Honda or Toyota?

toyota
honda
fit
yaris

#1

Opinions welome: Honda Fit or Toyota Yaris? It seems the Chevy Aveo is in the same category but not comparable. Thank you for any advice on which to purchase or not purchase.

Liz


#2

I would test drive each personally and then decide. I don’t think either way you can go wrong just get the one you like not everyone else thinks is best.

They differ significantly in personality, its like significant others its all what appeals to you.


#3

No question Honda Fit all the way. The Fit is better to drive, the gauges are easier to see, it stops/brakes better, etc. Reliability is equal between the two, but the fit is the overall better vehicle.

As for the Aveo you were right, it’s a horrible little car and definitely not in the same category as the Fit or Yaris.


#4

I test drove both and liked the Fit better, it felt more substantial than the Yaris. And if you want a four door hatchback, you’ll have to get a Fit, unless you live in Canada. While shopping, you may also want to consider the Nissan Versa, it has better crash test ratings than the Honda or Toyota.


#5

I prefer Honda products and think Toyota is slipping especially with customer service issues. Only thing with Honda is that you need to use their spec fluids.


#6

Toyota has become almost as particular about their fluids as Honda.


#7

Consumer Reports liked the Fit a lot better than the Yaris. And they were also very positive about the Nissan Versa, so you may want to take a test drive in a Versa. However, Nissan reliability tends to lag that of Honda and Toyota by a bit. Not terrible, by any means, but not quite as good in terms of reliability.


#8

Why are you looking at the Fit or Yaris? Fuel efficiency or cost? If you look at fueleconomy.gov, most owners are not reporting substantially improved mileage over the Corolla or Civic. A manual Yaris is in at 37.4 while a manual Corolla is 35.9 for 2007, 37.9 for 2008. The Civic gets 33.7 for a manual, the Fit 34.3. The Ford Focus is in at 33.8 for a manual (which can be bought around where I live for $10k, far less than a Fit or Yaris, and its just as reliable).

Most Versas aren’t even reporting 30 mpg.

Personally, if all you’re doing is looking to minimize gas costs, you might actually want to look larger, as these small things aren’t reporting big gas savings. I know if I was looking, I would prefer a Corolla, Civic, or Focus over one of those little things. Every Focus as well as about half of the Corollas and Civics are made in the US as well, whereas the Yaris, Fit, and Versa are all imported… if that sort of thing matters…


#9

The Fit doesn’t do better than the Civic on the highway, but tested city fuel mileage is superior to the Civic. The Fit is much less expensive than a loaded Civic. Additionally, the Fit is a hatch and offers more options for transport than the Civic and its trunk.


#10

I agree with most of the others in your previous post: http://community.cartalk.com/posts/list/1034011.page;jsessionid=F8B16AE5C08A2B39F1EA74899C5642E5

I think you should stick with your current car because the gas savings you’ll get won’t be significant. If that’s not an option for you, it might be feasible for you to downsize to a smaller car. The reason I say that is this: Kelley Blue Book lists the private party value of your car around $10K or $11K. If you can sell your car yourself to someone for about this much, it wouldn’t cost you a lot more to buy a subcompact…maybe a few thousand dollars? I wouldn’t try to trade your car in, though. I don’t think you’d get nearly enough for it to make a new car purchase viable.

If you do look at new cars, I like the new Hyundai Accent and the Nissan Versa, as well as the Honda Fit. Actually, the Hyundai Elantra gets better gas mileage than the Accent if you’re not looking at a hatchback - 25/33 compared to 24/33 in the automatic. The Ford Focus is comparable with 24/33 for the automatic.


#11

Hmmm…
So much quality input. I am looking for great gas economy, cheap cost of car, hatchback, minimal options (A/C and AM radio, airbags). In my previous life I had plenty o’money (and that pesky husband). We did a Corvette, VW bugs (my favorite), mini-van, high-end cars, and disposable cars. Now I just want reliable, inexpensive-to-operate, transportaion to get me from Point A to Point B with enough cash in my pocket remaining that I can afford to do something upon arrival at Point B.
Liz


#12

Financially your best bet is really to keep your current car, since you’ve already paid for its depreciation and you’ll take the same hit on a new car. That said, if you want a new car, that’s your business.

If I were you, here’s what I’d do: keep driving the Sante Fe for now. Keep consolidating your trips from home the way you already do, and optimize your current gas mileage by making sure your tires are inflated properly, accelerating gently, coasting where possible, and sticking to the speed limit.

List your car for sale in the paper and online (look up your own KBB value and aim a little high, but accept reasonable offers). If you get an offer, great! You can go out and buy your new hatchback for a few thousand more. If you don’t, you haven’t really lost anything. You don’t have a new car, but your current one is in good shape and you don’t have a car payment.

If you do get a new car, keep up with the maintenance and drive it as long as possible to make the depreciation a little less painful.


#13

You might also look at the Nissan Versa, Hyundai Accent, and Suzuki Reno. If you’re feeling rich, look at the Scion xD as well. You can see pictures and find out general information at Cars,com, our esteemed sponsor.


#14

I used to believe that too. However, I drive a Honda (1998 Civic with 172,000 miles) and I have found that:

  1. Other companies make power steering fluid that meets Honda specifications. I personally use Honda power steering fluid made by Gunk.

  2. I use synthetic oil in my manual transmission rather than Honda’s manual transmission fluid. It works just as well if you use the right viscosity. Check your owner’s manual for the right viscosity.

  3. As long as you use the right coolant, you don’t need the Honda brand. The same goes for brake fluid.

Honda’s factory warranty only lasts for three years or 36,000 miles. So I would use Honda’s more expensive fluids for the first three years or 36,000 miles. After that, you can choose other brands if you choose the right types of fluids.

Regarding the original question, Lizard, I think you should test drive both vehicles and decide for yourself which one you like better. You are smart to stay away from the Aveo. My belief is that a car that small should get better fuel economy than the Aveo gets. What good is a sub-compact that gets less than 30 MPG?


#15

If you want a reliable hatchback with great mileage get a Pontiac Vibe or Toyota Matrix, which are the same vehicle under the skin. The Vibe/Matrix also have good safety ratings.


#16

Find out which one is more comfortable. I recommend cruise control for the Yaris because I find it hard to maintain the same speed.


#17

Hoff
I have spent the day researching the internet and have concluded sometimes one can have too many choices and too much data. My brain is fried with all of the info! I am leaning heavily toward selling but dreading the timing of selling a gas guzzler. The good news is that people own SUVs around here because they are actually needed in the foothills/mountains. (What’s with those silly city folks?) I will take your great suggestion and attempt to sell my car first. Based on those results I can then make a decision. As it stands the Honda Fit or Nissan Versa look like viable options. Next I’m off to CR at the suggestion of others here. Thanks everyone!
Liz


#18

True, the EPA tests show the fit at 2 mpg more than the Civic in the city, equal on the highway. But that’s a minor difference, and real world results vary from EPA tests. In this case, owners are reporting 0.6 mpg difference combined. That’s a VERY minor difference in mileage.

So, IMO, you shouldn’t be buying a Fit over a Civic or even a Corolla or Focus for its fuel economy. You should be buying one because of price, form, function, or style (among other things)… but it simply isn’t significantly more efficient.

EPA numbers should only be used as guidelines. Some manufacturers routinely just meet the numbers. Some routinely exceed the numbers. I’m only supposed to get 18 mpg in the city in my 1997 Taurus according to the EPA sticker. I once hit 19, but that was with a three hour commute in a snowstorm averaging about 0.5 mph. Other than that, I have never dropped below 21, and routinely get 23 mpg on city-only tanks. I’m also supposed to get 26 mpg on the highway, but routinely hit 30-31 mpg at a minimum, and have gone as high as 34 mpg.

Those numbers are purely estimates, and individual owners and habits cause them to vary. Buying a car solely on the numbers plastered on the window can be seriously misleading. I mean, around here, a base model Fit is selling for about $14,500 (very close to MSRP because of demand). A base model Focus goes for $10,000. If I was buying purely for fuel economy, the stickers would tell me to get a Fit. But owners are reporting just 0.5 mpg less in a Focus. At 12,000 miles per year, that will save me just over 5.17 gallons per year. At $5 per gallon, that will cost $25.88 more per year. But I’ll get at least $135 per year in interest off the $4500 savings (even more savings if I were financing rather than paying cash). Even at 0% interest, it would take nearly 174 years for the Fit to pay back that difference in purchase price

So economically, the extra fuel economy in the Fit simply isn’t worth it.

But in terms of form/function/styling? There’s where you make the case for the Fit…


#19

If I recall correctly the tests done in Consumer reports, the Fit managed a full 4MPG better than the Civic in the city loop. I don’t really care what the EPA numbers are because they’re always way off. I like to see what a car gets through precise measurements in a consistent and controlled environment like CR does. Some cars do better than their EPA numbers and some do worse.

In any case If I lived in the city I’d rather have the less expensive and more practical Fit. Better visibility than the Civic and easier to load akward cargo. Yes, I’ve been in both.


#20

In my experience, Honda does a MUCH better job of standing behind their product than Toyota. I picked a Scion over a Fit a year and a half ago – I regret it. I miss my Honda customer service. Also, my friend’s Aveo just didn’t hold up very well. If you’ve ever been spoiled by the longevity of a Honda, it will be tough for another brand like an Aveo to compete. Good luck!