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Old 12-19-2018, 04:20 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Anything I should know before getting a used 2010 Honda Insight EX?

I am about to get my first car and someone on reddit recommended me a honda insight and lead me to this website. I have already looked at one in my area and plan on maybe getting it next week. I have already test drove it and I'm very satisfied, but I am curious to know what to be prepared for if I get one. I've looked into the insurance but nothing else after that. It has the original battery and is under 70k miles. I hope this community can help me out! I don't really know much about cars so anything helps!
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Old 12-19-2018, 09:49 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Slow down a bit here and let someone from the Gen 2 Insight bunch answer. One of the Gen 2 Insights had problems with oil consumption which had to be corrected by the dealers. You want to make sure you aren't buying into that problem.

Get some answers on this before buying a Gen 2
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Old 12-19-2018, 10:57 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Although I don't personally own a Gen 2 Insight, my dad works at a Honda dealership, and the Gen 2 Insight was one of the options when my mom was looking for a new car (she ended up going with a Prius). The 2012 and 2013 years were notorious for oil consumption. If you do a quick check on carcomplaints.com you can see the other issues noted for the Gen 2 Insight. They're pretty reliable cars, with the exception of the oil burning issues of the 2012 and 2013. A 2010, 2011, or 2014 would be a good option. Hybrid battery pack management was greatly improved over the 1st generation.

If you're looking at buying a Gen 2 Insight, take a look at the Prius as well. The Prius has more storage space and gets better fuel economy in the city. Highway fuel economy is comparable.
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Old 12-19-2018, 10:48 PM   #4 (permalink)
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First some lingo: a battery would refer to the 12 volt one under the hood.
The pack of them in the back that assists is a part of the IMA system. So far, we have not had any replacements of that one reported. All the failures have seemed to be from accidents. The rear end either gets smashed so hard it breaks components or when it gets towed to the body shop they don't have enough sense to throw a tarp over the broken rear hatch window. Leaving electronics out in the rain is never a good idea.

So, I (we really, my wifes drives it) have a 2010 Insight EX-NAV, owned since new. Now has over 136,000 miles. Four software updates (only one official)
Brakes at 70k and again just now. Both times a sticking caliper caused one pad to wear fast. Otherwise the brakes could have lasted to 80-100k based on the amount of pad left on the others.

The only "repair" was for the turn signal stalk that wouldn't stay on or return after a turn. That was really a one off as I don't remember anyone else making that complaint.

Regular maintenance, based on the MID (multi information display) done whenever possible, my wife would often change the oil before the oil life would say 15% left. That is when it will start saying service due and show the codes for other things, like tire rotation, engine & cabin filters, transmission fluid changes.

Speaking of the transmission, it is the religion around here to change that fluid way more often than the MID will call for. Every other oil change is not overdoing it.

The only big expense on these things is spark plugs (there is a timing chain, no belt) The MID will set a code for that at around 105k. We and others here have waited without issue. I think ours finally got replaced at 120k. There are 8 of them and they are quite expensive, like $18. each. There is only one part number you are supposed to use. So be prepared for the expense and know you can put it off.

There is a drive belt with no set replacement interval, just observe and replace if it shows wear. I think the coolant is supposed to be replaced at 120k, also only use real Honda long life coolant. You don't need very much and it's not expensive.

Brake fluid gets replaced every three years regardless of miles. This is true of almost all vehicles these days. Much cheaper than an ABS controller.

When it needs tires, go for the size they started using in 2012, P185/60R13 instead of the 2010-2011 size P175/65R15 The wider tire make the Insight much more stable.

This hybrid, like all of them, needs to be operated regularly. If you will leave a car sitting for weeks while you use public transportation or travel a lot, consider a simpler vehicle.

I can confirm what was said above about the model years. Even a 2012 & 2013 with the experimental "low friction" piston rings is under a warranty extension and Honda will replace them for free. But you have to hassle with it.

Last edited by egads; 12-19-2018 at 10:54 PM.
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Old 12-20-2018, 02:52 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I've already looked into the prius' and I like how the insights look more lol. Although people say you get more bang for your buck with a 2010 prius compared to a 2010 insight, I still favor the honda more and thank you for the feedback!
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