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2012 Honda Fit

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2012 Honda Fit Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 8.1

Americans have a love/hate relationship with subcompact cars. When times are good, we seem to prefer big, gas thirsty beasts to fuel efficient cars like the 2012 Honda Fit subcompact. But these are not such good times, and a car like the economical Honda Fit makes a lot of sense for a lot of reasons. The Fit is a tall car, with plenty of head and legroom for tall occupants. It has a versatile 5-door configuration, so larger items like bikes, skis or surfboards can easily fit in the Fit. And, perhaps most importantly, the subcompact Honda Fit strikes a nice balance between fuel economy and driving fun. While there are only a handful of subcompacts to challenge the 2012 Honda Fit, few have the backing of one of the most trusted automotive companies in recent memory. Honda's 5-door Fit is more than just inexpensive transportation. It is frugal on fuel, big on comfort, has lots of cool features, and is darn cute to boot. With competitors such as the Toyota Yaris, Ford Fiesta and Kia Rio5, not to mention the newest subcompact challenger, the 2012 Chevrolet Sonic, Honda's plucky 5-door has its work cut out to keep pace. But, if you're looking for a proven commodity with a sterling reputation for quality, economy and resale, then the 2012 Honda Fit 5-door is the right subcompact at the right time.

You'll Like This Car If...

If getting 35 miles per gallon (mpg) in a car that can fit four full-sized adults sounds like a dream come true, imagine it in a car that costs less than $16,000 and holds its value better than anything in its class. The 2012 Honda Fit 5-door subcompact can do all these things, plus is fun to drive and inexpensive to maintain.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you're looking for maximum fuel economy at a minimal price, the 2012 Honda Fit isn't the right subcompact for you. If you can forego the 5-door layout, the sedan versions of the Ford Fiesta and Kia Rio cost less, as do the 5-door Chevy Sonic, Hyundai Accent and Nissan Versa.

What's New for 2012

For 2012, Honda's Fit subcompact receives a number of improvements. The Fit Sport model gets a front-end facelift, while the base Fit 5-door gains color-key exterior mirrors. Inside, minor updates are made to the Sport and base car's accents, while both trims receive more soundproofing to help quiet the cabin.

Driving the Fit

Driving Impressions If you're expecting the 2012 Honda Fit to handle like a miniature Civic Si, think again. However, we admit we were surprised how much fun this car is, especially considering...

its subcompact status. We like the Fit's precise steering and its ability to keep its poise during hard cornering. The feeling gets even better when behind the Sport trim's steering wheel, which features paddle shifters on models equipped with the automatic transmission. The Honda Fit Sport is equipped with larger wheels and more aggressive tires, as well as a thick rear stabilizer bar, giving it a more playful attitude. With only 117-horsepower under the hood, the Honda Fit sometimes has to struggle on steep hills or when asked to overtake slower traffic. But in normal freeway driving the little Fit seems eager to please and has no problem merging from onramps or keeping up with fast-moving traffic. Of course, that's with one person in the driver's seat. Load the 5-door Honda Fit with additional passengers, however, and acceleration takes a noticeable turn toward the slower. The short-throw 5-speed manual transmission can help with quicker acceleration, however, and to our way of thinking it's just more fun to drive than the automatic.

Satellite Navigation
The available touchscreen navigation system inside the 2012 Honda Fit includes a voice recognition feature that allows you to speak rather than type in commands. Without ever removing your hands from the steering wheel, you can control the navigation, locate the nearest gas station, even find restaurant by genre.

USB Connectivity
With this universally accepted connection, the 5-door Fit can accommodate portable audio players and USB storage devices which can be controlled via the car's audio system.

2012 Honda Fit Details
2012 Honda Fit photo Interior

Where recent Honda interiors have been criticized for being too conservative, the 2012 Fit clearly didn't get the memo. Blue-lit gauges are surrounded by a curvaceous instrument panel flanked by equally elaborate door panels and seats. The Fit's interior is as fun as it is functional, with high seating positions both front and back, generous head, hip and legroom all around ,and convenient storage areas such as the cupholders built into the lower doors. When not carrying passengers, the 2012 Honda Fit's 5-door configuration can be utilized to load up all manner of gear. Just fold the rear seats flat and a respectable 57.3 cubic-feet of cargo space is ready for loading. That's more cargo room than in the Nissan Versa or Kia Rio5! Making the process even easier is a flat-folding front-passenger seat and Honda's rear "Magic Seat," which can be folded flush without having to remove the head restraints. OK, maybe it's not magic, but it is exactly the type of clever engineering people have come to expect from Honda.

Exterior
2012 Honda Fit photo

The 2012 Honda fit 5-door subcompact is more wagon than hatchback, bearing strong similarities to the popular Honda Civic Wagon of the mid 1980s. Designed with Americans in mind, the Honda Fit's tall roof and doors make it easy to get into and out of, while the generous expanse of glass, including triangular mini windows ahead of the front doors, gives everyone inside a clear view out. A long wheelbase gives the 2012 Honda Fit a smooth ride and a more stable platform – it also greatly increases the amount of legroom available to rear-seat passengers. The Fit's styling is rather progressive for an inexpensive subcompact, but its youthful appeal isn't lost on the Fit's target audience. The Sport trim takes things as step further, with a color-keyed lower body kit and spoiler, black headlamp bezels and dark "machine-finished" 16-inch alloy wheels.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The base 2012 Honda Fit 5-door includes a 5-speed manual transmission, power door locks and windows, power mirrors, a rear-window wiper/washer, 15-inch wheels with full covers, 60/40-split second-row Magic Seat with under-seat storage, cruise control, remote keyless entry, tilt-and-telescopic steering wheel, a 160-watt AM/FM/CD/MP3 sound system with four speakers, a USB audio interface, and an auxiliary audio input jack. Safety features include dual front airbags, front and rear side-curtain airbags, electronic traction and stability control, antilock brakes, and Electronic Brake Distribution.

Optional Equipment

One trim up is the Fit Sport, which includes a security system, leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, steering-wheel-mounted audio controls, color-keyed side mirrors, chrome exhaust finishers, a 6-speaker sound system and, with the 5-speed automatic transmission, steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters. Exterior upgrades include an underbody kit, a roofline spoiler, foglights, rear stabilizer bar and 16-inch dark "machine surface" finished alloy wheels. The Sport trim can also be ordered with Honda's satellite-linked navigation with voice recognition software. The automatic transmission is available for both trims.

Under the Hood

The 2012 Honda Fit 5-door has a 1.5-liter engine equipped with Honda's advanced i-VTEC system. The i-VTEC varies the intake and exhaust valve events, which enhances performance while still achieving good fuel economy and low emissions. The Fit transmissions come in two different 5-speed flavors: manual and automatic. The automatic version uses a 3-mode system: a "normal" drive mode, a "sport" mode that holds off shifting gears for maximum performance, and a "manual" mode, which allows the driver to shift gears with paddle shifters on the steering wheel.

1.5-liter in-line 4
117 horsepower @ 6,600 rpm
106 lb-ft of torque @ 4,800 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 27/33 (manual, Sport automatic), 28/35 (automatic)

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2012 Honda Fit Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.9
Out of 10

Based on 288 Ratings for the 2009 - 2014 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    9.1/10
    Quality
    8.9/10
  • Reliability
    9.3/10
    Performance
    8.7/10
  • Comfort
    8.5/10
    Styling
    8.8/10

I have never been more satisfied with a car.

By on Sunday, June 28, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 67,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "outstanding value when new and outstanding value now"

Cons: "a bit light for highway driving at 65 mph"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"In 57 years of driving this is my favorite car. In the 67K I have driven since new I have replaced brakes once and tires twice. I don't smoke nor allow anyone to in the car, so it smells fine. I have had work done on AC system twice, minor each time. I have kept records of gas mileage which has exceeded the epa estimates. I have changed the oil and filters every 5k and always used full synthetic oil. My only regret has been that I did not buy more options on the car. I rarely do, so it surprised no one that it is a basic car. I may sell it to someone and I may not depending on what I am offered."

2 people out of 5 found this review helpful

The best car I have ever owned.

By on Thursday, June 25, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 80,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "gas mileage, hauls alot, fun, seats fold flat"

Cons: "a little pricey, colors limited"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I bought my Honda Fit new and have had it for five years. It STILL seems new! I have driven it HARD! I take many long-distance (over 1200 miles) trips per year and am 100 percent confident in this car getting me where I need to go. It has never required servicing other than routine maintenance. This car is small and gets great gas mileage, yet has interior space that can haul a lot! I can fit my small Kayak INSIDE the car, with the seats folded down. This car can fit furniture, tall boxes, lamps, etc. I LOVE it!! I will definitely buy another one when this one gets "old", (which doesn't seem like it will happen any time soon, because it's still running strong.)"

1 person out of 1 found this review helpful

You Can't Miss With This Car!

By on Thursday, June 11, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 25,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Reliability, fun to drive, utility"

Cons: "MIddling gas mileage."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I thought my 2003 Civic was the best car I ever owned until I bought my Fit. Nothing, and I mean nothing, has gone wrong with it in 3 years. Oil changes, 1 set of front brake pads and a set of front tires. That's it. Excellent for utility & fun to drive. The only drawback is that, for being a small car, the mileage is only acceptable. For mixed city/freeway I get around 27 mpg. Not bad, but I would have expected 30+."

2 people out of 7 found this review helpful

Great first car

By on Wednesday, May 27, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 82,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Low price, fun to drive, comfortable, good space"

Cons: "Average mileage, can be $$$ to repair, weird shape"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"I bought my 2011 Honda fit used in February 2015. The car had about 76,000 miles on it at the time of purchase, and since then I have added a little over 6,000 more miles. I LOVE this car. It drives very well, and the mileage is decent. Both of my parents have heavy cars that are no fun to drive, so getting the fit was like purchasing a golf cart in a family that drives tanks. The outside of the car has a very sleek look to it, although my fit didn't come with a wing on it so, I will admit, it looks a little like a misshaped egg. When I first got into the car, I thought it looked a little shabby, everything has a very plastic look to it. This is probably due to everything being plastic. The seats are comfortable, and the passenger seat has a pouch on the back which is great for holding the owner's manual so it doesn't take up room in one of the two glove boxes (WHICH ARE VERY CONVENIENT). By far my favorite feature of this car is the 10 cup holders. 10. Flippin. Cup holders. That is 2 cup holders for each person in my car at maximum capacity. THINK OF ALL THOSE CUPS. On either side of the emergency break, there are little rectangle shaped holders that fit my phone and wallet really well so there's somewhere to put them while I'm driving so that I don't need to use any of my 10 cup holders. For a small car, the fit has lots of room, especially when you fold down the back seats. I'd imagine you could fit even more cups in all that space. When it comes to the car's performance on the road, it's a little above average. The car speeds up very quickly, and the gas pedal can be very touchy so you really have to ease onto it. Getting used to this car was quite the trip, to say the least. Another perk is being able to fit in almost any parking spot. I like to imagine this is why its called the Fit. I have backed in between two big trucks that were both parked over the line with a few inches to spare on each side. On a note of safety, I got in an accident in my Fit, and I'll admit it didn't do so well. Although the accident was small, none of the airbags went off despite impact to the drivers side, and the front left tire blew out. Lots of dents marginally larger than they would be on a heavier car. I'd say the car is easily damaged. Aside from that, I read a lot of reviews before buying this car, and I was afraid of a few things. Internal noise was a big one, and all I have to say is DON'T WORRY ABOUT IT. The internal noise can seem like a lot if you're used to heavier cars, but turn up the radio and the noise is gone. Many people complained about the speakers as well, and I'd say they're really good given the price of this car. There are many complaints, but I'm no critic. Its a cute car, it drives well, its reliable, considerably safe, and has lots of cup holders. I'd recommend this to first time drivers and to people who want a small car that can still handle cargo."

7 people out of 11 found this review helpful

great car for firs time car buyer

By on Friday, May 08, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 48,500

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "price, small, roomy interior, cup holders, fun"

Cons: "stiff drivers seat, too light"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This car is a great value for the price and all the optional add ons. Its reliable, rides easy and only has minor disavantages. its a bit light, so driving in windy conditions is a bit daunting and the driver seat could be more comfy, even after 7 years its a bit stiff. Other than those two little things i love this car. I can go places lager vehicles cant get and fit in more parking spaces in the city. Despite looking small, its increadibly roomy and fits a ton of stuff the way the seats fold down. More thatn enough cup holders and very sleek."

3 people out of 6 found this review helpful

My 2nd Honda Fit and am gonna buy a third!

By on Monday, March 30, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 38,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Great Price, versatile storage, clear bluetooth"

Cons: "Int. cabin noise, NAVI , rough ride"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"For it's class, the Honda Fit has VERY flexible interior storage. I moved a 46" flat screen TV in it's box!!! The interior noise can be a little loud, although greatly improved since 2009 (way outdated NAVI technology sent me down a few dead-ends, even with map updates). GREAT on gas for highway, up to 45 MPH on long distances, but city averaging about 29. Great reliability overall. I am looking forward to buying the 2015 Sport this Spring with many upgrades, ie. improved NAVI, heated leather seats, sunroof (which I miss since my CIVIC EX), CVT transmission, camera for turning, and improved gas mileage. ~ A Dedicated Honda owner since 1991!"

9 people out of 13 found this review helpful

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