Home    Feedback

3/6/00: Charlie Smith's tale of love (and purchase) at first Insight

[Insight puns are OK as long as I'm the one who thinks them up--InsightMan.]

Saturday, my wife (God bless her) spent an hour on the phone calling Honda dealers who for the most part didn't want to be troubled, but she found out about Doug at Dublin (CA) Honda who is another Insight fan.

She made an appointment for a test drive at 1pm Sunday. We drove from our home in San Francisco (about 45 min) and ate lunch at the local shopping mall. Just in time we arrived at the dealer and asked for Doug. He let us take the car but asked that we have it back in ten or he'd send out the Saint Bernards because another couple was coming to take the next test drive. [All hail Doug, a rare Honda salesman who not only knows the Insight, but works on Sunday!--InsightMan.]

We asked about the cost of the battery pack, since I put about 24,000 miles a year in on my commute to Silicon Valley, and could foresee the warranty slipping away quickly. We were pleased with the answer ($2K today going down to about $750 in four years). When I got in the car the battery charge was about one third. I asked for and got direction to some hills. My wife and I drove up into the hills where the car accelerated excellently (even though I'm heavy enough that, with the addition of my wife, we probably exceed the weight limit), and then back to the dealer. At this point the charge was up to about one half. [Hmmm, I had my dealer's parts guy check his Honda parts computer this evening and the price for the battery pack was not yet available--InsightMan.]

We were lucky we got there when we did, 'cause the couple that showed up for the test drive after ours found that the car had just been sold. They will have to wait for the next shipment in a couple of weeks.

Buy the time I drove the car home to SF, the lifetime gas mileage was up to about 60 mpg, and I drove it to work this morning and got about the same. I know I'll learn to do better, but it's nice to know the car delivers without a lot of special skill.

I feel great! I've got a new car that's sporty and I'm being "green." I love my year-old CRV (a Honda Civic wagon on stilts with better gas mileage), but felt naughty spending $8.50 a day for gas.

Thanks for your web page with all the info, it made the purchase decision a lot more straightforward.

Silicon Valley

[Charlie, I receive a lot of e-mail messages from people who wish I could tell them where they could find an Insight. Your wonderful wife knew what had to be done and did it! You're a lucky man to have such a wife AND enough parking space in San Francisco for both an Insight and a CRV--InsightMan.]