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4/17/00: Au Nguyen adds another Insight to the Bay area


Thanks for maintaining the web site. We used information from it in our search for an Insight. My wife found one at Lodi Honda last week. We drove 2 hours, test drove it, then she wrote a big check and drove it home. (It is primarily her car, but she's being shy about writing.)

We're curious, what kind of prices are people paying for these? We paid $22.5K for one with A/C. Burlingame wants $23.9K for theirs, and we had a deposit on one at Mistlin Honda in Modesto for $21.8K when Lodi called. These are all in the SF bay area. Enclosed is an interesting sales statistic, by way of Australia.

From http://www.drive.com.au/news/:   In the US, the response to Honda's petrol-electric Insight coupe has been   underwhelming. The maker has sold 397 since its launch December last year.   Despite this, Toyota plans to import the Prius, a Corolla-sized petrol-electric   sedan to the US later this year.

I was caught slightly off guard by a yellow light the other night and really haul in the brakes. I was underwhelmed. This is a light car; it should have done better, but the tires are limiting it.. 195/55 tires have the exact same diameter as the stock 165/65. I plan to try them at some point. A little more rolling resistance, a lot more grip, and a bit more selection.

[The stopping power of the Insight is definitely limited by the tires but also by the forward weight bias. I measured about 1100 lbs on the front and about 720 on the rear tires. The weight shifts forward and the ABS has to work hard to keep the rear tires from locking up with almost no weight on them. If you put wider tires on the Insight, they will throw more road grime up on the body behind the front wheels. The way the body tucks in aerodynamically behind the front wheels is like the opposite of a mud flap--InsightMan.]

So far we love the car. It goes round corners quite nicely. In the hills and curves of the Santa Cruz mountains it does fine, as long as I plan ahead and don't let the revs dip too low. (Just look at the big hill ahead and ignore the upshift light! Oh yeah, the downshift light comes on plenty!) The mechanical feel reminds me of all the little cars we always rent when we go to Europe (Ford Ka, Peugeot 205, Renault Megane.) Better mileage though. At 300 miles on the odometer, the lifetime mpg is 52 something.

BTW, how much does Honda get for the CD changer? Where does it mount? And the cargo net?

Au Nguyen
Santa Clara, CA

PS. We got a yellow one, though it looks more green. Kinda young kinda wow!

[Au, the CD changer can run over $700, depending on your dealer. The Cargo Net hooks at all 4 corners in the cargo area. I like the way it looks and it keeps stuff from rolling around back there. Have a great time with your Insight!--InsightMan.]