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well, I'm thinking about buying one, and religate the SUV for camping, and the sports car for weekends etc, so this will be a daily driver so i have a few questions.

first is that i will be buying used as i can't justify the expense of a new one, so is there anything particular to a hybrid to be leary of? manual or CVT? i was thinking manual. also, i saw an add for a used insight that someone had added a magnaflow muffler to and i was wondering if that can even be done, i checked the website and by my guess the only thing they could've put on there was a universal fit. the only reason i ask is cause it was listed at a lower price than the stock ones otherwise i try to stay away from modded stuff unless i know who did the mods, but overall i'm still kind of on the fence.
what kind of performance-type mods can i do? i think that if i can increase the fun-factor i am willing to sacrafice a few, read very few, MPG. i think it would be cool to have one that is faster than alot of other cars, as i know the standards can keep up, but still get good MPG. it seems like an interesting project. so i was wondering what is available as far as performance goes. i was thinking K&N air filter, maybe a cold air intake, maybe some exhaust, maybe some wheels/tires and sport springs, and lastly, if funds permit and the efficiency is still there, a turbo, even though i will have to custom make alot of stuff for the turbo i think it would be sweet! especially if i can do all and still achieve 50MPG or more. but now im getting ahead of myself, i should get the car first and see what is plausible, cost vs benifit etc.
sorry for the long post but i tend to get excited around new tech/cars/new projects. thanks for any and all information.
 

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Hello

When buying a used car, I always try to go with buying one owner from the original owner. Look on eBay. There are some good deals, and shipping isn't that much if you save big. A fair number of Insight owners are selling them now to buy the Civic Hybrid (they need a backseat). I think that such a person is the ideal person to buy from. And you might find one nearby.

Also, look for service records and one that is still in warranty if possible. Then you know they aren't getting rid of a problem. Run the carfax. I think you pay like $20 and can run all the VIN's you want for a month. Ask if it has been wrecked, and get the response in writing.

You get better mileage with a 5 speed, especially on the freeway. But it just depends. I got a CVT because I was tired of driving a 5 speed in traffic. CVT or 5 speed is just a matter of preference.

I think I'd stay away from any Insight that has been modified. I'm new to Insights, but I think performance modifications are probably antithetical to the Insight. It is not a performance car, and it has been precisely engineered. There may come a flood of posts saying I'm off on this, but I just can't see it.
 

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Ok, I kind of went through this whole thought process when I first got my Insight. Don't get ahead of yourself. Believe me, you can't out engineer the engineers. I put a K&N air filter in mine and as far as engine drive train stuff thats where it ends. Everything you touch is gonna sacrafice mileage. If you do a muffler and get rid of some of the back pressure (an ammount pre specified for optimum mileage from this car) your gonna take a mileage hit. Now a cool air intake you could do, but your not gonna get lean burn like you would with the stock air dam. The Insight needs warm air to see the mileage numbers, and espeically in cooler climates let alone cold ones. The worst idea if you want to conserve mileage is wheels and tires. Though they look cool, the Insight wheels are specially made ultra light weight and narrow so fit the narrow bridgestone potenza low rolling resistence tires on them. Simply changing the tire to a non low rolling resistence tire can cost up to 10mpg, and going with a wider wheel that needs a wider tire will really cost you mileage.

Let me recommend you to a few pictures, on http://www.honda-acura.net you'll have to register, but there is a very limited Insight forum. There is a guy who's nick is NUKE, he has the most god afuly riced out Insight I've seen. You'll find the pictures, they are unmistakable. His lifetime is less than 40mpg. He's got these big wheels and really wide tires that stick out past the fenders.

To answer your other questions, the manual is quite a bit better, unless you really prefer an automatic. The 5 speed gets about 15mpg better over the CVT. It also is naturally a bit faster. I guess I may be a bit biased on that though because I own a 5 speed, although I will admit in traffic there are times it gets annoying. As far as finding one I would say used, they loose a lot of value when they drive off the lot. Check eBay too.

Rick
 

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Rick...

Oh my God! That is the most horribly modified car I think I have ever seen. Never mind that the Insight is about the last car you'd want to modify...

Those wheels? What was he thinking? The hood? I'm simply amazed.

We need an IPS--Insight Protective Services. We could report that and have the car removed and placed with some owner with taste.


On a more serious note...I've heard that K&N filters are a mixed bag. They allow more air, but they also allow more dirt as a necessary result. More contamination to the engine. Is that a valid concern to you?
 
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stock it

I come from the Bottlehead Forum where modification of Tube circuits is the thing to do....do it stock first. New to Insight, great car. Last month I was driving a 4x4 4cyl Tacoma 80-85 mph over 22 mile oneway commute. this month I'm driving 47- 71 mph but getting 68-70 MPG, much less driving stress! best tweak for me is to drive bare foot, i'm still adjusting to the clutch, my head game is now to drive for MPG, why modify for decrease in MPG?
 

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Yeah, that guy Nuke went a little bit far. Poor car, and he put nitrous to it, should be interesting to see how long that lasts.

Anyway, I haven't heard about the K&N allowing more dirt, but a fellow Insighter I know had his K&N blow oil all over the inside of the filter housing. I'm thinking I'm gonna go back to the stock filter next time I get the hood up.

Thankyou Braxus for that link, I didn't realize those pictures were linked to that page where you didn't have to subscribe to the forums.

When it comes to me, yes I have done a few modifications to my car, but they are tasteful modifications. I'm leaving the drive train alone. So far I've done the whole stereo system (which is a must) which consisted of replacing the head unit with a kenwood one that I had in my previous vehicle, replacing the door speakers with Infinity's (that did require cutting out a little bit of plastic to make room for the magnets), and putting an Infinity Kappa Perfect 10 sub in the rear well. The next project is going to be along with Clayton Saffle which is to dynamat the whole car. Future possibilities is possibly leather seats when the origonal ones wear out, which might not be that long from now with that grey cloth material. Also, possibly HID head lights if I can come across a good enough deal on eBay or else where.


Now you mentioned wheels, if you wanted to have something unique why not just have the stock wheels chromed? It would be cheaper than a set of new wheels.
 

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I didn't think I was a Purist....... until I saw the pictures of that poor desecrated Insight :shock:

However, I must admit that my Insight, imported from Japan, appears to have a few options & equipment that no-one else appears to have (such as Sat Nav, TV, In dash CD Player, Rear Fog Light etc). If anyone is interested I can try and post some photos to the Forum at later point.
 

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Hmm must be the old time hotrodder in Me but I think the 2 tone isnt a bad idea but not crazy about the hood picture. and I must say if it is possable to get a replacement set of wheels I would possably consider it if they would be SAME size a production units.
As for the "juice"bottle well the professional mechanic in me cringes at thought of it in a Insight engine in fact I am against using nitrous on any engine I feel it is a lazy mans power/engine killing way to get HP, the poper way is through proper engine modification and balancing, which by the way MIZR seems to like high RPM's Honda has covered allready.
 

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If you build an an engine for nitrous it's ok, but geez, not the Insight engine. It's one of those know someone who saw it, but apparently there was a guy locally here in Phoenix who had an Insight that he put nitrous on. Well apparently he was out at the local drag strip and decided he was gonna go all out, hit it at 2000 rpm! Well for any of you who know how nitrous works thats a bad idea, you hit it at higher rpm's. Anyway, piston 3 let loose and came to rest half way out of the head. From what I understand it was a work of art the way it was sitting there in it's own sick way. I'd have loved to see a picture of that (anyone got it by chance?).
 

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If anyone is interested I can try and post some photos to the Forum at later point.
I'd love to see some pics. Esp the nav/tv system.
 

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ditto on the pics silver streaker. I'd love to see the extras. Also, Rick, when you install DynaMat please get detailed pictures. I just got the car and will be upgrading the sound system shortly and want to put dynamat extreme in the car to enhanced the sound. If I'm going to be only using 2 speakers and a 8" subwoofer (Super ShoeBox sub from Wayland) I minus well maximize their potential.
 

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My god. That airbrushed picture on the hood is one of the most godawful pieces of artwork I've seen in a long time, even without painting it on a hood.

Two-tone? Maybe. Not to the excess he's gone to.

The wheels aren't bad, but the tires are horrible. No one should ruin the car like that. And he wonders why he gets <39 MPG? God. I actually like the look of three ultra-wide spokes on a wheel, sort of like on the Lotus racing bicycles. Very cool. Not like his.

And the nitro is about the stupidest thing i've seen in a long time. I'd love to see what happens when he injects it...will the piston heads glow and melt, or will it simply explode? The Insight is _NOT_ a dragster!!

(neither is the civic for that matter. Nor is it a spaceship. So no more day-glo wiper vents and eerie blue running lights! And no exhaust system that makes the car sound like it has diarrhea!)

I agree...that poor Insight needs to be rehabilitated and given to a kinder owner.
 

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Nitrous

I don't know. I've been toying with the thought of nitrous in my mind. I love my car, want to take great care of it and all but wouldn't mind it being a little quicker. I didn't get the choice of manual like many of you did, I had the option of CVT or CVT. It's pretty peppy in Sport mode, but it's still sometimes not enough.

I was wondering, if done professionally, and using a lower grade nitrous just how bad it'd be for the motor. I wouldn't use a very strong nitrous, one that could damage the motor, but a lighter grade just to bump up the horsepower now and then, and not a tank nearly as big as his, just a small canister would do for those very rare occasional times you want to hit the button.
Would be nice to pull up to some hopped up civic with a teenager that thinks it's all that, would be nice for a Insight Hybrid to leave it in the dust.

So it's normally very fuel efficient with the hidden ability to smoke most cars out there in speed if need be. Hidden power, I like it. That's why I got the super shoebox sub for my car. I'll keep it down most of the time, but when push comes to shove, the system can get loud and quite powerful.

Anybody know of a very nice and safe way to add just a small canister of nitrous? I know it comes in different shots, ie 10 shot gives 10 hp, 90 shot gives 90 hp, etc. And I've heard that with the lower shots you can get away without getting custom headers which are expensive and ruin gas mileage.
 
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