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Discussion Starter #1
Haven't driven the Insight in 3 days. We woke up to 3 inches of very wet snow this morning, so I decided to clean off the car and try it out on the snow in the driveway to see how the tires would do on the slick stuff.

After driving it a few minutes, I brought it back to where I parked it in front of the garage and let it idle a bit.

Then I got the bright (?) idea to bring the revs up a little in neutral to see if it would throw a charge to the battery. I slowly brought the revs up. At around 2,000 RPM the charge indicator started to indicate charging. I held it there for about 2-3 min and the charge indicator went back to the middle position between charge and assist.

Did I really charge up the battery?
 

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Beats me. Sounds like an algebra question to me. :D Did you switch to the battery screen and see the battery fill up?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Nope, I didn't. I should have. Didn't think of it. :Hammer:
 

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Yes, you really did charge up the IMA battery by doing that.

It's a documented procedure for forcing the battery to charge: in 'park', take the engine revs up to 2400rpm and hold them there. The charge meter will show the IMA pack is charging up and so will the MID screen, if you switch it to the display with "battery and petrol pump". You may also hear a whirring noise from the boot, which is the IMA battery cooling fans kicking in.

I use this technique to fully charge the IMA battery pack if I know my car is going to be left un-driven for more than 4 or 5 days, as a high state of charge is much better for an dormant battery than a low state is. It may take up to 3 or 4 minutes for the IMA battery to show a full charge (i.e. all seven bars on the MID battery display), depending on the state of charge when you started.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
This is definitely good to know. I'm in the process of sticking a little bit rust inhibiting coating on some of the exposed metal underparts of the car in hopes of delaying the salt assault that it will face during our Maine Winter season. Some leading edges will get a slightly thicker "Rhino" coating like material.

Got some mud flaps for it to keep small rock pitting down a tad, too. The Insight is in the garage on stands... so maybe I'll start it and do a short generation stint for the battery while this current process continues. Even cleaned off the rust that was already covering the rear wheel contact point with the hub and put a light coat of Rustoleum on them. Now have to wait about a week for the paint to cure.

Was surprised to see so much rust had already developed on the face of the drum brake covers for a new car. That stuff can get slung around when it's really wet and can eventually stain alloy wheels.
 

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The Insight is in the garage on stands... so maybe I'll start it and do a short generation stint for the battery ...
If it's indoors, take care not to gas yourself with carbon monoxide and other nasties! Plenty of ventilation needed, and come away from the garage as soon as you're finished.

I've been under my 2012 i2 recently too, and it all looks pretty clean and tidy. UK spec cars have disc brakes front and rear, so I don't have the "rusty drums" to contend with...
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Would never attempt to off myself in garage... would leave garage doors, man door and window open for max ventilation... plus have an industrial type floor fan that I would run to make sure there's a good draft of fresh air.

Don't understand why UK and Europe as a whole get superior tech in your cars. Frustrating... it's not just disc brakes. It's a whole slew of options, including those 16 inch alloy wheels and fog lights to just mention a couple. So many other car brands do this. We get the short end of the straw on this, it seems.

How do you guys rate over there?!;)
 

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I have a UK-spec 2012 EX, which was the top-or-the-range i2 here.

I'm not sure what you get on lower-spec versions, or indeed on US-market cars - but mine has vehicle stability assist, integrated radio/CD/Bluetooth/USB music input, Europe-wide sat-nav, cruise control, full leather interior, automatic climate control, seven speed ‘paddle’ gear change, dusk-sensing headlights, rain sensing wipers, heated electric-folding mirrors, heated seats, rear parking sensors, voice control for many features (audio, sat nav, rear defrost, climate control, etc), those nice 16" alloys (with slightly wider tyres than the lower-spec versions) and more besides.

I'd read that many manufacturers produce down-graded versions for the US market, but I've never really understood why. Still, I'm really glad to have been able to buy what is arguably the best-spec'd i2 that Honda produced!

I think I'll hang on to it, at least until Honda start making something that is clearly much better....
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I have a UK-spec 2012 EX, which was the top-or-the-range i2 here.

I'm not sure what you get on lower-spec versions, or indeed on US-market cars - but mine has vehicle stability assist, integrated radio/CD/Bluetooth/USB music input, Europe-wide sat-nav, cruise control, full leather interior, automatic climate control, seven speed ‘paddle’ gear change, dusk-sensing headlights, rain sensing wipers, heated electric-folding mirrors, heated seats, rear parking sensors, voice control for many features (audio, sat nav, rear defrost, climate control, etc), those nice 16" alloys (with slightly wider tyres than the lower-spec versions) and more besides.

I'd read that many manufacturers produce down-graded versions for the US market, but I've never really understood why. Still, I'm really glad to have been able to buy what is arguably the best-spec'd i2 that Honda produced!

I think I'll hang on to it, at least until Honda start making something that is clearly much better....
I think Honda will have something more efficient soon, or at least they better have. More electric plug ins are being developed while there are more efficient cars offered for sale from most manufacturers each year. Don't think Honda will continue to fall behind. The hybrid Accord seems to be a step forward, especially for a larger car.

We get 3 levels of Insight, Base, LX and EX. The best equipped EX with Navigation has almost everything you mentioned, except the 16 inch wheels, full leather, the electric folding part of the mirrors, rain sensing wipers, rear disc brakes and more, I'm sure.

Guys with Stateside Navigation EXs on this site could probably expand on that. Not sure what features are included with the Navi option.

I basically bought my Insight to use mostly for Winter commuting, since my old Winter (non hybrid wagon (estate)) car has worn out, so didn't need the Navigation option, although the rear camera would have been nice!

What size tires do you have on your Insight?
 

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I think Honda will have something more efficient soon...
Maybe, though it's hard to justify spending an extra load of money to get out of a 60+mpg Honda into (say) a 70+ mpg one - at least on purely financial grounds.

What size tires do you have on your Insight?
185x55R16, on 6J rims for my EX model. UK base models had 175x65R15 on 5.5J rims.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
We've come a long way with efficiency in the last few years. As fuel prices rise, which they always do, better efficiency will be pretty important to us all. Look at the thermally improved Toyota 1.0 and 1.3 engines recently announced. Honda needs to keep up.

Hopefully they won't be too much more expensive than they already are, although every advance in technology has pushed the price of a vehicle higher. It's part of the package, I'm afraid.
 

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You got to admit Honda threw the Insight together with the old Jazz/Fit engine and a lower voltage ima system. I read comments from may prius owners how this car meets or exceeds the mpg and handles better.
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
I think the Second Gen Insight is a pretty good handling car. Have enjoyed driving it, so far. It's still a Honda, so the car is set up well. That's a given. One thing for sure, the suspension is a lot more compliant (softer?) than the Third Gen Prius we own.

If you compare our Insight to the Second Gen Prius, the Insight is just as efficient or maybe even a tad better, but the Third Gen Prius is still the most efficient Hybrid out there. Measured 54 to 56 mpg is not uncommon in the Summer. I haven't had the Insight through a Summer yet, so this is still up in the air.

We had a 2005 Second Gen Prius from new to about 148,000 miles, before we traded it in on our Third Gen. It got thoroughly used and was used on trips from Maine to Florida on a few occasions. Our Second Gen Prius suffered from linear vagueness. We saw significant improvement when we went from the OEM 185/65 15 tire to a 205/55 16 tire and wheel combination, but it still wasn't great.

Second Gen Prius interior ergonomics were really strange... at best... I'm trying to be nice here. I always told anyone that asked, that it felt like I was basically sitting on a chair in front of a desk that happened to have a steering wheel attached, instead of a car.

The Third Generation Prius took care of that linear vagueness and put some work into the interior. The off center guage cluster is still weird, but overall, the car is a very nice place to drive. It's actually a darned good road car for long trips, especially when compared to the Second Gen Prius.

I've only had my Insight for a little while, and only has about 1100+ miles on it so far. I'm still learning the best way to drive it to get max mpg out of the car. I like it a lot. It's way better than I expected, after reading all the old reviews on the car. That's another thing I have a problem with... the car media.

The car culture media has no clue how to drive or what to do or even write about a hybrid car. Every test article I've read, whether Prius or Insight, is awash with it's too slow, it's too expensive, it's not that efficient... and on and on.

The MPG reports many of these car "tests" come up with is usually pretty dismal. Level's that I've never been able to replicate. What I do understand for sure, is that after reading the nonsense on these cars, I come away with the feeling that they get the distinct impression that, by golly, this hybrid is definitely no Corvette or Le Mans race car contender. Darn.

They miss the point of these hybrid cars completely.
 

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Here in the USA we have an option for GPS but I don't believe there is a full leather package available or smart cruise control. We just bought our Insight a week ago, a brand new 2013 that had been on the lot for about 6 months and while it is only an EX trim, it has quite a few features like the USB/Aux input setup on the stereo, bluetooth, standard cruise control and paddle shifters. I'd imagine you guys pay quite a bit more for your Insight in the UK than in the USA so you are gonna get premium add-ons. With our $3000 trade and $3,500 markdown (because it was a 2013 model) we got our Insight for around $16,500 or around 9,700 Pounds Sterling. We were very happy. I thought I'd miss my sport utility vehicle until I took it to the petrol station for its final fill up before trading it with the dealer...nah, I'm happy with 45 miles per gallon in the Insight!
 

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take the engine revs up to 2400rpm and hold them there. ......I use this technique to fully charge the IMA battery pack if I know my car is going to be left un-driven for more than 4 or 5 days, as a high state of charge is much better for an dormant battery than a low state is.
My preferred method is to shift to a lower gear in the last mile to my home & bring RPM closer to 3000. I don't like the idea of revving the engine while sitting still (not air entering the hood).
 

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Discussion Starter #16
My preferred method is to shift to a lower gear in the last mile to my home & bring RPM closer to 3000. I don't like the idea of revving the engine while sitting still (not air entering the hood).
A safe way to do it is to put a fan in front of the car. I have one in the garage, heavy duty floor fan that puts out a good amount of air. Don't rev it to 23 or 24 hundred rpm until the engine warms up gently. Only done if the car has been sitting for longer than 4 or 5 days. Rear of the car is outside garage. Watch the battery monitor fill up... takes less than 5 minutes.

The other way is just to take it for a short drive and do what you do.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Here in the USA we have an option for GPS but I don't believe there is a full leather package available or smart cruise control. We just bought our Insight a week ago, a brand new 2013 that had been on the lot for about 6 months and while it is only an EX trim, it has quite a few features like the USB/Aux input setup on the stereo, bluetooth, standard cruise control and paddle shifters. I'd imagine you guys pay quite a bit more for your Insight in the UK than in the USA so you are gonna get premium add-ons. With our $3000 trade and $3,500 markdown (because it was a 2013 model) we got our Insight for around $16,500 or around 9,700 Pounds Sterling. We were very happy. I thought I'd miss my sport utility vehicle until I took it to the petrol station for its final fill up before trading it with the dealer...nah, I'm happy with 45 miles per gallon in the Insight!
There are some great deals on Insights. We purchased our new left over 2013 EX for about the same, minus the trade in. Great car with great features. Has exceeded all my expectations. 45 to 50 mpg is pretty easy to achieve with the car and drives very comfortably. So it's a real bargain all around.
 

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I believe the similar happens if you shift to sport mode.

I never worried about heat doing a rev charge as its normally done in 3-5 minutes.
 

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Well there was that guy who set his Fit on fire by revving while not moving. In just 5 minutes it burst into flames.

Car reviewers don't like hybrids but they love the diesel 1.2 or 1.4 engines. They claim these cars return the advertised MPG.

Some liked the new Ford 1.0 too (though some claimed it acted like a hybrid: low MPG).
 

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I don't rev charge ever.
I try to run the last half mile to home entirely in EV mode, so the battery is lowish.
When I leave the next morning I get moving immediately. The Insight recharges the battery on the move, heating up the engine more quickly than it would do otherwise.
I believe I use less fuel this way.
 
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