Even though North America is widely known for its love of massive cars when compared to the rest of the world, the recent rise in gas prices coupled with the economic downturn changed the tune of the average driver. Small, sleek, and nimble cars have become a trend unto themselves. Being able to fill the tank for a lower cost while parking in a busy city setting made compacts popular again. For those who really want the most popular option, the 2009 Honda Fit is the place to look.
While it may seem silly that ""supercars"" are suddenly being outdone by the Honda Fit, it actually makes sense to the people who investigated the car. In 2009, the Fit was completely redesigned to meet the high demand for compact cars with luxury in mind. The drivability of the Fit is one of the best in its class with more widespread power and increased handling features. Also, the interior is outfitted with some very nifty features that allow the cabin to be more comfortable for even rather tall adults.
Body Style: Compact hatchback
Engines: 1.5-liter four-cylinder
Transmissions: five-speed manual and five-speed automatic
Models: Base and Sport
Consumers desire compact cars like the Fit in reaction to rising gas prices and complex parking spots around busy urban areas. The 2009 model was completely redesigned so that everyone could find something in a smaller car. With the increase in length and width, the interior is more spacious than previous models. Also, the backseat was made to function more efficiently so that passengers in the rear can actually stretch out. A more powerful engine, in addition to sharper handling, makes the Fit very fun to drive in any setting. Finally, safety features increased to create higher standards in the compact class.
The smooth and sleek look of the 2009 Honda Fit matches perfectly with its drivability. The overall appearance is nimble and sharp with a very stylish swept-back look. The curves of the car seem to flow gently into each other, beginning with the slim but high reaching headlights. The new model is 4.2 inches longer than the previous one, while still maintaining a curb weight of 2500 pounds. While a four-door hatchback might seem to be old-fashioned, the 2009 Fit finds a way to make it look very trendy and functional. If a bit of flair is needed, the Sport trim package includes a stylish rear spoiler to increase the high-class racing attributes innate to the Fit.
Even though most manufacturers focus interior redesigns on style, the 2009 Fit chose to go the way of functionality. The rear seats have been remade to increase comfort and use. Without having to remove the headrest, drivers can fold down the rear seat unencumbered. There are even a few neat tricks that can be done with the rear seat, such as flipping up the cushions in a crew-cab pickup, to make a taller cargo area in the back. The longer backseat also increases general comfort for taller individuals riding in the rear. Taller drivers on the other hand will be very happy with the new telescoping steering wheel to allow more room to maneuver and properly fit.
Performance & Handling
The stylish four-door hatchback Fit is powered by the same 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine as the previous model that can produce 117 horsepower and 106 lb-ft of torque. However, it was refined with several alterations. The most notable change is the improved version of i-VTEC variable valve timing. The increase in overall power helps with handling, even though the upgrade did not lead to a dramatic burst in horsepower. All 2009 Honda Fit models are front-wheel drive with an option of transmission. The five-speed manual is standard on the base model, while the five-speed automatic is optional. On the 2009 Sport trim, the automatic transmission actually comes with a manual shift control through the use of steering wheel mounted paddles.
More emphasis was placed on safety standards in the 2009 Fit. The new body structure itself is part of the latest crash safety engineering efforts of Honda. The standard safety equipment included with the special features of the body are anti-lock disc brakes, active front head restraints, front-seat side airbags, and full-length side-curtain airbags. The 2009 Fit Sport model can be optionally equipped with a stability control system as well.
EPA Fuel Economy
Honda Fit, manual transmission: 27/33 mpg city/highway
Honda Fit, automatic transmission: 28/35 mpg city/highway
- Nimble handling
- Good fuel economy
- Generous standard features
You Won't Like
High fuel economy and sleek handling.
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