125mpg and rising!

MK1 Insight UK Buyers Guide.

To contact us:

E-mail: peter(AT)solarvan.gotadsl.co.uk


My MSN is also my e-mail above, so you can

add me to your contacts if you wish to chat

about Honda Insight Mk1 Issues/advice.

You will need to slow down and relax your driving style to really save money with a MK1 Insight.  With an unmodified manual MK1 Insight and some practise you will manage  :-

60mpg at 80mph

70mpg at 70mph

80mpg at 60mph

90mpg at 50mph  

Basically mpg goes down as speed goes up almost in proportion. The Insight really likes dual carriageways or A roads at 56mph, if you stick with the lorries just under 60mph you will get upto 90mpg. That's what I do, another few minutes on your commute yes, but less stressed, safer and certainly better off! The constant speed and better road surface are a real help to mpg. A Prius will be nowhere in sight mpg wise struggling to make 50-60mpg!

In the summer on a reasonable A road commute you may see over 100mpg :) My best was 116 mpg over a 250 mile trip in a standard car! An Insight will def turn you into a nerdy fuel miser and you can laugh at everyone else in there 35mpg tin boxes.

You can buy a pretty decent Insight for about £4-7000.  I put together a bit of advice for prospective buyers below. Remember there are only 250 Insights in the UK!!!  They can fetch quite a premium.

E-Bay and Auto trader are the best for locating cars in UK. They are very rare so a search set up on the above often pays dividends.  You can also try the Honda UK pages they have an approved second hand car search system and that occasionally brings one up as well. I bought one of mine from a Honda dealer and the others via e-bay. There are no local forums in UK as far as I know.

The critical dates for UK Insights are, March 2001 onwards cars are tax free in Band A!, pre March 2001 they are not and cost £110 a year or so :( Try and buy a genuine UK supplied car, there are quite a few imports about. Only about 100 Insights in UK are genuine UK cars!

Genuine UK cars are all manuals, have headlight levellers, a single din radio facia, and a rear fog light in bumper.  Check the registration documents. Try and buy one with a full UK Honda service history if you can.  (This is less critical now as virtually no insights have any UK warranty left!)

The UK warranty situation was complicated. UK cars carried an 8 year, 80,000 mile warranty only if they are 2003 or newer, pre 2003 cars carry same warranty only if an extended Honda Care warranty is also in force year in year (about £250 a year) Check docs carefully.

(This is less critical now as virtually no insights have any UK warranty left!)

Insights are very reliable! (Touch Wood) The battery pack is the only issue, but work by myself and others on Insight central means that are not the Achilles heel some suspected. Pack failure we believe is down to imbalance rather than cell failure in the majority of cases, so we have several schemes to prevent/reduce this. This said packs can last from 50,000 to 200,000 miles anyway, depends on your driving style.  Check if the car you are looking at has had the pack replaced? Does it have any issues as far as the owner knows?  Learn about 'Recals' and IMA problems from IC.  I also recondition the IMA battery packs from about £500 exchange so itís not the end of the world.


Of course if you are up this way youíre a welcome to a ride in one of mine. They can go pretty fast for a 1L, and 2nd gear (70mph) is great for surprising a few cars ;) Top speed is 112mph.

Finally achieving maximum mpg is all about driving style and sympathy with the way the amazing car works. If you want to whizz about at 80mph you will get 70-80mpg. If you drive at 50-55mph you will get 90+mpg  I am happy to give you lessons on lean burn etc.

My car with the upgraded lithium battery can do 150mpg.  And it has not been below 110mpg since I did the upgrade 6months ago. There are a number of cheap tricks to improve the mpg in a standard car. 


These tips below together can add up to a 15mpg+ increase.


1) Radiator block, an instant 5-10mpg increase and really helps in winter.



2) Tyres pumped up to at least 45psi.  +5mpg  I run mine at 55psi!  (Must be the Oem ones though, Bridgestone B391 any others mean a 5mpg+ loss in mpg!) Check this when buying a car, get one with the correct tyres fitted!!


3) Use the brake light max regen trick as well to improve battery charge. +1-2mpg. 


4) Maximise lean burn +5-10mpg especially on a decent journey.

Don't know what I'm talking about? No problem pop down/up for a chat or browse www.Insightcentral.net for more than you will ever need to know.