2008 Honda Fit Sport new car reviews

Better than: Your SUV
But not as good as: 1991 Civic Wagon
GRM Bang For The Buck Index: 77.35

When Honda introduced their Fit to the U.S. market in late 2006, some wondered if Americans were ready for a subcompact city car. Flash forward about 18 months, and it looks like their timing couldn't have been better. Honda's micro-utility vehicle seems to have that magical blend of practicality and economy that made the early Civics so popular.

Featuring four conventional doors and a large hatchback, the Fit is a lesson in space management. The rear seats can fold forward, backward and straight up, allowing cargo of nearly any shape to fit under the Fit's tall roof. The rear seats offer more in the way of cargo flexibility than comfort, but driver and front passenger seating is plush enough for a road trip.

Power is adequate, but we wouldn't pick the Fit for a getaway car in a bank heist. Handling was quite good, however, and with some sticky tires and a manual transmission we could see the Fit being an autocross-capable commuter on par with a base MINI Cooper.

Other staff views

David S. Wallens David S. Wallens
Editorial Director

This is the car that 95 percent of the population should be driving. It’s good on gas, seats four comfortably, offers excellent visibility, has a small footprint, doesn't cost a mint, and should last a long time. In a pinch it can seat five, and the seats can be reconfigured to hold a ton of cargo. Even the stock audio system is fine for me.

Tom says that his wife's Fit is too slow with the sport-auto gearbox, but I didn't mind it. Maybe it feels slow when carrying a family of four, but with two people abroad it was just fine. Around town downshifting to the S-mode helped, but it felt quicker than the autobox Clubman.

Can't wait to see the next version. If Honda licensed this version of the Fit to some other car makers, most of our problems would be solved. This could almost be called the Model T for this century.

Tom Heath Tom Heath
UberDork

I loved the Fit. For about 17,000 dollars with all the options, the Fit is pretty reasonable to own and operate. It's also tough to argue against Honda reliability, and the Fit is surprisingly fun to drive thanks to the responsive handling. You name the accolade, the Fit's got it for you--except acceleration. I know it's not a performance car, but I wanted a bit more pull from the engine bay.

I'd like another 20 horsepower, a limited slip differential, stiffer suspension and no extra weight. Maybe the next generation of Fit will offered in a more sporting Si trim before MINI offers a Clubman that has Fit practicality.

Per Schroeder Per Schroeder
PowerDork

Neat car, but why did they have to make it so tall? Imagine a Fit Coupe that was 12-inches shorter in height....it could be the modern interpretation of the CRX--not the bloated 2900 lb. car that the lastest spy buzz is talking about.

If for no other reason than it's light and cheap, I love this car.

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Comments

View comments on the GRM forums
GlennS
GlennS Dork
7/30/08 11:53 p.m.

btw, my friend showed up at my house today with his 9 foot surfboard inside his fit with about 2 inches to spare, front seat folded down.

integraguy
integraguy UltraDork
8/3/08 5:54 a.m.

Honda keeps teasing it's fans with the possibility of a CRX replacement. I second the idea of using the Fit's "chassis" as a starting point for a new CRX. Either that, or Honda could do the Del Sol right this time and turn the Fit into a fun 2 seat roadster, but WITHOUT the stupid "looks like a Japanese 914" styling.

mikephilpott
mikephilpott New Reader
9/23/08 12:22 a.m.

I've driven both the auto and the manual tranny Sport models. The auto is SLOW. Felt like I had to drive it "pedel to the metal" all the time, with the little engine really straining to keep up, just to keep from getting inhaled by day-to-day traffic on I-4. The manual 5-speed, however, significantly changes things. It's a sweet shifting unit and totally alters the character of the car. Much more eager and responsive. Fun, actually. A bit of road noise is apparant but otherwise, I really like the Fit. I would buy a Sport Manual but not the auto box.

Fit_Blue
Fit_Blue
2/26/09 9:23 p.m.

Well I own one and it's hands down the best car i've ever owned! Roomy as hell for the tiny footprint and fun to drive for what it is. Also the auto isn't that bad, its far better than other 4cyl automatics i've encountered.

wheelsmithy
wheelsmithy Reader
3/24/09 8:57 p.m.

Just bought the '09 restyled fit. Incredibly versatile, everything you need nothing you don't(except power windows, ABS, etc). The engine has a flat, unexciting torque curve, but what you get for a "microcar" is awesome. When I saw the phrase "majic back seat", I had to have one. I have not been disappointed. And I got it for the same price as an '08 on the dealers lot with 30K miles.

Tom Heath
Tom Heath UberDork
12/10/13 12:00 a.m.

When Honda introduced their Fit to the U.S. market in late 2006, some wondered if Americans were ready for a subcompact city car. Flash forward about 18 months, and it looks like their timing couldn't have been better. Honda's micro-utility vehicle seems to have that magical blend of practicality and economy that made the early Civics so popular.

Featuring four conventional doors and a large hatchback, the Fit is a lesson in space management. The rear seats can fold forward, backward and straight up, allowing cargo of nearly any shape to fit under the Fit's tall roof. The rear seats offer more in the way of cargo flexibility than comfort, but driver and front passenger seating is plush enough for a road trip.

Power is adequate, but we wouldn't pick the Fit for a getaway car in a bank heist. Handling was quite good, however, and with some sticky tires and a manual transmission we could see the Fit being an autocross-capable commuter on par with a base MINI Cooper.

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