It’s an all-new design that is low, wide and has a powerful stance.
At first glance, the Honda Insight is an impressive looking hybrid car disguised as a premium compact sedan. With its sleek curves, gorgeous grill, and flowing roofline the Insight is not hard on the eyes. Pop the hood and you’ll find Honda’s 2-motor hybrid technology plus a power control unit. Simply put it means you have the best in class horsepower and torque with three drive modes. Slide into the driver’s seat and indulge in a sporty yet sophisticated interior.
Who This Car Is For
- Singles with college behind them and a solid career on the horizon
- Double income, no kids
- Empty nesters
- Small families that need an affordable car
What This Car Costs
- LX model includes Honda Sensing, 16′ alloy wheels, LED headlights, driving lights and taillights, auto high beam, 7″ screen, 5″ color audio, 6 speaker system, heated door mirrors, hands-free link. $22,830 + $895 delivery.
- EX includes smart entry, Honda LandWatch, remote engine start, 8″ display audio, 8-speaker system, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, SiruisXM/HD Radio, 60/40 split rear seat. $24,060 + $895 delivery.
- Touring includes navigation, moonroof, 17″ alloy wheels, LED fog lights, leather seating, leather steering wheel, HondaLink, 10-speaker premium audio, 8-way power driver seat, 4-way power passenger seat, heated front seats, dual zone auto climate, HomeLink remote, automatic wipers. $28,090 +$895 deliver
What Can You Buy for $23,000?
When comparing the Insight LX to two of the competing brands you’ll quickly find that $23,000 can buy a whole lot of car. Let’s compare the Insight to the Mazda3 Touring and the Jetta R-Line in regards to cost, horsepower (hp) and miles per gallon (mpg).
- Insight LX $22,830: Honda Sensing (see below), 151 HP and 52 MPG
- Mazda3 Touring $21,440: 184 HP, 30 MPG
- Jetta R-Line $22,995: 147 HP, 34 MPG
The Insight has:
- More power and torque than the Jetta
- More torque than the Mazda3
- Better fuel economy
- More standard safety and driver assistive features
What exactly is Honda Sensing on the Insight?
According to Honda, Honda Sensing is an intelligent suite of safety and driver assistive technologies designed to alert you to things you might miss when you are driving. Including:
- Collision Mitigating Braking System: helps slow down, brake the vehicle if it senses an imminent collision.
- Road Departure Mitigation System: takes action to keep you from leaving the road.
- Adaptive Cruise Control with low speed follow: maintains speed and distance between cars.
- Lane Keeping Assist System: if you sway from the center of the lane, the car gently guides you back to center.
- Traffic Sign Recognition: recognizes and notifies you of speed limits.
More Safety and Driver-Assistive Tech
- Auto high-beams: This is genius. It automatically dims your brights when it detects oncoming traffic.
- Driver awareness monitoring: Flashes a warning on the dashboard that you may want to stop for coffee if it notices significant changes in your driving.
- Multi-angle rearview camera. Allows you to see multiple angles of what is behind the car.
- Honda Lane Watch. Shows the left side of the car when you make left-hand turns. A great safety feature that shows anything that may be hiding out of sight.
It has Pep in its Step
I took the Insight on highways, country roads and city streets which gave me an opportunity to see what this hybrid could do. It did not disappoint when it came to accelerating, braking or regenerative braking. Entering the highway the Insight easily accelerated and merged with traffic which always feels a bit like a scene from Fast and the Furious, I breathe a bit easier once I’m in the flow of traffic.
On the curvy country road, the Insight gracefully entered and emerged from curves, held its own on hills and provided a comfortable ride.
On the downside, depending on the type of road we were on (pavement vs. cement vs asphalt), the engine noise provided a bit of a racket. Not enough to warrant discounting this car as a viable purchase option, but enough that is was noticeable. My solution is to turn up the music and drive. Its worked for me so far.
Why Another Hybrid Sedan?
Honda is taking a gamble by introducing a new hybrid sedan to a predominately SUV and truck market, but the company feels confident with their sedan game. Plus, the Insight is the first step in the company’s intention for electrified vehicles making up two-thirds of global auto sales by 2030.
With the continued uptick of gas prices, this might be a great time to have another hybrid sedan enter the market. It helps that the Insight is priced appropriately for their target market of younger singles or those with double incomes and no kids. The Insight is meant to be more than a commuter car and one that reflects life with college well behind and a career becoming firmly established.
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