Is the Honda Fit a good car for high school students?Jul 21st, 2020
Honda’s cheerful wee Fit, the smallest member of the 2020 Honda family (at least on these shores) is just that – a great fit for many high school students. Its unique combination of attributes are best suited to the frugal teenager whose priorities are fuel efficiency, functionality, and fun.
The Fit is the least expensive model in Honda’s lineup but that doesn’t mean bare bones transportation. Every 2020 Fit is equipped with Bluetooth, a multi-angle rearview camera, and a USB port. Most trim levels come with Apple CarPlay/Android Auto, two USB ports, Siri Eyes Free compatibility, Wi-Fi tethering, text message function, air conditioning, and heated front seats. You can load up your Fit with luxuries like leather, navigation and satellite radio if you’re so inclined. Connectivity and comfort are covered.
Safety is another plus. All generations of Fits have earned excellent scores in crash tests. The current Fit is also available with Honda Sensing, a comprehensive suite of driver assist technologies like collision mitigation braking and lane keep assist. It should be noted that Honda Sensing is only available on Fits with the CVTs (continuously variable transmissions, i.e. automatics) so those considering a manual transmission will have to weigh the engagement that comes with shifting for yourself against that extra layer of safety. Higher trim levels, Sport and up, are all equipped with a CVT.
Clever and efficient packaging is a long standing Honda characteristic and the Fit really shines in this area. The footprint is small, making for a vehicle that is easy to park and garage, but interior space is very generous, and supremely versatile. The gas tank sits under the front seats instead of hanging out at the rear. This allows for deep and flexible cargo area when combined with the Fit’s signature Magic Seats. Flip the rear seat cushions up for tall items like potted plants. Flip both rear seatbacks forward and you can get most bikes in without removing a wheel. Fold both the front and rear right seat backs forward and you can accommodate a couple of surfboards and still have room for a passenger. A band student with a tuba or a member of the school hockey team would be well served by the Fit.
Passengers are not forgotten. Assigning lanky friends to the roomy rear seats is not akin to giving them detention though putting a third in the middle is a bit of a squeeze. Placing the gas tank in the middle of the car does make for a slightly unusual seating position so try before you buy.
Fuel economy is typically one of the main motivators for shopping in the subcompact market. High schoolers on a tight budget won’t be disappointed. Depending on trim level and transmission the Fit sips as little as 7.0 litres of fuel for every 100 km in the city and 5.9 litres for every 100 highway km. The smooth CVT is a bit more efficient than the manual, particularly in the city, if not quite as much fun.
It’s in the city where the Fit’s fun factor is at its highest. Nimble handling is the order of the day and the 128 hp (130 in manual equipped Fits) direct injected 1.5 litre provides plenty of scoot in an urban setting. The Fit is less successful as a highway warrior. You can get up to 100 km/hr from a stop in under 10 seconds but passing might require a bit of planning. Though the current Fit is more substantial and refined than earlier versions the ride can get a bit jittery over rough roads. Having said that, after reaching cruising speed the Fit feels pretty solid despite its tall profile and light weight.
There is more to the Fit’s value proposition than generous levels of standard equipment, roomy interior, and excellent fuel economy. Students taking their Fit with them to college can also take comfort in the Fit’s stellar reputation for long term reliability.
Like other models in the Honda family, the Fit is a great all-rounder with a little magic and good dose of fun thrown into the mix. The Fit is mostly like to appeal to the budget conscious teen who requires a vehicle with maximum cargo flexibility and who also places a high value on driving pleasure.