Thursday, September 26, 2013

Honda Insight review

I'm going to use Zipcar again today and I reserved a Honda Insight. I assumed they're not nearly as popular as the Prius because it's ugly. But apparently, it's not so great under the hood either.


MattC said...

I have a 2011 Insight that is my commuter car. While a agree with some points of the Autobytel review, I do disagree with some other points.

I bought the Insight this past year (slightly used with 11k on the odometer) out the door for less than $14k. I average between 48 to 53 mpg (real world/not the enthusiastic mileage readout on the car). I have even hit my best of 60mpg for a 2 day stretch.

My points of contention with the Autobytel review is that yes the Insight is a mild hybrid compared to the Prius. However, while you cannot start out of electric power alone, you can coast and even mildly accelerate on electric alone up to 25mph. Using the power/economy meter below the speedometer will really help in achieving well over the posted EPA mileage ratings.

I do agree that the car does wander past 70mph. This is usually fixed within the Insight community by upgrading to better tires. The stock tires are naturally geared for best mileage at the expense on tangible road feel. Many Insight owners (myself soon to be included in the ranks) upgrade to MINI stock alloys with slightly more aggressive rubber. The mpg penalty is minor and the benefits are a more Honda like proper handling car. (The stock MINI wheels has the same hub bore, bolt pattern, and offset dimensions as the Insight/Fit).

Would I buy a new Insight? No. Would I buy a slightly used Insight again for the cost of a base Corolla? Absolutely.

The Insight is a perfect commuter car for most longer distance commuters and it fits that role well.

Maxichamp said...

@MattC: Welcome back! We've missed you.

I think if you think of it as an inexpensive, comfortable commuter like a Toyota Echo/Tercel, then it's perfect.

I didn't take the time to figure out how to check fuel economy yesterday, so I have no idea what my mileage was. I drove maybe 80 miles and I think the fuel gauge barely moved, and I was stomping on the gas pedal whenever I wasn't stuck in stop and go traffic.

It has been a while since I drove the Mark 2 Prius, so it's hard for me to compare the two. My Insight (with 3,500 miles) noticeably shook every time the engine restarted from stop signs and red lights.