It took me a week of banging my head on the steering wheel, but I think I finally figured out how to express my feelings about a modern Honda. Hondas are like BlackBerry smartphones. They are reliable, sturdy, and feel a bit stuck in the past. If you really need to get your e-mail and you need the highest grade of security pick the Honda. If you’re interested in embracing the future? Lets hope that Honda has some rapid innovation up their sleeves. The 2012 Honda Fit Sport does everything a car needs to do. It does these essential car activities very well and I am convinced that it will keep doing them for years to come. My concern is that in the market today it seems like the competition is innovating faster and bringing more exciting products to market.
By Charles Krome
Getting into a new Ford Fiesta had been pretty high on my list, so I was plenty happy when the Blue Oval obliged me by sending over a Blue Flame model with a five-speed manual transmission, along with a full tank of gas. And more importantly, I was plenty happy driving it, too. Well, maybe not “driving” it, but certainly being transported in it.
By Chris Haak
Nissan’s Versa, which competes against subcompacts such as the Honda Fit and Toyota Yaris, has the value proposition of being the “big small car,” and indeed, the current Versa is a relative value. It’s a good car that accomplishes the rare feat of “small on the outside, big on the inside,” but is saddled with oddball looks, as if its designers spent a little too much time with its French cousins from Renault.
Today in New York, the Japanese automaker showed its next-generation Versa (also known as Tiida in other parts of the world). It’s clear that the 2012 Versa’s designers tried very hard to give the car a more fluid, dynamic, upscale shape. It’s not clear, however, that they completely succeeded.
By Chris Haak
In this design-centric era in which we live, many of us – myself included – have fallen victim to buying the best-looking item, and not necessarily the most efficient or most practical one. The iPhone 4 looks so great – but you can’t hold it a certain way in low-signal areas and expect to make a call.
Some folks, though, do prefer keeping things simple. They want a phone that doesn’t text, take pictures, have Internet access, or have a touchscreen. For them, the Suzuki SX4 SportBack may be just the ticket. It’s not a beautiful car – it has an unfashionably large daylight opening with its tall roofline and low door sills – and it’s not a performance car. However, it most certainly is an honest, competent piece of basic transportation.
By Charles Krome
There was a lot of hub-bub when Chevrolet originally announced it was changing the name of its Aveo subcompact to the Sonic, but after seeing the latter introduced at the North American International Auto Show, it’s starting to make a bit more sense.
The 2012 Sonic takes a notably more aggressive approach to the subcompact segment, with a relatively dynamic powertrain/suspension setup and, in the hatch, a notable nod to the look of the VW Golf/GTI. I’ll get to the design details in a moment, but first, here are some of the Sonic features that Chevy is counting on to help make people forget about the Aveo.