2009 Honda Fit Long-Term Road Test - Audio & Technology

2009 Honda Fit Long-Term Road Test

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Audio & Technology

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2009 Honda Fit: Road Trip to Palm Springs

November 19, 2009

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The Fit strikes a pose, backed by the windmills of Palm Springs.

Our spunky Honda Fit got a chance to stretch its legs on a recent road trip, traveling south to that gaudy bit of desert tinsel known as Palm Springs. It proved to be a fun companion -- as we've noted before, the engine gets clamorous at high revs, but the car's pleasantly frisky spirit more than made up for this shortcoming during the journey. Mileage was outstanding -- the Honda averaged 35.7 miles per gallon over a total of 230 mostly highway miles.

One of my fave things about the Fit has got to be its nav system. The system is easy to use -- entering locations is a cinch. It's also pleasant to experience, especially as far as its vocal reminders are concerned. In other cars I've driven, these reminders can be strident and excessive, with each upcoming turn preceded by a hailstorm of grating admonishments. Not so with the Fit. Its nav system delivers just enough reminders to inform without annoying, and the nav lady's voice sounds mellow, not shrill.

Warren Clarke, Automotive Content Editor @ 15,643 miles

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2009 Honda Fit: Time for Maths Camp

November 09, 2009

Quick! Math nerds, what's 133.76 - 100.47 ?



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2009 Honda Fit Sport: Picking Nits on the Fit

July 16, 2009


Readers of the Long-Term Blog know by now that the Fit is a hit among the staffers, and I count myself as one of the "fitties". But there are just a few tiny items I'd like to see fixed in future Fits.

Nav Screen: Leaving the office last night, the navigation screen looked nearly blacked out. My initial reaction was to blame my polarized sunglasses, but no, still dark and now I'm squinting. Maybe the headlights are on? Nope, they were off. The theory put forth by Executive Editor Seredynski was simple -- the previous driver may have switched the display mode from auto (or day) to night, or possibly adjusted the brightness level to make the screen legible in their particular environment. Now this is more of a driver setting issue, but the screen is prone to catching a lot of glare since it lacks any kind of binnacle or cowl to provide shade.While we're on the subject of the screen, how 'bout updating the graphics, Honda? The interface reminds me of Windows 95! Get a mac-based designer to sweeten up the artwork for you, mmmkay?

Armrest: The fold-down driver's armrest feels a bit lower than the armrest in the door panel. Not by much, maybe half an inch or so. It makes me feel like I have scoliosis. Other cars like our Jetta TDI have a ratcheting armrest so the driver can adjust the height. This would be a welcome addition, but I'd still prefer an even perch for my elbows.

Mark Takahashi, Associate Editor at 8,975 miles

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2009 Honda Fit: House Hunter

June 29, 2009

I had plenty of choices for the weekend car, but I took the Fit for the single reason that it had a good nav system in it. The lady and I have been looking to take advantage of the first time home buyer tax credit so our search area is a broad swath of the L.A. area.

The nav first came in handy when we left dinner on Saturday with time to spare a run to Scoops Ice Cream, a place way across town from where we were in an unfamiliar area. I 411'd their address, plugged it into the nav and off we went. Two scoops later and we made a mad dash back to the movie theatre.


On Sunday, we had a list of six places to see. With the easy touch type nav screen, I plugged in address after address and it effortlessly guided us to each destination. We didn't find anything we could afford or even really liked all that much, but at least the Fit made the process easy.

Scott Jacobs, Senior Photographer

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2009 Honda Fit: I Could Live With This Stereo

May 18, 2009


I have always liked the Honda Fit, both this generation and the original. I so enjoy this car's scrappy personality that I tend to be a little too forgiving about its shortcomings. Case in point: I still liked our 2007 Fit after enduring its unsupportive seats and sub-par stereo on a 15-hour drive back from Oregon.

Really, though, I couldn't own a first-gen Fit without making modifications to its sound system. However, such is not the case with our 2009 Honda Fit Sport's stereo. While not exactly top of the line, this six-speaker setup is bearable in a supermini. 3 points in its favor:

1. Clean signal from the amplifier. I listen to metal and hip-hop a lot (Talib Kweli for most of the weekend), and so far the Fit's amp isn't muddying them up.

2. Good soundstage. No rear subs in the Fit, but the combination of dash tweeters and drivers in each door makes for a pretty spacious feel in this surprisingly roomy hatchback.

3. Decent bass response. I am as surprised as you are, but Talib Kweli's "Beautiful Struggle" album actually has some punch to it in the 2009 Honda Fit as opposed to sounding flat.

Erin Riches, Senior Editor @ 6,608 miles

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2009 Honda Fit Sport: Lucerne Valley Rocks

April 18, 2009

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This weekend my nephew entered his first-ever desert race. So my daughters and I piled into the 2009 Honda Fit to head out to their campsite in Lucerne Valley to wish him well and roast a few marshmallows with my brother and the rest of his family.

They'd parked the Airstream and unloaded the dirt bikes well off of the pavement in an unmarked primitive "campsite." To get there, the Fit had to negotiate 6 miles of washboard dirt road and packed sand tracks. Granite Road and Transmission Line Road see more use than you'd think, so it wasn't much of a problem.

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2009 Honda Fit: USB Port and Display Screen

March 19, 2009


The Sport version of the 2009 Honda Fit comes standard with a USB port/cable located in the upper glove box. Today, I connected my iPod to the USB cable via my iPod's sync cable.

The Fit detected my iPod immediately. Compared to the interfaces on some of our higher-end long-term cars (like the Audi A4 and Infiniti FX50), you can't do as much with the Fit's. It doesn't display as many of the iPod's main menu items, and navigating around involves lots of tedious button-tapping. Still, it's way better than just hooking up one's MP3 device to the regular auxiliary audio jack (which our Fit also has).

One other note: I was planning on criticizing the look of our Honda Fit's touch-screen display -- the low-resolution blue map background, silver screen buttons and red jumping audio-level-bar display made me think Honda used a Windows 95 PC for inspiration. Really, it was awful. But then I discovered you can customize the look of the display. Our Fit now has a much more pleasing white map background and black display buttons. I turned off the background audio display, too.

Brent Romans, Senior Automotive Editor

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2009 Honda Fit: Buy The Nav, If Only For One Reason

February 06, 2009

I would fork over the extra cash to get the nav just so I wouldn't have to look at that ugly center stack:


The nav, besides functionality, adds so much to the interior.

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