What's the deal with the Fit?

The wife and I were looking at getting her a new car and she was interested in the Toyota Matrix, but then we decided to get a quote on the Fit. Right
away I found three things that surprised me:
1. The Fit is selling at full list price. No deals whatsoever. 2. The Fit is sold out and have been pre-ordered until summer (people are reserving them now knowing they won't be able to get the car until summer.) 3. The dealers (at least in my area) don't even have a demo you can test drive, they've sold them all.
Why is there such a buying frenzy over a car you can't even see at the dealership, let alone test drive, before you buy it? I looked up some of the stats but didn't notice anything that stood out about the car.
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My guess for what it's worth.... 1/ Fit is a Honda 2/ Fit is new to US 3/Fit is pretty fuel efficient not extremely tiny car 4/Fit (at least sport model) has some good features for price class 5/People are not always the most logical (I would never buy a car without test driving it)
We passed on the Fit due to the price issue and wait...
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tanukiki wrote:

yes
yes
no. Fit mpg is 31/38. Civic is 30/40. This is inexplicable: Fit is over 200 lbs lighter than Civic, and engine is 0.3L smaller, yet does not get better mileage?

ok
definite yes. This is similar to when the Odyssey first came out. They were selling for list or above, there were absolutely none on the lots, so everyone was ordering without test driving first. But then again, considering that people will pay 5x MSRP for a video game system just to have it a month before everyone else, it's not surprising.
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Those are estimates? Folks actually get that mileage with a Fit. At least, that's what I read when I was looking to buy one. I couldn't get one at a price I was willing to pay and I was willing to pay list.
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Huh? According to autos.msn.com, they are the same:
Standard Engine Fit: 1.5L 109 hp I4 Civic: 1.8L 140 hp I4
Standard Transmission Fit: 5-Speed Manual Overdrive Civic: 5-Speed Manual Overdrive
Horsepower Fit: 109 @ 5800 RPM Civic: 140 @ 6300 RPM
Fuel Economy (MPG) (city/highway) Fit: 33 / 38 Civic: 30 / 38
Also, the Civic DX Coupe is only about a hundred and fifteen pounds heavier than the Fit Sport, with the Fit at 2471 lbs and the Civic at 2586.

First, 200 lbs is not that big a difference in weight, only about 8 percent; and as configured above it's closer to 5 percent. That difference can be made up for with different tires very easily (some tires have substantially lower rolling resistance than others) or improves aerodynamics. Judging by the Fit's handling, I'd say the tire factor is geared toward handling rather than fuel economy. Second, having a *slightly* larger engine does not necessarily mean you're using more gas. If the engines are very well designed, a slightly larger engine should use about the same amount of fuel to do the same amount of work as a smaller engine. Since the cars are nearly the same weight, under normal driving it should take about the same amount of horsepower (and fuel) to move them.
Now, a substantially larger engine will usually be less efficient than a small engine when producing small amounts of horsepower, especially if it is tuned for performance rather than economy. That's why sport cars of the same weight as those two use so much more gas just driving around town.
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Like I said, it was my guesses on the matter. As for the fuel efficiency, I think once you get in the 30's for city and high 30's or better for hwy, most people are happy and aren't going to be picky about a mpg or 2 between 2 models. Besides, the Civic has that awful (IMO) split speedo/dash thing going on. blech Oh and the Fit is wagon-like which seems to be appealing to a lot of people these days....
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On Wed, 10 Jan 2007 23:25:11 +0000, tanukiki wrote:

The new civic dash is one of the car's finest features. The speedometer is right where it is easiest seen. Always right there. I absolutely LOVE it. To each his own, I guess...
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Definitely to each his own. I rank that dash design right up there with the speedo being in the middle of the dash instead of the driver...that alone killed a few cars from consideration. The Civic's dash and the bullet nose with tiny headlights looks ...bleh to me. Again to each his or her (in this case) own.
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That Guy wrote:

It's gotten rave reviews in the enthusiast car mags for it's (relative) performance and flexibility of interior configurations. Being a Honda, it has a reputation for quality and has good features for it's class. The Nissan Versa has also gotten good reviews but doesn't handle quite as well as the Fit, according to the press.
I suspect that Honda hedged its bets a bit and isn't producing tons of them, as they have done in the past with other intros of new models ('big' Odyssey, Pilot, Ridgeline). But I agree with the sentiment about not buying a car I haven't driven in the form I want it (i.e., many dealers may only have a demo with the automatic but I would want to drive the manual).
Dan D '07 Ody EX
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Are you kidding?
The big Odyssey realized FIVE YEARS of waiting lists and full list price plus, due to demand--because they didn't make enough of them, and couldn't.
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Elmo P. Shagnasty wrote:

You mis-understood me, Elmo. I was saying that the big Ody (and others) were introduced with too small a production planned, therefore (like the Fit) you have list-price only and waiting lists...
Dan D '07 Ody EX Central NJ USA
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Wow, according to Car and Driver,
"the Fit that ran away with our econocar comparo last year ["Cheap Skates," C/D, May 2006] posted a lane-change [measurement of handling ability] number - 71.4 mph - that edges the best run by the Ferrari F430 Spider F1 we tested last June ["Divine Wind"]."
That's pretty damned impressive right there.
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That Guy wrote:

I saw that comparo and the Fit crushed the field...not even close.
Based on that comparo and my 20+ years of Honda loyalty the Fit was at the top of my list. And then I read about the dealer pricing and the crazy delays. That was the end of that decision.
--
Message posted via http://www.carkb.com


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