What is the best value in compact cars?

Is the Honda Civic or Honda Fit a better buy?

John C., Pinehurst

We regard both as good values and named them Best Bets: the Fit as a standout among compact hatchbacks and the Civic among compact sedans. The Fit won our $16,000 Subcompact Showdown, and the Civic placed second behind the Hyundai Elantra in the Under $20,000/Over 35 MPG Compact Car Showdown.

2013_fit

The Fit emerged as the favorite in the $16,000 Showdown over rivals such as the Kia Rio, Hyundai Accent and Ford Fiesta because of the impressive amount of passenger and cargo room it provides in such a small package. Plus, it is fun to drive and is economical.

The Civic, redesigned for 2012, retained its traditional virtues of adequate space, good ergonomics and impressive fuel economy. However, it finished second to the Elantra in the Showdown because of complaints about its ride quality and noise levels, so we encourage you to test-drive both before buying. Changes to the 2013 Civic are abundant with an almost unheard of number of features revisited only a year after a redesign — a new suspension and qualities to quiet the interior may address some of our previous reservations with the 2012.

The Fit, Civic and Elantra also have been named Top Safety Picks by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

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Answered by Rick Popely on January 29, 2013 in Honda , Honda Civic , Honda Fit , What Car Should I Buy? | Permalink

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