We have some car switch-a-roo's going on in our house. Alexa has been driving the Mercury Villager mini-van which Tara and I decided was time to replace for a car she can be happy with and take to college. My first thought was to get something she wanted, but Alexa and Tara talked and decided that Tara would give Alexa her Mercury Mariner SUV so that Tara could get her long awaited Hybrid.
So Tara spent the weekend researching, test driving and narrowed her choices down to either a Toyota Prius or a Honda Insight (and was also considering a non-hybrid in the Honda Fit). She does so much driving from school to school for her work and the per mile reimbursement is no longer covering all of the travel due to fuel prices. The hybrid will take care of that and cut her $225 gas bill in half.
Monday, she dragged me up to Des Moines to test drive everything. I took them all out on I-80 to rev them up and see how they responded in Interstate speed traffic. Believe it or not, the Insight felt the best to me, but I'm biased towards Honda. The Fit had a nice view with all of the window space surrounding the cockpit, but it was bouncy and got the worst mileage of the three. Cute, but I gave it a thumbs down which Tara was happy to hear because that's how she felt, but needed another opinion.
The Insight was not brand new, it's a 2010 had had 34K on it. It was in pristine condition, came with a warranty, had been totally detailed and upgraded by Honda. It was the LX package which means no alloy wheels and no cruise control. But who needs cruise control for commute driving - and even on trips, I tend to drive with the flow of traffic and not use the cruise. Tara did the negotiating and I did the customer stare down with the salesman. It was the "end of month" period at the dealer and this hybrid had been on the lot for a while. They were ready to move it off the lot and we struck a very good deal - at least in our opinion (we were able to pay about $1000 under the Edmunds 2010 used LX price of 15,026 and for the mileage it had). Not good for Honda as we paid cash, and did not even consider an extended warranty, but the price was within the going rate range we researched for the model year, package and mileage. We even got a full tank of gas with the purchase before we drove off the lot.
Tara loves it and here she is going off to work this morning...
It reminds me a lot of the Civic we had in Austria (color, cabin room, hatchback/trunk space).