View Full Version : Should I buy this 2002 Insight? Need Advice!
10-17-2008, 02:44 PM
Hi everyone! I've been looking for the right deal to get into an Insight for about 2 years now which, as you know, only amounts to looking at a handful of them. They are SO rare. I see one about once a year here in Minneapolis. Anyway, I just can't decide what to do on this one. It's a 2002 Honda Insight with 34K miles on it. The 8 year/80K battery warranty lasts until May 2010. The body in good (not excellent) shape. You can see the car here:
Here are my concerns:
- What if the battery goes out shortly (100K or so) after the warranty?
- Yes, the miles are incredibly low, but does the effectiveness of batteries decay over time even if they haven't been used that much? I mean, they ARE six years old.
I have driven it and it felt great. After a little runaround with the salesman, I suspect I could get it for around 13K.
Please help me out here! I know a lot about them but I don't feel like it's enough after reading some of things you guys talk about! Would you get this or not and WHY?
THANK YOU SO MUCH IN ADVANCE. REALLY NEED SOME ADVICE HERE!!
10-17-2008, 02:51 PM
The low SoC concerns me.
If you can test drive it and keep it 3/4 full, I'd say the batteries are good.
Forced recall on Insights happen at about 3/5 of the bars appearing.
I'd inquire if the updates to the BCM and MCM units are current (they regulate the hybrid batteries)
10-17-2008, 03:26 PM
It's worth looking at closely and don't forget the IMA battery has an extended warranty of 10 years or 180k if I recall correctly. It's also a good time to buy right now as gas prices have fallen recently. Insight prices peaked about 30-60 days ago but they have fallen a bit lately.
My IMA battery failed a few months back and I was still averaging 90mpg without the battery assist. Honda did replace it under warrant at no cost to me.
10-17-2008, 03:44 PM
If you want it, you need to go get it NOW.
10-17-2008, 04:05 PM
Good news! Gas tank looks full. Bad news: IMA battery near empty. That's not uncommon for a car on a dealers lot. 14.3 mpg showing in one picture is lame though. They should have taken an odometer picture with the mileage and lmpg showing.
Right Lane Cruiser
10-17-2008, 04:12 PM
Clint, where exactly are you located? I could meet up with you and take it for a spin sometime soon if you like to check it out more thoroughly.
Double check the serial number on this car -- according to the one on the listing this vehicle does not have factory AC installed. To see what serial numbers actually mean for the Insight have a look at this site:
Insight serial numbers (http://www.insightcentral.net/encyclopedia/enserialno.html)
Chuck is right -- you'll want to know if the battery is working as it should. I can help you with that if we meet up. As Reid mentioned, the warranty is long on the hybrid powertrain so it shouldn't be a problem (150K mi instead of 180K, but close enough :)).
You'll want to know where the car was purchased and where it spent its life -- if in one of the more southern states the pack may be stressed from heat. Mine came from ID and is slightly older than this one (#305 from that year as opposed to #441). You'll want those center caps for the wheels, too. Lifetime mileage is also important so that you know how the car was treated.
Tim is right -- if you want this car you'll have to act quickly. $13K is what I paid for mine and it has been worth every penny but you have to know what you are getting into.
Let me know if you want to get together. There are a few other Insight drivers in the area but none active on this site.
10-17-2008, 05:11 PM
If the lifetime mpg is under 50 - I'd wonder how well the car was treated. If it's 45 or less, it was abused.
10-17-2008, 05:16 PM
A 5 speed Insight is being offered by a low priced used car dealer locally. Wants $5995- no mention of miles or condition. This dealer sells low priced cars- ususlly just this side of POS cars.
Might be worth a look.They all FE cars- are definitely down in price.
10-17-2008, 07:41 PM
Ooooo I wish I did not look at those pics!what a beauty! and it is right in my back yard too!:eek:
I thought I wanted one, but with the economy the way it is and all, that would be putting me way up to my ears in debt that i might not be able to pay off!:eek:
I say if you really want one, and can pay cash for it, go for it! Sean really knows these cars, if he is willing to help you, take it! :)
10-18-2008, 10:03 AM
The craiglist Minn. one you posted is certainly nice. $17000 is a lot of $$ for a used 5 yo car. You can buy a FIT or Corolla for that $$-. Granted they get 1/2 the MPG, but they are very useful-4 passenger cars.
Maybe they will come off the price a bit-quite a bit-to $12000 or so??Doesn't hurt to ask. Gasoline is waaaaay down and getting lower; the economy is even worse and getting "worser" by the minute.Make a very lowball offer; all they can do is say no.
01-19-2009, 08:49 PM
Opened the paper this morning and found this 2002 5M w/ 65,000 miles. Lifetime mpg showed 55.1mpg. Factory air, add-on cruise and 6cd changer. Local one owner, carfax shows regular maintenance. Bought it for $9700, how'd I do?
01-19-2009, 08:54 PM
I would say that sounds marvelous from what is said, however, there's quite a bit of info that wasn't included.
___You did pretty good by all appearances...
___And welcome to the world of high fuel Economy :)
01-19-2009, 10:08 PM
Sounds like a good price if it is clean and the Carfax is good.
Right Lane Cruiser
01-19-2009, 11:05 PM
Indeed! Tell us more!
01-20-2009, 08:50 PM
Well, it's Monte Carlo Blue Pearl and real clean inside and out. I've got a question about the battery pack and IMA battery warranties, are they honored for a used Insight? I purchased from a Honda dealer and I recall they said it is not certified. I don't anticipate problems because the owner brought it in regularly for service but the CarsDirect site made some mention that concerned me.
Lots to learn about this vehicle.
Right Lane Cruiser
01-20-2009, 09:52 PM
As long as it was originally sold in the US, is not a salvage vehicle, younger than 10yrs, and has less than 150K miles on it, all hybrid components (including the battery) are under warranty.
Mine happens to be pretty much the identical car and you can see the results I've gotten out of it. :)
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