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Honda tweaks Insight

Feeling Blue: Honda has replaced the Insight’s aftermarket Bluetooth equipment with a fully-integrated system featuring steering wheel controls.

Lower fuel consumption and minor design updates for Honda’s Insight hybrid

Honda logo8 Jun 2012

By HAITHAM RAZAGUI

HONDA has applied a few tweaks to its Insight hybrid hatchback, resulting in a 6.5 per cent improvement to fuel economy, more rear headroom and better Bluetooth integration.

Aerodynamic improvements, a fettled drivetrain – including power-saving electric fuel pump – and low-rolling resistance tyres combine to reduce petrol usage from 4.6 litres per 100 kilometres to 4.3L/100km.

CO2 emissions drop 5.5 per cent, from 109 grams per kilometre to 103g/km, but the Insight’s eco-credentials still trail the more expensive Toyota Prius, which returns 3.9L/100km and 89g/km.

Honda has responded to criticism about the Insight’s interior, fully integrating the Bluetooth phone system and adding extra steering wheel controls to replace the aftermarket afterthought that went before.

Upholstery and instruments have also been updated, while improved rear visibility comes courtesy of a redesigned headlining, slimmer boot spoiler and re-shaped wiper motor and blade.

15 center imageRear headroom is boosted by 20mm, aided by re-thought rear seats and updated hatch lining, while occupants up front now get a centre armrest with storage box and redesigned head restraints.

External updates include new alloy wheel designs, LED daytime running lights situated in a refreshed front bumper, a two-bar grille design that replaces the old three-bar unit and the door mirrors now fitted with indicator lights.

Carnelian Red and Premium White replace Spectrum White and Cerulean Blue in the available exterior paint colours, while Alabaster Silver, Crystal Black and Milano Red remain.

The $29,990 drive-away price established last August for the entry-level VTi variant has been ditched, with that same price now subject to on-road-costs, while the VTI-L premium variant remains at $33,490 plus on-roads.

Honda has sold on average 48 Insights per month since it was launched in November 2010, but sales have dipped in recent months ahead of the arrival of the updated version.

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