The redesign resulted in the all-new 2016 Honda Fit was extensive to say the least, with a key enhancement in its active and passive safety systems. Honda engineers targeted top-level ratings from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, and to that end, the Gen III Fit's upgrades earned it a NTHSA 5-Star rating and a Top Safety Pick honors from the IIHS -- although the lack of available front crash mitigation technology did prevent this versatile subcompact hatch from grabbing its Top Safety Pick+ accolade.

Also: Class of 2016 -- New Cars Ready to Roll 

The Fit's safety story actually starts with its more robust core that leverages the automaker's ACE (Advanced Compatibility Engineering) body design. The central structure now consists of 27 percent high-strength steels, a strategic revamp that helped trim 44 pounds out of the Fit's basic body while further improving its ability to route crash energy around rather than into the passenger compartment. The redesign also made the Fit's nose more forgiving in a scenario that involves striking a pedestrian. 

Enhanced peripheral vision

While offering a long list of current must-have standard features including advanced stability/traction controls and ABS with Brake Assist and Electronic Brake force Distribution to side curtain airbags with a rollover sensor and Hill Start Assist, the 2015 Fit also introduced a selection of new active and passive safety technologies. All versions -- LX, EX and EX-L -- now feature an Expanded View Driver's Mirror that provides a wider field of vision off to the left as well as a new multi-angle rearview camera that offers a choice of top/normal/wide imaging. The EX and EX-L go one step further and add Honda's trick Lane Watch. This driver-selectable system uses a camera mounted in the passenger-side mirror to display what's in the adjacent right lane on the car's 7.0-inch Display Audio screen.

Also: Kelley Blue Book Best Buy Awards of 2015 

On the general housekeeping front, our Fit EX-L long-termer has now eclipsed the 8,000-mile mark and according to the oil-life readout will be heading in for an oil change within the next week or so. While still racking up respectable fuel economy figures, this latest monthly stint did see its combined number dip to 32.1 mpg, which is barely over the Fit's official EPA city estimate. Beyond that, it remains rattle, squeak and otherwise trouble-free.

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