I Want Just One Cool Feature to Rave About - 2010 Honda Insight EX Long-Term Road Test
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2010 Honda Insight Long Term Road Test

2010 Honda Insight EX: I Want Just One Cool Feature to Rave About

September 28, 2009

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Wind generators in the Tehachapi Pass behind the 2010 Honda Insight. Photo by Andrew Reed.

If only I didn't know about the Toyota Prius.

If I had never driven a Prius I would think that the 2010 Honda Insight EX was a cutting edge, ultra high tech wonder. But the fact that Honda is only now introducing the Insight, after the redesigned Prius has been in the market since 2004, seems like a real misstep.

I drove the Insight about 500 miles last week and enjoyed it (please copy in and assume I agree with most of the comments from other posts about low power on mountain passes etc). But I came away thinking, "Give me just one cool, knockout feature to rave about and I'll remain a loyal Honda fan." And on top of this, the styling begs -- almost demands -- comparisons to the Prius.

I wanted to think that the lower price tag of the Insight was a good reason to buy it. Looking at sticker prices, the LX Insight could goes for $19,800 while the cheapest Prius is $22,000 -- a difference of $2,200. But the Prius is more powerful while delivering better fuel efficiency. (This added fuel efficiency actually accomplishes little. Using our True Fuel Consumption Calculator, it shows that over 12,000 miles, at $3.25 a gallon of gas, the savings would only be $171.) However, the Prius seems greener by driving at low speeds in all-electric model.

I'm not saying that the Insight isn't a very capable car. Around town, this gas sipper is quiet and efficient. For a single commuter it would do the job without complaint. But it comes off as an imitation of a break-through car. I guess you could say that Toyota still owns this territory.

Philip Reed, Edmunds Consumer Advice Editor @ 6592 miles


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