Many subcompact buyers are concerned about crash safety when they shop for a mini car. So when the 2015 edition of the Honda Fit got a “marginal” rating in tests done by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, the automaker’s engineers went back to the drawing board.
To reassure buyers and get a higher rating, the engineers strengthened the welds on the front bumper beams to make the car more crash resistant by spreading the energy from a crash over the front of the car. This makes the car safer for the driver and the passengers.
The IIHS tests show how a car would fare should its front corner meet up with a hydro pole in a 40 mph (65 km) crash.
According to Kelley Blue Book, all Fits built at Honda’s plant in Mexico after June 9 will have the upgrades.
But Honda went one step further. Starting late September, the automaker will be asking North American owners of the 2015 Fits built before June 9 to bring in their cars for an upgrade free of charge.
An IIHS rep said it was rare for an automaker to recall cars after a retest.