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Why Honda Fit owners love their subcompact hatchback

I’ve yet to interview a Honda Fit owner that hasn’t expressed exuberant, undying love for this somewhat ‘quirky’ subcompact 5-door hatchback. So why do Honda Fit owners love their subcompact hatchback?

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This Torque News contributor has penned well over 50 Honda Fit articles in the past 2 years, how much more can I write about Honda’s smallest, least expensive North American offering?

With a mother and sister in the family that drive Honda Fit, there’s plenty of firsthand feedback to spin into glowing accolades -- as to Fit’s “magic seat” transformer-like interior, haul capacity, and notably, the greatest interior passenger and cargo volume available in a subcompact car format today. As for me, I’ve logged 1,000 miles in Fits of varying trim levels, and find Honda’s least expensive offering to be surprising at every turn.

2016 Honda Fit EX-L with Navigation

This week we had a 2016 Honda Fit EX-L Navi delivered to the house, my 3rd week-long drive review of the 3rd generation Honda Fit “ World Car.” This one mostly manufactured and assembled in Celaya, Mexico.

I’d spent my initial seat time behind the wheel of 2015 Honda Fit in Los Angeles, California traffic, and was taken by how well Fit performed -- not only on surface streets, but on the “rougher than Cobb,” transitional crap-shoot that is the Freeway system of L.A. Honda Fit drives and rides with larger car stability and comfort. You may find 2016 Honda Fit model price and specifications here.

An owner’s experience: 83 year-young teacher loves Honda Fit

Professor Gwen McCants of Whittier, California is an interesting case study of “old-school”-stick-shift driver meets modern progressive, young at heart educator -- she also happens to be my mother. I’m amazed by this octogenarian’s energy and zest for life -- she’s driven Fit across the U.S. and back, and despite a fender bender or two, fins Fit to be a capable and competent city street warrior.

While visiting Whittier, Mom, who just happens to own and operated a manually shifted 2009 Honda Fit, eagerly swapped keys (momentarily) for the fully equipped 2015 Fit EX-L CVT with navigation, and loved it! Although a decades-long manual gear shifter, after a moment or two of driving the automatic Fit, Professor McCants was sold!

According to Mom she appreciates the ease of city maneuvering afforded by Fit; the interior space available for art supply and pet hauling -- as well as Fit’s in-town fuel economy that she claims kisses 40 miles per gallon at times. Here’s the original story.

Standing just a shade over five 5-feet, 2 inches tall, Honda Fit offers the perfect “fit” and utility for this “still” very busy artist and educator.
Gwen_McCants_FitDaughter like mother

Sister Juliana McCants, also an award winning educator, recently received her Master’s degree. Along with the degree, this Tenured grade-school teacher received a long deserved increase in remunerations.( pay raise) Sister Juliana also commutes some distance daily on the surface streets and Freeways of Los Angeles County, California.

Ms Julie, along with her husband Dale is an animal lover, cares for 2 adopted horses and 5 dogs. In her case, she penned a deal for a dark blue Fit EX CVT and loves it! Julie tells me that her Honda Fit was initially affordable to purchase, loves the look, fuel economy, and the way the her Fit drives.

Desert heat, no problem! Read my latest Fit drive impressions here.

What I like about Fit

For me, a seasoned driver and auto review guy approaching legal senior discount age, Honda Fit is a modern high-tech approach to the subcompact hatchback of the past. I’ve always preferred a small car when not driving a pickup truck,my preferred mode of transportation for decades. In the case of Fit, owner's find the “magic seat” near flat-deck utility, maneuverability in town, and decent driver-dynamic to be an ideal vehicle for my daily transportation and hauling needs. Fit also looks “cool!” Need to seat 5 adults in Fit, no worries.

Without this reading like a Honda Fit advertisement

Along with most auto journalist polled today: I believe that 2016 Honda Fit when directly compared to the competition, presents the greatest purchase and ownership value in the sub-compact car segment, as well as the highest safety rating. The icing on the cake for Fit owners is bulletproof mechanical reliability, affordability, ease of ownership and exceptional long term residual resale value. Did I mention that Fit is fun to drive?

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rottboy (not verified)    March 7, 2016 - 8:43AM

Agree totally with your family members that the new GK fit is an "all-around" pleasure to own and drive. Had my LX manual since Sept, '15 with no problems experienced to date (my model has had 3 recalls which were dealt swiftly by the dealers).
Not that this is a perfect car (Fit owner's forums will have some owner's with issues). Being man-made problems MAY eventually arise. However, seems that the solid majority are very pleased as can be seen from long-term reviews of Consumer Reports and JD Power.

Ryan (not verified)    March 10, 2016 - 4:21PM

I liked the review, but have to question if we drove the same car. I owned a 2015 Honda Fit LX for 15 months/5,000 miles and couldn't wait to get out of the thing. It was the most sloppily built car I've ever owned.

The good sides to the Fit make a positive showroom impression; the magic seats are indeed a work of art, the fuel economy numbers are impressive, visibility is excellent all around, the ergonomics were logical, and in base form, represents solid value.

But this was not an easy car to live with in LA. The car was relentlessly loud. Even at idle, the direct injection made itself hard. Accelerations onto the freeway were met with a lot of buzziness. The engine would be revving its guts out at 65mph while doing 3300rpm. The manual's gearing was bizarre, and the gears were too short requiring constant shifting. 5th and 6th were almost identical. Front seat space is limited, and it's almost as though Honda focused on the back seats and then the fronts as an afterthought. Overall, the car just felt slow, tinny, and unrefined

But the quality was the pits. In 5k miles, it visited the dealer 10 times for a variety of defects; loose trim, water leaks, clutch issues.... it was never ending. The fuel gauge quit working occasionally, the cabin had a few rattles, doors didn't line up, and front bumper started drooping due to cheap plastic clips holding it on.

I've owned many cheap, economy cars over the years and this one was by far the worst. The very definition of a penalty box. At least it had a big back seat

Parks McCants    March 10, 2016 - 8:41PM

In reply to by Ryan (not verified)

Welcome Ryan. Well no, we're not reviewing the same car. It reads as if you purchased one of the first "Hecho in Mexico Fits.-- Bummer. While I've read similar assessments from our readers on past-owned Fits, I've yet to experience a "bad"one on my own accord. I will say this: I'm not a big fan of the 1.8 Liter / 6 speed manual setup - you owned one. As to the front seat, at 6 foot 5 inches tall, I had no problem with it. I certainly hope that your present ride is a bit more enjoyable. Take care.

Steve (not verified)    August 18, 2020 - 4:34PM

I own a 2016 Honda Fit EX. Love the look, colour, fuel economy, everything except one thing. The front seats. They are THE most uncomfortable car seats I have ever sat in. Unfortunately a 20 minute test drive was not long enough to reveal how poorly they are designed. I hate to say it but if I had to do it all over again I would not buy a Honda Fit.