Morimoto XB vs Hybrid: What is the Difference?
With the Bronco XB housing being teased, we felt it was important to discuss the differences between the different trim levels of the Morimoto LED headlight line up. Over the last few years, Morimoto has continually released headlights and taillights for numerous vehicles and many of those headlights come in different trims to accommodate different budgets.
Make no mistake, even the most inexpensive Morimoto headlight housing knocked our socks off. Their trim levels more so leave out major features like sequential signals and LED side markers as opposed to cutting quality corners to meet a price point. As a result, Morimoto has routinely pushed out quality products for enthusiasts of all types.
While exact performance figures vary from model to model, Morimoto’s headlight housings have consistently outperformed their stock headlight counterparts. This is in the measurement of the percent increase in brightness from the OEM to the aftermarket.
This is thanks to Morimoto’s LED projector lenses and the crisp, white color they generate. You also cannot ignore the sharp beam pattern that you will see on all XB housings. It has great width with a perfect gradient for the best visibility. The housings also utilize a stepped design to avoid giving oncoming drivers glare.
|Low Beam||High Beam|
Morimoto really knows how to make a quality beam pattern and you can tell. The width and coverage of the lights are second to none on the low beam. Switch over to the high beam and you are getting some incredible depth to your visibility, as well as a reasonable amount of height in its projection.
XB vs XB Hybrid
Beyond the actual beam patterns and light output, these housings will often come with sequential turn signals, amber or white daytime running lights (DRL), and LED turn signals and side markers. Their premium XB line will feature all these functions, on top of a start-up sequence to greet you when you get in the car.
Alternatively, their Hybrid line of headlights will skip out on a few of the premium features to help lower the cost of these headlights. You will not find LED turn signals in the Hybrid housings. Instead, you will be using the OEM incandescent bulb or an aftermarket bulb of your choosing. As a result, you will not have that sequential turn signal on the Hybrid housing.
|XB LED Sequential Turn Signal||XB Hybrid OEM Turn Signal|
The design of the headlights remains practically the same regardless of the housing. You will see the reflector turn signal on the Hybrid, but otherwise, Morimoto has a distinct design language that makes their headlights stand out. Prominent DRLs, a clean fit and finish, and the piano black finish to the headlights. However, Hybrid housings will sometimes feature a ‘graphite’ finish instead of the piano black.
|Graphite Finish of the Hybrid||Piano Black Finish of the XB|
With respect to the projectors, the XB headlight housings will typically use multiple projectors. All of them will be utilized as a low beam, and then two or more will be bi-LED projectors, allowing use as a high beam. Some XB housings use only one bi-LED projector, but more often than not they use multiple projectors.
The Hybrids will utilize either one or two projectors, with one being a low beam, and the other doubling up as the high beam. In terms of light output, the difference is clear but negligible in the grand scheme. Regardless of which housing you choose, both will be brighter than your stock headlights.
Which Should I Buy?
When deciding on Morimoto housing, your decision will come down to three key points. How much are you willing to spend? What features do you need/could do without? What style of headlight do you like?
These answers and their specifics will change based on the car or truck you are purchasing for as well as the year of the truck. While Morimoto makes a considerable range of headlights for different vehicle YMMs, their development process and standard for meeting/exceeding DOT requirements, means they do not offer as many headlights as cheap, marketplace brands do.
The premium XB LED housings will typically run you between $850 USD to about $2,000 USD. These housings are fully LED and offer all the bells and whistles we discussed before. Sometimes places like The Retrofit Source or Headlight Revolution may have closeout sales, but for the most part, you can expect to pay a fair amount for these.
Hybrid LED headlights will cost around $700 USD to $1,400 USD. The higher end of that range applies to the likes of the Ford Super Duty and other big trucks. The same goes for the premium XB housings, whereas the more expensive housings are for large pick-up trucks.
From the XB to the Hybrid, the major difference between the two is the omission of the LED sequential turn signal on the Hybrid model in favor of the OEM incandescent bulb. If you are really wanting that DRL-based sequential signal found on all the premium XB housing, and can afford to spend the cash, then go for it. You will not be disappointed.
All the fancy signals and the crazy-looking projector headlights may not be to your taste. We really enjoy the design of the Hybrid-R housing Morimoto made for the 2018-2020 Ford F-150 over the XB LED version. You may also be a fan of the graphite finish on a Hybrid model or the amber DRL on an XB housing.
There are a lot of options out there for fully LED headlight housings. But few are as well put together, street legal, put out consistently bright performance figures, and have such an easy installation process as Morimoto does.
Regardless of whether you prefer the premium XB housing or the wallet-friendly Hybrid housings, you will not be disappointed.
In the meantime, stick around the Better Automotive Lighting Blog for all the latest on Morimoto and other lighting brands. Also, check out our Facebook page we just started. Be sure to drop us a comment and leave a ‘Like’ to let us know how we are doing.