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Honda Fit, Scion xA, Toyota Matrix, Car Comparisons, Hatchback
Apr 18, 2006 (9:15 am)
As an owner of a 2006 Matrix I have to say it is higher priced than any of the others you have talked about. We like the Matrix but I would look at the Fit. We would have bought either an Xb or Xa had we not had such a terrible time with the Scion dealers in our area. We could not get the equipment we wanted even though it was listed as available. Your best bet is just to take your daughter and let her pick from the models you have talked about. Nissan Versa, Honda Fit, Scion Xb /Xa should all come in under 15G. The Yaris hatch will only be a 3door here in the states. Good luck finding one like you want it.
#38 of 130 Re: Honda Fit vs. Scion xA vs. Toyota Matrix [Mr_Shiftright]
Apr 21, 2006 (4:13 am)
does anyone know if the honda fit has height adjustable front seats? i know the xa does and it is nicer being higher up to see traffic but i didn't like where the speedometer was. i like the matrix but it is more than i want to pay, what bout the dodge caliber?
#39 of 130 Re: Honda Fit vs. Scion xA vs. Toyota Matrix [anotherscott]
Apr 21, 2006 (4:20 am)
Update: I posted some more dimension information in the main Honda Fit forum, message # 3245.
#40 of 130 Re: Honda Fit vs. Scion xA vs. Toyota Matrix [lablover2]
Apr 21, 2006 (4:30 am)
The FIt does not have adjustable seat height. I'm surprised the xA does, because (at least according to the dealer I asked), the xB does not.
#41 of 130 Re: Winter/mountain driving in a Fit? [mrcranston]
Apr 27, 2006 (11:56 pm)
I test drove the 5 speed Fit Sport on 4/27/06 in dry conditions on the highway, it was a noisy bumpy ride,I can't imagine snowy mountain driving in this car would be any fun. I was disappointed in the amount of engine and road noise above 50 mph that the Fit made. Test drove 06 XR Matrix after Fit test drive-will purchase Matrix if I can get price down a little bit more.
#42 of 130 Re: Winter/mountain driving in a Fit? [bagahey]
Apr 28, 2006 (8:28 pm)
The Matrix is pretty solid. We were so sure for 3 yrs. that it would be our next car. Luckily, we live in a mild climate so our needs are minimal, but the deal breaker, certainly on a new Matrix, was the take it, or leave it attitude of the Toyota salespeople. Access pricing, really means that Toyota won't budge on their prices, so you had better be able to get good trade in value. I'd be interested in knowing how you do. I don't know that the Matrix is really comparable to the Fit given a big price difference.
#43 of 130 Re: Winter/mountain driving in a Fit? [ramo]
Apr 30, 2006 (7:39 am)
In my limited experience (limited because I have only bought one Toyota, an Echo, and one Scion, an xA, both from the same dealer), Toyota dealers are a bit of a pill compared to Honda - and Honda is not as nice as Chevy and Dodge. However, they have advertised specials on Camry's periodically that are really low priced.
#44 of 130 Re: Honda Fit vs. Scion xA vs. Toyota Matrix [bostonjazz]
Apr 30, 2006 (2:06 pm)
We're also looking at the Fit and XB(not the XA) - both seem pretty adequate for our needs EXCEPT we have been unable to determine how well the XB or the FIT (both with automatic) would do in the mountains (5500 feet or so up and down little to no snow conditions). Would appreciate any comments as to mountain driving experiences.
#45 of 130 Re: Honda Fit vs. Scion xA vs. Toyota Matrix [bdog3]
by MrShift@Edmunds HOST
May 01, 2006 (7:15 am)
At 5,500 feet, you will lose about 22% of your car's horsepower...so figure it will be like running on 3 cylinders at zero altitude--something like having 88HP instead of 109. You'll get by, but with the automatic you'd be better off shifting the transmission manually, and staying in the lower gears longer between each upwards shift.
In my xA, I could not quite pull the left lane at 65 mph in 5th gear, (stick shift) up to Lake Tahoe at something like 4,400 feet. In my old Mercedes diesel, with 90 HP, high altitude performance was really pathetic, since that would put me down to about 70HP in a 3,600 lb car.
Hope this helps---I think you'll be fine but you'll have to adjust your driving habits, especially a) starting from rest and b) moving to the right or middle lane when mountain climbing on longgggg stretches.
#46 of 130 Re: Honda Fit vs. Scion xA vs. Toyota Matrix [bdog3]
May 01, 2006 (10:19 am)
My experience was different from our host's. On the same drive to Tahoe (presumably from the Bay Area) my xA (exact same engine as the xB you are thinking about) with manual was fine - no appreciable drop off in acceleration or passing power. Keep in mind that the xA (or your xB) is not a rocket to begin with, so passing cars while going uphill requires more downshifting and higher rpm. (I drove to the South Shore where there is more one lane driving than the North Shore).
Driving at high altitude has almost no perceptible impact on modern cars driven within "normal" throttle ranges, unless you are used to driving a lot at WOT (wide open throttle, otherwise known as "pedal to the metal").
The reason being, that in modern cars with fuel injection the air mass sensor automatically adjusts the fuel delivery to keep the fuel/air ratio optimal regardless of altitude. In the old days, with carbuereted cars, high altitude driving was terrible because the carbueretor had no way to adjust the fuel jets to the higher altitude, so your air/fuel mixture was leaning out and starving the engine regardless of your actual throttle position, speed, etc.
Of course, there is ultimately less air at higher altitudes, so you may be using an additional part of your accelerator pedal to keep the air flow the same, but the difference is hardly noticeable - it doesn't feel, for example, like you are pressing down another 1/4 of the way to the floor as you climb up the mountain. In terms of horsepower delivery, then, you don't actually experience the effects of the lost "top end" horsepower until you hit WOT - in which case the air density at the higher altitude is the limiting factor on your power, and not the position your your accelerator pedal. And yes, in a passing situation you probably WILL use WOT in any of these cars, and your passing power will be slightly less.
Shiftright was absolutely right that the maximum available power (103 on the Scion, whether xB or xA) drops off significantly at higher altitude. But this is only part of the picture. That horsepower is really only coming into play at very high rpm - mabye at 6,000 rpm on the Scions. At 2,000, 3,000, 4,000 rpm, if you look at typical dyno curves, you may only be running with 20, 40, 04 60 hp anyway!
So it's not as bad as Shiftright makes out. At least not on a relative level. In absolute terms, Sion xA and xB owners almost always wish for more horsepower. These simply aren't "pocket rockets" like Ford Focii and Chevy Cobalts; even the Corolla is faster.
In terms of 0-60 tests, it appears the Fit may have a 1-2 second edge on the xA/xB - probably due to gearing, but possibly due to breathing better at higher rpm.
Therefore the odds are the Fit would perform slightly better in the situation you describe. On the other hand, it might be better to give priority to the form factor you need (xB = Big Box, Fit = microwagon). Or wait until this fall when a rumored xB replacement, slightly larger, comes out with 2.4 liter Camry engine, if the rumors are true. (I find the engine size rumor hard to believe, it would make more sense to me if Toyota dropped the Corolla 1.8 into the xB - the new xB, from the pictures floating around on the web, doesn't look to be going all Honda Element on us in terms of size - just a larger rear trunk area.)
Hope that helps.
(I used to think the xA was slow, until I got a minivan with a 4 cylinder.)