The 2012 Honda Fit might be the smallest of Honda's U.S. economy-car offerings, but it's one of the most versatile. Despite its subcompact size, the 2012 Honda Fit seems to defy the laws of physics inside, providing compact-car space and remarkable versatility.
The impressive interior space inside the Fit is thanks to Honda's clever design efforts. Looking like a scaled-down minivan from some angles, the Fti's gas tank resides under the front seats, ensuring the rear luggage space is an impressive 20.6 cubic feet, even without the rear seat folded.
There's more. Thanks to Honda's clever rear "Magic Seat" design -- which allows the rear seat bases to be folded up against the seat backs to transport bulky items behind the front seats, the Honda Fit can carry far more luggage than other cars in its class.
Opt to fold the rear seats down, and they fold flat with headrests in position to provide a perfectly low, flat load-bay area.
For smaller items, the Fit offers upper and lower glove compartments, storage compartments, trays, cubbies and cupholders that provide storage solutions for everyone from busy moms to those who spend a lot of time on the road.
Even with all these storage options, the 2012 Honda Fit feels airy and spacious, thanks to its no-nonsense two-tier instrument panel and steeply raked windshield--giving it a very different feel inside than competing cars like the 2012 Ford Fiesta.
Talking of competition, while the Honda Fit isn't capable of the 40-mpg highway rating that some other subcompacts achieve, we suspect more drivers buy the Honda Fit because they like its versatility and upright driving position.
While the 1.5-liter, four-cylinder engine -- available with a five-speed manual or five-speed automatic transmission -- isn't the most powerful one around, the Fit feels peppy and much more enjoyable 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 rated at 27 city, 33 highway, for a combined 29 mpg.
Like many in its class, the Honda Fit has been awarded a Top Safety pick by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, while it gets a 4-star rating in the new, tougher NHSTA crash test ratings.
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, and a number of appearance options. The navigation system is its own package.
Prices start at $15,175 for the base-level Fit, while you'll spend upwards of $19,540 for a Fit Sport, complete with satellite navigation.
For more details, see the full review of the 2012 Honda Fit on our sister site, TheCarConnection.