I just picked up my silver Insight (#363) yesterday; it came into the dealership on Wednesday, 3/1.
I moved to Florida from NYC in July; until that point I had never owned (or needed) a car. (Though I do know how to drive; I grew up in suburban Delaware.) Thus the hunt began. I had the use of my grandfather's 1993 Oldsmobile Cutlass Ciera, so there was no major rush.
My main criteria for a car was that it look cool. I didn't want to have a car that looked like everyone else's. So I investigated classic cars, but ultimately decided that using one as a daily driver would be unsafe (there are lots of bad drivers in South Florida, and the rain can be particularly intense during hurricane season), expensive, and time-consuming. Then I looked to see what new cars had the kind of "different" design language I was looking for. I checked out the New Beetle but decided it looked too much like a kitchen appliance. Then I saw the Audi TT and fell in love. I came thiiiis close to buying one, but eventually chickened out over the price; I didn't really want to commit to owning such a "fancy" car.
During the aforementioned investigative process, I was reading a lot of car magazines, and came across a blurb about the Insight (then still referred to as the VV). Consumer Reports mentioned it in passing in their 1999 New Car guide. I hunted around on the web for info and found very little, but what I read (and the picture I saw on the Honda site) intrigued me. I filled out the survey at honda.com, but the only response I got was a notification for some webcast press conference. I stopped by my local Honda dealer, but no one had even heard of it yet! Very disappointing.
Things got busy and I stopped looking for a while. Then about a month ago I found your web site and realized that the Insights were finally coming to the US. I hightailed it down to Ed Morse Honda in Fort Lauderdale to get more info. They said they had one coming in sometime in the spring; I put a deposit down and became first in line. They called me last Wednesday with a pleasant surprise--it had arrived that day, all alone on its own truck. I went in on Thursday to check it out and take it for a spin. The car itself performed well and looked good, but I also liked the crowd gathered round it--the Insight is an attention magnet! So of course I had to buy it.
So for me, the thing that initially drew me to the Insight was the fact that it looks different from any other car on the road. But the environmentally conscious aspect also appeals to me as someone who was used to living in the city and being able to walk/subway/bus everywhere. Living in suburbia forces me to drive most places, so the less impact I make on the environment, the better. I'll keep you posted on how the Insight works out as my only car (though I use my bicycle for short trips to the store, etc.).
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[Jennie, I'm so excited to read your interesting and well-written report! It was gratifying to read that my website was of value to you. Your story is very different from the previous reports submitted by technology-oriented male Insight buyers. Your attraction to the Insight's form is commendable. I spend so much time discussing the way it works that I sometimes forget how much I like the way it looks. However, today I got back in touch with my Insight's beautiful lines. To my delight, it was finally warm enough in Michigan to wash my Insight in the driveway instead of at the dollar car wash. I didn't miss the hand-chapping cold one bit--InsightMan]