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New Fit looks like a winner

Honda's tiniest team member gets an overhaul for 2015

Published: January 21, 2014, 9:00 PM
The 2015 Honda Fit proved so popular following its Japanese debut last fall, it actually managed to topple the Toyota Prius from its No. 1 spot in October. Following its Detroit debut, it's looking like North Americans have every reason to embrace the wee wonder too.

The subcompact gets a more rounded shape but sharper body creases, redesigned tail lights, restyled rear and significant interior improvements. Passenger volume is up by 5% in spite of only modest dimensional growth, and includes a gain in rear legroom of nearly five inches.

The rear bench Magic Seat remains highly configurable to accommodate your long stuff, wheeled stuff, and bulky stuff; volume with the Magic Seat folded flat actually goes down, but that additional seating space has to come from somewhere.

New engine technology finds a home in the Fit too, with a 13-hp gain to its 1.5-litre, up to 130 horses; they and eight additional lb.-ft. of torque are available at lower rpm than before too. The manual transmission gets a sixth gear, while the conventional automatic is out in favour of a CVT, which improves fuel economy. Agility and steering response get a boost from minor geometry changes and new rear dampers.

Wide-angle mirrors and standard Bluetooth are on the expanded features list; the options list gets leather trim, heated front seats, sunroof, push-button start and even a lane-departure warning system. It doesn't seem that long ago that cars in this class had wind-up windows and lacked power steering.

Pricing will be announced closer to launch.