2010 Honda Insight EX: I Kind of Want One
June 24, 2010
There seems to be a lot of negativity around these parts towards the 2010 Honda Insight. It's not the most solid riding car and it's slow --slower than the Traverse-- and the fuel economy isn't as good as the Prius.
But you know what? If I were in the market for a new car tomorrow, the Honda Insight would be high on my list. Keep reading for the why....
Let's do this bullet-point style for simplicity on both my end, and when you inevitably disagree with whatever it is I'm saying.
1) Fuel economy. I drove the Insight for 4 days, put some 300 mostly-city miles on the car and averaged about 37 mpg. That's great! When I drive my car-- a Mazda 3-- I get about 18.
2) On my way into the office this morning my top speed was 41 mph. If I had a Vbox hooked up, you would have seen that I hit that speed in approximately 6.5-6.7 minutes. I walk to the grocery store, I take surface streets to work. For my life, I could deal with fewer horsepower than the Insight offers.
3) iPod and Nav are easy and let you use them while moving. In this day and age, that's an epic win.
4) It's not a Prius. Nothing against the Prius, except that I can't tolerate the switches/buttons/navigation system. It's a maddengly restrictive system that barely works while moving and is generally designed for people just landing on Earth stepping into a car for the first time. No thanks. Not for me. Plus the steering. And the big flat seats.
5) They don't make a Ford Fusion Hybrid wagon. I won't buy a sedan. Never have, never will. I need the space/flexibility of a hatch/wagon. Plus, hatches look better.
6) The steering wheel in the Insight is inarguably the second best steering wheel in the world. (Current M3, of course, being the best.) And it steers the car well. There is no accounting for being comfortable holding the steering wheel. That can make-or-break a car. If you don't like the one thing you HAVE to touch, what's the point?
7) It looks cool. Shut up. It does.
Now the negatives that I'd have to consider
-1) Air conditioning is WEAK.
-2) No sunroof.
-3) No truly keyless entry/ignition. It's a convenience I really value and will absolutely pay for on my next car.
And while those aren't the things I'd put weight on in a review, when I'm buying a car, those are the things I want. And those, above, are the things I want. And it's why, come December, I'll be trolling Honda lots alongside Ford (Fiesta?!) Mazda (2) and others looking for my next car.
Mike Magrath, Vehicle Testing Assitant @ 20,400 miles