Tuesday, May 6, 2008


Although the redesigned Honda Fit made its international debut last fall at the Tokyo Motor Show, American Honda decided to keep its version of this small city car under wraps until New York.

While the basic car is similar to the Japanese-market model, the U.S. version sports a different front and rear treatment to better fit in with Honda's U.S. lineup. The black mesh grille opening and new headlamps align with the recently introduced Accord. At the rear, a hatch-topping wing that was optional in Japan is standard on U.S. models.

Other new features include a rear seat that allows the seat bottoms to be folded up into the seatbacks, opening up the area behind the front seats. The open area is large enough to accommodate a bike or other tall objects. Also new on the car is an optional onboard navigation system, a first for a car of this class.

Power comes from a transversely mounted 1.5-liter 4-cylinder engine mated to a 5-speed manual or automatic transmission. Base Fit models are equipped with 15-in. wheels, while the sport versions boast 16- inches. The new Honda Fit goes on sale this fall and will be priced at about $15,000.

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