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Discussion Starter #1
So I'll start by saying I'm an engineer and tend to over think everything. My car buying process is long and complicated and usually requires me writing some app to analyze all the data. So at this point, I'm looking to get a car early next year (at least before my 45 b-day in May). I currently drive a Ford Focus Titanium model which I've learned to drive very fuel efficient, but still maxing at around 35 mpg combined. I want to get a car in the 45+ mpg range...and so far the contenders are Ford Focus Hybrid, hyundai Ioniq, and the Honda Insight. For my research I've been collecting data about each car and charting them. But there are a couple things I can't seem to find and not getting clear answers from the dealers, so I figured I'd ask people who actually own one. Also worth noting I've read the manual to all three cars I'm interested in.

First question - does the 2019 EX model have any blind spot detection on the left mirror? I know the right mirror has a camera that gets activate when you signal right...but look to see how it covers the left. I drive about 60 miles a day and most of that is on highway. Going into the left lanes is something I usually have to do to get past slow trucks. So does the car have any kind of sensor to alert me when someone is in my left blind spot?

Second question - again on the 2019 EX model, is there any power plugs in the rear for the backseat passengers? I Ford Focus has a 12v in the front and back currently. It's nice because the Kids can plug in their devices and keep quite during long rides. I can't seem to find any dealer picture that shows the right region, and dealers have been very iffy on the answer. Also manual doesn't mention anything, only the front 12v and two USB ports.

Third question - this will be my first hybrid. Do the batteries lose their charge after a certain amount of time? Is this something I should plan to replace at some point like 100k miles? Looking to see maintenance cost vs normal gas cars. My boss keeps trying to get me to go full electric to reduce maintaince (he has a Telsa 3), but not making that much yet.

Fourth question - speaking of battery, anyone has any issues with the car battery (12v one) being hidden between the driver and passenger in the front? Looking at the manual it seems there is leads that you can access by popping the hood in case you need to jump start it, but since I've had to replace the battery on my Ford Focus around twice now, would the cost be a lot higher due to it's odd placement?

Fifth question - More of a clarification really...but can someone explain the deceleration paddles a bit? From best I can gather it has something to do with how much braking the car will do. The manual just really stated its function which seems like they could have just added to a control on the wheel and not fancy paddles. Also looked on YouTube for this...but couldn't find any video explaining it.

Sixth question - How does the EV work in cold weather? I fly drones for a search and rescue group and I'm aware that batteries in cold weather don't last as well as in warm weather. I live in PA and winters can get a little nasty some years....so was wondering if that would reduce MPG quite a bit. Also, how is the car overall in bad weather?

Seventh - when are the new 2020 insights expected? Would it be cheaper for me to wait for them to come out and get a 2019 or would the price on the 2019 not be reduced that much compared to now?

Sorry for asking so much...but I can't seem to find this information online. I don't want to go a dealer yet since I don't really plan on buying one until next year. So thanks in advance for the answers.
 

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First question - does the 2019 ex model have any blind spot detection on the left mirror?
Unfortunately, no blind spot monitor is available as a feature on any of the 2019 trim levels. To change toward left lanes, it's the traditional "look over your shoulder and at mirrors" approach. The Japanese version of the Insight (also produced in US/Indiana) has blind spot monitoring, and we're hopeful that it gets added to US version as a standard or optional feature.

Second question - again on the 2019 ex model, is there any power plugs in the rear for the backseat passengers?
No power plugs in the rear for backseat passengers. The primary outlets (one 12V and 2 USB) are in the front area of the car. There are options to add 12V and USB ports after buying. Check out these threads for context: additional 12V; additional USB.

Third question - Do the batteries lose their charge after a certain amount of time? Is this something i should plan to replace at some point like 100k miles?
As with 'regular' batteries, capacity loss occurs with time and cycled use of the high voltage battery. This loss occurs more rapidly in warmer climates, and more slowly in cooler climates. The standard warranty for the high voltage battery is 8 yrs/100k, but in certain states the battery warranty is extended to 10 yrs/150k (see this thread). Average projected battery life is ~100k miles, and estimated cost is $2-4k (see this thread).

Fourth question - speaking of battery, anyone has any issues with the car battery (12v one) being hidden between the driver and passenger in the front?
No issues so far with the 12V battery. It's covered by the standard warranty (3 yr/36k), and having the battery placed in the interior will likely protect it from the elements (and hopefully last even longer). Note that it's an AGM (vs lead acid) battery, and that since there's no alternator, the it gets recharged from the high voltage battery.

Fifth question - more of a clarification really...but can someone explain the deceleration paddles a bit? From best i can gather it has something to do with how much braking the car will do.
This is a frequent question, and responses are woven through different posts. Check out these threads for some preliminary info:
https://www.gen3insight.com/forum/258-honda-insight-features-equipment/2628-paddles-vs-brakes.html
https://www.gen3insight.com/forum/7-2019-honda-insight-general-discussion/772-looking-knowledge-re-paddles.html
https://www.gen3insight.com/forum/7-2019-honda-insight-general-discussion/2072-buying-ex-insight-week-need-tips.html

Sixth question - how does the ev work in cold weather?
The gas (ICE/internal combustion) engine runs more in cold weather to keep the cabin warm and also to maintain the high voltage battery charge. The average difference from cold to warm weather mpg is a 20-25% difference.

Seventh - when are the new 2020 insights expected? Would it be cheaper for me to wait for them to come out and get a 2019 or would the price on the 2019 not be reduced that much compared to now?
The 2019 Insight launched in July 2018 (some of our members were able to buy in the last week of June 2018). The 2020 Insight is expected to show up soon, as Honda typically anniversaries their timing... but the window can vary by up to 3 months. Nothing 'official' on the 2020 is posted yet by Honda, likely to help clear 2019 inventory. Since only minor changes are expected, Honda may delay the release date depending on the amount of unsold 2019 national inventory. (This happened with the Clarity in 2018.) Here are a couple threads on the topic of 2020s:
https://www.gen3insight.com/forum/7-2019-honda-insight-general-discussion/1976-buy-now-wait-2020-model.html
https://www.gen3insight.com/forum/7-2019-honda-insight-general-discussion/2384-2020-insights.html
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Amazing info and appreciate the speediness of the response! This will be my first hybrid so want to do as much research as possible.

I'm leaning towards the EX model at this time because it has the bigger truck, better milage then touring, and has the main features I want. It would be a downgrade in some respects from my current car, but I'm willing to part with leather seats and sunroof.

Thanks again for all the extra reading! Will so a lot of reading this week before heading to the dealer.
 

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Sure thing! The Insight was my first hybrid as well, plus I'm no stranger to over-thinking things and analyzing data to the nth degree. Good luck in your search!
 

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Two additional thoughts... give consideration to the type of terrain and driving conditions (city/highway) as you look toward buying a hybrid.

"Rolling" terrain is ideal for hybrids, since it helps with the cycle of using/rebuilding the high voltage battery. There is a limit to the amount of energy the high voltage battery can store, so your fuel efficiency will be limited if your commute involves long and steep hills.

The Insight is very efficient in city driving (<45-50 mph), but you'll notice the car's highway rating is less than its city rating. On highways and/or higher speeds, the gas engine starts to directly drive the wheels, so your fuel efficiency will decline.
 

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So I'll start by saying I'm an engineer and tend to over think everything. My car buying process is long and complicated and usually requires me writing some app to analyze all the data. So at this point, I'm looking to get a car early next year (at least before my 45 b-day in May). I currently drive a Ford Focus Titanium model which I've learned to drive very fuel efficient, but still maxing at around 35 mpg combined. I want to get a car in the 45+ mpg range...and so far the contenders are Ford Focus Hybrid, hyundai Ioniq, and the Honda Insight. For my research I've been collecting data about each car and charting them. But there are a couple things I can't seem to find and not getting clear answers from the dealers, so I figured I'd ask people who actually own one. Also worth noting I've read the manual to all three cars I'm interested in.

First question - does the 2019 EX model have any blind spot detection on the left mirror? I know the right mirror has a camera that gets activate when you signal right...but look to see how it covers the left. I drive about 60 miles a day and most of that is on highway. Going into the left lanes is something I usually have to do to get past slow trucks. So does the car have any kind of sensor to alert me when someone is in my left blind spot?

Second question - again on the 2019 EX model, is there any power plugs in the rear for the backseat passengers? I Ford Focus has a 12v in the front and back currently. It's nice because the Kids can plug in their devices and keep quite during long rides. I can't seem to find any dealer picture that shows the right region, and dealers have been very iffy on the answer. Also manual doesn't mention anything, only the front 12v and two USB ports.

Third question - this will be my first hybrid. Do the batteries lose their charge after a certain amount of time? Is this something I should plan to replace at some point like 100k miles? Looking to see maintenance cost vs normal gas cars. My boss keeps trying to get me to go full electric to reduce maintaince (he has a Telsa 3), but not making that much yet.

Fourth question - speaking of battery, anyone has any issues with the car battery (12v one) being hidden between the driver and passenger in the front? Looking at the manual it seems there is leads that you can access by popping the hood in case you need to jump start it, but since I've had to replace the battery on my Ford Focus around twice now, would the cost be a lot higher due to it's odd placement?

Fifth question - More of a clarification really...but can someone explain the deceleration paddles a bit? From best I can gather it has something to do with how much braking the car will do. The manual just really stated its function which seems like they could have just added to a control on the wheel and not fancy paddles. Also looked on YouTube for this...but couldn't find any video explaining it.

Sixth question - How does the EV work in cold weather? I fly drones for a search and rescue group and I'm aware that batteries in cold weather don't last as well as in warm weather. I live in PA and winters can get a little nasty some years....so was wondering if that would reduce MPG quite a bit. Also, how is the car overall in bad weather?

Seventh - when are the new 2020 insights expected? Would it be cheaper for me to wait for them to come out and get a 2019 or would the price on the 2019 not be reduced that much compared to now?

Sorry for asking so much...but I can't seem to find this information online. I don't want to go a dealer yet since I don't really plan on buying one until next year. So thanks in advance for the answers.
  1. The Insight doesn't have a blind spot alert system on either the left or right side mirrors. We have a thread here somewhere which teach you how to setup the side mirrors correctly to mitigate blindspots. On a sidenote, the Japanese Insight does have blind spot alerts, but we're not sure if the 2020 model year will implement this feature here.
  2. The Insight doesn't have usb ports or 12v outlet for rear passengers.
  3. The battery has a warranty for 8 years/100,000 miles and 10 years/150,000 miles in certain states(PA is one of them).
  4. The 12v battery is a AGM type battery and it does cost more to replace (https://www.hondafactoryparts.com/oem-parts/honda-bat-agm-46b24l-31500txm100m). From my research, it seems better than the regular lead acid battery.
  5. The deceleration paddle slows your car down a little without needing to use the brake pedal. It's useful in certain situations like making an upcoming turn where you don't have to come to a complete stop, while having your foot on the gas pedal, so you can accelerate immediately after completing the turn.
  6. My first winter with the Insight didn't seem as bad as what I normally get up here in Boston but I averaged 40-42mpg per tank. Couldn't test the Insight much in blizzard or heavy snow conditions due to lack of winter storms this year. You won't benefit much from a hybrid in the winter if you do short trips where the car doesn't get to warm up enough. If you do long trips you will still benefit but not as much compared to warmer months.
  7. Your guess is as good as ours on when to expect the 2020 model year. The Honda Insight isn't a high volume car so dealerships will only order as many as they can sell within a reasonable time. You could get a better deal by waiting but that only applies if dealerships in your area still have plenty in stock.
Welcome to the forum, feel free to post more questions! :smile:
 

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@insightfully pretty much nailed everything. The only piece I'd add (question 4) is that the expected life of the AGM battery is well over that of a normal battery. It should last ~8 years from what I've read.

As for MPG numbers, there's a great crowd-sourcing site for that - Fuelly - Track and Compare your MPG

You can drill down to a particular car model and review other's results over time. Currently, there are 165 Gen3 Insights registered on the site. Quite a few of us share our information within our signatures on this Gen3Insight forum.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for all the info guys! I actually test drove one today and got lots more answers to my questions. I'm actually a huge fuelly fan and have been looking at real world MPG ratings on there. My Ford Focus is there and currently averaging 30 mpg...with the best of 35.

My conservative estimation I figure I can save about 1200 a year on fuel. If I avoid the toll roads altogether (and really maximize the fuel effiency) to work I can also save another 1500....so it would be really good to go hybrid.

So now just need to convince wife....but hoping to be one of you guys by end of the month.
 

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Thanks for all the info guys! I actually test drove one today and got lots more answers to my questions. I'm actually a huge fuelly fan and have been looking at real world MPG ratings on there. My Ford Focus is there and currently averaging 30 mpg...with the best of 35.

My conservative estimation I figure I can save about 1200 a year on fuel. If I avoid the toll roads altogether (and really maximize the fuel effiency) to work I can also save another 1500....so it would be really good to go hybrid.

So now just need to convince wife....but hoping to be one of you guys by end of the month.
Ford knew Focus, Fiesta models had flawed transmission, sold them anyway [The carmaker says that it's not a safety problem if your car slips into neutral on the highway]
^I just read about this investigative report a few days ago on the Focus and Fiesta. Not sure if you're experiencing this problem with your Focus but I think the report might interest you.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Well aware....transmission has been replaced on it twice by ford for free. It never shifted smoothly from 1 to 2 gear either, unless you in sports mode. Another reason I'm looking to replace it.

Ford knew Focus, Fiesta models had flawed transmission, sold them anyway [The carmaker says that it's not a safety problem if your car slips into neutral on the highway]
^I just read about this investigative report a few days ago on the Focus and Fiesta. Not sure if you're experiencing this problem with your Focus but I think the report might interest you.
 

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Great questions and great responses by insightfully (incredibly thorough), Andrews, and hasarad, as always!

Your thoroughness and exploration before buying mirrors that of several of us, so you are in good company.

I would strongly recommend your waiting a couple of months. You'll then see what changes the 2020 model has introduced and be able to decide whether to get a 2019 at a discount vs. a 2020. It could happen in just a month, too.

Unless your car is on the fritz, there's no reason to "rush" into this. Personally, I'd love to see the combination of the current right side Lane Watch, along with the addition of a Blind Spot Monitor. If they bring over other features of the Japanese model, it would include an overhead bin for sunglasses, a feature I still miss from our old Honda! The thread on the Japanese model goes over other goodies that *could* be brought here in a new model.

In case you haven't realized it, we're incredibly enthusiastic about the car! I find it so much fun to drive that even going on errands are now a treat -- gives me an excuse to drive the Insight!

______________________________

Oh, just as a footnote to all this, we ended up getting an EX, which from our perspective was the sweet spot in the line-up, although one sacrifices the heated front seats! But gains MPG and avoids leather seats if that's something that matters to you (but did to us). With the EX, you also won't have a moon roof, but that means it has more headroom than the Touring, and that extra room was something I wanted -- and needed!
 

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Hasarad, I looked at Fuelly again after seeing your post. I've been there before. I must have missed some trick because there is no filter for year or generation of the Insight.

Honda Insight MPG - Actual MPG from 986 Honda Insight owners

Here's what I did. It provides Trim, so I selected EX. Does that make it a 2019 Insight? Or, did one of the earlier version also have that trim? That gave me 222. Then I noticed Body Type and applied Sedan. That reduced to only 89.

It's left me confused. Fuelly really should add a year filter! (Unless I've missed it, which is possible...)

_______________

spider, I also see where you mentioned transmission having been replaced twice. If it's still working OK and you can nurse it (and not drive it as much) for the next month or two, you should have more options and an actual choice of 2019 vs. 2020!
 

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Hasarad, I looked at Fuelly again after seeing your post. I've been there before. I must have missed some trick because there is no filter for year or generation of the Insight.

Honda Insight MPG - Actual MPG from 986 Honda Insight owners

Here's what I did. It provides Trim, so I selected EX. Does that make it a 2019 Insight? Or, did one of the earlier version also have that trim? That gave me 222. Then I noticed Body Type and applied Sedan. That reduced to only 89.

It's left me confused. Fuelly really should add a year filter! (Unless I've missed it, which is possible...)

_______________

spider, I also see where you mentioned transmission having been replaced twice. If it's still working OK and you can nurse it (and not drive it as much) for the next month or two, you should have more options and an actual choice of 2019 vs. 2020!
The filter is there. Once you get to the Insight page, don't bother with trim levels. Look a little down the page and you'll see the years. Here is a direct link to the 2019 Insights: 2019 Honda Insight MPG - Actual MPG from 165 2019 Honda Insight owners

There is no method to sort the registered cars. Fuelly admins made a good case that, if they allowed this, it would be ripe for corruption. Cars are ordered from the most recent fill-up or note.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Nice to know Jame Bond drives a hybrid....so much better then the other gas gussling cars he drove before.

So at this point I'm going to wait until the end of the month at least and see what finance terms they can get me. If the get in the range I'm happy with - I'll go for it. If not, I'll wait and save up for a bigger down payment.

Also, the blindspot issue isn't a huge deal since you can buy blind spot mirrors that attach to you mirrors to help with that...it's about 20 dollars so no problem there. The issue of no power in the back seats is not too hard either. I can use the front 12 volt and plug in a usb charger that has two ports and run six or ten feet cables to the back for the kids. For the times when I'm going on a search and rescue (I belong to Great Philadelphia Search and Rescue.), I can use the 12 volt for the radio. So problems are easily solvable.

Great questions and great responses by insightfully (incredibly thorough), Andrews, and hasarad, as always!

Your thoroughness and exploration before buying mirrors that of several of us, so you are in good company.

I would strongly recommend your waiting a couple of months. You'll then see what changes the 2020 model has introduced and be able to decide whether to get a 2019 at a discount vs. a 2020. It could happen in just a month, too.

Unless your car is on the fritz, there's no reason to "rush" into this. Personally, I'd love to see the combination of the current right side Lane Watch, along with the addition of a Blind Spot Monitor. If they bring over other features of the Japanese model, it would include an overhead bin for sunglasses, a feature I still miss from our old Honda! The thread on the Japanese model goes over other goodies that *could* be brought here in a new model.

In case you haven't realized it, we're incredibly enthusiastic about the car! I find it so much fun to drive that even going on errands are now a treat -- gives me an excuse to drive the Insight!

______________________________

Oh, just as a footnote to all this, we ended up getting an EX, which from our perspective was the sweet spot in the line-up, although one sacrifices the heated front seats! But gains MPG and avoids leather seats if that's something that matters to you (but did to us). With the EX, you also won't have a moon roof, but that means it has more headroom than the Touring, and that extra room was something I wanted -- and needed!
 

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Hasarad, thanks for the link! I looked again and the main site and the year listing must have been added since I last visited there. It's so obvious I can't believe I would have missed it.

In any case. I entered the EX trim level and ended up with 95 vehicles. Limited sample for sure, but at least it's real world results. Although, strangely it reports tossing out 54 outliers ~2%, but that must be for the entire set. As a data analyst, they should have outlier removal as a choice, not the default. And, they should define what an out,User is right there, too!

Oddly, it shows 5+ pages below the graphs, but advancing by page doesn't change the graphs.

Still, it's good to zero in on 2019 results so quickly. Thanks for the link!
 

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Hasarad, thanks for the link! I looked again and the main site and the year listing must have been added since I last visited there. It's so obvious I can't believe I would have missed it.

In any case. I entered the EX trim level and ended up with 95 vehicles. Limited sample for sure, but at least it's real world results. Although, strangely it reports tossing out 54 outliers ~2%, but that must be for the entire set. As a data analyst, they should have outlier removal as a choice, not the default. And, they should define what an out,User is right there, too!

Oddly, it shows 5+ pages below the graphs, but advancing by page doesn't change the graphs.

Still, it's good to zero in on 2019 results so quickly. Thanks for the link!
My tanks never seem to be included since they are "outliers." Sad!
 

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Just realized that auto-correct changed my post. Pretty funny, though, as it turned out to still have a correct meaning!

“As a data analyst, they should have outlier removal as a choice, not the default. And, they should define what an out,User is right there, too!”

Of course, that should have been:

“And, they should define what an OUTLIER is right there, too!
 
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