The 2011 Honda Fit is the least expensive and smallest model it offers in the U.S. market, but it’s also one of the most impressive. The upright but jaunty little subcompact offers unmatched flexibility inside, and the space of a compact car inside its minimal footprint.
The Fit is peppy, enjoyable to drive (like most Hondas), and relatively fuel-efficient. Unlike the Ford Fiesta, with its SFE model, no Fit hits 40 mpg highway. But the EPA ratings are decent if not class-leading.. We suspect more drivers buy the Honda Fit because they like it, compared to buying a not-so-fun competitor (we won’t name names) for the few more dollars a month that their higher gas-mileage ratings will bring.
The 2011 Fit is tall enough that from some angles, it looks like a scaled-down minivan. That gives it remarkable space inside, aided by enough head- and legroom in the back seat to handle two adults comfortably and three at a pinch. Its rear “Magic Seat” lets you fold it down with a single action, and the headrests can stay put while you do it. The flat load floor that results could let you move a small household, and even with the rear seat up, there’s 20.6 cubic feet of load space.
Inside, upper and lower glove compartments, storage compartments, trays, cubbies, and cupholders make the Fit an exceptionally practical place to spend time without juggling the contents of your pockets among too few receptacles. The swoopy two-tier instrument panel and steeply raked windshield give a spacious feel to the interior—very different from the close and complicated dash layout of, say, the Ford Fiesta.
The 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine can be paired with a five-speed manual or five-speed automatic transmission, with the addition of paddle shifters if you order the Fit Sport model. It’s not all that fast, but again, it’s easily tossed into corners and vastly more entertaining to drive than most of its class. The automatic gives you the best EPA ratings—28 mpg city, 35 mpg highway, 31 mpg combined—with the manual giving 27 city, 33 highway, and a combined 29 mpg.
Standard features include air conditioning, cruise control, keyless entry, power windows, locks, and mirrors, and a CD sound system with MP3 jack. Upgrade to the Fit Sport model, and you get 16-inch alloy wheels, a security system, cruise control, keyless entry, and a number of appearance options. The navigation system is its own package.
For more details, see the full review of the 2011 Honda Fit on our sister site, TheCarConnection.