Honda just pulled the veils off their all-new 2015 Fit, and not only did they fall with ease around its distinctly tapered flanks, but they revealed the exact same car we saw back in July of 2013 when the Jazz debuted in Japan. However, that car will be built much closer to its home market, whereas the Fit will roll off the brand new production line in Celaya, Mexico (at a planned rate of 200,000 per year).
Slightly shorter, but with a longer wheelbase, the new Fit promises improved handling, maneuverability and interior space at the same time, plus the added aesthetic benefit of having the wheels closer to the corners of the body.
Despite looking much more modern than the outgoing model, it’s definitely still recognizable as a Fit, and in black it looks properly mean – that could not have been said before, regardless of the color you had it in…
The interior is a direct carryover, with the obligatory swap from right- to left-hand drive. Tech features now available include a multi-angle rear view camera, a moonroof, heated front seats, LaneWatch and the industry-standard seven-inch touchscreen infotainment unit with Bluetooth connectivity and soft touch plastics to cover them all (at least on the top of the dash). One last option that is worth mentioning, since it is a first for the model, are the new leather seats.
The only engine offered at first is the 1.5-liter 130 hp i-VTEC unit (13 hp more than before) which can either be paired to a “slick-shifting” six-speed manual or a continuously variable transmission that comes with paddle shifters – it returns a claimed 36 mpg US (42 mpg UK or 6.5 l/100km) on average.
Safety-wise, it’s “anticipated to earn top safety scores from NHTSA and IIHS, including a NCAP 5-Star Overall Vehicle Score and a TOP SAFETY PICK rating with a GOOD rating in all IIHS test modes, including the rigorous small overlap barrier test,” according to the automaker.
The official US launch is set to take place this spring and is bound to come with more details and news on the other powertrains, including the hybrid which comes with a (unique) seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox.
By Andrei Nedelea