (mpg)Trip B Tank FCD (mpg)SG-II Segment (mpg)SG-II Tank (mpg)Notes
    07/21/084,672NANANANANANATopped off fill.
    07/21/084,70734. – 79 degrees F, little wind, medium traffic, 85% highway.
    07/21/084,74236. – 79 degrees F, little wind, heavy traffic, 80% highway.
    07/21/084,78643.5113.972.775.781.587.367 – 68 degrees F, little wind, light traffic, 40% highway, 60% around town and country roads.
    07/22/084,82640.5154.467.072.675.984.064 – 67 degrees F, little wind, stop and crawls out and medium traffic back. 90% highway with half being stop and crawls and average speeds < 20 mph :(
    07/22/084,87346.2200.668.671.6Multiple83.468 – 72 degrees F, 5 - 10 mph side winds, heavy traffic and 80% highway/20% local.
    07/23/084,91340.3241.068.471.179.982.858 – 63 degrees F, little wind, heavy stop and crawls out and medium to heavy traffic back.
    07/23/084,95440.8281.870.170.9Multi83.075 – 78 degrees F, little wind, medium traffic out and 5 miles of horrendous Stop and Crawls back.
    07/23/085,01157.3339.277.972.094.184.767 – 70 degrees F, little wind, 10 miles of Stop and Crawls out and light traffic back.
    07/24/085,05746.3385.568.171.580.584.156 – 63 degrees F, little wind, 5 miles of suburban stop light to stop light and medium Interstate traffic both ways.
    07/24/085,11153.4439.065.970.8Multi82.976 – 78 degrees F, little wind, all suburban traffic driving.
    07/24/085,15240.9479.974.071.0Multi83.372 – 73 degrees F, little wind, medium Interstate traffic.
    07/25/085,17219.9499.985.271.588.483.466 degrees F, little wind, Low and Medium speed P&G.
    07/25/085,17503.3503.283.271.585.483.466 degrees F, little wind, 3 mile drive to the gas station.

    FE Rating OriginEPA City FE ratingEPA Highway FE RatingCleanMPG Observed Fuel Economy
    US40 mpg45 mpg73.15 mpgUS
    British Imperial48 mpg54 mpg87.78 mpgUK
    European Metric5.9 L/100 km5.2 L/100 km3.215 L/100 km

    Review MPG data: 503.2 miles using 6.879 gallons = 73.150 mpgUS.


    71.5 mpg over 503.2 miles per the aFCD – 73.15 mpg actual from top off to top off.

    2008 HCH-II FE Techniques

    Tarabell has already covered the basics very competently in her article entitled Adapting Basic_Hypermiling Techniques to the HCH-II.

    [xfloat=left][/xfloat]Steady state lower speed highway cruise

    SAHM -- 56 mph at IGN 32 with a LOD of 48% yields 80 + mpg.

    In addition to what Tarabell has written, Super Atkinson Highway Mode (SAHM) can be added to the arsenal of efficiency techniques.

    SAHM is an Ignition timing target (viewed on a ScanGauge) that can be used to achieve 75-90 mpg in the HCH-II with light throttle, DWL steady state cruise on the highway. The Fuel Economy achievement you see above can be held from 43-60 mph with the fuel economy numbers falling as you approach 60 mph or as ambient conditions (temperatures, wind, grade, road surface and/or traffic conditions) deteriorate. Unless you are heading downhill, SAHM will disappear above 60 mph.

    To achieve this state once you are near a steady state target, ever so gently let off the accelerator pedal to allow LOAD (LOD per the ScanGauge) to drop under 50% and throttle position (TPS) to hang at 15. Once these two parameters are achieved, Ignition advance (IGN as displayed on the ScanGauge) should remain in the 30-36 range with the OEM iFCD settling in the 75-90 mpg range -- the ScanGauge’s iFCD displays even higher numbers. :)


    This one is tough as I believe the 2006 and 2007 HCH-II’s act differently than the 2008 model depending on which ECU flash update has been performed. The 2008 will run SoC down to 4 or 5 bars most of the time whereas the 2006 and 2007 models appear to want to hold a 6 to 7 bar SoC. With a 4-5 bar SoC there is little room to allow assist without running into a Forced Charge scenario and this is an area you do not want to be in -- SAHM is extremely difficult if not impossible to hold at this level and low speed/RPM (1,100 RPM) 90 + mpg capability is also gone. Assist affinity is extremely hard if not impossible to minimize during acceleration but do try to limit assist from a stop with 0 to 12 mph in D at a maximum of 2-3 bars, down shift to S for 12-18 mph and then up shift back to D above 18 mph. Above 25 mph, assist affinity can be controlled with a very gentle right foot although even at highway speeds, assist will occasionally appear so focus is needed. Staying out of the pack will allow the best overall fuel economy and increase battery pack longevity.


    This one is a bit tricky as there is built in capability to shut down injectors while closing off the intake/exhaust valves to reduce pumping losses in a no-assist or regen glide. This is very useful but there is still the momentum killing parasitic drag of the entire drivetrain spinning over. Coming to a stop this is not a problem but if you have to re-engage at speeds above 20 mph there is a distinct 2-4 mph slow down as the belt catches the sheaves and the CVT engages. FAS’ing produces better results on those kinds of glides if you do not require regen later on to slow to a long light or sign.

    Another use for FAS is in Stop and Crawl that does not allow re-acceleration back above the 5 mph Autostop threshold -- this leaves the HCH-II idling away while stopped. Take manual control and FAS the HCH-II to a stop in this situation.

    Stop and Crawl – The daily grind

    The traffic scenario you do not want to visit with an HCH-II is an urban area stop and crawl. If you are forced to stop, the HCH-II will make you pay for the acceleration to speed dearly with the aFCD falling precipitously.

    Picking my wife up from work, after 3 miles of light suburban traffic and 17 miles of lightly trafficked, 45 and 55 mph construction zone Interstate, the HCH-II’s aFCD displayed 78.9 MPG. Heading back to the Interstate had us driving through a classic Suburban Chicago stop and crawl over 2 miles lasting more than 20 minutes. The type of stop and crawl encountered was typified by requiring three light cycles to get through a single traffic sign. The HCH-II’s aFCD fell from 78.9 to 70.9 mpg as I approached the Interstate on-ramp. The fuel economy calculations for that single 2-mile stretch after 19.9 miles had been accumulated revealed a dismal 34.4 MPG average while throwing the Hypermiling book at it. :(

    If you encounter this type of traffic condition on a daily basis, the HCH-II will unfortunately offer disappointing results.

    2008 HCH-II competitive comparisons

    The only vehicle we have driven to date that matches up well to this vehicle is the Prius-II.

    Ergonomics and comfort for the driver? HCH-II wins by a large margin due to the Prius’ short seat bottom cushion length, mostly non-adjustable seat height and non-telescopic wheel.

    A Prius’ FE cannot keep up at slow speed highway when using the SAHM - IGN 30-36 driving technique but in any slow down, stop and crawl, or stop light to stop light, a Prius will eat the HCH-II alive.

    If you drive an HCH-II into a daily stop and crawl, you will discover the frustration as described in the Stop and Crawl scenario above. The Prius can in some cases achieve upwards of 90 + mpg in these situations while the HCH-II is only capable of low to mid-30s with quite a bit of work.

    Above 60 mph, the comparison is a “pick em” if FE is what you are interested in.

    Overall, the Prius is more flexible under a larger variety of speed ranges and traffic conditions but where the HCH-II really runs well (47 to 60 mph) is where a Prius owner would have to think twice about going head to head.

    I suspect the Diesel equipped Jetta TDI would perform similarly in those speed ranges and walk away from the HCH-II above 60 mph but that will have to be discovered in a future review. From the European sourced 2007 Honda Civic - 2.2L iCDTi Turbo Diesel review, it is obvious that particular vehicle will outgun the HCH-II in any condition when driven appropriately.

    2008 Honda Civic Hybrid wants

    As reviewed, the Honda Civic Hybrid is a comfortable daily commuting fuel miser. What is frustrating however is the extreme assist affinity programming that Honda has encumbered the HCH-II with. With the accelerator pedal at idle, adding the slightest of pressures will induce assist even when none was needed or requested. This continuous draw from and refilling of the pack is paid back with lower fuel economy and in some cases, a performance killing moment when you may actually need full assist. Assist should be more reasonably induced only when the accelerator pedal is pushed through maybe one-third to one-half of its total travel rather than just barely touching it. Pack longevity would increase along with minimizing the issues spelled out in the HCH-II Battery Recalibration thread. This adjustment would make the vehicle easier to drive and possibly extend pack life. Who wouldn’t want that?

    EPS should be less sensitive at lower speeds (a personal want but not a necessity) and boot up much faster during a FAS. The actual under-steer to perceived over-steer once the EPS comes back online can be managed but it is not a pleasant experience.

    EV mode should either be limited to far fewer seconds or a clutch should be added between IMA and the Crankshaft so it can propel the vehicle without dragging a spinning motor along for the ride. It is great to see EV mode but the payback once forced regen has started is simply too harsh to make it worth using.

    Adjustable Lumbar is a desperate want for the comfort of anyone who drives the HCH-II over longer distances. I find the HCH-II more comfortable than the Prius-II overall but the built in lumbar accentuates a poor seat design for me. The left foot - dead pedal also needs to be angled back towards the floor by a good 20 degrees for more comfort.

    2008 Honda Civic Hybrid Conclusion

    The Honda Civic Hybrid is not only a worthy competitor to the Toyota Prius but in many cases better, surpassing it with superior ride, handling, ergonomics and safety. With the right slower speed highway or suburban thoroughfare commute, the HCH-II will make many an owner extremely happy. If you are driving an inner city stop light to stop light scenario or afternoon stop and crawls on the Interstate however, your overall fuel economy will never come close to the EPA ratings. It simply cannot compete with the Prius in these two scenerios.

    Finally, the following is an example of what makes a Honda a Honda. Who has not questioned the direction of sweep speed increase when turning the variable wiper speed control in any vehicle?

    Variable speed wiper control mimic shows detail like no other.​

    With a 73.15 mpg actual result over the week (using little more than SAHM) and considering the bulletproof reliability that Civics are known for, the Honda Civic Hybrid is one of the best fuel misers available in the US today.

    Visits to the Pump will be few and far between if you own a Honda Civic Hybrid. :)

    I want to thank Honda’s Press Fleet Coordinator, Lynn Seely for arranging the Honda Civic Hybrid for our review and in particular, Manuel Santos for his technical expertise and discovery of SAHM.

    Last edited: Aug 19, 2012
  2. Dream'R

    Dream'R Well-Known Member

    Thanks Wayne!! This should be required reading for anyone shopping for a Civic hybrid or debating between it and a Prius.

    I'm finding that I'm getting used to the lumbar support but completely agree that it should be adjustable. I've found in my Accord that the foam seating material needed to be broken-in so it's possible the Civic may be the same. The left foot rest is a separate plastic piece so it might be possible to alter it to suit different drivers' preferences.

    Since I've only had my HCH II for 3 months I'm still trying out the various techniques but I have been seeing steady improvement. As you reported, the steady state FE at modest highway speeds is fantastic. Without a ScanGuage it's difficult to see the SAHM in action, but by using the metric iFCD I can hold it at around 3-4 pips which tells me I must be getting close.


  3. shifty35

    shifty35 Well-Known Member

    If you find the handling on the HCH wanting, you have plenty of options. The easiest is probably to piece on the suspension components from the SI. There is also a huge range of aftermarket pieces available as well.

    Gorgeous car, I would love to have one myself. ;) The Prius simply met our driving profile a bit better.
  4. pcs0snq

    pcs0snq Well-Known Member

    Great review. Way better than I'm use to reading.

    Did Honda happen to slip out any details about their future Hybrids capability?
  5. ema

    ema Banned

    Great review. But if you're going to use it as a basis of comparison with prius, you'll be way bias.:D I guess, wayne, you should also do one for Prius:).

    About the car, yeah, it does look great! I'd love to have one as well.

    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 3, 2009
  6. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi Ema:

    ___Just got back from over 1,800 miles in the Prius-III about 20-minutes ago and we have a review coming up ;)

    ___On a 100% highway segemtn or drive, the HCH-I, -II and Jetta TDI (in that order) will eat the Prius-I, -II and -III alive. Not by much but they will topple the Prius'.

    ___Around town, the Prius-I and especially the -II and -III will SuperNova the HCH-I/II and TDI by a huge margin!!!

    ___Good Luck

  7. ema

    ema Banned

    Thanks! I'll watch out for that:)
  8. clayton4115

    clayton4115 Active Member

    as quoted from the review

    Stop and Crawl – The daily grind

    The traffic scenario you do not want to visit with an HCH-II is an urban area stop and crawl. If you are forced to stop, the HCH-II will make you pay for the acceleration to speed dearly with the aFCD falling precipitously...

    ... The type of stop and crawl encountered was typified by requiring three light cycles to get through a single traffic sign. The HCH-II’s aFCD fell from 78.9 to 70.9 mpg as I approached the Interstate on-ramp. The fuel economy calculations for that single 2-mile stretch after 19.9 miles had been accumulated revealed a dismal 34.4 MPG average while throwing the Hypermiling book at it.

    If you encounter this type of traffic condition on a daily basis, the HCH-II will unfortunately offer disappointing results.

    if one was to use a petrol civic, wouldnt the fuel consumption be even worse that the civic hybrid as mentioned above?

    it states over 19.9 miles the FE was a dismal 34.4MPG wouldnt it be safe to assume if you drove a petrol civic the FE would be like 20MPG? or would it not be dissimiliar?
  9. BlueHeaven

    BlueHeaven New Member

    Wanna say you Thanks Wayne.I was determined to purchase a pirus.But your review knocked me so well that I am now thinking about civic( keeping in mind the price and the advantages).The problem is only consisted with the safety features.Still 'm making plan for Honda.
  10. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi Clayton:

    ___Driving a std. Civic through a stop and crawl would have been worse just as driving a tractor trailer would have been worse. I was not comparing the HCH-II's FE against a std. Civic but was making references with regards to its capabilities in that kind of traffic.

    ___BlueHeaven, if you are a mostly a slower speed highway driver, the HCH-II will impress you as it does me everytime I get the chance to drive one. If you get caught in stop and crawls on a daily basis or do a lot of around town driving, the Prius would be the better choice.

    ___Good Luck

  11. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi All:

    I should have done this six months ago but given the recent rise in the number and severity of IMA NiMH recal events on HCH-II’s, I am pulling any future used car recommendation from this automobile. It provided great fuel economy as new but recal events create both a power and fuel efficiency deficit similar to driving a car with 1/4 of its capability removed due to poor pack longevity. While Honda has the ultimate responsibility to make this right, it is Sanyo’s NiMH batteries that are causing the nightmare for all concerned and it is too bad for all of our sakes :(

    I also reduced the HCH-II's reliability rating to a 1 due to this recurring problem :(

  12. Harold

    Harold Well-Known Member

    Hi Wayne: I drove my 2006 to Colville WA and return Sat. and managed 66 US mpg. each way. I have notice one or 2 recal per week . In-fact I had one on the return trip. That was my best trip and return to date. Hope the light comes on soon as I did purchase extended warranty. 7 years 120,000 kilometers. I am at 95,000 Kilometers now. I purchased the car Dec. last mth. of the first year so I have about 14 mths. and 25,000 Kil to go on the warranty. The odd recal I get is not even noticeable to my style of driving! H
  13. herm

    herm Well-Known Member

    Is it Sanyo's fault or Honda's implementation?
  14. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk 2010 Prius (CAN Touring) Staff Member

    We purchased our first Honda in '81, were loyal to that brand through 6 vehicles. Our last purchase was a second gen. '06 Civic Hybrid. Switched to Toyota Prius in 2010, with our Civic having increasingly frequent recals. It's still on the road, still not showing any error codes. All-in-all a very frustrating experience.

    I somehow doubt Honda is going to acknowledge the problems with their hybrid. Considering the relatively low number of vehicles involved, I think it's kinda sad: this will hurt their reputation, and drive customers to the competion.
  15. Harold

    Harold Well-Known Member

    I don't think it will drive me away as Honda makes one heck of a auto in my opinion! It will take more than the odd recal to drive me to another brand. H
  16. Right Lane Cruiser

    Right Lane Cruiser Penguin of Notagascar

    It really is the monitoring of the batteries that is largely to blame. Honda's battery management system is extremely crude, simplistic, and any other inadequate adjective you can think to apply to it. Yes, the pack would be easier to cool and a bit more energy dense if it was composed of prismatic rather than cylindrical cells, but that's not the main issue here.
  17. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk 2010 Prius (CAN Touring) Staff Member

    You're too kind, LOL. They're in my bad car manufacturer right now, will be for some time.

    I recollect talking to Honda Canada about missing underbody panels on the Canadian model. I mentioned that I had a shop manual, and her immediate response was "where did you get that?".

    I felt like I'd been caught with contraband, LOL. There's an infuriating disregard in that corporate structure for what keeps them in business.
  18. Harold

    Harold Well-Known Member

    Hi Mendel
    I believe the auto company,s are all similar. I still like the feel of a Honda. This is my second only. I wasn't crazy about my CRV really , but the Civic I like. H
  19. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk 2010 Prius (CAN Touring) Staff Member

    I think you're right: put Toyota in similar circumstances, would they behave differently? Maybe not.

    OTOH, maybe they were cagey enough to not drop themselves into such a predicament, designing a battery with more reserve.

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