The Honda Insight is a 5-door hatchback with Honda's IMA hybrid system offering low-emission, fuel-efficient motoring in a practical, no-compromise package - at a lower price than any other hybrid on the market.
IMA stands for Integrated Motor Assist, which means that an electric motor sits alongside the petrol engine it supports and in front of the transmission.
This system has been used successfully in not only the Honda Insight, but also the Civic IMA, and its successor, the Civic Hybrid. Over the years the system has evolved and become smaller, more lightweight and cheaper to produce, and the latest version in the new Honda Insight is the most advanced IMA technology introduced by Honda to date.
The Insight is an affordable, efficient, frugal and low emission car, but there are styles and techniques of driving that can be employed to take even greater advantage of its hybrid technology. Called Eco-Assist, this driver coaching system developed for the Honda Insight will train drivers, helping them achieve the best possible fuel economy.
The fuel economy of the Honda Insight (combined) is 64.2mpg, while CO2 emissions are as low as 101g/km on SE models. ES models achieve 61.4mpg combined and 105g/km respectively.
The Honda Insight has been designed to accommodate five passengers, cleverly packaged within an aerodynamic shell. Within this sleek exterior, the Honda Insight still boasts headroom and tandem distances among the best in class, and rivaling many medium sized cars.
An inviting and airy interior has been created with clever designs that give an increased sense of space, and practicality.
Convex shapes have been used wherever possible to reduce mass of the interior plastics and create a sense of space, particularly where passengers sit. This moves away from the traditional interior design rules that usually dictate concave surfaces. In the Honda Insight for instance, the front dash is split into two distinct sections.
The lower section is convex and curves away from the driver and front seat passenger giving a greater sense of space and leg room while the upper, darker section surrounds the front occupants, the driver in particular, to create a cockpit-style cabin.
Special attention was paid to outward visibility. Forward visibility is excellent thanks to slim A-pillars, large front door window surfaces that do not require a separate pillared front quarter window, and the same cabin-forward design used for the latest Jazz. Equally, the integrated window in the boot enables good low, rearward visibility, allowing the driver to see a low post, or child behind the vehicle. In addition, retractable rear headrests and rear three quarter lights increase rearward visibility. A rear window wiper has also been fitted in response to customer feedback.Published 2 January 2009