2010 Honda Insight: Best Fuel Economy So Far
February 05, 2010
The EPA's estimates for a 2010 Honda Insight are 40 mpg city, 43 mpg highway and 41 mpg combined. After about 12,000 miles with our long-termer, we're averaging 38.7 mpg. Knowing that driving style has a huge impact on fuel economy, I decided to see how good of fuel economy I could get this week.
My goal was to improve on the best tank so far, which was 43.9 mpg from last July. I wasn't planning on doing any extreme hyper-miling techniques or anything, but I was going to drive conservatively and take advantage of the regenerative brakes as much as possible. For the latter, I've noticed by watching the charge/assist gauge for the Insight's electric motor that just slightly applying pressure to the Insight's brake pedal brings up full electric charging for the hybrid battery pack without getting into the actual brakes. It's like our Mini E's regenerative braking, just not as strong.
So for about 100 miles of city driving, I tried to be as gentle as possible on the brake pedal to maximize recharging and minimize the use of the brakes. This also meant I was paying more attention to traffic lights ahead; if one was definitely going to be red, there was no point on rushing up to it and then subsequently have to jam on the brakes (which is what most other motorists do, I noticed.)
On top of the city driving, I did about 150 miles of highway driving. This was on a mostly flat and straight section of highway that had a 70 mph speed limit. I kept to the 70 mph speed limit and used cruise control as much as possible.
The final result for the 252 miles of driving was the best logged economy so far: 45.8 mpg. I used our standard fuel pump recording procedure to determine this, but I also watched the Insight's in-car fuel economy gauge to see how the Insight responded to city and highway driving. For the city driving, my average was about 42 mpg. The highway driving had about a 49 mpg average.
Brent Romans, Senior Automotive Editor