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Old 01-08-2012, 09:19 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Honda insight Problem. Very low (25) mpg?

UPDATE 1/30/2012
After 500 miles of driving I am getting 62mpg. I haven't filled up yet so not exact. No permanent damage but don't recommend cruising in Neutral in CVT.
UPDATE: 1/10/12
After a test ride (3mi) I got 53mpg. Longer test ride to come.No damage done.
To any CVT (prius/insight) owner who is reading this DO NOT shift into neutral while driving.
For completeness below is the service manual for the CVT transmission.(remove spaces)
2shared(dot)com /document/ 2CGK1mbn/ cvt_transmission(dot)html

I live on top of a big hill and wanted to figure if I could cruise to the bottom in Neutral in my 03' Insight CVT. So I put the car into neural and turned the engine off then 1/2 way down the hill realized that the brakes were very mushy, so I put the car into Drive and tried to turn the engine on.

It wouldn't turn on, and I didn't know if I could stop at the bottom so I took a side street which goes up hill, and after it stopped turned it on. Started up fine. But now I am only getting 25-mpg at 25mph; my mpg has dropped 40-50%.
I don't hear any strange sounds when I drove it back up the hill. Assists and regen both work as the should.

Does anybody know what is causing the low mpg? (my 15mi avg. of 60- has already dropped to 53 in 1 mi. Are the brakes locked up? I assume there is no ABS when the car is turned off?
Also the brake light came on 1/4 down the hill. Parking brake was off.

Last edited by hyper-miler; 01-31-2012 at 01:18 AM.. Reason: Added more details Corrected mpg avg
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Old 01-08-2012, 09:37 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I think you can seriously damage the CVT transmission with engine off coasting.

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Old 01-09-2012, 12:01 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Does the insight turn off the engine during coasting anyway?
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Old 01-09-2012, 12:08 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Ecky View Post
Does the insight turn off the engine during coasting anyway?
No, at least not at higher speeds. It'll shut off fuel to the engine (DFCO), but everything still goes around, and on a steep enough grade, you'll likely get some regen.

With a manual, it will shut off below about 18 mph, if you push the clutch in and brake - that's part of the autostop logic that shuts the engine off at traffic lights &c. Don't know how this works with the CVT, though.
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Old 01-09-2012, 03:12 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Having no vacuum in the braking system could have turned on the brake light. Still, you may have brake issues, like a frozen caliper, etc. I doubt you've damaged anything.

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