2010 Honda Insight EX
2010 Honda Insight EX
2010 Honda Insight EX
2010 Honda Insight EX. Click image to enlarge

Manufacturer’s web site
Honda Canada

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Review and photos by Michael Clark

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2010 Honda Insight

Inside Story is a review of interior comfort features, cabin controls, storage options, trunk space and under-hood accessibility based on a seven-day evaluation.

I wonder if Chili Palmer would approve?

Determining whether or not the 2010 Honda Insight is the Cadillac of Gas-Electric Hybrid’s (see Be Cool, the movie, not the book) required a Winnipeg to Thunder Bay jaunt, as this reporter took to the TCH for the Insight into Canada eco-awareness tour (www.insightintocanada.ca) The first thing most consumers will be aware of is the MSRP, starting at $23,900 for the LX. (As tested, $27,500 for the EX. (Prices shown do not include freight, taxes, regional, or promotional incentives.) At press time, this makes the Insight the least expensive way to hug the planet, in the automotive sense.

The Cockpit/Centre Stack

As with most Hondi, your first order of business should be to reach into the glovebox, and grab the Quick Start Guide for some much needed reading. (Every vehicle should have one.) The overall cockpit

2010 Honda Insight EX
2010 Honda Insight EX
2010 Honda Insight EX. Click image to enlarge

layout is familiar Honda corporate, such as the upper dash speedometer display. Or is it? As part of the Insight’s “Milk That Litre” policy, aka Eco Guide feedback system, the speedo face will change colour to help modify your driving inputs. Green hues are good, while Blue is Boo On You. There’s even an Awards Centre of sorts, in the information display screen, which bestows LCD ‘leaves’ to reward you for good throttle input behaviour. The ECON switch is the key to assisting with modifying your skill set, found below the power mirror controls.

As fuel economy meters go, the Insight’s driver information feedback is one of the most detailed. There’s the expected power supply animation screen, plus real-time fuel consumption graphs. Thankfully, these graphs and consumption maps are not needlessly duplicated on the Navi screen. Steering wheel-mounted controls are plentiful, including cruise, audio, driver information, voice prompts, and access to wireless phones via Bluetooth. The EX adds variable intermittency for wipers, paddle shifters, and Vehicle Stability Assist with Traction Control.

The driver’s door pod includes an Auto up/down switch for the driver’s window. The Auto HVAC controls take up minimal real estate, a design direction that other makes should immediately fleece for single-zone climate control. Rear defrost and side mirror heating are controlled from the same switch. While the Navi head unit is fairly easy to access, Honda really needs to step up on their display, with alphanumeric type that borders on Commodore 64.

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