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First Drive: 2010 Honda Insight

Hybrid on a budget.

by on Aug.24, 2009

The original hybrid was a teardrop-shaped two-seater. With the launch of the 2010 Honda Insight, the automaker adopts a more conventional four-door design that's still distinctive as a hybrid-only model.

The original hybrid was a teardrop-shaped two-seater. With the launch of the 2010 Honda Insight, the automaker adopts a more conventional four-door design that's still distinctive as a hybrid-only model.

The original, 2000 Honda Insight was the first hybrid-electric vehicle to reach North American shores and it was certainly no trouble to spot it rolling down the road, thanks to its unusual, teardrop-shaped aluminum body.  But the 2-seat design had limited functionality for most Americans and despite its incredible mileage, it quickly slipped in the sales charts and was pulled from the market in 2006.

There were high expectations when the Japanese maker announced plans to launch a new hybrid using the Insight name, and that it would be affordable, distinctive and, this time, for more functional than the original.

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There’s no question the 2010 Honda Insight lives up to the first two goals, while also delivering solid fuel economy.  But after spending a week behind the wheel, TheDetroitBureau.com found some serious drawbacks to the design that potential buyers should be clearly aware of before signing on the proverbial dotted line.

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