Sunday, July 21, 2019

My FIT EV: 6 years and 120,000 Miles later

Posted on Jul 21, 2019
Now that it's time to return my leased Honda FIT, after owing it for 6 years and having driven over 120,000 miles,  I thoughts it to be a good time to summarize my overall experiences & to build up on my earlier experience : 

The Battery Performance

One of the most important feature of an electric car is its battery and it's degradation. 
Surprisingly the battery performance for Honda FIT EV turned out to be excellent. I saw almost no degradation even after driving it for over 120K miles.
My experience is detailed here

but in summary I :
  • drove a 100+ miles commute every day.
  • charged vehicle to 100% twice; once overnight, other time during the day at work
  • about 2% of the time, drove vehicle beyond 0% charge, when it reduced the power etc. but still let me go on for another 5-6 miles.
  • about 50% of the time, drained the vehicle below 40% battery level.
  • never fast charged (car doesn't' have that feature)

2013 picture
2019 picture

The maximum range still shows 105-110 miles on a good day and drives closer to that, i.e. No observable Battery Degradation at all in 6 years

But before you jump on that conclusion for other EVs, please remember the battery chemistry and cooling systems are different in different cars. Below are some data that I gathered for most of 2019 models with my 2014 FIT:

Make Model Battery Chemistry Cooling
Honda FIT EV Lithium Ion --
Nissan Leaf Lithium Nickel Cobalt Manganese Oxide air cooled
Chevy Bolt Li-Ion (nickel-rich) air  Liquid cooled
Hyundai Kona EV NMC (Nickel, Manganese, Cobalt) 622 Liquid cooled
Tesla Model 3 Lithium Ion (2170) Liquid cooled

The $$ Math:

This car I got from Honda through special leasing program that they had running, which gave me the lease for $259 a month for unlimited miles and including free maintenance and insurance.
Later, after 3 years, they reduced the rate to $199 per month.
So, altogether:
  •     Upfront fee (tax, title etc.): $2200.00
  •     Maryland rebate: -$1,000. 00
  •     Lease (first 3 years): $259 * 36 = $9,324.00
  •     Lease (year 3-4) : $199 * 36 = $7,164.00
  •     Maintenance: $0
    Total:  $17,688

Gas Savings:

If instead of leasing this car and then driving 120,000 miles, I would have gone to own same car but non EV variant (2013 ICE Honda Fit), then:
Total Gas required to drive 120,000 miles: 120,000/31 = 3,871 Gallon of gas.
Assuming an average of $3.5/gallon over last 6 years, this means
3871 * 3.5= $13,548 of gas put in the to drive that 120,000 miles.

Electricity consumed

This car's EPA rating is 82 mpge, which means once fully charged , the car can drive 82 miles.
So, for 120K miles, i needed to charge the car = 120000/84 = 1463 times.
Each time, since the car has a battery pack of 20 kwh, it would cost me : 20* 10 cents ( in reality my electricity rate is about 6 cents/kwh since I have a pilot program rate from Pepco) : $2.00
So, for 1463 times, It probably costed me : 1429 * 2 = $2,926 to drive that car 120,000 miles.

Saving Gas vs Electric

So overall saving for driving the electric car vs a similar gas car was:  $13,548 - $2,926 = $10,622

Maintenance & Insurance Cost

Let us just stick to the very basic cost for a gas car to be as generous as possible for them

  • Oil & filter Change (every 5000 miles, cost $25/each) = 24 X 25 = $600
  • Tire change (once at 60,000 miles): $500
  • Brake pads etc. change $500
  • Fluid change (transmission oil etc., engine flush etc.) : $500
  • Minimum Insurance $500/year = $6000
     Total:  $8,100

All these service was covered by Honda and also either not applicable or required minimally in an electric car, meaning total savings: $8,100


So in summary, I spend $17,688 to own the car for 6 years and it resulted into $18,722 of gas & related savings.

In other words I  owned & drove a brand  new compact car for 6 years and made about $1,000 on the way 😃😃

And don't' forget the environmental benefits ( the 48 metric ton of CO2 saved or equivalent of planting 48 trees of 40 years lifespan) !!


  1. Good deal. Some like my home have solar pv so it cost even less. We also have a lot of free charging in Phoenix.
    The Bolt has liquid cooling for life of the vehicle batteries.
    The LEAF has no cooling at all.same with the KIA SOUL EV. We leased and both died here.

  2. I love the savings aspect but let's be honest. The negative impact of building and then decommissioning these cars including the battery packs is unknown and potentially far worse than that of a gas car. Plus if your electricity comes from fossil fuels then the air pollution is the same plus the battery impact.
    It's time to get honest about the environmental impact of these cars.
    I leased a Leaf for 4 years and am going back to gas as my experience was not a favorable one.

    1. Wish I'd gotten a Fit. I had a gas fit before my leaf and it was the best car I've ever owned or leased. And I got it with 120k miles. Gave it to someone in need with ~180k miles 2 years later and it has over 300k now and has travelled to 48 states all Canadian provinces and several states in Mexico. Awesome car!

  3. You're wrong. We know exactly the impact of decommissioning EV batteries. These batteries, which can no longer power a vehicle at high speeds are perfect for offsetting peak hour electricity consumption for home and business use. While the packs can no longer output 130,000 watts of power, they can output 15,000 watts for each pack for the next 25+ years. You can store renewable electricity when it's not produced. You can charge the battery at off peak hours and then use that same stored power during peak times potentially saving thousands of dollars each year. You can potentially have days of power during a blackout. Even after that battery use has reached end of life, you can still recycle most of the batteries components and start over again.

    1. Great comment. I am being asked to return my FIT EV after 5 years but am trying for an extension. It has under 10k miles on it and I love the car. I also have 6k of solar but I doubt if the batteries could be applied there. So sad that they never made a production car out of it. For me it is so perfect! Long live the FIT EV!