New for 2019, the Insight is based on the Civic small-car platform and gives Honda a triple-threat in the gasoline-electric category, alongside the Accord Hybrid and Clarity plug-in. The drivetrain consists of a 99-horsepower four-cylinder gasoline engine and two electric motors. The drive motor generates 129 horsepower while the secondary electric motor acts as a starter as well as a generator. Net system output, according to Honda, is precisely 151.5 horsepower. The internal-combustion engine only operates independently when the Insight is cruising at steady-state highway speeds, otherwise the electric motor powers the front wheels alone through a direct-drive controller. The four-cylinder’s key function is to generate electricity for the battery pack. In EV Drive mode, the electric motor operates solo, but only for about a mile or so before the gasoline engine kicks in to replenish the batteries. EV Drive comes in handy for low-speed stop-and-go traffic. Fuel economy rings in at 52 mpg in combined city/highway driving. It’s a bit lower in Sport mode or slightly better if Econ is selected (the default is Normal). The Insight LX includes an assortment of active-safety technology that’s bundled under the Honda Sensing name. The mid-grade EX adds a 60/40 split rear seat, premium audio system and an eight-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android connectivity. The Touring comes with a moonroof, navigation and heated power front seats.

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