2010 Honda Insight Review

2010-honda-insight.jpgUnlike the previous version of the original Honda Insight, the totally redesigned 2010 model looks much less like a spaceship and a lot more like a state-of-the-art hybrid car. Geared mainly toward young, hip and price-conscious consumers, the Insight is both friendly on the environment and the pocketbook.

Although the 3rd generation Prius comes with a few more standard luxury features, the new Insight starts at a lower MSRP of only $19,800 with upgradeable models listed at just $23,100. In comparison the Prius has a starting MSRP of $22,000 and can climb north of $30,000 with all the goodies. However, the Insight does have a lower MPG rating of 40/43 compared to the Prius at 51/48 (and 2010 hybrid Fusion at about 41 miles per gallon). It should be noted that many of the road tests conducted by consumers got a better MPG rating than that of the EPA (although the same could be said for new hybrids from Toyota and Ford).

With a 1.3 liter VTEK four-cylinder engine and Honda’s Integrated Motor Assist System, the Insight offers a fairly smooth and quiet driving experience. Rated at 98 horsepower and 123 pounds-feet of torque, the Insight utilizes its’ electric engine when stopped and at speeds up to around 30 mph. The dashboard provides drivers with a high-tech Eco-assist system in which the background color of the speedometer turns from blue to green as mileage improves. In addition to the eco-assist, you can also utilize the Eco-guide which is a nifty little game that adds graphic tree leaves as you improve and keeps tabs on your daily driving and overall “lifetime” score.

The interior of the Insight begins with a dash forward design, mainly to give front passengers more room and comfort. The back seat can realistically seat three children or two adults, but complaints have been made about the lack of headroom for taller people, with most mentioning a problem if you are over 6 feet in height. Cargo space is 15.9 cubic feet, quite a bit larger than other several previous hybrids on the market; however, the back seats do not fold completely down, which can create a bit of a problem when transporting larger items. One nice feature, uncommon with other hybrids, is the Insights’ lift-up handles as opposed to the larger, more SUV like handles we’ve grown accustomed to on vehicles in this class. And with rear tinted windows and LED taillights, the Insight has some rather impressive design features for such an inexpensive green car.
The Insurance Institute For Highway Safety (IIHS) crash test ratings for the 2010 Insight were recently released with a good performance rating in front, side, and rear tests with optional electronic stability control. NHTSA rated the Insight a perfect 5 of 5 on the front driver impact, 4 out of 5 on the passenger side and 4 out of 5 on rollover, which gives it an overall safety rating of 4 out of 5 stars.

So, do you own one of these insightful rides? If so, add a comment below and tell us what you think!

Other 2010 Honda Insight Reviews and Resources:

Honda Insight versus Fit
Honda Insight versus Toyota Prius

USA Today


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