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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep. 27, 2000
    Location
    Southern California - on a freeway someplace
    Posts
    9,882

    Question Honda Fit -- Good, Bad, Ugly, Alternatives?

    Leaning towards this for several reasons-- mileage, seems reasonable to drive, seems to hold a lot of stuff, safety, reliability, and size. Plus I have a Honda broker who will get me a great deal without me having to deal with the dealer.

    So, try to talk me in or out of it. Or suggest something else.

    Also, manual vs auto. Which may be a moot point because I can't seem to find a manual to test drive and that doesn't bode well for actually buying one of the dang things.

    I worry about hybrids b/c I drive a lot (barn is 50 miles away) and the batteries "only" last 85K miles (or so I've heard). If the car is longer than about 175" it will not fit in my garage. I know it's not going to be as nice to drive as the Acura RSX that was my last car. I do not want a gray (AKA silver, charcoal, etc) car as 75% of my cars have been that. I love the look of the Mini Coopers, but suspect that cars, like horses and men, should not be selected solely based on looks.
    The Evil Chem Prof



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov. 26, 2006
    Location
    Minnesota
    Posts
    709

    Default

    I just bought a Honda CRV that is lovely! My mechanic was very pleased when I showed him the car I bought because he said he has had great luck with Hondas being reliable and safe.

    I drove the Honda Fit just for fun when I was at the dealership (I needed something that can handle MN snowstorms, lol). I HATED driving it. It's very low to the ground, and it seemed as though it would get smooshed in any sort of crash. It reminded me more of being on a bicycle than driving a car!

    However, I know several people who own a Toyota Prius or Matrix (which I dislike for the same reason I didn't like the Fit), and they enjoy the gas savings. One thing to watch out for is forgetting to turn off your car if it is running on battery! (it's silent). Also, realize that no one can hear you coming since you don't have the engine rumble characteristic of automobiles. Finally, if you are buying it to be "environmentally friendly," realize that the batteries are arguably worse for the environment than a little extra gasoline.



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr. 2, 2003
    Posts
    4,944

    Default

    I have a Scion xD and I loooooooove my car.

    I drove a Fit too but I found the scion's looks to be a little less generic, and I had the predecessor xA as well so I was a little attached to the brand. I also thought the Fit sat very low compared to the scion which actually has a pretty high seating position for a small car.

    My car is going to be driven until it dies...I love it.



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar. 25, 2010
    Posts
    1,180

    Default

    I have a Prius (had to get rid of my suv when gas prices soared) and I love it! It seriously can handle just about as much "stuff" as an suv. I have gone to horse shows with a serious amount of tack in the back and people were surprised how much stuff was packed in there. I also brought home a pantry for my kitchen in it, just put down the back seat and in it goes! Hubby was worried about how we were going to get a Christmas tree without an suv, well right in the back of hte Prius it went! I feel like it is the best of both worlds, gas saving, and lots of utility. That said, I really miss my sunroof and leather seats!



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb. 4, 2004
    Posts
    2,675

    Default

    I just got a Civic, as I decided to get something a bit older.
    I always go for the manual, in part for repair costs (replacing a clutch is nothing compared to a transmission) and in part for performance--economy cars are not the peppiest usually.

    I didn't drive the Fit, though I did also test drive a Hyundai Accent and a Scion xD, both of which I liked less, and a Civic Hybrid which was pretty cool.

    It is my first summer without the (now dead) miata, so I'm still in sporty withdrawal.



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov. 2, 2006
    Location
    North Carolina
    Posts
    74

    Default

    I've heard very good things about the Fit, but I love my Pontiac Vibe. Gets about 33 mpg in mostly city driving, fairly peppy even with an automatic and very roomy inside. Mine is four years old and has been trouble free so far. It actually sits higher off the ground than the small sedans though not so high as the little SUVs. Did I mention the gas mileage? Pontiac is gone now, but the Toyota Matrix is pretty much the same car.



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb. 4, 2007
    Location
    Gainesville, FL
    Posts
    82

    Default

    I just bought a Yaris, when Toyota was having their 0% financing thing. So far, I love it.

    I opted for the manual, because I think it makes driving more entertaining...and it's cheaper I got the most basic model--no automatic anything, but it still came with a jack for my ipod, which I was very excited about

    It gets great gas mileage, even down here in FL where I have to have the AC on all the time. It has good safety ratings, too. Really, there is nothing I don't like about it.

    I would have liked to test drive the Fit, because I love Hondas (I used to have an older Civic coupe that I loved), but I was only looking at Toyotas because of their 0% deal.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb. 26, 2007
    Location
    Bronx, NY/Atlanta, GA/Fort Dodge, IA
    Posts
    3,409

    Default

    I have a Toyota Matrix - manual. Great gas mileage; about 32-33mpg in city driving, 43mpg straight highway.

    It's a 2008 and has about 68,000 miles on it... not a single problem (except that I just had to replace the tires; they were impressed that I had gotten so many miles on the OEM tires - I think I set some kind of record!)

    Great car, plenty of room to accommodate the "traveling tack room." I like to refer to it as a "sport utility wagon."

    I like it much better than my friends' Honda Fit.

    Pontiac Vibe IS the same thing - couple differences in detailing, but mechanically speaking, the same car. Made in the same line in the same factory in California. (Just like the old Chevy/Geo Prism and Toyota Corolla).

    ETA - Forgot to mention that I speed... all the time.
    I also checked my odometer when I went to the grocery store after posting this, and I actually have a bit over 70,000 miles on it.
    And to echo costco_muffins below, definitely Costco for tires! (Mine were more like $500, but with as much as I drive, I got ones with a longer warranty on them).
    Last edited by pattnic; Aug. 6, 2010 at 02:09 AM.
    Founder, Higher Standards Leather Care Addicts Anonymous
    Capitalization is the difference between helping your Uncle Jack off a horse and helping your uncle jack off a horse.



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct. 12, 2005
    Location
    Issaquah, WA
    Posts
    712

    Default

    We have a Fit. Absolutely love it and would buy another in a heartbeat. It is very spacious, easy to rearrange seating, fun enough to drive (coming from a Toyota Echo, so anything was an improvement). Handled much better than the Yaris and we have so much more space.

    We have the manual, which only comes in the base model. If you want the sport model you must have automatic. We loved the features of the car that came standard - power windows! power locks! It was all quite thrilling.

    I commonly haul a bike in the back, it fits great without taking the wheel off. Also, the space behind the back seat is big enough to house our two labs if necessary and we have extra passengers. The back seats fold down completely which makes the car very spacious. I also commonly load the car with 500+ pounds of grain (whenever it rains we don't take the truck on the grain runs) and while it drops lower a bit, it is still plenty useful.

    Handled well enough in the ice and snow with cables on the tires. Had to replace the tires at 30K miles, which is very common with the crap tires that are on the base model. Cost us $300 to get good new ones from Costco.

    Also, our actual gas mileage tends to be between 33 and 40mpg, depending on where we drove. We got 44 mpg one time where the entire tank was spent on 55mph roads with no traffic. The 33mpg tanks are from commuting up and down hills around Seattle during traffic...

    We love ours... can you tell?



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep. 27, 2000
    Location
    Southern California - on a freeway someplace
    Posts
    9,882

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by pattnic View Post
    I have a Toyota Matrix - manual. Great gas mileage; about 32-33mpg in city driving, 43mpg straight highway.

    It's a 2008 and has about 68,000 miles on it... not a single problem (except that I just had to replace the tires; they were impressed that I had gotten so many miles on the OEM tires - I think I set some kind of record!)

    Great car, plenty of room to accommodate the "traveling tack room." I like to refer to it as a "sport utility wagon."

    I like it much better than my friends' Honda Fit.

    Pontiac Vibe IS the same thing - couple differences in detailing, but mechanically speaking, the same car. Made in the same line in the same factory in California. (Just like the old Chevy/Geo Prism and Toyota Corolla).
    That's helpful, as Rental Car #2 that I just picked up is a Vibe. Rental Car #1 was an Avenger and was somewhat larger than what I'm used to--felt like I was driving the Queen Mary by comparison.

    Based on your mileage and year, it sounds like you drive about as much as I do.
    The Evil Chem Prof



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec. 21, 2005
    Location
    Cascade Foothills
    Posts
    2,360

    Default

    A friend of mine bought a new Fit this year and has had a terrible time getting the dealer to own up with mechanical issues; a slipping transmission, stalling, etcetera within days of leaving the lot. I'd be afraid to buy from his dealer!
    My ears hear a symphony of two mules, trains, and rain. The best is always yet to come, that's what they explained to me. —Bob Dylan

    Fenway Bartholomule ♥ Arrietty G. Teaspoon Brays Of Our Lives



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan. 1, 2008
    Posts
    4,914

    Default

    I never thought I'd say this, but go see the Kia Soul. Kinda like a Mini Cooper on steroids.



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Aug. 22, 2009
    Location
    Indiana
    Posts
    870

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    We got a Honda Fit a couple of months ago and love it! We like Toyota and have had several but we didn't love anything there- the Yaris was too small, the Matrix was said to have poor mileage and didn't score too high on Consumer Reports, and the Prius was a little more than we wanted to spend. We were thinking about another Corolla but liked the idea of a hatchback.

    While at Toyota we also looked at Scion's vehicles. Consumer reports said that the pillars on the xB created a pretty large blind spot and we were able to notice that during the test drive. The xD was ok but we felt the Fit was better for many reasons and we could get it for significantly less.

    The Fit is small, but while inside it feels much larger. The back seats will not only fold down but will flip up so you can put larger / taller things in the back seat (plants, etc.). The Fit Sport only comes in automatic so if you want a manual for the better mileage, you have to get the regular Fit.
    Quote Originally Posted by RugBug View Post
    Don't throw away opportunities because they aren't coming in exactly the form you want them to.



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jul. 11, 2000
    Location
    Brookline, NH, USA
    Posts
    2,108

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Go Fish View Post
    I never thought I'd say this, but go see the Kia Soul. Kinda like a Mini Cooper on steroids.
    I totaled my company car in an accident while driving to a meeting. My company arranged for a rental until we got a new company car lined up for me. It was a Chrysler minivan.

    Had the Chrysler rental for about 2 weeks and guess what? It was parked in my driveway and an oak tree came down in the middle of the night and fell across it. Not kidding. You should have heard my boss when I called him to tell him that news.

    Anyhoo....the long point is....the Chrysler minivan rental was then replaced with a Kia minivan rental. I was underwhelmed by the mention of a Kia, but after killing off both a company car and a rental car in 2 weeks, I felt like I didn't really have a say in the matter.

    Ended up REALLY liking the Kia! No joke! Way better than the Chrysler. Drove better, handled better, the interior was more comfortable. Everyone who got it in (those who dared, given my history), ended up saying how surprised they were by how much they liked it.

    I wouldn't dismiss Kia from consideration as a little drive about town car, at all.



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jan. 13, 2005
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    179

    Default

    Another thumbs up for the Pontiac Vibe. Just got mine at the beginning of the summer and I LOVE getting 33mpg tooling around town with the AC on. During the school year I come home 100 miles every weekend and I am definitely looking forward to reducing my gas budget. Plus, it has a jack for my iPod and a sunroof. What more could I want?



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Nov. 2, 2006
    Location
    North Carolina
    Posts
    74

    Default

    The 2009 and newer Vibes/Matrixes have slightly larger engines and poorer gas mileage than the older models. Also, the front passenger seat in the older models folds flat so you can fit extra long stuff inside.



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Apr. 2, 2003
    Posts
    4,944

    Default

    Oh, also, check out the new Ford Fiesta. It's pretty sweet for its price point.



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Apr. 25, 2002
    Posts
    359

    Default Honda Element?

    I've actually also been halfheartedly looking at Fits although I haven't driven one. Right now I have an Element and love it. The only reason I'm curious about the Fit is b/c it would give me a little better mpg without sacrificing much space. Having said that, I'm getting 22 in all city driving with the Element which really isn't too bad, and it's paid for so the Fit would have to be pretty amazing.

    Anyway, if you haven't driven one try the Element too. It's ugly but comfortable to ride in and drive especially if you're used to the boxy feeling of SUVs and trucks. The thing honestly is a tack and feed room on wheels and the space inside is kind of amazing. If they made a hybrid Element it would be perfect.



  19. #19
    Join Date
    Feb. 26, 2007
    Location
    Bronx, NY/Atlanta, GA/Fort Dodge, IA
    Posts
    3,409

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    Quote Originally Posted by Peggy View Post
    That's helpful, as Rental Car #2 that I just picked up is a Vibe. Rental Car #1 was an Avenger and was somewhat larger than what I'm used to--felt like I was driving the Queen Mary by comparison.

    Based on your mileage and year, it sounds like you drive about as much as I do.
    He, he, he... and the 2008 was actually purchased (new) in 2007 (Dec 26, but still...)

    I also drove a Dodge Caliber, but once I drove the Vibe (and then the Matrix), there was no comparison... but I did like the orange color and the orange/charcoal seats of the Caliber... but no stick =(
    Founder, Higher Standards Leather Care Addicts Anonymous
    Capitalization is the difference between helping your Uncle Jack off a horse and helping your uncle jack off a horse.



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Sep. 21, 2000
    Location
    New England
    Posts
    1,008

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    When I was looking for a new car in 2006, the choice came down to be between the Honda Fit and the Toyota Scion xB. The local Honda dealer convinced me that I wanted the Scion xB. There was nothing wrong with the Fit but the dealer's attitude was terrible. The back of the xB is now decorated with Baby Belgian's brown hair from my saddles.

    I use Consumer Reports to narrow down the choices of cars to consider.
    ------------------------------------------------------------
    But all the finest horsemen out—the men to Beat the Band—
    You’ll find amongst the crowd that ride their races in the Stand



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