Honda Insight 2021 – Review, Fuel economy, Price

The 2021 Honda Insight is a compact hybrid that gets 55 miles per gallon in daily city driving. This 5-seat front-wheel-drive sedan is based on the chassis of the Honda Civic, but it has a handsome look all its own. Though the Insight supplements its gasoline engine with an onboard electric motor, there is no need to plug the car in. The onboard lithium-ion battery charges during regular everyday driving. While some folks might prefer their hybrid to look more modern or futuristic, we like how the 2021 Insight has a handsome, more traditional appearance. Price, technical specifications, interior, exterior of the car – Honda Insight 2021 read below.

New Honda Insight 2021

The 2021 Honda Insight begins arriving at dealerships on May 12th featuring newly available blind spot information (BSI) with Cross Traffic Monitor along with a new exterior color—Radiant Red Metallic. With best-in-class passenger space, upscale interior appointments and a refined driving experience, the 2021 Insight is a premium compact sedan with EPA city fuel economy rating up to 55 mpg2. The 2021 Insight carries a Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP1) of $22,930 (excluding $955 destination and handling). The Honda Insight, with standard Honda Sensing® technology, is the only compact hybrid sedan to earn a Top Safety Pick+ rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety for 2021. Also, the Insight recently received a top-five green score from the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy (ACEEE), beating out multiple plug-in and battery electric vehicles. Available in LX, EX, and Touring trims, all Insights come standard with multi-element LED headlights, push-button start, and the Honda Sensing® suite of advanced safety and driver-assistive technologies. New this year, Insight EX adds blind spot information and Rear Cross Traffic Monitor, while the 8-inch Display Audio with Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™ integration remains standard. Insight Touring adds leather seating surfaces, an 8-way power driver’s seat, Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation System™, dual-zone automatic climate control, and more. Honda Insight 2021 – review, fuel economy, engine and release date, read about all of this below!


The interior’s features and finishes occupy a well-judged middle ground between bargain basement and premium. The Insight feels a bit more upscale than the closely related Civic, and it measures up well to other hybrid competitors. A customizable digital gauge in the instrument panel can display a variety of information, from fuel-economy data to speed-limit info. You sit low in the Insight’s front seats, but there’s plenty of space to stretch out. Adjustable lumbar support is missing from the driver’s seat, however, which is disappointing. The rear seats have plenty of room for two adults. The Insight’s battery pack is located under the rear seat, so it doesn’t infringe on cargo capacity at all; the rear seats still fold mostly flat to accommodate larger items. Several of the Honda’s competitors are hatchbacks—the Insight is a conventional sedan with a separate trunk—which means they can hold more stuff and their large cargo areas are easier to load. The Insight does have a very useful and configurable center console that can hold tons of personal items. There are also a few bins in the cargo area. Honda Insight 2021 – see the photo at the end of the article!


Did you know Ars reviewed its first car 20 years ago? Back in the year 2000, Will Ryu tried out the brand-new Honda Insight, justifying it because the car married some impressive technology and a fun-to-drive nature—criteria we still look for today. Back then, the Insight looked like little else on the road. It had advanced aerodynamics, used lightweight alloy construction, and was the first parallel hybrid powertrain to go on sale in the US market. Today, we’re revisiting the Insight, now in its third generation. The differences are pronounced: what was cutting edge two decades ago is mainstream now. Instead of shouting its presence, the current Insight hides in crowds. And hybrid powertrains are commonplace and even seen as old tech in a world of 300-mile battery EVs and vehicles with hydrogen fuel cells. But proven technology has its upside. Today’s Insight might look normal, but it’s still remarkably efficient, even beating the old streamliner when it comes to city driving. And it’s cheap, too. That weird-looking Insight with the faired-in wheels cost just over $20,000 in 2000—just under $30,000 in today’s dollars. The 2021 Insight starts at $22,930, and a Touring model loaded up to press-fleet specifications is still only $28,840. And you can actually fit people in its back seats, too.


It’s a quiet year for the Honda Insight. The Insight EX and Touring models now come standard with a blind spot warning system and rear cross-traffic alert, two safety technologies we highly recommend. There’s also a new color for 2021: Radiant Red Metallic.

Fuel economy

Honda provides two separate EPA ratings for the Insight: 55 mpg city and 49 highway for the lighter LX and EX trims and 51 city and 45 highway for the Insight Touring, which is better-equipped and comes with larger wheels. All three Insight models fall a few miles per gallon short of the Toyota Prius and the Hyundai Ioniq’s EPA ratings. But the Insight Touring achieved 47 mpg on our real-world highway test, 2 mpg better than its EPA rating. Drivers who spend more time in stop-and-go driving can expect even better results; hybrids typically are more efficient in city driving conditions than on the highway.


The Insight’s interior slightly reflects its below-average price, but it’s uncluttered and spacious. The Insight’s fuel-efficiency is anything but below-average, however. Under the hoods of all 2021 Insights is a 1.5-liter inline-4 gas engine that makes 107 horsepower. It normally drives a generator that produces power for the hybrid battery pack and 129-hp electric motor that powers the front wheels. In certain situations, the gas motor can clutch in to drive the wheels, although Honda says that’s the exception for its hybrids—not the rule. The EPA rates the combo at up to 52 mpg combined, which is near the top for any new car sold without a plug today.

Technical specifications

The Insight’s hybrid powertrain does care about the planet, though. And it’s not old hat, either—it has no transmission but combines two electric motors with an internal combustion engine. The 129hp (96kW), 179lb-ft (242Nm) electric propulsion motor is usually responsible for turning the front wheels, which it does through a 2.45:1 direct drive. Under the hood is a 107hp (80kW), 99lb-ft (134Nm) 1.5L four-cylinder gasoline engine that uses the Atkinson cycle with a thermal efficiency of 40.5 percent. Most of the time, this engine just works to charge the car’s 1.2kWh lithium-ion battery through the second electric motor, but at speeds above 65mph (105km/h), the internal combustion engine can engage a clutch that connects it to the propulsion motor to also drive the front wheels (through a direct drive with a ratio of 0.81:1). With such a small battery—one shared with the NSX hybrid supercar—you won’t go particularly far in EV mode, but if fully charged, it will stretch to roughly a mile (1.6km) before the engine fires up again. The 2021 Insight is rated at 52mpg (4.52l/100km), combined, by the EPA, getting 55mpg (4.28l/100km) in the city and 49mpg (4.8l/100km) on the highway. If you do spring for the more expensive Touring trim, this drops to 48/51/45mpg (4.9/4.6/5.2l/100km) combined/city/highway thanks to larger 17-inch wheels. Over the course of a week and a couple of hundred miles I managed to average around 44.5mpg (5.29l/100km).


LX: $23,885; EX: $25,765; Touring: $29,795. The Honda Insight’s mid-level EX trim comes with plenty of standard features and offers the best value equation. It doesn’t have leather seats like the Touring, but otherwise includes desired extras including a larger infotainment screen, remote start, and proximity-key entry.


The Insight earned a five-star rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, and it was named a Top Safety Pick+ by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. All Insights come with a comprehensive package of driver assists called Honda Sensing. Blind-spot monitoring and cross-traffic alert come standard on EX and Touring models. Key standard safety features include: Standard forward-collision warning and automated emergency braking; Standard lane-departure warning and lane-keeping assist; Standard adaptive cruise control.


The Insight does a better job than most hybrids of balancing spry acceleration with miserly fuel economy. It’s about as quick as many conventionally powered compact cars—and way quicker than the hybrid competitors we’ve tested. Its combination of a gas engine and electric motors provides a combined 151 horsepower, which motivates the Insight from zero to 60 mph in 7.7 seconds. It can run on its electric motor alone for roughly one mile at lower speeds but request brisk acceleration and the gasoline engine will kick-in seamlessly. You might notice the engine getting loud under hard acceleration, but the Insight’s powertrain is otherwise quiet and refined. The Insight is an exceedingly pleasant vehicle to drive. It is quiet, comfortable, and refined, and it handles confidently. That’s no wonder, considering it’s in many ways mechanically similar to the Civic sedan, which shares those attributes. Although it’s not overtly sporty, the Insight has a nicely controlled ride and solid handling. Its supple suspension soaks up bumps well, and its quick steering helps it change direction responsively. The predictable and progressive brake pedal in the Insight suffers from little of the clunkiness that plagues the brakes of other hybrids. The Insight’s brakes feel just as confident as a traditional, gas-powered vehicle’s.


The 2021 Honda Insight is a remarkable hybrid commuter with impressive safety features for a low price. The 2021 Honda Insight is smart money. The compact hybrid sedan returns this year with a few new safety features on some trims, although the good stuff doesn’t change. It still returns more than 50 mpg combined in most trims, according to the EPA, and it costs less than $30,000 in every configuration—LX, EX, and Touring. It’s a 6.5 thanks to its superlative fuel economy and stellar safety scorecard. The least expensive Honda Insight, the Insight LX, is equipped better than you might expect. In addition to smart cruise control and automatic emergency braking, the LX has a 5-in touchscreen, lane-keeping assist, dual-zone automatic climate control and ambient LED console lighting. More standard features come on the midevel Insight EX. These include an upgraded 8-in touchscreen, a 160-watt audio system, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and a blind spot monitoring system with rear cross-traffic alert. A leather interior, heated front seats, onboard Wi-Fi and an even more powerful stereo system (180 watts) are standard equipment on the Insight Touring. Options on the Insight EX include 17-in alloy wheels and a package featuring several blacked-out styling elements. On the Insight Touring, dark finish 17-in alloy wheels are available, as is a chrome exterior accent package.


Slightly larger than the Honda Civic and a bit smaller than the Honda Accord, the 2021 Honda Insight is a four-door sedan. This four-door sedan, however, comes with an impressively efficient hybrid powertrain. The EPA estimates that the Insight gets around 50 mpg in combined city/highway driving, which makes the Insight one of the most fuel-efficient cars you can buy. For 2021, the Insight won’t see big changes, and that’s fine by us. We’ve given the Insight high marks in the past for comfort, interior space and build quality, so we’re happy it’ll carry over mostly unchanged. The small changes for the 2021 Insight come in the form of added safety tech. All models are equipped with the Honda Sensing suite of safety features, but the higher trims (EX and Touring) are now fitted with blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert. Last year, these systems weren’t available on the Insight, even as options. Already our top pick among hybrid sedans, the 2021 Honda Insight just got even better.

Release date

Which should you buy, 2021 or 2021? If you’re looking for an entry-level model, you might as well go for the 2021. Otherwise, you’ll have to decide if the addition of blind spot warning and rear cross-traffic alert is worth the extra $525. Honda has updated the Insight compact hybrid sedan, its answer to the Toyota Prius, for the 2021 model year by adding additional safety features to the Insight’s mid-level and above trims and making a new Radiant Red Metallic paint color available.


Its hybrid powertrain delivers quick acceleration, and this compact car rides smoothly. Gas mileage is superb even by hybrid standards. The Insight is well-built inside, and there’s adequate space for passengers and cargo. This Honda has a lengthy list of standard active safety technology, and it features an easy-to-use infotainment system. However, there are a few hang-ups that keep the Insight from ranking near the top of the class. Its gasoline engine can drone loudly under stress, and some rivals have more athletic handling. Additionally, because it’s a compact car, the Insight has a less spacious interior than several other hybrid classmates that fit into the larger midsize car category. As detailed above, there are a lot of reasons to like the Insight, and as it has a lower starting price than most other hybrid and electric cars, it provides plenty of bang for your buck. That doesn’t mean that this is the only hybrid worth considering, however. There are some really good options in the class, including the Toyota Corolla Hybrid, Hyundai Ioniq, and Honda Accord Hybrid.

Photo Gallery 2021 Honda Insight

All information about Honda Insight 2021: Price, Interior, Fuel economy, Motors, Exterior, Horsepower, Colors, Safety, Configurations, you read on this page, and in the end – see the photo!

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