2010 New Honda Insight EX Navi Reviews and Specs

By :David Zenlea, Assistant Editor

This Honda Insight lists for about $5000 more than our similarly equipped Four Seasons Fit. The extra money nets you a continuously variable transmission rather than the Fit's 5-speed manual or automatic transmission, two inches more in length (the cars have identical width and track), nicer floor mats, and, oh yeah, Honda's Integrated Motor Assist Technology. The hybrid scores a whopping 12 mpg better in the city and 8 mpg better on the highway. And yet, it drives very similar to the Fit, not surprising since they share many suspension components. In fact, the most noticeable difference on the road is not due to the Insight's electric motor but rather to its transmission. The CVT eliminates the engine drone that afflicts the Fit at highway speeds. Around town though, it makes the Insight feel more sluggish, and doesn't offer the precision of Honda's excellent manual shifter.

The interior has excellent ergonomics, good fit, and cubbies galore. The seats are a little flat but fairly comfortable. Too bad about the cheap seat fabric, though. It feels especially bargain-basement on the center console where a soft-touch plastic would have been a better choice. The lighting around the digital speedometer is really cool. Not only does it look great, it's informative-running the spectrum between bright green to deep blue depending on how frugal your driving is. It's a great way of keeping the mpg-obsessed hybrid driver's eyes on the road rather than looking down at the gauges.

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