$13,469 - $16,506

2018 Honda Fit Performance Review

Note: This performance review was created when the 2018 Honda Fit was new.


Performance: 7.7

Powering the 2018 Honda Fit is a four-cylinder engine that has no interest in haste or zoom. Its unenergetic nature becomes even more apparent with the noisy automatic transmission, but the tradeoff is one of the highest fuel economy ratings in the class. In spite of this, the Fit is still a frisky in-town hatchback, thanks to its nimble handling and well-tuned steering. 

  • "What limits the fun is the engine, especially with the CVT – it's slow to accelerate and doesn't seem to pull the car with much urgency even at high engine revs. The manual transmission improves things a bit, but the car remains sluggish from a start. Passing maneuvers need to be meticulously planned with either transmission, and short merges onto highways may be pucker-inducing." -- Cars.com
  • "When you get behind the wheel of the 2017 Fit, you'll find that it's especially enjoyable to drive. A longer wheelbase and revised suspension tuning make it one of the most nimble subcompact cars around, yet it's also more comfortable and less susceptible to choppy pavement." -- Autotrader (2017)
  • "On winding roads, the Fit feels light and athletic. Even within its modest power limits, and particularly with a manual transmission, the Fit can transform into the slow car you like to drive fast." -- Edmunds (2017) 

Acceleration and Power

The Fit comes with a 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine and a six-speed manual transmission; a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) is available. Acceleration rates are leisurely in the Fit, a problem worsened with the CVT. This transmission also tends to emit a droning sound when you're on the highway. If you can tolerate it, the CVT will save you in fuel costs, with one of the highest gas mileage ratings in our subcompact car ranking: It gets 33 mpg in the city and 40 mpg on the highway. With the manual transmission, the Fit gets 29 mpg city/36 mpg highway.

  • "Every 2018 Honda Fit is powered by a 1.5-liter 4-cylinder with 130 horsepower. The engine makes good noises and likes to rev to its 6,700-rpm redline. It's one of the reasons the Fit is sportier than many of its competitors. The 4-cylinder uses Honda's i-VTEC and Variable Timing Control (VTC), which makes more power at high engine speeds for best acceleration, but at low speeds, like when you're cruising down the highway, it retunes itself for better fuel economy. And fuel economy is excellent, with a CVT-equipped LX getting up to 40 mpg on the highway. The engine powers the hatchback's front wheels through either a slick 6-speed manual or a smooth continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT), which is standard on the EX-L trim." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Either way, the Fit is slow. But with the stick-shift, the driver is more involved and has greater control over the powertrain. With the CVT, he or she does not, despite paddle shifters that suggest otherwise." -- New York Daily News
  • "The CVT is prone to that droning noise, especially at highway speeds and during acceleration. It would be more acceptable if the noise were accompanied by large increases in speed, but that's not the case, either." -- Cars.com

Handling and Braking

The front-wheel-drive Fit feels composed and nimble, and its sharp steering imparts a playful quality, making the Fit more fun to drive than many of its competitors. Its suspension is a little firm, but the ride is still comfortable on the highway.

  • "The 2018 Honda Fit is fun to drive, but not because it has gobs of horsepower. It's responsive and quick for a car in this class, but it's the Honda's agility that makes it a standout. The Fit's suspension offers up the kind of predictable handling you'd expect, but with a sharpness you don't, and it combines with the hatchback's above-average steering feel to make this subcompact genuinely entertaining in sharp corners. While all four models -- LX, Sport, EX and EX-L -- offer the same engine and transmissions, the Sport, EX and EX-L models handle better than the base LX thanks to their 16-inch wheels and lower-profile tires. The Fit rides well, and it's comfortable out on the highway, but its short wheelbase can cause some chop on rough patches of Interstate. This year Honda has added insulation and acoustic-laminated glass, and the Fit's interior is noticeably quieter." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Nimble handling helps to put a smile on the driver's face, and with the HFP package, the Fit eagerly zips around corners, helping to conserve forward momentum. Considering the rear drum brakes, pedal feel is excellent, and it is easy to modulate while attempting to scrub as little speed as is possible before entering a turn." -- New York Daily News
  • "Among the updates for 2018 are improved handling thanks to added chassis reinforcement to make the car more rigid, different damping rates in the shock absorbers and a new part added to the steering column to make it feel more solid." -- Cars.com

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