If you’re looking for a car that’s thrifty on gas, is fun to drive, inexpensive to own and operate, can hold plenty of passengers and cargo without feeling cramped, and can maneuver the urban landscape with ease, then the 2017 Honda Fit for sale near Phoenix at your Valley Honda Dealers may be just the right choice for your lifestyle. However, there are many other subcompacts out there vying for your attention. One such vehicle is the 2017 Yaris hatchback from Toyota.
It’s no secret that there’s no love lost between these two Asian automotive giants. Honda and Toyota battle it out at every stoplight, backcountry road, and interstate for supremacy in the U.S. automotive marketplace. So it should come as a surprise that Toyota offers up the clearly inferior Yaris to go toe-to-toe with the Fit. When you compare these two compact hatchbacks against one another, we think it’s pretty obvious which one is the better all-around choice.
But we’ll let you be the judge of that. We selected the top models from both manufacturers so we can compare all the major features. So we’ll be looking at the 2017 Honda Fit EX-L CVT with Navigation and the comparably equipped 2017 Toyota Yaris SE.
Styled To Fit Your Lifestyle
The 2017 Honda Fit was recently refreshed in 2015 and carries over much the same styling that made it a hit with buyers. A sloping hood, raked windshield, blacked-out grille with wedge-shaped projector headlights, and upswept crease along the lower beltline give the Fit a modern aerodynamic look that’s youthful and visually appealing. The Fit’s youthful and contemporary attitude can also be seen from the rear with large “C-shaped” taillights (mimicking the hot new 2017 Honda Civic’s) giving the Fit a sporty flair.
This is not to say that the 2017 Toyota Yaris is an ugly duckling. While it may not have the head-turning appeal of the Fit, some people may actually prefer the Yaris’s more conservative sheetmetal because they like to blend in with the crowd. To each their own.
Fit’s Bigger & More Feature-packed Interior
Get behind the wheel of the 2017 Honda Fit and you’ll be amazed at the quality and spaciousness. In fact, despite its small dimensions, the Fit is exceptionally roomy. Sportiness merges effortlessly with practicality and versatility in the Fit. The controls are laid out to be both convenient and intuitive. In fact, everything about the Fit’s cabin speaks volumes about the level of craftsmanship Honda builds into each and every of its vehicles. Since we’re comparing the top EX-L model, we can tell you about some of the upscale amenities that you wouldn’t expect to find in a subcompact at this price point.
For example, the 2017 Fit EX-L with Navigation comes with genuine leather seats, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, and leather shifter heated front seats with two heat settings, and navigation system, and sporty paddle shifters.
Honda Innovation A Big Plus
Here’s something the 2017 Toyota Yaris can’t match: The Honda-exclusive 60/40 Split 2nd-Row Magic Seat®. It gives you four different ways to configure your Fit’s interior. In “Utility Mode,” it folds flat, for transporting larger items. Fold the front passenger seat flat in “Long Mode” to fit in those extra-long items. Fold the bottom of the Magic Seat® up for “Tall Mode” that lets you carry those tall items that most likely wouldn’t fit as neatly in the Yaris. “Take 5” by engaging “Refresh Mode” that enables you to stretch out and relax.
By the numbers, you’ll find that the 2017 Honda Fit is roomier than the Yaris in just about every area. Cargo space behind the rear seats edges out the Yaris 16.6 cubic feet to 15.6 cubic feet. The Fit also bests the Yaris with 93.8 cubic feet of total passenger volume compared to the Yaris’s 85.1 cubic feet of cramped space.
Honda Scores A Technology KO
The 2017 Honda Fit just out-classes the Toyota Yaris regarding technology. For starters, a circular Multi-Information Display (MID) monitors the Fit’s vital stats that you can view at a glance. The Fit’s sports instrumentation also features a unique Eco Assist™ that coaches you to improve your fuel-efficient driving habits.
Plus, the Fit also offers a larger 7.1-inch color Display Audio touchscreen compared to the 6.1-in screen in the Yaris. You also get Bluetooth® Streaming Audio, available SiriusXM® Radio, HD Radio™, and Pandora®, along with the convenience of a Smart Entry key fob and keyless push-button start/stop.
You’ll find that, while the Yaris also features Bluetooth, you may find its infotainment features a bit lacking since it only offers HD Radio™. Although the top-line Yaris can also be ordered with navigation, the Fit’s new Satellite-Linked Navigation System™ with voice recognition is hard to beat.
Honda Outperforms The Yaris By A Mile
Speaking of being hard to beat, we have to admit that the 2017 Toyota Yaris will be hard-pressed to compare with the Honda Fit regarding performance, handling, and fuel economy. The Fit is the clear winner in all three of these categories.
The 2017 Fit EX-L with Navigation offers up a lively, 1.5-liter, 130-hp EarthDreams® 4-cylinder Gasoline Direct Injection (GDI) engine with 114 lb.-ft. of torque. Compare this to the sluggish 1.5-liter 4-cylinder engine you find in the Yaris. It can only muster a paltry 106 horsepower and 103 lb.-ft. of torque. If you want to merge onto the interstate, you best be driving the Fit which gives you more power when you hit the gas.
Here’s a shocker. While the Fit offers a choice of either a snappy 6-speed manual or advanced Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) with available paddle shifters, the Yaris comes with an outdated 4-speed transmission. No wonder TheCarConnection.com gives the Yaris a pathetic 2 out of a score of 10, calling it “…an old-fashioned driving experience with a lot of noise for not a lot of forward motion.”
You’ll also find that the 2017 Honda Fit gets better gas mileage compared to the Yaris. To be specific, the Fit gets up to an EPA-estimated* 33 mpg in the city and up to 41 mpg on the highway (with Eco Mode engaged). This compares to an EPA-estimated* 30 mpg in the city and 36 mpg on the highway for the Yaris.
Honda Scores With Safety
One last nail in the coffin (we say that figuratively, of course) for the Yaris is safety. While the Yaris does offer the available Toyota Safety Sense™ suite of safety features, it lacks a rear backup camera, which isn’t even offered on the Yaris but comes standard on the Fit.
You’ll find that the Fit comes equipped with Honda’s advanced, energy-absorbing ACE™ Body Structure, Vehicle Stability Assist, Daytime Running Lights, and Honda LaneWatch™, among other advanced safety features.
More importantly, the Honda Fit gets a top 5-star safety rating from the NHTSA compared to an overall 4-star rating for the Yaris from that agency. And the IIHS also gives the Fit it a top score as well while the Yaris only gets a “Marginal” score in small overlap front crash test from the IIHS. No wonder TheCarConnection.com gives the Yaris a worrisome 3 out of 10 points for safety.
The 2017 Honda Fit Is Clearly Superior
Well, there you have it. As we said at the beginning, the 2017 Honda Fit 5-door hatchback from your Valley Honda Dealers in Phoenix not only decisively beats the 2017 Yaris hatchback in virtually every area, it does so by a wide margin. Perhaps someday Toyota will go back to the drawing board and create a hatchback that can actually compete against the Fit. In the meantime, it’s pretty obvious that Honda wins this contest hands down.
We invite you to make your own comparison. Stop by one of our Valley Honda Dealers near Phoenix and take the 2017 Honda Fit for a test drive. We think you’ll agree that Honda’s hatchback takes the prize.