The Honda Insight is one of those rare hybrids that offer more than just great gas mileage.
It is an energetic performer with responsive handling, and has a comfortable interior that rivals most conventional sedans.
With such qualities, the Honda Insight appeals to many and maybe you as well. However, it is important to consider durability before buying any vehicle.
Read on to find out if Honda Insights last long or not.
Here is the short answer to how long Honda Insights last:
The average lifespan for most hybrids is between 150,000 to 200,000 miles. However, with proper maintenance, a Honda Insight can last for more than 250,000 miles. If you average around 15,000 miles annually, your Honda Insight will be good for another 16 years.
How Many Miles Can You Expect from a Honda Insight?
From the factory, the Honda Insight’s battery comes with a 10-year/150,000-mile warranty. This means Honda thinks the average Insight car should go 150k miles before the battery will need replacement.
Replacing a battery on a hybrid is akin to getting a new engine for your car. Since your Insight can already go 150,000 miles on the original battery, it can definitely get another 150,000 miles from a new battery.
Based on this, getting 300,000 miles on your Honda Insight is very much possible. We’ve seen Honda Insights with 300,000 miles on them, so this is hardly based on conjecture.
However, we’d suggest 250,000 miles as a more realistic number to expect from your Honda Insight.
At this point, your car will likely be in excellent condition; put additional miles on it and you may have to replace expensive components.
Honda Insight owners recommend keeping up with routine maintenance if you want your car to last up to 250,000 miles.
They also advise against leaving your car sitting for long, as it can damage the battery and shorten its life.
How Soon Should You Expect Rust on a Honda Insight?
Many of the parts on the Honda Insight are made from aluminum, which is less susceptible to rust compared to other metals such as steel. This means you won’t deal with that much rust on your car.
But this doesn’t mean your Honda Insight cannot rust—they can and will rust.
The only difference is that the rust is often less noticeable, as it hardly affects the body or other obvious parts. This rusting usually starts in the first ten years of using your vehicle.
On the Honda Insight, the parts most prone to rust are those made from steel. Many owners have made complaints about steel components, including fasteners, bolts, brackets, axle beams, clutches, etc., rusting out.
Nevertheless, you can still prevent rust on your Honda Insight by treating the steel parts with anti-corrosion products.
Also, try washing your car regularly if you live in a) a seaside area b) an area where road salt is used.
Driving in any of these two places exposes your car to a lot of salt particles and regular washes can eliminate them, thus preventing rusting.
Please also read our article about driving the Honda Insight in snow and winter.
How Long Do Honda Insight Last Compared to Similar Car Models?
For a hybrid vehicle, the Honda Insight is durable. However, there are several other hybrids on the market, touting their durability credentials.
Below, we compare the Honda Insight to similar models in terms of longevity:
Honda Insight vs. Toyota Camry Hybrid
Both the Honda Insight and the Toyota Camry Hybrid are products of automakers whose names are synonymous with reliability.
Thus, it makes sense that the two models are at the same level of reliability.
The Toyota Camry Hybrid can get you about 250,000 miles or more, if used responsibly.
This is about the same mileage you will get on a Honda Insight, so we’d call it a tie between the two vehicles.
Honda Insight vs. Hyundai Sonata Hybrid
The Hyundai Sonata Hybrid is among highly rated models in the hybrid vehicle segment. However, it can hardly go toe-to-toe with the Honda Insight in terms of longevity.
While you can get 250,000 miles on a Honda Insight, you’d hardly get over 200,000 miles on a Hyundai Sonata Hybrid.
Honda Insight vs. Ford Fusion Hybrid
Although Ford makes great vehicles—the Fusion Hybrid being one of them—it doesn’t have the reputation for reliability Honda possesses.
Therefore, we are barely surprised the Honda Insight outlasts the Ford Fusion Hybrid.
Maintained well, a Ford Fusion Hybrid will give around 200,000 miles. Give a Honda Insight the same level of maintenance and you will get more than 250,000 miles.
If you are looking for a durable hybrid car, we recommend picking the Honda Insight over the Ford Fusion Hybrid.
Make sure to also read our article about how long Ford Fusions last.
How Reliable Is a Honda Insight?
Honda, manufacturer of the Insight, has a reputation for reliability that spans several years.
Like every other Honda vehicle, the Insight undergoes rigorous quality control to ensure it is free from any defects.
This ensures the reliability of the models and explains their ability to run flawlessly with minimal repairs.
Many owners swear by the reliability of the Honda Insight and say it is as reliable as far as hybrids go.
Sure, we can’t always trust the usefulness of anecdotal evidence in judging reliability. But even the data support claims that Honda Insights are reliable.
RepairPal, whose reliability ratings are widely respected, scores the Honda Insight four out of five reliability-wise.
Similarly, the foremost J.D. Power and Associates gives the 2019 Honda Insight a near-perfect 4.5 reliability rating.
Based on both the anecdotal evidence and the data available, we can safely say the Honda Insight is a reliable model.
The Best and Worst Years for Honda Insight
Mostly, the Honda Insights have been reliable. However, there have been some model years plagued with several problems, though.
The worst of these is the 2012 Honda Insight. This model year was simply terrible going by the number of complaints it received.
The most recurrent problem on the 2012 Honda Insights is the engine’s abnormal oil consumption.
Owners say the engine burns through oil rapidly—as much as 1 quart per 1000-2000 miles. The issue often occurred around 64,400 miles and cost about $2,070 to fix.
Judging from its low number of reported problems, the 2019 Honda Insight seems to be the best model year so far. We advise considering it if you want a used Honda Insight.
What About Recalls for These Models?
The Honda Insight has been a largely reliable model, having been recalled only 12 times in its production history. This is far lesser when compared with many vehicles, even hybrid models.
Here, we have a breakdown of recall figures for the Honda Insights, ranking each model year according to the number of recalls for it:
- 2010: 7 recalls
- 2011: 7 recalls
- 2012: 6 recalls
- 2013: 3 recalls
- 2001: 2 recalls
- 2014: 2 recalls
- 2019: 2 recalls
- 2000: 1 recall
- 2006: 1 recall
- 2002: 1 recall
Honda Insight Model Year List
The Honda Insight has 15 model years, even if it got its international release in 2000.
The reason is that Honda stopped producing the Insight at various times, only to bring it back again.
For example, production of Honda Insights stopped in 2014 and didn’t restart until the 2019 model year.
Here are all model years for the Honda Insight since it started production:
- 2000 Honda Insight
- 2001 Honda Insight
- 2002 Honda Insight
- 2003 Honda Insight
- 2004 Honda Insight
- 2005 Honda Insight
- 2006 Honda Insight
- 2009 Honda Insight
- 2010 Honda Insight
- 2011 Honda Insight
- 2012 Honda Insight
- 2013 Honda Insight
- 2014 Honda Insight
- 2019 Honda Insight
- 2020 Honda Insight
Also read our article about how long Chevrolet Malibu lasts.
Are Honda Insight Expensive to Maintain?
The average Honda Insight will cost you far lesser to maintain than many conventional cars out there.
RepairPal estimates you will shell out an average of $392 on servicing a Honda Insight for a year. This is far lower than what you would pay on the average alternative-fuel vehicle ($471).
How Long Do the Brakes Last?
If there’s one thing that’s obvious, it’s that the brakes on Honda Insights last a long time.
On average, many owners get anything between 50,000 to 70,000 miles on the OEM brakes. How much you get will depend on how hard you brake and the frequency of braking.
How Long Do the Tires Last?
From what owners say, the OEM tires on your Honda Insight should last 50,000 to 60,000 miles or more, if you maintain them well.
How Long Do the Transmissions Last?
The transmission on your Honda Insight can last between 120,000 miles to 180,000 miles.
Maintenance will play a role in how long your transmission lasts. Regular transmission fluid checks, filter replacements, etc., will extend the life of the tranny on your Honda Insight.
How Long Do the Spark Plugs Last?
The Honda Insight uses iridium spark plugs, which can last 100,000 miles before they need replacing.
There are eight spark plugs on the Insight and these cost $15-$25 apiece, bringing the total cost of replacement to $120-$200.
What About Insurance Cost?
The Honda Insight is relatively inexpensive to insure. Average insurance cost is about $1,836 per year or $158 per month.
Tips to Prolong the Life of Your Honda Insight
Here are ways to improve the longevity of your Honda Insight:
- Endeavor to use and charge your battery regularly. Disuse often degrades the battery and reduces its life.
- Perform all maintenance activities on schedule.
- Avoid driving your Honda Insight roughly, as this will decrease wear and tear.