Is the Honda Fit made of wood?
March 29, 2017 12:37 PM   Subscribe

I was told by a used car dealer that a sheet of plywood was a factory installed part of the vehicle. Is that true?

I was shopping for a used car and took a Honda Fit for a test drive. In the cargo area, I noticed that the only thing between the upholstery and the spare tire was a sheet of bare plywood. I asked dealership staff if that was part of the original design of the car. I was told it was.

I took this to be dishonest and told them so. I'd like to be absolutely sure that I don't owe them an apology. If you own a Fit, could you please confirm that plywood in the cargo area floor is not factory installed.

I don't usually write customer reviews, but I think I would like to post about my car shopping experience at this dealership. Not having done this before a) where would be a good place to post a dealership review? and b) should I have any concerns about being sued if I post an accurate account of my recollection of what happened?
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow to Shopping (20 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
I have a 2016 Fit and there is definitely no bare plywood anywhere in the cargo area. Edited to add: check out some review videos that show the car's interior to compare to what you saw. Here's one.
posted by LKWorking at 12:39 PM on March 29, 2017


Almost all Japanese sedans have a piece of fiberboard or similar material under the "carpet" in the trunk - it supports the floor of the trunk where the parcels go and keeps them from falling into the well area holding the spare tire and similar stuff. My '15 Camry has a bit of an upgrade from my '08 Camry in that it also seems to have some foam fitting over the tire providing some trays to hold the jack, etc.

Doesn't seem implausible that a Fit has a similar set up. Actual, bare plywood seems a little odd; maybe a retro-fit done by a previous owner because the fiberboard broke down?
posted by randomkeystrike at 12:41 PM on March 29, 2017 [5 favorites]


Mr. Redstart's 2013 Fit has a thin carpet-covered sheet of something like particle board covering the spare tire. It could possibly be described as a sheet of plywood, but it's not bare; it's covered by carpet-like material.
posted by Redstart at 12:46 PM on March 29, 2017 [8 favorites]


Quick image search suggests that actual plywood is not original equipment. Though a rigid carpeted cover is.

Japanese hatchback tire cover anecdata: my 2015 Mazda 3 has a carpeted styrofoam spare cover. The cover on the trunk of my 1994 Mazda Protege is something that looks like masonite or some kind of pressboard sandwiched by carpet and fiber insuation.
posted by monopas at 12:47 PM on March 29, 2017 [1 favorite]


I've had cars with bare particleboard there, underneath a carpet layer.
posted by chesty_a_arthur at 12:47 PM on March 29, 2017 [2 favorites]


I have a 08 Fit and I'm quite sure the OEM trunk floor is something like plywood. I can double check tonight. It is has black carpet adhered to one side but the bottom is bare wood. There is a string handle.
posted by bdc34 at 12:48 PM on March 29, 2017 [2 favorites]


[Friendly reminder, please don't use the edit function to add or change content; just make a second comment instead.]
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 12:52 PM on March 29, 2017 [1 favorite]


Mr. Redstart's 2013 Fit has a thin carpet-covered sheet of something like particle board covering the spare tire. It could possibly be described as a sheet of plywood, but it's not bare; it's covered by carpet-like material.

My 2012 as well. It's bare on the underside, carpeted on top.
posted by Capt. Renault at 12:54 PM on March 29, 2017 [2 favorites]


My boyfriend has an '08 Honda Fit and confirms this:

I have a 08 Fit and I'm quite sure the OEM trunk floor is something like plywood. I can double check tonight. It is has black carpet adhered to one side but the bottom is bare wood. There is a string handle.
posted by pazazygeek at 1:18 PM on March 29, 2017 [1 favorite]


It's going to be hard to say definitively without a model year and trim level. Honda has been making Fits since 2001, and if they've been selling LX, EX, and EX-L (or whatever they call them) versions for that time, you're looking at about 50 different models.

Cargo liners/trays are also pretty common dealer options, so it's even harder to say that the plywood isn't original. Maybe only, say, the 2007 LX with the cargo liner had the spare cover switched from molded plastic to carpeted plywood for some obscure engineering reason.

(Wood isn't a completely unreasonable material for this seldom-removed part, I think my '96 Civic DX had a carpet-over-chipboard spare cover. Compared to plastic it's stronger, cheaper and almost as light.)
posted by lozierj at 1:20 PM on March 29, 2017


You made me curious, so I just checked my 2010 Civic - its trunk floor is just a carpeted piece of something that looks kind of like corrugated plastic. And I know my 1997 Civic hatchback just had a carpeted particleboard trunk floor. So for what it's worth, it seems like "flimsy" is not an uncommon quality for these trunk floors.
posted by DingoMutt at 1:22 PM on March 29, 2017


I didn't have a Fit, but the spare tire cover in my Honda Civic was a sheet of very shitty particle board. There was carpet on top of it, but the carpet wasn't adhered to the board. The board itself looked something like this, though that eBay link is to an after-market part that is probably a significantly higher quality than the cheap crap that was actually in my Civic. Actual plywood would be a huge quality leap.

The main thing about this story that surprises me is that the Fit apparently has spare tires again? They were sold without them for a long time.
posted by jacquilynne at 1:43 PM on March 29, 2017 [1 favorite]


I have a 2017 Fit EX and in the cargo area I have a thin piece of... something, but it's carpeted on both sides. It's certainly not plywood.

Do you mean that when you look into the back cargo area you can see bare plywood? That's certainly not OEM. Or do you mean that if you lift up the carpeted section of the cargo area floor you see bare plywood underneath that? In my car I've got some kind of styrofoam looking piece that fits over the spare tire, and I could imagine that breaking and me putting something over the spare tire to support the existing cargo area floor, which is fairly thin to begin with. But either way, I don't think a piece of actual plywood was OEM to the car.
posted by ralan at 2:28 PM on March 29, 2017


I bought a used Fit from a non-Honda dealership recently, and the cover for the tire is carpeted.

However, the salesperson also said the car has Bluetooth (it doesn't), was no help when I looked under the hood to check fluids, and admitted to never being in a Fit before. They also said that the shop hadn't done anything to the car (after going back to "pull a shop report"), while the carfax showed that they'd done brake work. I think you may be overestimating how much knowledge the average used car salesperson has about their inventory. I think you should expect to verify anything the dealer tells you about a car. Which is annoying! But also seems to be standard.
posted by momus_window at 3:43 PM on March 29, 2017 [4 favorites]


I was curious enough that I went and checked mine (a 2013 sport), and if there's plywood it's very thin and covered with some kind of fabric/felt/carpet stuff on both sides. It also didn't flex like plywood and felt too light to me, but I guess I haven't seen plywood that thin before (~2mm at most). Here's a picture if you want to see. FWIW It's not particularly flimsy feeling when it is lying flat, but it is a bit when you pick it up.

Underneath as you can see there's also no plywood, just plastic/metal (+tire). The other thing to know is that this surface is hinged with something attached near to the seats, offset from the seats a bit, so it's not just sitting there. No idea if there are models where there is a surface or board-like thing that is unattached back there, but this actually seems a bit inconsistent with the general aesthetic of the cargo area so I'd be a bit surprised. (But they do go back several major revisions before mine so who knows.)

You'd get better results if you could provide the year.
posted by advil at 4:07 PM on March 29, 2017 [1 favorite]


2010 Honda Fit owner. There is nothing in the cargo area that would resemble plywood to the casual observer. Everything is upholstered with carpet-like material.
posted by RonButNotStupid at 5:30 PM on March 29, 2017


I just checked my 2008 base model. It has particle board with black carpet on the visible side. When it is in place it looks presentable enough.
posted by bdc34 at 7:19 PM on March 29, 2017 [1 favorite]


Just checked my 2008 also. It is carpet covered particle board that bends easily. It fits under a plastic "lip" around the inside of the hatchback. It does look like plywood, (to the point where I said "huh, it IS plywood" but is more like fiberboard and has a grid pattern on the "wood" side that you have to look closely to see. Honestly, I think plywood might be an improvement, except it would be harder to remove due to it being so rigid.
posted by raisingsand at 8:06 PM on March 29, 2017 [1 favorite]


Seconding RonButNotStupid re: the 2010 Fit. I had the Sport model, FWIW.
posted by dondiego87 at 3:33 AM on March 30, 2017


My 2009 sport model (bought used in 2014) has carpeted thin particle board.
posted by briank at 5:25 AM on March 30, 2017


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