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I'd like to know more about towing with my Insight. I would be interested in hauling some sort of very user-friendly camping gear, such as this http://www.tent-trailer.com/ Check out the video--even I could do that! It only weighs 255 lbs; add the driver and it's ~400, add a passenger we're ~550, plus minimal clothing, cooking gear, etc. Is this feasible? I currently have the ordinary tires the used car came with and am getting 51 mpg. With well-inflated Provenza tires but NOT doing things like driving in the breakdown lane or slip-streaming behind big rigs, what sort of mileage could I expect with two people?
 

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You would have the most fuel-efficient tow vehicle on four wheels. Of course, your mileage would vary... regardless of the light trailer weight, aero would suffer, stopping distances would lengthen, acceleration would be more leisurely, etc. etc. etc. What kind of hit you would take mileage-wise, who knows. :?

Attaching the hitch might be problematic, although others here have done it. There's not much to anchor the hitch back there, so normal hitches may need to be modified to find a more substantial attachment. Be sure and do a search, IIRC, others have done it and have been happy with their results... but the hitch has been used mostly as, say, a bike rack attachment. There are lightweight motorcycle trailers that would probably be perfect for the Insight... :D

Do keep us posted, but as long as you're a reasonable driver and pay attention to the Insights limitations, I can't imagine why you couldn't do this... ;)
 

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Is this feasible?
It certainly is, I do not have towing experience with the Insight but do have with very small engined cars.
Its all relative, if you lack a big engine just keep the weight and profile low and its amazing how well small cars will tow things.
Not car related but I have previously owned a tiny 550cc Honda pick up that had a demountable camper with cab over storage and couldn't tell much difference between it being on or off the tiny truck.

Your biggest problem will be to find a trailer hitch/tow bar for the insight ......keep the weight down here as well for they can be heavy..remember you will be towing a light wt trailer not a 35 footer.

DGate
 

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In the UK, some small cars are not approved for towing a trailer and you cannot buy an approved tow bar for those vehicles. This probably means you will be breaking some petty law if you make your own tow bar and are therefore not insured etc etc.

I fitted a tow bar to a Reliant three wheeler van in my youth, just like "Dell Boy" had in "Only fools and horses" (google it) Cars don't come any punier than that! It towed two MX bikes fine (in a mad, slow, get looked at by just about everybody sort of a way) :D

Check out your local towing laws to see if you are pushing your luck........

Rog
 

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I used a 1980 Honda Prelude that was 10 years old to haul a trailer that I filled with rocks repeatedly while build a retaining wall. I broke three sets of springs on the trailer!I also used the trailer to haul an ancient oak upright piano on back roads 150 mile from Montreal to where I'm now living, destroying a tire on the trailer. I sold the Prelude in working condition when it was 13 years old with 200,000 miles on it. It still had the original clutch and transmission.

I would never treat my beloved Insight like that, but I'm suggesting that a small lightweight trailer, driven with intelligence shouldn't be a problem. Just don't ever forget that it is there!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
"Don't ever forget that it is there!...Especially when reversing." Oh boy, ain't that the truth! I once forgot the front end was there...I doubt I'll ever forget anything about this crazy car after greeting a certain shrub a little too warmly! :shock: :oops: Backing up is still the only thing I don't like about it, though; I'm so in love.

Thanks everyone for your answers. At least I know it can be done if the right hitch can be attached. I'd still like to see a likely MPG; then I'll know whether I can travel past the neighboring states this summer. I would like to go to Newfoundland from western Massachusetts. I'd much prefer to meander through the Maritimes for a month or so, but flying and hotels may be so much cheaper than driving and camping that it just won't be feasible. I sure never thought a time would come when planes/hotels would cost less than cars/campgrounds, but apparently that time is now. :cry:
 

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here is a link to some pictures if you like.

http://yves.fungiart.com/pages/trailer.htm

I also saw a trailer and hitch last years ( 2007 ) Alt Wheels festival in Boston... that trailer was as big as the insight itself... I don't know if others have any pictures of it or not... I thought I took some but can't find them now...
 

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Is this the 1st Generation Insight with trailer you were referring to?
0819191538_HDR.jpg
 

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I'd like to know more about towing with my Insight. I would be interested in hauling some sort of very user-friendly camping gear, such as this www.tent-trailer.com Check out the video--even I could do that! It only weighs 255 lbs; add the driver and it's ~400, add a passenger we're ~550, plus minimal clothing, cooking gear, etc. Is this feasible? I currently have the ordinary tires the used car came with and am getting 51 mpg. With well-inflated Provenza tires but NOT doing things like driving in the breakdown lane or slip-streaming behind big rigs, what sort of mileage could I expect with two people?
This may help: Tow Hitch or Motorcycle Towing?

Also, I believe that Scott (KLR3CYL) has fabricated tow hitches for the G1. Besides being tailor-made by the Insight Whisperer it also tucks away out of sight when not in use.

I'd also ike ro add it's a lot like chewing gum in church. You can chew gum in church but it is not a good idea.
 

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I would not unless it was an ultralight aluminum motorcycle trailer.

Towing capacity is not about how well the engine can pull. It strains the drivetrain (don't even think about it with a CVT), clutch, chassis and suspension, brakes, and mechanical tire grip. The G1 insight has none of these to spare aside from chassis rigidity, but that matters little.

One of the biggest factors in towing capacity is having a heavy towing vehicle. That is a must for safety even if you beefed up the brakes, suspension, etc. You need it for stability and safety, period.
 

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Be sure to tell this to the guy who towed a teardrop trailer to Alaska, up the haul road to Prudhoe Bay, and back.

Sam
 

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I didn't say it wasn't possible. It's unsafe (and possibly illegal if one actually cares about that sort of thing).

My own experience and expertise aside, I have enough SAE certified master mechanics, truckers, and mechanical engineers in the family to know a thing or three. Do what you want, but know the risks and be aware so you can keep others safe too. Cheers.
 

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I towed what I estimate to be at least 1000lbs in my aero cargo trailer from Florida to Vermont, and averaged near 60mpg. This was around 5 years ago (wow, has it been that long?).

I'd say broadly speaking Hex is right. I was able to safely brake and steer with mine, but the center of gravity was very low, weight distribution was very careful, and the car itself had probably 600lbs of extra weight. I'm not a fan of pulling more than 6-800lbs behind mine, less if it's bulky or tall, but really you can tow anything you want if you keep the speed low enough. Sometimes that's just really, really slow.



I'd also like to point out the dates in this thread.
 

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That it can be done does not mean it is a good idea. Just like the old saw that you can chew gum in church but it's not a good idea. I'd be surprised if his insurer knows about this. And I would assume that the local constabulary would not be amused.

Take a clue from insurance companies: expose yourself to as little risk as possible.
 

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IIRR I think it was determined a long long time ago that it was a doctored picture.
 

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I want to see it driving down the road with that trailer attached before I believe it. The back of the Insight isn't down one inch.
Tongue weight can be controlled by weight distribution in the trailer. I think I saw a clip of it actually pulling the trailer. a classic case of chewing gum in church: you can do it but it's not a good idea.
 
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