Honda Insight test drive by Daragh O Tuama

Honda Insight

In theory the Honda Insight is a very good car which has tapped into essential technology. Their IMA technology (Integrated Motor Assist), which was first introduced with the Honda Civic Hybrid, is very forward thinking. What this is is an electric motor which which gives added power to the car when needed, thus saving on fuel as extra jolts of power needed come directly from this motor.

Yes it’s fuel efficient. Yes it’s green. Yes it’s spacious. Yes it’ll get you about 4.4l/100km. Yes it’s got a 5 star Ncap rating. And yes it’s good in theory.

One of the things I really liked about the Honda Civic Hybrid was its interior. It was nice. It had a great dash board, and the Insight’s dash is no different. Also, if you’re green minded, part of the odometer changes colour depending on your fuel efficiency. Funnily enough, it goes green if you’re efficient and blue if you’re not!

There is a button to the left of the dash as well called ECON (Effective CONtrol), which helps to keep your driving even more fuel efficient.

The rest of the interior feels cheap and hollow. It would be great if they focused a little

more on making space more comfortable. I mean the problem isn’t that they are lacking space. There’s plenty of it, it’s just used wrong. The car kind of feels like a 90’s Honda – everything is thin, grey and untight looking.

To look at, this car has been quite a good conversation point. I would describe it as retro-future (if there’s such a thing). Its shape looks like what somebody in the 80’s thought a car would look like in the 21st century. It’s kind of unique in this way, but its looks aren’t for me – even though its shape is probably brilliantly aerodynamic. This however is one of the few cars that I’ve test driven were randomers actually approached me and commented about it. About 70% of those who approached me and of those who I asked thought it was kind of cool looking. Well, whatever flicks your switch!

Now for the stats:

0-100km = 12.5 seconds – don’t be shocked – this is a hybrid!

Engine size: 1.3litres

It burns about 101gco2/km putting it in the A band in road tax.

Price: Starting from €22,378

In this day and age all motor companies are looking at fuel efficiency and green machines. Although the Insight isn’t as green as a Prius or as an electric vehicle, if you’re into saving the environment and want to save a bit of money at the petrol pumps, then this car is worth a look. If what I just said about the environment went in one ear and out the other….then this car isn’t for you.

Me, well, of course I’d like to save money at the petrol pumps, who wouldn’t? And you know, a greener world is great and that. But eh the Insight – it’s not for me.

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