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Thought this could be a fun topic. Who knows maybe some Honda engineer will read some of these and take some action. I am sure for a profitable company keeping costs down is always an issue so perhaps indicate how much you would be willing to pay for any option you suggest. Here are a few to start things off

1. Acoustic noise cancellation technology for the Insight Cabin.
Seams possible considering the small area we would need to cover and the ample headroom for small speakers to be placed in the headliner. An extra 1000 if we could drop the level by 10+ db without adding extra weight.

2. Smart cruise control that could key off mpg vice speed. 500 cost would seam reasonable.

3. GPS Navigation. Get Garmin unit integrated into design (1000)

Have fun, RIck
 

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The obvious improvement I would recommend is for two seats to be added in the rear, so that the Insight becomes a 2+2. Obviously the car may have to be lengthened (by around 6" with some clever rearrangement of the electrics?) and Honda engineers may have to consider further methods of saving weight (such as losing the power steering (?) - unnecessary on a small, light car). I would be willing to pay an extra £2,000 for a four seater, great looking, 1 litre hybrid that is still capable of 70MPG+.

The downside of this suggestion is that my mother-in-law would reappear as a back seat driver!!! And yes, I realise that my suggestion could be easily realised if Honda made a (aluminium) Civic Hybrid with much improved MPG figures.
 

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Ohh I think a can of worms just got opened here.

Well, here's my complaints.

!. NOISE, I put noise insulation in my car, while tearing it apart there was no insulation anywhere. Now I know why the car was so loud to begin with. I don't know if they were that concerned about weight or the cost of it.

2. Yes, Cruise control with an option to hold either the speed or fcd.

3. A better stock audio system would have been welcomed for those two days before I replced mine. I guess I would have ripped the stock one out anyways reguardless. A navigation system like in the japanese version would be nice too.

4. Facroty HID's. The VV had em, I suppose the engineers lost that battle with the accountants. The german version has the auto leveling system on it already anyways. (I think)

5. Better air vent design. They loose all friction what so ever durring the summer so right when you want to point the cold air at you it just drops in a straight up position.

6. Larger beverage holders.

7. For the Arizona climate a better cooling system for the batteries would be nice. Perhaps heat sinks on them or even a water jacket would be nice.

8. Real carpet, not fuzzy cardboard. This would also help a lot in noise deadening.

9. An option for factory Leather.

10. Also, if those rear windows were longer like on the CRX, it woudl help on the blind spots.

11. A different fabric that would replace the grey fabric on the seats that would not fray.

12. LED tail lights and turn signals would seem appropriate for the car.

13. Side curtain airbags for piece of mind when an excursion side swipes you.

Ok, ok I'll stop.
 

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The Insight is a Very Complete Package

I added little to my silver 2000 5-speed Insight. The only two items that come to mind is the sound system and anti-theft.

I could be showing my age {blush} but the 1974 Civic would have had more than just two improvements. It just relects what Honda has done through the years to use nearly every fuel-saving technology available and add nice perks.

If I was the original owner of the 1974 Civic and had money to spend, the upgrades would include:

- a tachometer
- electronic ignition
- a vacuum gauge (Before there were on-board computers for MPG, you used this. As the vacuum increases, so does the milage)
- other gauges like oil, water, charge
- a sound system (just like the Insight, but more work)
- electric windows (standard on the Insight)
- electric door locks (standard on the Insight)
- window tint (don't need it on the Insight, even in Texas)
- keyless entry
- an engine heater (since I'm in Texas, people would think I'm crazy to get better milage buying one of these)


I bet someone could add to this list, but suffice to say, I have a harder time thinking of things to add these days. I used to be into sunroofs, but leaks were a problem.
 

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IMA improvements

I'm surprised nobody has suggested anything related to the hybrid technology, yet. Here is what I can think of in a heartbeat:

-manual IMA controls ("full assist", "full charge", "force idle-stop" buttons)
-electric vacuum and coolant pumps (so idle-stop can come on more often and stay on longer)
-allow grid-charging the battery
-increased battery capacity/motor power
-clutch between motor and engine to allow electric-only driving

Well, maybe the last one is asking a little much. But at least the first two or three could be done fairly easily with little added cost.
 

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I love the car pretty much the way it is. From my own experience, I'd just like the doors and door locks to get an engineering review to decrease the likelihood that someone else will lose their car to the Jaws of Life, as I did.

Since I wasn't there, I'm not sure what happened, but likely one of two things happened:

1. The rescue workers are right and a minor impact to the driver's side front wheel bent the frame, jamming the doors, and probably damaged the sensor so the electric lock system falsely sensed that a door was open and would not unlock even the hatchback, and untrained "professionals" would be inclined to not turn the hatchback key far enough to manually unlock the hatch, so they destroyed the car getting it open.

2. Nothing was jammed, but confused, untrained people couldn't figure out how to unlock the doors and they destroyed the car.

Maybe something else happened, but it's worth looking at the doors and the locks, keeping in mind that with electric windows and electric door locks, having people trapped in a car is a bad thing.

Oh, and maybe I'd like a small, streamlined trailer for those rare times when you need to haul more than will fit in the back, or to increase the weight hauled without increasing the weight on the suspension. It could look very cool, continuing the curves of the car. You might want to use a non-standard trailer hitch to discourage hooking up some other trailer of a less complementary design.
 

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Re: IMA improvements

Armin said:
I'm surprised nobody has suggested anything related to the hybrid technology, yet. Here is what I can think of in a heartbeat:

-manual IMA controls ("full assist", "full charge", "force idle-stop" buttons)
Yeah I'd second that. The question is how exactly would you make those controls optional? I guess buttons on the steering wheel, but they might scare some people away unfortunately. One thing I would change would be to actually make the IMA less aggressive. My 2002, which basically has the same ECU as they are putting in the recalls, just has too nasty of an assist which is not good for the pack durring the summer. Maybe some manual or automatic aggressiveness adjustment that changes with temperature.

If you think about it, we're the few who would really like this stuff. The majority of Insight owners I'd say would be just average drivers who just want simplicity so I doubt they would go for anything like that.
 

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- A slightly more powerful IMA system and batteries allowing the insight to drive on pure electric as the Prius does. That would shoot up the city consumption figures.

- A cruise control system, which (when activated) would suggest a range of speeds and efficiencies, allowing you to choose one or override the bunch.

- A heads-up display similar to that in the Pontiac Aztek (pukes at thought) but in blue or green light instead.

- A slightly modified stereo system: slightly better speakers and a 1/8" audio-in jack on the faceplate of the radio (to plug in the iPod :D )
 

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Re: IMA improvements

Rick said:
If you think about it, we're the few who would really like this stuff. The majority of Insight owners I'd say would be just average drivers who just want simplicity so I doubt they would go for anything like that.
I guess you're right. So aftermarket would be the only way to do this. But since we're talking going way deep into the cars computer systems, I doubt it will ever happen. Sad, especially since (aside from insider knowledge) it would be really easy to do!

But an man can dream, can't he?
 

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I would like to see the next-generation IMA of the Civic Hybrid and improvements to VTEC-E brought back over into the Insight, and either more batteries/capacity, or more space in the back.

The stock stereo is a miserable joke. Tapes? cmon.
 

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Nothing wrong with tapes...although I admit the technology is a bit dated. I can use the tape adapter to connect my iPod as it is, but I'd rather have a CD player and the 1/8" audio-in jack. A cable (of which I have about 10) is about $4 at radio shack.

Why not go all the way and add a Super Audio CD player? I love those...If you have a really good speaker system it actually does make a difference. Basically all the audio is left uncompressed so that it must be put on a DVD-style disc.

[off topic]

Speaking of which, has anyone got a copy of Final Cut Pro 4? it comes on 2 DVDs and takes up 15 GB of space for a full install. Never seen anything as big as that.

[/offtopic]

- I'd also like to see a repositioned battery pack: put it where the cargo bin is now and take out the floor of the hatch just behind the seats. That would give you a little extra room, as well as making the seats fully reclinable.

- A solar panel in the roof to charge the batteries at highway speeds on sunny days

- grid access to charge the batteries through a standard 3-prong plug and extension cord.
 

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Hell yeah. I mean, the application itself is only a 1GB install, but if you want to install LiveType and Soundtrack it's another 14GB of source files (fonts and sounds mostly....absolutely insane).

I guess that's apple's idea of an anti-piracy measure: No one can spare 2 DVDs/has a DVD burner/is willing to download 15Gb of files.
 

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Sorry...I was wondering whether someone would notice. Especially after reading that stuff about the bandwidthe exceeding limits..... :oops: i feel so sheepish.

Sorry.
 

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Macwarrior said:
- I'd also like to see a repositioned battery pack: put it where the cargo bin is now and take out the floor of the hatch just behind the seats. That would give you a little extra room, as well as making the seats fully reclinable.

- A solar panel in the roof to charge the batteries at highway speeds on sunny days

- grid access to charge the batteries through a standard 3-prong plug and extension cord.
Repositioning the batteries means that instead of using the spare tire as part of your intentional squish-zone for safety in rear impact, you'd be using the batteries. I'm not sure that's effective.

Since solar panels generate a max of about 17volts per panel for 12 volt systems, you'd need at least 10 panels wired in series to get a charging voltage for the 144 volt system; probably 12 would be preferable. The roof is not that big.

Charging off the grid would imply a power brick used near the car with really fat cables for the 144 volt connection to the brick, and a really secure weather seal for the plug so you don't toast yourself while washing the car at the local power-wash... :shock: Meanwhile, the car already charges itself just fine. This is probably the one feature that least needs fixing.
 

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Cruise Control

I'd love it if Honda brought out cruise control as an option; especially if they could make it so it could be installed on current insights.

I was going to wait and buy a 2004, just to get cc if it became an option. When I became concerned there may not be a 2004, I bought the 2003.
 

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Will M said:
Charging off the grid would imply a power brick used near the car with really fat cables for the 144 volt connection to the brick, and a really secure weather seal for the plug so you don't toast yourself while washing the car at the local power-wash... :shock: Meanwhile, the car already charges itself just fine. This is probably the one feature that least needs fixing.
Observing that there is a large number of EVs that solved this problem without toasting their drivers, I don't think it would be that hard. Since the battery is small (<1kWh) you would need fairly low power (around 100 Watts) for an effective overnight charge.

Of course, the bigger problem is that we would now need to modify the battery management to make use of this charge (by depleting the battery just in time when we get home)!
 
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