While it's still one of the most economical gasoline cars offered in the U.S., the 2013 Honda Insight faces increasing competition both in its niche--lower-priced subcompact hybrids--and in larger, pricier hybrids that return better combined gas mileage numbers. And in the subcompact category especially, its price premium over conventional gasoline-engined subcompacts that come reasonably close may make the numbers a hard sell.
The 2013 Insight is rated at 42 mpg combined (41 mpg city, 44 mpg highway). That's not only lower than three more expensive compact or mid-size cars--the Toyota Prius (50 mpg combined), Ford C-Max (47 mpg combined), and even Honda's own compact Civic Hybrid (44 mpg combined)--it's lower than the Toyota Prius C subcompact, at 50 mpg combined.
So while the Insight remains a viable competitor, it's facing a tougher array of competitors this year--especially among buyers willing to pay about $5,000 more for a larger car to get better gas mileage.