Honda FIT | Latest Review
The all new Honda FIT offers outstanding efficiency, comfort and class-leading specification.
- Advanced hybrid powertrain delivers optimum efficiency and performance*
- Contemporary design is an evolution of the iconic Jazz silhouette
- Class-leading interior space and outstanding practicality
- Suspension enhancements deliver a dynamic driving experience
- Comprehensive suite of advanced safety features*
* The introduction of Honda SENSING
The all-new Honda FIT provides an effortless driving experience with efficient and responsive performance delivered by an advanced 1.5L DOHC petrol engine, shared with the latest Honda Ballade. The all-new FIT range, which replaces the Jazz nameplate in South Africa, will also be the first model to introduce Honda’s new e:HEV hybrid technology, marking the return of Honda Motor Southern Africa (HSAF) to the Hybrid market. This next-generation FIT Hybrid will feature Honda’s impressive e:HEV two-motor hybrid powertrain technology delivering a compelling blend of strong performance and impressive efficiency to complement its class leading levels of interior comfort and usability.
To revolutionise the essence of its compact city car, Honda focused on a new design philosophy, encapsulated in the Japanese notion of 'Yoo no bi'. This recognises the beauty that exists in everyday items, which have been perfected over time to make them even more appealing and ergonomically satisfying to use for their specific purpose.
REBRANDING OF THE HONDA JAZZ
“The all-new generation of the longstanding Honda Jazz will officially be reintroduced into the South African market as the “All-New Honda FIT”, in recognition of the vast and distinct improvements made over the previous model,” says Yuishi Fukuda, President of Honda Motor Southern Africa.
“The all-new Japanese-built Honda FIT represents a new generation of cars for Honda Motor Southern Africa focused on reasserting Honda’s position as a brand that is synonymous with outstanding quality, durability and technology,” says Dinesh Govender, General Manager of Honda Motor Southern Africa. “Our rebranding strategy for the all-new FIT aims to rebrand the image of the model from one that has always appealed to customers’ rational side due to its space and practicality, to one that appeals more to customers’ emotional side with an exquisite design, exceptional drive and brand-new technology.”
HSAF’s rebranding strategy, furthermore, aims to target a new, more diverse group of customers with an attractive and unique product offering. Despite the model’s new branding direction, the all-new FIT will still cater for an extremely loyal set of Honda customers who are already familiar with the brand and what it represents.
A SEAMLESS, CONTEMPORARY DESIGN
When designing and developing the latest generation FIT, Honda engineers took the bold step of completely reimagining the model from the ground up. In the process they conceived a compelling new proposition in the compact segment: an all-new city car that combines exceptional efficiency with outstanding everyday usability, ready to meet the needs of modern consumers.
The new seamless and contemporary design evolution introduces a beautiful simplicity to the timeless shape of the outgoing Honda Jazz. Its smooth contours follow the short nose, long roof line and cabin-forward style of previous generations, to form the instantly recognisable monoform silhouette. The result adds a new emotional appeal to the class-leading levels of comfort and practicality for which the model is renowned.
The smooth exterior surface treatment and sleek front face are key to achieving a sophisticated visual balance, with all the different exterior surfaces, including the C-pillars and rear combination lamps, blended together, devoid of any lines.
The A-pillar thickness has been more than halved from 116mm to just 55mm with the pillar behind now providing the main structural strength. This, along with the hidden windscreen wipers, provides the driver and front seat passenger with an unobstructed, almost panoramic field of vision. The sweeping A-pillars and a sleek door-mirror design also minimise noise and drag caused by wind turbulence and increase aerodynamic efficiency.
The overall height is reduced by 13mm, which combines with a forward-leaning tailgate design to create a more compact-looking, well-balanced cabin and a reassuringly surefooted stance. Sleek styling enhancements, including a refined rear roof spoiler and a premium-look light cluster design, complement the dynamic FIT shape and maintain the well-balanced profile.
A COMFORTABLE FEEL-GOOD INTERIOR
The philosophy of 'Yoo no bi' continues in the clean, minimalist interior, wrapping utility, practicality and functionality in a simple, uncluttered ergonomic cabin. To introduce the car’s pleasing utility, durable materials and contemporary, soft-touch dashboard materials are applied throughout the cabin.
The uncluttered, user-focused dashboard incorporates a slim instrument panel that sweeps horizontally across the cabin. The deletion of the dashboard visor further reflects the key focus on driver visibility, enhancing the sense of exceptional spaciousness. With Honda placing ultimate usability at the core of the design ethos, the central HMI 9-inch touchscreen (standard on Elegance and Executive grades) and 7-inch full TFT instrument cluster which is standard across the range, are simple and easy to read. Convenience features and controls are intuitive by design, contributing to a stress-free driving experience. Adding to the refined ambience, the flat, wide centre console armrest is height-aligned with the door armrest, echoing the interior comfort levels of larger, premium cars.
The new ultra-thin A-pillars improve horizontal visibility from the previous generation model’s sixty-nine degrees to a class-leading ninety degrees. This, along with the hidden windscreen wipers and flat dashboard, allows unobstructed views and natural light to flow into the cabin through the panoramic windscreen and front quarter glass. This creates a sense of spaciousness for occupants, enhances the airiness in the cabin and contributes to the interior's bright, open feel.
The luggage capacity (with rear seats up) starts from 309 litres (298 for HEV) and increases to an impressive 1210 litres (to the roof with the rear seats down) (1199 for HEV).
Also key to maximising cabin room is the positioning of the fuel tank in the centre of the chassis beneath the front seats, which is unique in this class. This enables the FIT to retain the exceptionally versatile rear Magic Seat configuration that offers both fold-flat or flip-up seat flexibility, offering optimum versatility to accommodate cargo of various shapes and sizes. The packaging and overall design also permits a wider tailgate opening and new stepless flat floor that makes loading and unloading the boot easier than ever.
Front seat occupants also benefit from Honda's newly developed body stabilising seat frame featuring a new premium mat structure for additional support and an increase of 30mm in seat padding thickness for extra comfort. These changes enhance comfort levels and provide greater lumbar support to minimise fatigue.
Adults in the second row also travel in increased comfort thanks to the redesign of the Magic Seat structure allowing the hinges to be moved outside of the passenger hip points. Class-leading rear leg space of 986mm – made possible by the torsion beam suspension lay out – and an increase of 24mm in seat padding thickness also adds to the enhanced comfort levels.
ALL NEW INFOTAINMENT SYSTEM
The all-new Honda FIT offers one of the most compelling infotainment packages in its segment, combining intuitive technology with seamless in-car connectivity.
The simple-to-use LCD touchscreen interface is designed to minimise driver distraction; operation time for the most regularly-used controls is reduced by 58% compared with the previous model, providing a safer and more ergonomic experience. The system interface is navigated using familiar smartphone-style usability, with swipe controls to scroll through pages and lists. The display can be configured to suit any usage requirements, incorporating customisable shortcuts to frequently used functions and audio sources.
The comprehensive suite of in-built apps can be supplemented by smartphone mirroring, enabled by Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, with the latter available via wireless connection.
The car's interior designers paid great attention to detail when creating the uncluttered dashboard and interface. In response to consumer demand, Honda has reinstated physical controls for key functions, with tactile, precise-feeling dials for heating and ventilation settings.
POWERFUL e:HEV HYBRID TECHNOLOGY
With the introduction of the all-new Honda FIT, Honda Motor Southern Africa aims to re-enter the local hybrid market, where Honda was once a major player, for the first time since the discontinuation of the Honda CR-Z in 2016.
The base FIT petrol models are equipped with Honda’s new 1.5-litre DOHC i-VTEC petrol engine generating a power output of 89kW @6600rpm and torque of 145Nm @ 4300rpm. This new 1.5-litre powertrain is more powerful and efficient than the outgoing model while returning a fuel consumption figure of just 5.5L/100km and a CO2 emission figure of 132 g/km.
Carrying Honda's new e:HEV badge, the all-new flagship FIT Hybrid has been engineered to deliver an exceptional blend of strong performance and impressive efficiency, to complement the model’s class-leading levels of interior comfort and ultimate usability.
The e:HEV system is newly developed for the FIT and engineered to deliver an enjoyable driving experience. It consists of two compact, powerful electric motors connected to a 1.5-litre DOHC i-VTEC petrol engine, a lithium-ion battery and an innovative fixed-gear transmission via an intelligent power control unit, which all work harmoniously together to provide a smooth and direct response.
The total output of 80kW and 253Nm of electric propulsion torque can propel the car to 100km/h in just 9.4 seconds and on to a maximum speed of 175km/h. The effect is an effortless and comfortable journey, whether travelling through urban areas or cruising at high speed on motorways. Its fuel-efficient hybrid system returns a fuel economy figure of just 3.7L/100km and produces CO2 emissions of 88g/km, exempting the FIT Hybrid model from additional CO2 tax.
To deliver such a highly-rewarding driving experience and exceptional efficiency, the advanced e:HEV hybrid set-up seamlessly selects from three interchangeable drive modes:
- EV Drive: the lithium-ion battery supplies power to the electric propulsion motor directly
- Hybrid Drive: the engine supplies power to the electric generator motor, which in turn supplies it to the electric propulsion motor
- Engine Drive: the petrol engine is connected directly to the wheels via a lock-up clutch and drive force is transmitted directly from engine to the wheels
In most urban driving situations, optimum efficiency is achieved through seamless transitions between EV Drive and Hybrid Drive. For driving at highway speeds, Engine Drive is used, supplemented by an on-demand peak power ‘boost’ from the electric propulsion motor for fast acceleration.
In Hybrid Drive, excess power from the petrol engine can also be diverted to recharge the battery via the generator motor. EV Drive is also engaged when the car is decelerating, harvesting energy through regenerative braking to recharge the battery.
Switching between the three driving modes is unnoticeable to occupants as the FIT engineers dedicated significant efforts to minimising lag during transitions. The high-speed electric motors have been developed in-house by Honda to be as lightweight, compact and efficient as possible, the electric propulsion motor spins up to 13,300rpm to achieve a maximum speed of 175km/h. The maximum torque of 253Nm is generated from 0rpm for substantial low-speed acceleration.
Rather than using a conventional transmission, the FIT Hybrid is equipped with a newly-developed Electronically controlled Continuously Variable Transmission (e-CVT) with a single fixed-gear ratio to create a direct connection between moving components. The result is a smooth and reassuring transfer of torque with a linear feel during acceleration across all drive modes.
When in Hybrid Drive mode the all-new e-CVT control logic ensures that the electric propulsion motor provides powerful torque, whilst the engine provides a direct and linear feel during acceleration, similar to that of a multi-stage transmission.
The all-new FIT Hybrid is the first model in Honda Motor Southern Africa’s line-up to wear the new e:HEV branding that will appear on all of the brand’s future hybrid vehicles.
EXCEPTIONAL DRIVING DYNAMICS FOR AN EFFORTLESS DRIVING EXPERIENCE
Building on the Jazz's driving dynamics and responsive performance, Honda has enhanced the car’s chassis, suspension and body rigidity for exceptional agility and best-in-class ride comfort in the FIT.
The ratio of higher tensile strength steel has risen by 80% for the new generation model, helping to reduce weight and improve safety performance in the event of a crash. Static bending is improved by 6% while static torsion is improved by 13%.
The adoption of a new aluminium die-cast rear damper mount structure improves the driving experience. While further suspension improvements, such as new spring material and reduced friction-bush design, plus the rear torsion beam suspension layout, also support the outstanding ride comfort and driving enjoyment.
The front suspension geometry has a low front roll centre to enhance stability, which helps the FIT feel precise, natural and agile when cornering. Its agility is further augmented by an electric power-assisted steering system and steering ratio improvements, which deliver accurate feedback to the driver and provide more natural direction-changing behaviour.
The low friction suspension components combine with the long wheelbase to provide an impressive base level of stability by naturally reducing pitching motions. Sophisticated damper systems also contribute to a more comfortable ride for all occupants, and minimise the transmission of vibrations from the road into the cabin, contributing to the car's refined composure.
Powerful stopping power is ensured by an all-disc braking system featuring 262mm ventilated front discs and 239mm solid discs at the rear. Electronic brake systems include: Vehicle Stability Assist, Brake Assist System, Hill Start Assist and Automatic Brake Hold.
Honda’s all-encompassing approach to NVH management ensures minimal cabin intrusion of engine, road and wind noise. Increased insulation and sound deadening material reduce road noise from road surface variations, improving cabin ambience. The cabin and floor panel are separated to reduce resonance through the car's structure, and sound insulation has been added around the dashboard. Noise from the engine has also been reduced through the use of resin material to the engine mount to insulate the engine bay. The sound absorbing materials and thicker glass contribute to a significant reduction in noise intrusion to the cabin over the previous Jazz model.
Additionally, the improved body stiffness and the use of higher tensile strength steel affords new structural technologies to allow for the new thin A-pillars, complemented by the aerodynamic door mirror design, rear spoiler and new alloy wheel design. These aerodynamic features minimise airflow noise, helping to reduce drag and improve refinement.
COMPREHENSIVE SUITE OF HONDA SAFETY TECHNOLOGIES
The all-new FIT incorporates as standard a suite of premium active and passive safety technologies designed to make driving both easier and safer.
The FIT incorporates Honda's proprietary Advanced Compatibility Engineering™ (ACE™) body structure technology that forms the foundation for excellent passive safety performance, enhancing occupant crash protection. A network of connected structural elements distributes crash energy more evenly throughout the front of the vehicle, reducing the forces transferred to the passenger compartment.
Passive safety is as important to Honda as active safety to protect occupants in the event of an accident. FIT owners and occupants are protected by six airbags, comprising front, side and curtain SRS airbags.
Enhanced Honda SENSING active safety technology, available exclusively on the FIT Hybrid model, offers a broad range of driver assistance features and driver aids as standard. This new and improved Honda SENSING system incorporates a newly-developed wider-angle, higher definition front camera that is able to detect a more comprehensive range of road surfaces and traffic characteristics, including enhanced night-time operation. The latest generation of Honda SENSING safety systems offers increasing safety in a wider range of situations compared to the current generation systems on models such as the CR-V and Civic.
The enhanced Honda SENSING suite of technologies includes:
- Collision Mitigation Braking System (CMBS) with improved night-time operation to also detect pedestrians when there is no street lighting. The system also alerts the driver when it detects a cyclist turning into the road. In addition, the system now also applies the brakes when the FIT cuts across or turns into the path of an oncoming vehicle thanks to the new front wide-view camera.
- Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) manages the distance to the car in front automatically by continuously adjusting the speed, allowing the car to follow traffic at highway speeds.
- Lane Keeping Assist System (LKAS) prevents the vehicle from drifting into adjacent lanes by detecting lane markers on the road
- Road Departure Mitigation (RDM) system assists the driver to not stray from the road. It alerts the driver if it detects that the vehicle is approaching the outer edge of the road, an oncoming vehicle, or drifting into another lane without indicating.
- Auto High-Beam (AHB) switches High Beam head lights on/off automatically depending on oncoming/preceding vehicles (cars, trucks and motorcycles), bicycles and environmental brightness so not to blind other road users.
The driver is also able to operate and determine how much driver assistance information is displayed on the seven-inch TFT liquid crystal display (LCD) instrument binnacle.
MODEL SPECIFICATIONS & COLOUR LINE-UP
The all-new FIT range will launch with four models, the Comfort, Elegance and Executive models available exclusively in 1.5L Petrol CVT, as well as the flagship Hybrid model available with Honda’s 1.5L i-MMD e-CVT hybrid system.
The colour line-up for the new FIT range includes a host of new colours including Opal White (Pearl), Crystal Red (Metallic), Meteoroid Grey (Metallic), Midnight Blue (Metallic), and Rose Gold (Metallic), in addition to existing line-up colours which include Platinum White (Pearl) and Lunar silver (Metallic).
Please see the comprehensive specification sheet attached to this document.
FIT 1.5 DOHC i-VTEC Comfort CVT R319 900
FIT 1.5 DOHC i-VTEC Elegance CVT R359 900
FIT 1.5 DOHC i-VTEC Executive CVT R389 900
FIT 1.5 DOHC i-MMD e-CVT Hybrid R469 900
*FIT Hybrid is available from October 2021
WARRANTY AND SERVICE PLAN
For additional peace of mind, the Honda FIT range comes standard with Honda’s five-year/200 000 warranty, as well as a four-year/60 000km Service Plan with 15 000km service intervals. Customers also have the reassurance of three-year AA Roadside Assistance. The FIT Hybrid model comes standard with an extended eight-year/200 000km warranty specifically covering the battery and related components of the Hybrid system.