The new Honda Fit is the latest competitor in South Africa’s bustling hatchback segment – and it is going up against the local king, the VW Polo.
Below, we find out if the Fit has what it takes to challenge the Polo.
As the mid-range trims from the respective brands, these cars are treated to many features.
You will be hard-pressed to find something lacking in either hatchbacks, as both come with a leather multifunction steering wheel, cruise control, electric windows, LED daytime running lights, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support through an infotainment display.
This is where most of the similarities end, however.
The newer Honda brings a host of standard features which need to be selected as extras on the VW.
This includes partial-leather seats, a rear-view camera, automatic air-conditioning, push-button start, 16-inch alloy wheels, a 9-inch infotainment display, and a 7-inch digital instrument cluster.
Additionally, every trim comes with Honda Magic Seats – which make it possible to lift a seat’s base upwards to transport taller objects.
This lets the Fit carry 309 litres of cargo in five-seater mode, while total cargo capacity extends to 1,210 litres with the Magic Seats stowed away.
The VW Comfortline, on the other hand, offers driver fatigue detection, manual air-conditioning, and a 6.5-inch infotainment display as part of the Comfortline trim.
Additionally, the R-Line package adds a range of extras – comprising adaptive cruise control with front autonomous braking, blind-spot monitoring, and front and rear park distance control sensors.
This is in addition to exclusive exterior elements that lend it an athletic look, such as more pronounced bumpers, R-Line badging, and 17-inch “Bonneville” alloy wheels.
The Polo then competes against Honda’s Magic Seats with its own VW-exclusive feature – the We Connect Go app.
This app lets the car’s owner display important vehicle information, book service appointments, keep a digital logbook, and request roadside assistance from their smartphone.
The Polo, due to its slightly taller and wider dimensions, also carries a bit more cargo than the Fit – at 350 litres with all five seats up.
On top of this, the Fit comes with an alarm and immobiliser, ABS with brake hold, hill start assist, and front, side, and curtain airbags.
The Polo packs ABS with brake assist, hill-hold assist, an alarm and immobiliser with interior monitoring, and front, side, and curtain airbags.
The new Honda Fit range is powered by a 1.5-litre, petrol engine paired with a CVT transmission.
The combination delivers 89kW and 145Nm to the front wheels, and achieves a combined fuel consumption of 5.5l/100km.
Under the hood of this Polo you will find a 1.0-litre, turbo-petrol motor, mated to a seven-speed DSG automatic transmission.
This motor puts out 70kW and 175Nm, with fuel consumption rated at 4.7l/100km.
The new Honda Fit 1.5 DOHC i-VTEC Elegance CVT has a South African price of R359,900.
Along with this, you get a 5-year/200,000km warranty, a 4-year/60,000km service plan, and three years of AA roadside assistance.
The VW Polo 1.0TSI Comfortline R-Line goes for R364,800 in South Africa.
Each model comes with a 3-year/120,000km warranty and a 3-year/45,000km service plan.