Honda Insight Forum banner

1 - 20 of 22 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
228 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
or Which Insight is for me?

Hello, my name is Sean and I’m a gas mileage fanatic! I have a 72 mile per day commute that is 70% 65+mph freeway and 30% stoplight-to-stoplight city traffic. I keep Excel files to track my mileage and try to drive to maximize my mpg. I had a 1998 Dodge Neon (5-spd) that averaged 35.2 over 64,800 miles and I am currently getting 28.7 on my 2002 Honda CR-V (2WD LX Auto) after 25,700 miles.

My son will probably be driving the CR-V starting this summer which is why I’m looking for something else for my daily commute. This led me here to the current MPG King! I’ll probably buy a used one but really can’t decide on the CVT or 5-spd.

Some of my driving habits and preferences are:
- On the freeway, I try to stay at 65-70mph and will only exceed that to pass (usually large trucks).
- My cars have A/C but that is more for the comfort of any passengers. By myself, which is most of the time, I rarely use it.
- Where possible, I’ll coast to stoplights and avoid aggressive acceleration.
- I like to run higher than recommended tire pressures and am not bothered by a “harsh” ride. (I keep the CR-V at about 38psi all around).
- I use synthetic motor oil (Amsoil) exclusively.
- One of the reasons I went to an automatic in the CR-V was heavy stop & go freeway traffic due to construction. That is all complete now and freeway speeds have never been better. Transmission choice now would probably be made more for better mileage and not convenience.

I’d like to reach and maintain 60mpg/lifetime and I’m willing to make the effort to learn the best mileage producing techniques. Is that goal possible with the CVT?

I look forward to all of your input, opinions, and suggestions.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
804 Posts
Sean,

If you can still get a 5-speed you would be much happier with one. You clearly want the best milage possible and from what I've read, the CVT Insight would be very challenging to maintain 60 mpg. As it is, I'm getting 55.6 mpg in Dallas driving. I could easily get 60 mpg if I stayed within the speed limit and in the right lane.

Automatic transmissions have come closer to manual tranmission efficency but are still not there. I am calling the CVT an automatic tranmission.

The other thing about the CVT Insight is it lacks a lean burn like the 5-speed Insight. Lean burn occurs basically when you are crusising under 65 mph with a "feather foot".

The stick shift is no problem at all for me.

It seems like you could get 60-65 mpg on your commutes if you kept it under 65 mph. Some trips would probably get 75 mpg.

My information my not be 100% correct, but anyone wanting the best possible milage would get the 5-speed Insight. Your message clearly indicates you seek the best milage.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
891 Posts
I agree; if you are truly interested in getting the highest mileage possible you should seek the 5spd. Its EPA-rated mpg is 20% greater than that of the CVT. Plus if you're at all like me you'll find the extra interactivity of the manual transmission pleasing.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
366 Posts
I can get 60 MPG if I drive at 62 MPH on straight, flat roads (like the one out here to work). But as soon as I get into town and have the stop and go stuff, it drops below that. Just my observation.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
56 Posts
Sean
I think you will be happy with either Insight, but I think you will be happer with the 5 speed.
One of the most important factors in the high MPG equation is driver attitude. It sounds like you have that. Another factor is the car. In the US market the 5 speed Insight is the best. In the right hands the Insight is capable of much greater achievements than the EPA gives it credit for. With the combined efforts of good driver attitude and the very capable Insight, I predict that in a short time you will be useing less than one gallon per day.
I drive 56 miles per day half city and half freeway. Over the last two years and 40000 miles including three vacation and several weekend trips, I have averaged 77 MPG. My personal best one tank MPG was 91, the worst was 59. There are other drivers in this group that do a lot better than that.
Good luck buy the 5 speed Louis
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
39 Posts
CVT mileage

From someone who owns a CVT, i agree with the others point of view in that the 5-speed does get better gas mileage. I think that for me the CVT is a better choice considering the traffic i have to deal with. Right now i am averaging 57.1 mpg, which is right on target for the CVT. I at worst got about 45 mpg and at best got 68.1 mpg!! I have taken trips and have averaged 55 mpg going in excess of the speed limit! I hear that the 5-speed is difficult to get. Mostly CVT's are available in the 2003 model.
Good Luck! :lol:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
366 Posts
The reason I have the CVT is because the dealer didn't have/ was going to get any 5 speeds. I wanted the 5 speed, but alas, no. I don't miss shifting in traffic though.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
804 Posts
Whichever version of the Insight you get, the only two accessories you might consider is an anti-theft system and a better stereo. It has just about everything else.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
228 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Wow, thanks for all of the great replies!

I almost ended my original post by asking “Would I regret not getting the 5-speed if better mileage was my goal?”. It sounds like the answer would be a resounding YES!

I have seen several for sale here in Southern California in the last month so I hope in another month or so when I really get serious I won’t have too much trouble finding a 5-speed. Ideally, I’d like one with 30,000 miles or less.

I’ve never been told that I had the right “attitude” for a particular type of car but when I tell people I’m looking at the Insight the usual response is, “That car seems perfect for you!”. I can’t wait to find one and join the Insight community.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,448 Posts
I personally would have to recommend finding a used one. The value of our cars has fallen quite significantly lately. You should be able to find a good deal. You might also try eBay as a possibility.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
228 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
Rick, I have been checking out just about every resource I can think of, including eBay. If this car wasn't in PA I'd be all over it: Citrus Yellow. The mileage is a little more than I'd like but I love that color!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,448 Posts
Make sure you run a carfax on them though. I've seen several Insight's that have been in accidents on eBay which were fixed. They almost never reveal this to the buyer. If you want me to run you one I'm signed up for unlimited ones right now until the 29th I think. There is a silver one in Glendale AZ (Where I live) and I ran a car fax on it and it revealed possibly 13,000 miles odometer fraud. Also, one give away for a probably wreck is they never replace the hood ornament when the hood is replaced. Look for stickers in the engine bay and vin tags. When they are in a wreck the hood will also be tweaked generally, and they don't always put little things back together properly. The citrus one looks good though. It would be a bit $$$ to get it shipped to phoenix though.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
173 Posts
D'OH!
I'm about 2 hours from Philadelphia....AND I told myself if I ever found a good deal on a SAG (space alien green) Insight that I'd jump on it. Alas, we are in the middle of searching for a new home - so I don't have that kind of "disposable income". :(
If anyone on this list gets this car, and you are driving westward with it - please let me know, maybe we can meet up along the way. I'm 2 hours west of Phila - about 15 minutes south of the PA Turnpike exit in Harrisburg, PA.

<whine> ohhhh....I want that car!</whine>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
243 Posts
I've checked the VIN of ebay #2419993328 (on experian) and it's clean. I doubt that I'll be bidding since I've always told myself (and anyone that asked my advice) that only fools buy a car with out seeing it in person first. But at that price and if no one else bids..

This http://www.autotrader.com/findacar/vdetail.jtmpl?car_id=119669390 Citrus Yellow model in NJ also has a clean VIN.

If you want to see VIN check of a car that's been in an accident...
http://www.autotrader.com/findacar/vdetail.jtmpl?car_id=133675156
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,448 Posts
Yes, never buy a car until you see it in person. However one thing I'm finding with eBay is you can actually get a lot out of even low res digital photo's. Before you fly out across country to buy a car take 15 minutes and really look hard at the pictures they provide. If they did the super sized pictures look at each of them really well. And not only the car, check background things as well. You might catch them in a lie.

Just a little fyi, I ran car fax's on all the Insight's on eBay currently and they are all clear. To be honest looking at this citrus one it looks good. Unlike the last one that was sold on there (remember that one with less than 10K miles we were talking about). Aside from a good interior shampooing it looks in good condition. Still, see before you buy, and if you can get the car under mercury vapor lights. This will show any paint mismatch if a car has had portions repainted.

Geez, I want a citrus insight. I dunno, if I got a major scratch on my car I might be very tempted to turn mine in to the only 2002 citrus Insight. PPG has the color in a base coat clear coat. You could make it a heck of a lot thicker than origonal too. But then again that would be a lot of work.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
243 Posts
Using the word "fool" was probably too harsh.
The less you know about what you are buying, the more risk you are taking. Obviously, one should pay less for something in unknown condition than something in "ideal" condition.

For example, the CYM (Citrus Yellow Metallic) insight on ebay does not have any pictures of the engine compartment. What recourse do you have if you win the car and find soot stains on the underside of the hood? How do you know the photos have not been retouched? (The VIN indicates it came from the factory without A/C but he says factory AC) The ebay feedback rating of the seller is also important.

The result is that if I could actually inspect the car inperson and take it for a test drive, I might pay up to $12K for a car like described the ebay listing. But having only the information of the ebay listing, I can see why no one has bid on the car at 8750 yet.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
125 Posts
gomarlins3 said:
The reason I have the CVT is because the dealer didn't have/ was going to get any 5 speeds. I wanted the 5 speed, but alas, no. I don't miss shifting in traffic though.
Looks like you were in the same boat as I was. Couldn't find any 5spd models here. Only CVT... And main reason I bit the bullet on a CVT was cause the dealership offered it for 16,400 out the door (13,400 after tax incentives [1K state/2K fed])! :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
173 Posts
No offense taken flunkysama - of course I would NEVER buy a car sight-unseen. This particular one just piqued my interest because it is CYM and easily within driving distance for me (~2 hours) so that I could see it "live and in person".
Here in Pennsyl-tucky I don't see many other Insights. Most of the ones I see are around the area where I work (Baltimore). I've seen one in my hometown - the older guy driving it looked at me as if I were insane when I beeped and waved frantically at him.

Straying off topic - I passed a HCH earlier this week on my way home - it's license plate read 50MPG. I also got the "who is this crazy fool?" look when I waved as I passed her. <sigh>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
CVT mileage

I have had a 2000 5-speed and a 2002 CVT. My lifetime on the 5 speed was 68 MPG at 30,000 miles. I now own a CVT with about 7000 miles. I bought this one used and it was at 48MPG when I purchased it. I have got the lifetime to 57. My last 5000 have been at 59.1 so I think I may be able to get it to about 60 but do the the non lean burn and the heavier weight of the CVT it will never get much higher but it is still pretty awesome and it is sulev which the 5 speed isn't. The 5 speed was more fun to drive but did deplete the batteries faster than the CVT.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
21 Posts
You can approach 60 mpg on the freeway in a CVT, even with a slight grade. However, you'll have a challenge maintaining that if you live in a hilly area! Hills really cut into your gas mileage (I was never aware how much till I got the Insight).

My experience with the CVT is that in a flat area, you easily exceed the listed MPG (especially on the freeway). Unfortunately, hills cut into it. On a flat freeway stretch my estimate is closer to 75 MPG, a slight rise and fall in elevation is 58-60 MPG. Flat city driving is 60 MPG or so, but hilly areas lower that to around 48 or so. :cry:

That's as long as you maintain a reasonable speed (65 MPH). I've also tried driving at 55, but did not see any improvement in MPG, and actually suffered a decline. I think the Insight may be aerodynamic enough that it does not hit its peak efficiency until 65+ MPH.

Of course, for the best MPG you should get a 5-speed. The only trouble is finding one. And, of course they're only ULEV, which means more particulate exhaust, but still less greenhouse gasses released due to higher fuel efficiency. On the whole, I'd say the greenhouse gasses are probably more of a concern.
 
1 - 20 of 22 Posts
Top