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Xsight Upgrade Anyone ???

4040 Views 12 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  IamIan
For some time I have been trolling the posts on this forum listening to solutions to increase mileage on our cars and/or mods to make them look cool. I’ve heard “take the mirrors off” (cool and increase mpg), “take the rear wiper off” (cool and increase mpg), “put a turbo on it” (cool and increase ICE hp and also mpg), “reduce aerodynamic drag” (increase mpg), “cover up the front grilles” (increase mpg in winter), “hot air mod” (increase mpg), “MIMA” (increase mpg), and the list goes on… Sounds like most of us believe we have a very fuel efficient and cool car already, but would like to make it even better. I love the insight, it’s amazing how the car can train you to drive and increase your mileage on other cars when you drive them just by following a few simple rules.

I believe Honda engineers did a wonderful job making the car work within the variables they had to deal with. However, for my car, the way I drive, and my commute, I can see how some modifications could increase the fuel efficiency of the car and also increase the cool factor.

All of us know how drafting an 18 wheeler increases fuel economy “greatly”. This of course is because we are reducing the drag by driving in the low pressure area behind the truck (truck cuts the air). Drafting can be scary at times due to inability to see objects in the road, truckers can get upset and so on…

I believe combining many of the proven mods (MIMA, Turbo, and Aerodynamics and more...) would increase mileage as well as cool factor. I work with race teams (NASCAR, Indy) and the Military (Aviation) and develop critical systems for them. I could not help but think we could (with some effort) develop a package for the Insight which would change the aerodynamics (reduce drag), increase horsepower (on demand), and increase cool factor (better looks) that would allow current Insight owners to upgrade to what I will call an Xsight.

To begin the quest I tried to combine many of the concepts discussed with my own ideas on how to mod the car and came up with the XSIGHT. I have an initial mockup of the exterior mods to the car which improve aerodynamics and looks.

I am looking for constructive input on the mods shown in the photo (see link) and listed below, and would like to also get an idea of the number of Insight owners that would like an Xsight upgrade if we were to produce a total package IE,

Exterior Mods:
Aerodynamic Front Cover
Improved side skirts
Improved wheel skirts
Improved undercarriage skirts
Aero front wipers
Rear wiper removal kit (Plug kit)
Mirror Removal Kit (LCD based camera replace)
Door handle removal kit (Open with FOB)

ICE Mods:
Turbo kit
Hot air induction system
Electric A/C Compressor

IME Mods:
MIMA system
Improved larger battery pack
Grid charging

I know the first question will be how much would the Xsight upgrade cost? At this point it is too early to tell given the range of variables. With quality input from the forum I believe the Xsight upgrade could become a reality in time, what do you think...
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I bet the mirror mod is about the best you can do for the aerodynamics. A lower air dam would help keep air out from under the car, which might help--but the car is already pretty low.

The wheels have to have some ability to cool the brakes, so you probably don't want to just cover them over completely. You need a radiator--the cooling system contributes a big fraction of the aerodynamic drag--so you can't just block off the openings in the front. The wiper is in an area where the flow is already turbulent, so taking it off probably accomplishes nothing.

To evaluate rolling resistance, push your car along the street by hand. It's obvious that most of the drag is coming from the tires: Better tires are key. I'm hoping that this latest round of concern about fuel economy will pull some new LRR tires out of the woodwork...
Not sure if this will help you at all, but I rationalize the electric windows by noting that Colin Chapman used them in his Lotus Elan, certainly one of the most weight-efficient cars ever made...

In fact, I should admit that to me, a big part of the attraction of the Insight is that it so closely resembles the Lotus Elite, THE supercar of 1960. Light weight, about 75 horsepower, top speed around 115 MPH, several class wins at Le Mans, driven all over Europe by Jim Clark...
1 - 2 of 13 Posts
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