By on July 17, 2017

2018 Honda Fit EX

The current-generation Honda’s Fit is considerably less adorable than previous incarnations, but still a vehicle that’s easy to recommend to those with a specific price point and varied needs — especially if they also do all their driving in the city. However, it wasn’t perfect and rationalizing its purchase became difficult as upmarket models offered more car for less money.

For 2018, Honda has updated the subcompact Fit with driver-assist features, new looks, and some mild performance accoutrements for a not-unreasonable amount of cash. It doesn’t necessarily make it a better buy than the Civic you’ve been considering, but it should be enough to make the Fit deserving of a second look. 

While the updated appearance leaves something to be desired, abandoning the plastic grille wasn’t the worst choice Honda could have made. But the new face of the Fit isn’t going to garner any design awards. It’s still a somewhat homely car and best suited for those who aren’t concerned with appearances. For those who are, and actually like the new styling, go with the Sport trim and option a “Helios Yellow” or “Orange Fury” paint job.

2018 Honda Fit Sport

The most welcome upgrade to the refreshed Fit is, without question, the return of a physical stereo volume knob. Replacing the burdensome touch-slider with something tactile means no more frantic pawing at the center console while you utter a string of obscenities so vile that it nullifies any prospect of the car being a family-friendly option.

Second to the volume knob in terms of importance is the Honda Sensing package. This grab bag of tech adds adaptive cruise control, collision mitigation automatic braking with forward collision warning, lane keeping, road departure mitigation, and lane departure warning. Honda Sensing is standard on EX trim and higher, but can be added to any trim for a grand. That particular upgrade also adds a 4.2-inch display in the gauge cluster.

2018 Honda Fit EX

While some subcompacts provide emergency braking — the Chevrolet Spark, for example — only the Toyota Yaris offers lane departure. Honda’s decision to provide the works and adaptive cruise control really does help the Fit show up its rivals.

Bringing back the Sport trim is another welcome addition. In addition to some loud colors, reminiscent of the Fit’s early paint schemes, Honda adorned the Sport variant with a unique interior with orange stitching, orange pin-striping on the exterior, 16-inch gloss-black alloys, chrome exhaust tips, side sill garnishes, a front spoiler, and a rear diffuser.

The engine, however, has not been modified and remains the same 130 horsepower 1.5-liter DOHC unit with 114 lb-ft of torque. And if you want to get the most from it, you basically have to blip it off the redline. That makes it a hoot for some and a chore for others. Keeping the vehicle higher in the rev-range is also likely to diminish its EPA estimated fuel economy of 29 miles per gallon in the city and 36 mpg out on the open road.

2018 Honda Fit EX

The base LX Fits start at a pre-destination MSRP of $16,190 for a 6-speed with a clutch. Upgrading to the CVT adds a noticeable fuel economy bump and $800 to the final price, but also robs you of a couple of horsepower and the enjoyment of driving a manual. Sport-trimmed cars begin at $17,500 and include a sized-up 7-inch infotainment display with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Maxed out with Sensing’s safety suite and a CVT yields a $19,300 MSRP.

Starting at $18,160, the EX adds a moonroof, keyless entry, push-button start and a rearview camera to the passenger-side mirror to better monitor blind spots. It’s particularly useful for not running over bicyclists who don’t care that you’re about to make a right turn. The CVT version will run you $18,960 and heated leather sets are an additional $1,560. If you want absolutely everything, including in-car navigation, you can purchase a fully equipped EX-L for $21,520.

While those prices may sound steep for a subcompact runabout, the higher-trimmed cars really only represent a $250 increase over last year’s model. Those purchasing Sensing as an option will be the ones taking the biggest financial hit, while those seeking the EX trim will be getting a comparative bargain.

2018 Honda Fit EX

[Images: Honda]

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28 Comments on “New Pricing, More Content Bound for the Updated 2018 Honda Fit...”

  • avatar

    The gearing of the manual transmission is what got the Fit crossed off our shopping list. I test drove one at 70-75 mph, and it was a big nope.

  • avatar

    The gearing , not enough front leg room ,and the fact that you can’t get a manual trans EX or EX-T model=FAIL !

    • 0 avatar

      You can get a manual EX, I think.

    • 0 avatar

      They’ve always offered the EX with a 6MT or the CVT. There is no EX-T trim level because the Fit doesn’t come with a turbo.

    • 0 avatar


      Honda, you have been losing out on the mildly tall customer segment. JUST FIX IT!

      • 0 avatar

        Gearing also matters*. And if they can’t be bothered with legroom, do they have headroom?

        *@tmport: It was introduced with a 5MT. It was otherwise great, but buzzy and needed a sixth gear. So of course Honda made 6th gear identical to the old 5th and provided a close ratio gear box, just what it didn’t need.

        • 0 avatar

          I’m 6’6″ and I drive a 2010 Honda Fit. The legroom is OK if the driver’s seat is back far enough. Headroom is excellent, much better than on the average modern car and comparable to many crossovers.

          They took away about an inch of headroom with the 2015 refresh, so the newer versions aren’t as good in this regard for tall drivers. Honda’s website now lists the specs for the 2018 Fit, and it says it has 39.5 inches of headroom (my 2010 has 40.4 inches).

      • 0 avatar

        As always, the answer is C-Max.

  • avatar

    Rented one two weeks ago on long island, New York. The performance of the engine, transmission, and brakes were just fine. I never had the car over 60 mph. To me, the biggest problem was road noise. It would be absolutely unbearable to have this as a daily freeway commuter. Now that vehicle I had was several years old, so I certainly hope they put some more sound deadening material into the newer models.

    • 0 avatar

      The ’17 EX 6MT version I test drove was quite noisy…road, wind, and engine. I could live with the noise, but not the poor gearing.

    • 0 avatar

      NVH is definitely one of the Fit’s weaknesses.

      • 0 avatar
        Matt Posky

        It’s definitely a vehicle better suited for around town driving. I would love to hear about Honda setting up the Fit with some taller gearing for people who might want to take it on a road trip. However, it could lose some character in the process. The newer model is already a little less fun to drive than the older versions (even as a manual) and the CVT is an absolute snooze.

        Noise is less of a problem in the newer models, but it’s definitely not whisper quiet in there. It’s more refined but still a budget vehicle.

  • avatar

    I certainly hope they did something about the touch screen in the car. My daughter has a 2017 and it is not only ridiculously awkward to use it is outright dangerous when the car is running. It takes 90% of your attention off the road. Honda really didn’t know what the heck they were doing when they released this thing. What was wrong with knobs, anyway?

  • avatar

    I’ve owned two Fit(s). I started with a ’10 Sport MT and moved into a ’15 EX-L. They were both daily drivers that I mostly enjoyed. Here are some complaints that I felt were common on both generations. The low beam headlights were weak as far as output, both had fog lights that I used 100% of the time. IMO using the fog lights in conjunction with low beams only improved the vision to poor.

    I am 6ft 2inches, seat comfort (the actual seat cushions) were uncomfortable (too stiff). The often mentioned lack of leg room was a constant annoyance as well. Highway RPM’s were oddly high, only adding to the already loud cabin. With all the above mentioned I’d be remiss not to include the following. Taking into account what this car is, a commuter – you’d be hard pressed to find a more usable vehicle. If you are looking for a long haul highway cruiser, keep on looking.

    If a run about, fun to drive commuter is what you are looking for, the Fit is the golden ticket. Both of mine have proved to be reliable and cost friendly transportation. I’d have no problem recommending a Fit after explaining what I view as shortfalls. A great first car for a teen etc.

  • avatar

    …and they hold lots and lots of stuff — kind of like the tardis. Something like 100% more interior volume than a Ford whatever their small car is.

    • 0 avatar

      So true! It’s such a beautiful bit of packaging, you feel like you’re in a car one or two sizes larger than it really is.

    • 0 avatar

      My wife sat in a Fiesta at the auto show last year and said it felt claustrophobic. And she’s a 5 foot nothing asian gal. I think she’s been spoiled by the Fit.

      I see some complaints here about highway RPMs, but they seem typical for Honda to me.

  • avatar

    The US Fit has been around since 2007, and it got the six-speed in 2009. It’s unfathomable that Honda hasn’t gotten the message that they bunged-up the six-speed by making six gear the same as fifth gear in the previous car. Whether in sixth in the new car, or fifth in the old one, the engine is turning the same RPM in top gear! What the hell were they thinking?

    A real shame because, otherwise, reviews have consistently listed the Fit as the top choice for its class, largely due to the clever ‘magic’ folding rear seat packaging (although the trade-off is the Fit does have a small gas tank).

  • avatar

    Sounds like all these complaints: bad seats, accommodation for tall people, appropriate gearing, availability of MT across all trims, small gas tank, and horrible infotainment system, are all fixed by switching to a base MINI Cooper Hardtop.

  • avatar

    Why does TTAC publish so many articles about Honda Fit that are merely lightly edited press releases? Every month? There are other topics. Is auto industry news that hard to come by? Or is this a slow slide into excessive emphasis on Honda?

    See July 18, 2017 and June 13, 2017 articles.
    Both consist of lightly edited press releases and were published at TTAC just after manufacturer press releases.

    If publishing lightly edited press releases, why not give links to press releases?

    With so much of TTAC consisting of lightly edited press releases, Farago would have started a death watch.

    Reader comments from both articles mention good cargo room, bad driver legroom for tall drivers, less headroom than old models, noise, vibration, harshness, and annoyingly high engine speed at cruise due to bad gearing in 6th gear.

    Some Honda press releases that TTAC missed discuss the Minnie Van

    and incorrect third center row seat belt assemblies that fail to latch.

    • 0 avatar
      Matt Posky

      You mean three articles over the course of a year that outline meaningful changes to the Honda Fit as soon as the manufacturer confirms them?

      It’s probably a conspiracy.

  • avatar

    The visibility out of these is shocking, at least with the earlier models. Somebody I know went from a 1954 Humber Super Snipe to a Fit, and said it was far easier to see out of the older car, especially to the rear. He did say the Fit was a lot better on gas though…

  • avatar

    Compared to the new herpe that is the Civic the Fit is drop dead gorgeous. Damning with faint praise I know, but I know which I’d rather look at on a daily basis.

    That said this isn’t a car I’m terribly interested in. I’m sure it’s a fine runabout, but subjectively speaking it’s not for me.

  • avatar

    I will keep my Original Honda Fit Sport Automatic 2007 model thank you. Once again Honda took a great looking fun car to drive and screwed up the body in my opinion. Who in the heck needs all what is in the top of the line Fit. The Honda Fit was a great replacement of a the Civic 3 door Hatchback that was a simple car and was fun to drive IMO. Honda a lot of people like myself what a good car that is safe without all the junk. And we want the simple style like the 2007 Honda Fit or the old Honda Civic 3 door Hatchback that have become a classic car to drive from coast to coast.

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