2013 Honda Fit EV Preview

Jeff Youngs | Apr 26, 2012
FAST FACTS
  • New pure-electric drivetrain
  • Unique technology specific to electric model
  • Special Reflection Blue Pearl paint

Introduction

The 2013 Honda Fit EV is an electric version of the automaker's subcompact Fit 5-door hatchback. It will be available to lease for $389 per month in California and Oregon in the summer of 2012, followed by selected East Coast markets in 2013. The lease payment includes scheduled maintenance and 24-hour roadside assistance.

Exterior Features

Honda plans to lease no more than 1,100 Fit EVs during a 3-year planned production run. All of them will be painted in Reflection Blue Pearl, a color unique to this model. Additionally, the Fit EV is adorned with "EV" badges, identifying decals on the car's flanks, chrome front trim, clear-lens taillights, a rear spoiler, and 15-inch aluminum wheels that are specific to this model. The Fit EV also receives more aerodynamic front and rear bumper covers, according to Honda, as well as side skirts to improve airflow around the car and extend driving range.

Interior Features

Occupants sit higher in the Fit EV, because the battery is installed under the car's floor. Seats are upholstered in ecologically responsible bio-fabric, and the Fit EV's electronic gauge coloring changes between green, white and red depending on whether the car is operating in Econ, Normal or Sport modes.

A standard telematics system with smartphone and computer applications allow the owner to remotely keep tabs on the Fit EV's state of charge, initiate or terminate charging, pre-condition the car's cabin temperature using the air conditioner or heater, set charging alerts, and to program charging times for off-peak utility rate hours.

A navigation system is also standard, designed to help find the nearest charging stations, and the Fit EV's remote key fob allows for charging activation or termination as well as cabin pre-conditioning. The remote must be used within 100 feet of the vehicle.

Optional Features

Honda leases the 2013 Fit EV in a single state of specification. Options are not available, though dealers do offer a range of extra-cost accessories that may be added to the vehicle.

Under the Hood

The 2013 Honda Fit EV is equipped with a rechargeable 20-kilowatt-hour (kWh) lithium-ion battery that is located under the car's floor. The battery powers a 92-kilowatt electric motor, which drives the front wheels through the Fit EV's 3-mode electric drive system featuring Econ, Normal and Sport settings. Honda says that when driven in Econ mode, driving range for the Fit EV increases 17% over Normal mode. In Sport mode, acceleration improves, the automaker states.

Using a 240-volt outlet, the Fit EV can be recharged in as little as 3 hours, according to Honda. The company does not provide timing when using a standard 120-volt household outlet. Typically, however, using a standard outlet doubles recharging time at a minimum.

Driving Range

Honda says the new 2013 Fit EV should offer a 76-mile driving range in combined city and highway driving. Used exclusively for city driving, the company claims the car can travel 123 miles between visits to the charging station.

Safety

Honda says the Fit EV's battery is encased in a steel jacket and "is designed to be non-reactive in any crash or puncture." In addition to these measures and Honda's Advanced Compatibility Engineering body structure, the Fit EV is equipped with six air bags, anti-lock brakes with electronic brake-force distribution, and stability control.
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