Click on image above to see a full gallery of the EcoDesafio Honda Insight in Barcelona

The first generation the Honda Insight wasn't offered for sale in most European markets, including Spain. The Honda Civic hybrid is available here, but hasn't seen too many sales, in part because diesel is usually cheaper than gasoline. Honda thought that it would be a good idea to promote its new Insight hybrid using a slightly more intensive marketing campaign. Named the "EcoDesafío Honda Insight" (Honda Insight EcoChallenge), a new event asks drivers from all around Spain to participate in a big challenge: how well can you hypermile the new Insight? The event is currently being held in different cities around the country and we hit up last weekend's event in Barcelona. What was this all about? Follow us after the jump.

Cars waiting for the Eco Desafio
  • Cars waiting for the Eco Desafio
  • At the Hotel Miramar in Barcelona, 10 Honda Insight were ready for the fuel efficiency test
  • EcoDesafio Honda Insight
  • The event was planned for potential customers to test their high mileage driving skills
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • Cars at the hotel court waiting for contestants
  • EcoDesafio Honda Insight
  • A few more cars parked at the Hotel Miramar court in Barcelona
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • Cars starting to leave with drivers testing their hypermiling skills
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • Cars leaving the Hotel court to perform the urban circuit that tested their hypermiling skills
  • EcoDesafio Honda Insight
  • Cars leaving the hotel court to start their hypermiling test
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • Cars leaving the Hotel Miramar court to perform the hypermiling test
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • Superbike racer Dani Pedrosa is the celebrity that promotes the event
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • This is yours truly keeping the mileage as high as possible being as gentle as possible on the accelerator pedal
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • The circuit totalled 7.9 km (5 miles). Contestants had to drive downhill the Montjuïc hill in Barcelona, drive through a few traffic lights to the Ronda Litoral (the city's bypass road) to exit at Cementiri de Montjuïc and climb uphill back to the hotel passing by the Olympic stadium and Fundació Miró
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • Driving photo. As you can see, the models were the top-equipped Honda Insight Executive Navi
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • Back to the hotel, where more people were taking the Insights for a ride
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • A few pictures of the cars used for the test
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • A few pictures of the cars used for the test
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • A few pictures of the cars used for the test
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • A few pictures of the cars used for the test
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • A few pictures of the cars used for the test
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • A few pictures of the cars used for the test
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • A few pictures of the cars used for the test
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • A few pictures of the cars used for the test
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • A few pictures of the cars used for the test
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • A few pictures of the cars used for the test
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • A few pictures of the cars used for the test.
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • A few pictures of the cars used for the test. Here's the car's respectable trunk
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • A few pictures of the cars used for the test. The car's engine bay.
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • A few pictures of the cars used for the test. They even showed the battery pack to us
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • A few pictures of the car interior.
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • A few pictures of the car interior.
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • A few pictures of the car interior.
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • A few pictures of the car interior.
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • A few pictures of the car interior. Door trim
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • A few pictures of the car interior. Window lining
  • Ecodesafio Honda Insight
  • A picture of the view from Hotel Miramar of Barcelona's Seaport


We were greeted at the Hotel Miramar Barcelona where the first Spanish TV studio was built 60 years ago and which overlooks the sea and the city from the Montjuïc hill. There, we were inundated with all the benefits of the Honda Insight compared to a standard gasoline vehicle. We were also instructed on how to get the maximum miles per gallon during the short drive circuit. Since the Insight is an automatic car, we were instructed on how to use it, since most Europeans drive manuals.

The circuit was very simple. We just went downhill the Montjuïc mountain, took the Ronda Litoral (the city's seaside highway) towards the Montjuïc Cemetery, then headed back to the hotel. On the return trip, we had to drive uphill along El Sot del Migdia, passing by the Olympic Stadium and the Fundació Miró. Total circuit length: 7.9 km, which we were supposed to drive in about 15 minutes.



Drivers were given points depending on our average speed, time and fuel consumption. The car's official consumption figure is 4.6 l/100 km (for the top Executive version, which we were driving). We were awarded 10 extra points over the standard 200 if we reduced our consumption by 0.1l/100 km over the standard (I managed 0.2 liters), we got the points subtracted for going over time (I did it in 18 minutes) and then our average speed was multiplied by 3 (I got 24 km/h). The winner of each city will participate in a same challenge performed on a circuit near Girona (NE Spain, near the French border) against moto GP champion Dani Pedrosa and the winner of that final event will be rewarded with a 12-month free lease the Insight Executive Navi. Second and third place winners will get tickets to go to the Moto GP race in Valencia.

After the challenge, we were asked our opinions about the car. I talked with the people who were in my test group and they said that: diesels still deliver the same mileage and feel stronger (i. e. have more torque); the interior quality was quite disappointing - we could see welding spots on the door frames - but the car's styling and overall drive feel were top notch. The Insight's price in Spain is quite good, less than €20,000, thanks to the car avoiding the registration tax. Thanks to Imma for helping me out!


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