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Honda Fit v. Nissan Versa

SylviaSylvia Posts: 1,636
edited March 20 in Honda
Both are great hatchbacks - which do you prefer?
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Comments

  • arkainzeyearkainzeye pittsburgh paPosts: 473
    wow i just went on the nissan site. that versa comes with alot of stardard features and a More Powerful engine too! the 5speeds mpg is in the 30's also. and the price is cheaper than the fit! i think i will wait. then the honda dealers can not be so stuck up about their prices. Im really impressed with the specs of the nissan. power and price.

    chris
  • chris...

    might wanna check out this article if you haven't already:

    http://money.cnn.com/2006/06/23/autos/carreviews/subcompacts.moneymag/index.htm
  • The Versa certainly looks good on paper and if your primary goal is a people mover it's probably your best bet. That said, the back seats don't fold down flat (bad if you're a cargo mover) and while the engine is more powerful the Fit has better pick-up performance b/c it's lighter (and better MPG). The real turn-off for me is the fact that the US Versa is constructed at a brand new plant in Mexico and with Nissan's past reliability issues I am wary. The Fit is 100% Japanese made at a plant that has been making them for 5+ years. I guess you get what you pay for.
  • moparbadmoparbad Posts: 3,842
    Your statement is false.

    The real turn-off for me is the fact that the US Versa is constructed at a brand new plant in Mexico and with Nissan's past reliability issues I am wary.

    Aguascalientes is not brand new, not even close to new. Nissan has been manufacturing in Mexico since 1966. Aguascalientes plant has in the past produced vehicles exported to Japan. Aguascalientes even manufactues the Renault Clio and Scenic. The facility producing the Versa has a history of producing above average quality vehicles.

    Now, back to the regularly scheduled Fit topic.
  • cmkcmk Posts: 59
    I test drove a Versa (SL, auto) yesterday. Here are my thoughts. Please take with grain of salt, this will be my first car purchase and I am no expert.

    Comfort:
    Versa wins, hands down. Dead pedal is there, fully adjustable seat height is there. Steering wheel is tilt only, however, at 6'2" I was surprised that it was already in the right place.

    Fit and Finish:
    Versa wins, hands down. It had a much more luxurious air than the Fit. Felt a bit like the Rabbit, which I test drove last week.

    Features:
    Versa wins, hands down. Keyless entry, keyless ignition (awesome), all your basics like maplights, etc (you know, all the stuff glaringly absent on the Fit). And guess what? I can get CRUISE CONTROL without all the embarassing plastic wingy things. And a sunroof, if I want!

    Driving:
    Trans: I prefer the Versa, I think it's nifty.
    Power: Pretty much the same, both have enough power for my purposes.
    Handling: I prefer the Fit, here. The Versa's handling felt.. odd, squirelly, like it was too responsive, or something. Reminded me of a bicycle. Maybe I need some more time with it.
    Ride quality: Versa wins, definitely. You don't feel like you are going to break the car and yourself when driving over bumps. Quiet and smooth.

    Looks:
    Guess what? Versa, hands down! I didn't expect that! The Versa in person looks great. The Fit would have won this category, but unfortunately I have to have cruise control, and so I'm having to compare the Versa to the Sport Fit, which I personally find ridiculous (No offense to those whose aesthetics prefer the addons).

    Stereo:
    Versa sounded much better. A fuller sound. Plenty of options there, too (speaker packages, satellite radio, etc).

    So basically, I am in the market for a new vehicle. I was prepared to buy the Versa after one test drive, I was that sold on it. Oh, wait a minute... I left out one category...

    Cargo/storage:
    So, Versa is a hatchback. I will only buy a hatchback... I need the storage versatility. But guess what? The rear seats don't fold down ANYWHERE NEAR flat with the cargo floor, giving you a completely uneven floor, and making the extra space of a hatchback COMPLETELY IRRELEVANT! I mean seriously, what are you going to do, fold those things over and then perch your crap on top of the seats only to have your stuff fall right off? You might as well NEVER fold the seats down because then at least the seatbacks will keep the stuff in place.

    ARRGGHHHHH.

    I've been looking for a long time and the Versa was SO CLOSE. It will be easy for you guys too say that I am picky for letting this issue break the deal, but c'mon! That's the whole point of a hatchback, for me! I need the storage.

    So, no dice on the Versa, for me. BUT if you aren't concerned with storage versatility as much as I am and are interested in the Versa, I say GO FOR IT because it is a hell of a car.
  • ramoramo Posts: 66
    Thanks for this. After buying the Fit, I could not justify driving the Versa, just to satisfy my curiosity. You have confirmed my impressions formed at the Vancouver auto show. It is a good looking car, but there is not enough 'magic'.
  • jrlncjrlnc Posts: 48
    Good writeup by cmk. The Versa wasn't available at the time I was seriously thinking about buying my Fit, but I did consider Nissan. (I've owned 2 Nissans before and the Fit is my 3rd Honda).

    One factor you did not mention (which played a large role in my decision) was the quality/reliability issue. I've got to say from my experience that though Nissan is a good make, I would rate Honda as excellent. My Hondas have generally held up better as the years and miles wore on.

    I would also be much more comfortable about buying a Japanese-made Fit than a Mexican-made Versa. Not to mention also that the Fit has been around a while and the Versa is new. The Versa may really turn out to be a great model and not have any major problems.

    My Hondas also had much better resale value than my Nissans as well.

    Just another criteria for potential buyers to consider.
  • fitchgrrlfitchgrrl Posts: 21
    Ultimately it was the reliability factor and the magic seat that forced my decision to purchase the Fit over the Versa.

    Did you test drive them one after the other? To me that is the best way to compare because they are fresh in your memory. Hence why i love auto malls. You can walk from one car dealership to another.
  • mwqamwqa Posts: 106
    Not to mention also that the Fit has been around a while and the Versa is new.

    The Versa has been around in other markets for a couple of years as the Tiida, so it's not a totally new design.
  • fit_nessfit_ness Posts: 58
    Indeed, the "magic factor".

    I've surprised myself in finding that my favorite part of the "magic" is TALL mode. I never gave it much thought, but I find myself with the rear backs and the bottoms up for TALL and that it holds a ton of the stuff you always seem to have when you come out of a store.
  • jrlncjrlnc Posts: 48
    As I mentioned the Versa wasn't available when I was car shopping (early April) but I did test drive the Sentra.

    Besides the fact that I don't really like the current Sentra, it was the Japanese-made Honda versus the Mexican-made Nissan factor that steered me away from Nissan.

    I too was persuaded by the Magic Seat and the utility and fun of the Fit.
  • cmkcmk Posts: 59
    To be honest, I did not mention reliability because it did not enter my mind as a factor. I think this is because the 3rd vehicle I am considering is a VW Rabbit, and when compared to VW, Nissan and Honda are pretty close ;)

    I guess I am trying to say, I would have been confident buying a Nissan with respects to reliability. My family has had good luck with Nissans for many years.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,624
    The two Sentras I owned or leased were very reliable. But they were built in Smyrna. The current Sentra, built in the same factory as the Versa, has above-average reliability according to CR. I am not concerned about the reliability of the Versa. As noted, it is not a brand-new design.
  • flightnurseflightnurse at 35K feetPosts: 1,524
    I have had my Versa now for almost a week, I test drove a FIT 3 times, I'm glad I bought the Versa. The Ride is better, the seats are far more comfotable (Granted the FIT seats hold in you in place better) the car FEELS tighter then the FIT, the CVT transmission is light years ahead of both transmissions of the FIT, and I love the Convience package, the Intelli-Key and Blue Tooth are 2 opntions I'll be looking for in my future cars. Nissan has a home rum with the VERSA..

    Granted the FIT has those Magic seats, but how offen are you going to sit in the back seat and fold the front seat down and sit back there, also how offen are you going to have a Lama in your car...

    Tony :shades:
  • Car and Driver, Edmunds, Motor Week/Trend all preferred the Fit by a large margin. Granted, the Versa is bigger, but not better. Fit and Finish are far superior on the Fit. Handling, interior quality, even performance with less HP and torque is superior on the Fit. Sorry Versa!
  • hungarian83hungarian83 Posts: 678
    "the car FEELS tighter then the FIT"
    By "tighter", I assume you mean more solid and better built? I haven't even seen a Versa in person yet, but hearing this makes me want to take a trip down to the Nissan dealer and check it out. I have to say the Fit (especially considering its segment and price) is exceptionally well put together and really quite solid. After 3000 miles there is not a single rattle or squeak on mine, and despite the rather liberal application of hard plastics, the interior does not feel cheap and is very well put together. A big thing I notice in cars is how the door sounds when shut with the window rolled down. In many cars I have been in, including other Hondas, there is usually a shaking or rattle as the door closes. In the Fit (or at least mine) the shutting door makes a single, solid noise.

    "Granted the FIT has those Magic seats, but how offen are you going to sit in the back seat and fold the front seat down and sit back there"
    I will admit that I have never used Refresh mode, but that is just one of the modes. Actual experience: Being able to take a 6-foot tall bookshelf (unassembled in a 7-foot long box), 8-foot tall patio umbrella (top was resting on the dashboard), a half trunk load of groceries, and a passenger is in my opinion quite an accomplishment for Long mode. On one outing I threw in my bicycle (front wheel removed), a cooler, box of firewood, and two folding chairs in Utility mode.

    With the Versa, putting the rear seats down is like having two suitcases in the back.

    Anyway, I'm glad you like your Versa and have fun with it. :)
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,624
    Car and Driver, Edmunds, Motor Week/Trend all preferred the Fit by a large margin.

    That is not really accurate. Here is a quote from C/D for example:

    If you're chiefly interested in commuting and errand hopping, this [Versa] is the one.


    Meaning that if you use a small car the way a lot of people do, the Versa was the preferred car in C/D's comparo--which included the Fit.

    Here is a comment from Edmunds' review (they haven't yet done a comparo of the Versa vs. Fit):

    In this category of low-priced, basic transportation I'd probably pick the Versa over the competition solely because of the roomy interior.

    As I recall, MT made similar comments but I don't have that issue in front of me.
  • cmkcmk Posts: 59
    "Car and Driver, Edmunds, Motor Week/Trend all preferred the Fit by a large margin. Granted, the Versa is bigger, but not better. Fit and Finish are far superior on the Fit. Handling, interior quality, even performance with less HP and torque is superior on the Fit. Sorry Versa!"

    What does this even mean? Are you saying the concept of "Fit and Finish" is a purely objective category, and people that prefer the Versa are somehow wrong or misguided? Those are mostly opinions and would be best stated as such.

    Anyhow, I spent time in both and think that the superior interior lies in the Versa.
  • lonewaldenlonewalden Posts: 26
    Im new to the message boards here but long time reader of Car Mags. This months issue of Motor Trend (August 2006), in a test of the Nissan Versa SL with the CVT transmission, the Toyota Yaris with 4 speed auto, and the Honda Fit Sport with 5 speed auto, states that the Versa is the faster/ better performer.

    The Nissan has the second best weight-to-power ratio, but its gearing advantage over the four-speed Toyota made it the best performer at the track, reaching 60 mph in 9.7 seconds, over two seconds faster than the Fit (11.9) and 0.7 second faster than the Yaris.

    But later in the article they did say that it was the "runaway sporty car of the three". This due to a combination of quicker steering, and firmer suspension to name a few.

    I personally think that both the Fit and the Versa have their strong points. Most every magazine I have read states the Versa to be a better people mover, where as the Fit is the more versatile car/"stuff" mover.
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