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Honda Fit EV Sport Vs. Eco Mode: What It Means for Range

am enjoying my week with the Honda Fit EV. The Fit is a great platform, and Honda engineers and designers are meticulous. I could easily see myself owning this car one day—if Honda someday decides to move beyond leasing, and offer the car for sale. As I wrote about on Wednesday, my favorite feature of the Fit EV is its use of modes: Normal, Sport and Eco. Because the Sport mode is so much fun, and the Eco mode is so lackluster, I decided to test out how these modes affect overall driving range.

On Wednesday, I left the car in Sport mode all day, and pushed its performance to the limit. (Honda programmed the Fit EV to stay in Eco or Normal mode between trips, but if you’ve been driving in Sport mode, the car reverts to Normal mode on your next trip. That means on the next start-up, you need to once again select Sport mode.) At every opportunity, I darted through traffic, jumped quickly away from traffic lights, and ran the AC at full blast. The idea was to simulate range if I was to regularly drive for maximum fun and with little regard for conserving energy.

In fact, I went a little overboard. With about 10 percent of charge remaining, I did a couple tests for zero-to-60 performance (using highway on ramps as my test ground). But stomping as hard as I could on the accelerator quickly drained the battery. With the SOC meter reading “0%,” I pulled into a Walgreens in San Pablo, Calif., for a 30-minute top-up—adding 10 miles of range via the Fit EV’s 6.6-kW charger to make sure I could get home. (By the way, the 350Green Walgreens charging station is now requiring a $2 an hour fee; it had been free until June.)

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