I was reading Don Sherman's history of hybrid vehicles and noticed the Honda Insight's gas mileage - 61 mpg city/70 mpg highway! Incredible numbers, and that is from a hybrid developed almost a decade ago.
Though it was an extremely efficient car, the public didn't embrace the Insight. Fuel was cheap when the Insight was introduced in 1999, and Honda's tiniest hatchback packed an uninspiring 67-hp inline three-cylinder engine and a 14-hp electric motor. Also, the car only had two seats and limited storage space, making it a hard sell to consumers hungry for big SUVs. However, now that gasoline is almost $4.50 per gallon, I was wondering how many used Insights are available and how much they are selling for.
A quick search on Autotrader.com revealed only 12 Insights for sale in the entire country! And good luck finding a model that was made after the initial hybrid novelty wore off - the youngest Insight available is from 2003 and has 37,000 miles (Insights were sold through the 2006 model year). The asking price for this 2003 Insight? $16,000.
Assuming the car has air conditioning, this particular model Insight originally retailed for $20,280. (That's some phenomenally low depreciation, if you ask me.)
Could I find a potentially better Insight bargain on eBay?
There is a 2006 model available and it has less than 6,000 miles! Bidding is a bit above the $14,000 line, but there are five days left on this no-reserve auction. I fully expect the price of this Honda to jump to at least $17,000, which will make one smart Wisconsin Insight seller very happy. This could also be a solid deal from the buyer's perspective - rumor has it that this 2006 Insight's engine has also been retrofitted to run on cheese.