Honda's New Infotainment Setup a Great Fit
The latest version of HondaLink debuts on the 2014 Civic and 2015 Fit
The 2015 Honda Fit brings an advanced new infotainment system to the subcompact class, with a simple user interface and the ability to pair a smartphone for navigation and music.
Debuting at the Detroit Auto Show, the new Fit features a seven-inch touchscreen that lets users swipe, pinch, and tap—just like a smartphone. Instead of Honda's old, two-screen i-MID display with jog wheel, the Fit's infotainment system is streamlined and easy to use.
For example, a backlit control panel on the left of the screen only shows options that are relevant to the screen the user is viewing. So volume controls will show on the radio screen, but not during destination entry.
The setup is also technologically advanced. The Fit is the first car from Honda to feature Siri Eyes Free integration straight from the factory, and it's the second car to feature the updated version of HondaLink, which debuted on the 2014 Civic. Apps are also available.
And with Display Audio, a smartphone can power the car's navigation system. For just $60, drivers can select a destination on their phone whether it's in or out of the car. Pair the phone using a Apple Digital AV Adapter, and turn-by-turn directions will appear on the center console screen, along with a map. The option is available on EX trim levels and up.
Users must have an iPhone 5, 5c, or 5s, though Honda spokeswoman Jessica Fini told us that Android connectivity would come soon. There's no plan for backward compatibility with older phones, so make sure you upgrade before you buy.
We gave Display Audio a try on the Fit on the show floor, and came away impressed. It was quick to process and responsive to inputs. And the pinch and swipe capacity was on par with most smartphones.
By eliminating the need for a pricey navigation system in favor of the GPS that's already in most drivers' pockets, Honda has given the Fit a value advantage. Pricing details have yet to be released, but we're told the Fit's cost should be in line with current models featuring similar option packages.
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