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Honda Insight

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  • xcelxcel Posts: 1,025
    Hi Rfruth:

    ___There is a guy out of Washington state (an Internet friend of mine) that cleans the bottom of his Insight including waxing behind the rims every 3 or so weeks! His Insight is so clean you could eat off the bottom, top, side, and interior ;-) In actuality, he takes it to car shows almost weekly so that is why its so meticulously maintained.

    ___Good Luck

    ___Wayne R. Gerdes
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,684
    I don't blame the guy for choosing the Insight over the HCH. If he is a commuter that is looking for the best mileage the Insight is still KING of the Road. If you don't haul 3 or more people 20% of the time it is a waste to have a 5 passenger car that only gets 45-50 mpg. You can rent a bigger car on the occasion you need more room.
  • Insight (5-speed with /AC) is still on my short list. Does anyone have an specifics of the 2005 model. Any changes?

    YMMV,

    MidCow

    P.S.- Oh to give up power for mileage!
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,629
    The Insight is on your short list? What happened to the S2000? What happened to the HAH? What happened to that "need for speed"? Finding that 0-60 isn't everything, eh? ;-)
  • falcononefalconone Posts: 1,726
    I saw the crash test results (4 stars) front and side crashes. Problem is there is NO side airbag option. I wonder why?
  • Well side airbags were not very common when the insight was first introduced; the car is a small seller for Honda so they are not going to invest alot of money updating. Heck there are cars with side airbags that don't get a 4 star side rating.

    I think now that Honda has mainstreamed hybrid technology into the civic and soon the Accord, that they should look at turning insight platform into a replacement CRX; imagine what that car could do with the 1.6 and 1.7 liter engines honda has produced in the last few years.
  • rcc442rcc442 Posts: 56
    Well, looks like Honda has announced that Insight WILL be built for 2005. But, the problem is, they said there will be NO changes from the 2004 model.

    Problems with this:

    1. They will not be including any advances in hybrid technology (batteries, motors, wiring, etc.) that they've learned. So, should one buy a Civic or Accord hybrid instead? Are/Will they be significantly "better" because they are "newer" technology?

    2. I can't believe there was no room for any improvement. Can you say that "everything" in the 2004 is "perfect"? That there was nothing learned from warranty repairs, etc. that could have been corrected/adjusted for 2005?

    3. Would have been really nice to get a different color interior.... I really have a problem with that brown/tan they use! I can't understand why they didn't choose grey, which would have gone beautifully with the three available external colors.

    And, I can't find any statement as to how many they expect to build for 2005. Will they purposely keep the number small so that dealers won't need to discount? Or will there be plenty available once they start rolling in? I know at the end of the 2004 model year dealers here were discounting left-over Civic hybrids.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,629
    No changes for 2005 doesn't mean a car is perfect. It probably means that the sales volume doesn't justify changes, such as a new interior.
  • rcc442rcc442 Posts: 56
    Is it true that the Insight is not a "full hybrid"? In other words, when starting from a stop, it always starts the gas engine, correct? And, for most around-town driving, both the electric motor and gas engine run, correct?
    (If both of the above statements are true, then it is not a full hybrid, since a full hybrid will use only the electric motor for starting and most around-town driving, unless the batteries are low or if the driver demands more power.)

    However, this may be a moot point, since the Insight's fuel economy is so high as it is...
  • rcc442rcc442 Posts: 56
    I think the interior color was a design mistake to begin with. The exterior colors are fine; but a grey or charcoal interior color would have gone much better with all of them.
     
    Not asking for a "new" interior; just to manufacture all existing parts in a different color... don't even have to offer two colors!
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,629
    Any manufacturing changes cost money. When you consider how much money Honda makes per Insight plus the low sales volume, even minor changes can be hard to justify business-wise.
  • xcelxcel Posts: 1,025
    Hi All:

    ___The Insight will be available in 2005 w/ no changes. It will be available to those that order one as of this writing. If you order one through your Honda dealership, you can expect to pay close to or at MSRP. You might find a dealership to order one for a grand or so over Invoice if you place a non-refundable large percentage of MSRP down payment possibly? MSRP or anything close to that price for any Hybrid is ridiculous imho. 2004 MY Insight’s production was halted in early summer IIRC and the same can be expected for 2005 if history repeats itself.

    ___Given the Insight’s low volume and unprofitable status per vehicle built, Honda is not going to improve upon there current capabilities or attributes at this point in time. Maybe if gasoline climbed to $6.00/gallon or more and people finally got serious about fuel economy and purchased boatloads of Insight’s, Honda might invest in improvements or an Insight II. As it stands, Honda still has the highest fuel economy capable automobile in the Insight available anywhere including the POS Lupo available in Europe.

    ___As for the mild/full hybrid discussion. I don’t know of any automobile available to us anywhere that has hit > 95 mpg in the city or > 115 mpg out on the highway. With that, the Insight 5-speed is your best choice for maximum fuel economy available anywhere. An Insight also forces one to sacrifice in areas one may not wish too. Some of these sacrifices include performance, ride, and handling and are inherent sacrifices to all hybrids available to date in one form or another. All of this doesn’t really matter of course because if you want greater fuel economy; you can achieve it from the vehicle you currently drive … if you so desire. Unfortunately, the practical fuel economy limits of all other automobiles can not come close to the fuel economy capabilities of an Insight 5-speed no matter how much we all wish our present automobiles (Hybrid’s, Diesel’s, or std. ICE’s) fuel economy to improve …

    ___Good Luck

    ___Wayne R. Gerdes
    ___2000 Honda Insight 5-speed #203 - 92.5 lmpg
  • rcc442rcc442 Posts: 56
    Thanks for the "insight".... especially on the pricing aspects. It would be difficult to place a large and/or non-refunable deposit having never even sat in one, let alone test driving one. Wonder why they'd only order one for you under those circumstances... if they are in demand, would seem they'd leap at (any) opportunity to order one. Then if you back out, they've got another to sell.
     
    How much lower MPG do you think there would be for the CVT? Your mileage is MUCH above the EPA estimates. Wonder if the continuously-variable transmission model could also be expected to beat the estimates?
     
    Have you ever experienced problems with the gas engine restarting so often (sounds like it will cycle on and off at every stop in city driving... quite an exercise for a starter)?
  • rcc442,

    The problem is that they are not in demand.

    Honda keeps making them because they can have the bragging rights for the highest mpg vehicle. This gets a lot of free publicity for Honda.

    XCEL is a pretty phenomenal driver for getting high mileage. I don't think many people can come close to what he can do. However, I think you can reasonably expect to get the EPA estimates and maybe a little better if you follow guidelines for getting maximum mileage.

    YMMV,

    MidCow
  • From my experience(around 35k miles), you can expect around 56 mpg in mixed driving from the cvt. I am not sure how that relates to the epa estimates. the 5-speed has a few advantages (more control of auto-stop, lean burn, etc) that result in greater potential impact on mpg by driving style.

    As for the starter, the insight does not use a conventional starter (except as a backup). The electric motor part of the drivetrain is used to start the gas engine.
  • Wayne (Excel) ,

    You have a 5-speed Insight. How well does the Insight AC coll down on hot (above 90 degreess0 days?

    I had a 1995 Acura Integra GSR and it colled very slow, maybe 5 minutes before you had real cold air. After I put in a cold air intake ( clear up a lot of the space take up by the factory air filter) it cooled much faster, taking only 1 minute.

    YMMV,

    MidCow

    P.S.- If I could ever find a car dealer that had a 5-speed Insight in stock that I could test drive, I might buy one. I am just not sure if I could handle the perfomance. However, I have test driven a Jetta TDI 5-speed twice and was pleased with the performance.

    P.S.S. -Wayne thanks for all of your insight and comments on the Hybrid forums. I for one really appreciate your knowledge and your point of view. Most of the time I fully agree with you!
  • billy5billy5 Posts: 4
    Greetings; On both of my Insights the AC has cooled the interior down very quickly, even on 103 degree days. Concerning the earlier post: Yes, Wayne is probably the best at getting high mpg. But really, any driver who WANTS to can do nearly the same thing, by re-thinking things in terms of: high tire pressure, slowing down, highway driving only, momentum, keeping OFF the brake pedal, very gradual acceleration, lean burn, watching the instant mpg graph. Billy....
  • rfruthrfruth Posts: 630
    Every car I've ever owned or ridden in that had a properly functioning A/C had/has cold air within seconds. I must say my current '00 Civic hatch requires a higher fan setting than most to stay comfortable but it does the job & there's cold air from the get-go.


    Xcel is a master at squeezing everything possible from a gallon of gas but I agree anyone who wants better MPG from whatever they drive can do so with some simple steps http://www.drivecleanacrosstexas.org/ - Astros in 7 !
  • On my way home from work, I usually drive with the fast work flow far left lane. But guess what there was a silver Insight I bascially had trouble keeping up with :) I guess he was in the correct lane at the right time. He seemed to do okay at 70-80 mph!

    My question about the air conditioning was because I agree with Rob , almost all cars I have driven except for one : 1995 Acura Integra GSR, had more than adequate cooling.

    Billy, Thanks for your answers.

    YMMV,
    MidCow

    P.S- Just put new tires, brakes, radiator flush on my commuter car. So I guess it will last a little longer.
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