Don't let the official EPA figures fool you, the car can routinely get more MPG - particularly if the weather cooperates. My commute is pretty much a 50/50 mix of hwy and city driving. 32 miles in all daily. I typically get slightly upwards of 45 MPG when it is below freezing. When in the 70s, I can hit close to 60 MPG. However, it should be known I drive the speed limit on the freeway - 55 mph. Drive the car 70 mph and the mileage drops into the mid 40s. The car has "interactive" features which help you learn to drive it efficiently regardless of the speed. I find the car to be very comfortable and functional as a city commuter. As long as you don't take any detours at the dragstrip you're fine. It does after all have a 1.3 L engine. Merging with traffic at highway speeds uphill can tax the motor quite a bit but with enough electrical assist it can usually do fine. The gasoline motor does generally shut off at stops as a hybrid should. Is eerily quiet at first. And, the brakes have a hybrid feel to them as well. They stop great but use a metered pressure on them. Put the family in the car and things get a little tight in the backseat - two teenagers and a younger child in a booster seat. That can make even a Grand Marquis tight. Hatch is convenient with easy access. One car magazine describes the car as alien in nature styling wise. The dashboard does look more sci-fi than hi-tech but ignore the looks and you'll find everything is right at your fingertips or direct view as it should be. It is a reach to the Navigation/audio unit sometimes but this is easily overlooked as I appreciate the direct integration for my Ipod. Bluetooth for the hands free phone on the Nav model is also a great convenience. Some folks complain about the bar in the middle of your rear window. I on the other hand appreciate it at night when it blocks glaring headlights. Just the right level. I have had no visibility issues. I have two other Hondas - Odyssey and a Civic Hybrid. This one seems to have the same desired family traits.
I absolutely love seeing 40 MPG on my dash, and love that I only have to fill up maybe every 2 weeks. I love the size of the car because I can fit pretty much anything I need to in it, and my dogs fit perfectly in the back. I love the cloth seats because there are no dead animals I have to sit on. I also love the digital MPH reader.
It's an efficient car and, with the hathback and laying down the seats, can carry a lot of stuff. The Integrated Motor Assist (IMA) System takes a little getting used to, but is kinda neat. It's comfortable for a small person and probably feasible for a mid-sized person; I would not recommend it to a tall person, though; there simply isn't enough leg room.