Honda Fit, Civic, Accord and S2000 Reviews
The Honda Fit was launched as a 2007 model in April 2006 for Canada and the United States although it was a 2001 model release under the Jazz nameplate for many European and Asian countries. We have reviewed the North American Honda Fit.
The Fit is the entry level four door hatchback and comes well equipped with a starting price of $14980.00 plus freight and taxes. With a small 1.5 liter four cylinder i-VTEC engine producing 117hp at 6600 rpm the Fit is sufficiently responsive and handles with agility. It is an extremely fun car to drive reminiscent of those fast and agile go-karts on a summer afternoon except with lots of higher end standard features and tons of cargo space (1622L/57.7 cu.ft) with the rear seats folded down. The fuel economy is quite good (7.1 city and 5.7 highway L/100kms, 28 city and 31 highway mpg average) on regular pump fuel. Safety ratings from the NHTSA (5 star frontal and side and 4 star rollover for 2007) are top notch and the Honda Fit comes standard with anti-lock brakes and side curtain airbags.
Overall owner satisfaction for the Honda Fit is quite good with only a handful of complaints being registered. Some complaints are fuel tank sloshing excessively, automatic transmission engages rough and A/C condenser is vulnerable to road damage.
The Honda Fit cost of ownership is quite good on with repair costs being lower then average and parts being readily available and inexpensively priced. The 2007 Honda Fit models have had a few added warranties including wiper chatter, passenger seat not sliding and excessive wind noise from the top of the windshield.
The 2009 Honda Civics have continued virtually unchanged since a complete model redesign in 2006 except for a few aesthetics and gadgets. The Civic comes in various versions. A four door sedan with either a standard 1.8 L or a 2.0 L for the Si model only. The two door coupe is equipped also with either the 1.8 L 140 hp 4 cylinder or the Si model 2.0 L 197 hp 4 cylinder motor. The Civic also is available in a hybrid with a 1.3 L 110 hp gas/electric engine.
The 1.8 L 140 hp equipped Civics come in a variety of trim levels from the DX without A/C to the fully appointed EX-L(leather, moonroof) and supply the driver with responsive acceleration and surefooted handling. Both the coupe and sedans 4 cylinder engines are paired with either a five speed automatic or manual transmission which return very satisfactory fuel consumption ratings which are not far from the Honda Fit. The Civics are 8.0 city and 5.7 highway L/100kms or 25/36 mpg U.S. (owners do however report burning approximately 10% more)
The two tier instrument cluster which seems to be Honda's version of a heads up display, takes a little getting used to with its futuristic design but does work well at keeping your eyes focused on the road ahead. Safety ratings are classic Honda receiving top marks from the NHTSA with thanks to its standard ABS, EBD and six airbags(front, side, side curtain)> Owner satisfaction is very high with only a few issues such as rear wheel bearings breaking down and rear windows rattling. Cost of ownership is lower then that of most vehicles with only some work needing to be done at the dealership due to the nature of the 16 valve i-VTEC. Honda is also very generous with its "good-will" warranty work. Using this term may also better your chances of getting some kind of refund of deal from Honda.
The Si version which is equipped with an extremely invigorating 2.0 L i-VTEC 197 hp motor ideally matched with a six speed manual transmission comes in both coupe and sedan. The engine produces a throaty growl under acceleration and also produces commendable fuel economy (10.2 city and 6.8 highway L/100kms and 21 city to 29 highway miles per US gal) for such an aggressive car. Some owners report burning as much as 30% depending on driving habits. Handling is just as impressive with very nimble slalom results, although sometimes the Electric Assist Steering felt a little non-responsive when pushed extremely hard. This however doesn't dampen the ear to ear grin on your face while putting this exciting car through its paces.
The cost of ownership is a little higher then the standard Civic but still comes in much lower then most other vehicles in this class. Owner satisfaction is quite high due to the exciting nature of this car with only a few notable problems reported such as third gear slipping or grinding under heavy acceleration.
The Civic Hybrid is a much nicer version then was originally released as a 2003 model. Handling is nimble but the suspension is a bit stiffer then the standard Civic. The Hybrid comes equipped with a 1.3 L 110hp engine paired with a CVT (transmission without gears). Fuel economy is very good (4.7/4.3 L/100 kms city/highway and 40/45 miles per US gal.) but not as good as the to be released 2010 Insight. Cargo space is ample (294L and 10.4 cu.ft.) but unfortunately the rear seats will not fold due to the battery placement. Saving the environment and money on gas have a cost in luggage purchases. Safety is rated very high, scoring top marks with the NHTSA. Thanks to Honda's "safety for everyone" plan all vehicles are equipped with standard safety equipment including ABS,EBD, ACE body construction and six airbags (front, side and curtain).
Cost of ownership is good for hybrids but is higher then other Civics. Some higher costs to anticipate are electrical and battery disposal when the time comes, approximately 10 or so years.
Click here for Honda Fit, Civic, Accord and S2000 invoice prices for Canada and the U.S.
The 2009 Honda Accord comes in both a two door coupe and a four door sedan and are paired with either a 2.4 L four cylinder 177 hp/ 190 hp engine or the 3.5 L V6 which produces 268 hp. The engines match well with either the five speed manual or automatic transmission and a six speed manual transmission is available for the V6.
The redesign saw the Accord grow giving even more space to an already spacious interior. The handling is quite responsive and power is more then adequate in the four cylinder and exhilarating from the 268 horses produced from the V6. Honda's 2.4 L engine has the power and smooth operation of many V6's and the vehicle produces a comfortable ride matching some vehicles twice its price. The seats are well positioned and offer very much support and comfort. The EX-L models surround you with all the luxury appointments saved for high priced automobiles including voice recognition, bluetooth and navigation. Cargo space is very large (397L/ 14.0 cu.ft) which matches the vehicles interior.
Fuel economy is very impressive from both the four cylinder (9.9/ 6.4 L/100kms city/ highway and 21/ 30 miles per US gal) and six cylinder (11.0/ 6.7 L/100kms city/ highway and 19/29 miles per US gal) and real world consumption doesn't stray far from these numbers. The newly redesigned Accord gives you a large car to drive with a small car at the gas pump and accomplishes this all on regular pump gas.
The cost of ownership on the Accord is nearly that of the Honda Fit and is by far one of the smartest decisions when purchasing a mid to large size vehicle. Very few problems have been reported with the base Accord except minor complaints such as the screen for the radio going dark (previous generation) and brakes wearing out too quickly (previous generation up to '05). Some of the gadget laden models have had more problems (voice recognition not understanding requests etc). Safety ratings are standard Honda with five stars from the NHTSA. Safety standards include ABS, EBD, front side and curtain airbags all installed on Honda's ACE body construction.
Owner satisfaction is quite good with most stating they would continue to drive the Accord or only move up to Acura TL/RL.
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The Honda S2000 performance is rivaled by few with a 2.2 L engine, which is not that much bigger then the Honda Fit. The small four cylinder engine produces a whopping 237 hp at 7800 rpm which will pull you into the seat of your 1301kg/2864lbs road worthy rocket. Performance is agile and predictable making sure you don't push your own abilities to pilot beyond the limit. Power is hooked to the rear wheels via a crisp short shifting transmission. The ride is the downfall if you are looking for comfort. You don't sit in as much as you are enveloped by the cockpit while the ride is harsh and choppy. The S2000 is a performance car through and through so comfort is low on the list of priorities.
Fuel economy is good when the vehicle is not pushed (11.8/8.4 city/ highway L/100kms and 18/25 miles per US gal.), but this is probably not one of your main criteria when driving this vehicle.
Owner satisfaction is good allowing you to have a well complimented vehicle which fills almost every need a car like this could. Cost of ownership is listed as average due to the severe punishment inflicted by the operators.
*Definitions for Honda Fit, Civic, Accord, S2000 reviews*
1.ABS: Anti-lock Braking System
2.EBD: Electronic Brake Distribution
3.ACE: Advanced Compatibility Engineering