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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
4 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
3 / 0
Average Mileage:
23,399 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2008 Honda Fit brakes problems

brakes problem

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2008 Honda Fit Owner Comments

problem #13

May 092012


  • 76,000 miles


At start-up there seems to be enough brake booster vacuum for one braking; the next time I hit the brakes it goes to the floor as if there is no power brake assist. There are brakes there, but it takes a huge amount of force and if you're not expecting it would be easy to hit something. It happens 50% of the time I start the vehicle (after sitting 8+ hours). The issue is worse when in reverse (lower gear and thus more power from the engine?). the second dealer I went to said this is a known issue with no known repair. While at the dealership, a civic owner said she has the same problem and the dealers told her that it is "normal". the service manager told me to let the car warm up for 2-minutes before driving. A year ago, I had 32,000 miles when this first occurred 20% of the time; now I have 76,000 miles and it occurs 50% of the time. I can understand that some people with similar complaints may think the brakes are not working at all, when you have to push extremely hard to get them to work (as when your brake booster fails). It is difficult for me to stop even though I'm 6'7", 200 pounds, very strong and I'm a heavy equipment operator so I'm prepared for things to go wrong.

- Salida, CO, USA

problem #12

Jan 012010


  • 25,000 miles
There is something seriously wrong with the brakes. The brakes lack feel and are "spongy." This causes great difficulty during braking. At high speeds, the brakes seem to function properly, but at low speeds it does not. When I press the brake pedal, instead of braking, the brake pedal will drop. The car continues to move as if the brake pedal is not being pressed down. The creates a situation where the last few seconds, I must hit the brakes even harder for the vehicle to begin stopping. This creates a hazard for vehicles both in front and in back of me. There is very little control in the braking system. From the forums, it appears there are many other Honda Fit owners with the similar problem. Some have gotten into accidents due to this failure, while others have been more lucky. This is certainly a accident waiting to happen. I have taken my car to the Honda dealership, whom have denied anything being wrong. I urge you to investigate this matter before another person is killed/ injured due to this failure.

- Oakland, CA, USA

problem #11

Jan 022012


  • 31,200 miles
After attempting to make an emergency stop on a city street on a sunny day with about 2.5 car lengths between my Fit and an Accord. The vehicle's ABS system overreacted and caused the vehicle to become very choppy, dramatically increasing the distance it took to stop. This caused my vehicle to rear end the Accord. In retrospect, had I not applied 100% brake force and did not trigger the ABS, I may have been able to stop the vehicle just short of rear ending the other vehicle. I have experienced similar situations under various road and weather conditions with this vehicle, where the ABS activates prematurely and remains active, even when there should be sufficient grip. Even light pressure on the brake pedal while going over some pot holes and up onto drive ways triggers the ABS system. I never paid much attention to this issue because I always leave enough space between myself and other vehicles, but after doing some online research after my accident, it has become apparent to me that I am not the only individual experience ABS problems with this vehicle. Nor am I the only individual who has reported this issue to the NHTSA. As a note, I have driven various small and large vehicles - with and without ABS - and they have never been reacted so poorly in an emergency/panic situation. It should be noted that these ABS problems occurred with the factory dunlop tires as my recent accident with performance (grippy) Firestone firehawk wide oval indy 500 tires (with >50 tread). I have not gotten the estimate for the damage to my vehicle, but the front bumper is damaged as well as the hood - not sure if there is any frame damage. No airbags were deployed, no occupants were harmed. I will also reach out to Honda America. Please look into this issue. Thank you.

- Fremont, CA, USA

problem #10

May 112011

Fit 4-cyl

  • 38,386 miles


Honda Fit 2008 brakes failure to stop during braking. Noise during braking grinding / loosening of brake pads when braking. Went to Honda for brake inspection per my non-Honda mechanic, to replace calipers. Honda technician says there is nothing wrong, that I just needed new brake pads. First time replacing them since I bought the car. Mileage was at 38,386. Paid for new pads. Date was Dec. 29, 2011. Today first oil change and brake check since pads were change, wearing of pads are still uneven and brake noises still prevalent, even at from 20 mile per hour braking to stop.

- 94546, CA, USA

problem #9

Jan 232011


  • 37,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Honda Fit. While applying pressure to the brakes, the contact noticed that the vehicle would not decrease in speed, which caused her to hit another vehicle. The contact sustained bruises to the leg. The vehicle was towed to the dealer and the contact was awaiting the results of an inspection. The contact did not inform the manufacturer. The current and failure mileages were 37,000.

- Spokane Valley, WA, USA

problem #8

Jun 172009


  • 6,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Honda Fit. The contact was driving approximately between 25-30 mph, approaching a traffic stop signal. Suddenly, the brake pedal traveled to the floor when pressure was applied. The vehicle would stop with a brief delay. The failure occurred ten to twelve times on different occasions. However, the problem would not occur in cold weather temperatures. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer where the technician was unable to locate a problem. The failure persisted. The contact planned to have the vehicle diagnosed for a second time. The failure mileage was approximately 6,000.

- Blue Springs, MO, USA

problem #7

Dec 012009


  • 10 miles


Brake concerns: I have a 2008 Honda Fit that intermittently has a hard brake pedal and often will not stop with 2 feet on the brake pedal. It feels to me like the master cylinder or brake booster linkage is somehow binding, this usually occurs after driving on rough roads and making a right turn, my local dealer will take it for a 5 minute drive and give it back to me stating "no problem found" even after several complaints. I feel this car is unsafe to drive. Honda and it's dealers don't seem concerned about brake problems but I'm afraid to drive this car.

- Sacramento, CA, USA

problem #6

May 032010


  • 38,000 miles
On several occasions when applying the brakes in my 2008 Honda Fit, they failed to engage. I have been lucky enough to avoid accidents, but I'm quite concerned and have noticed other such concerns posted on the web.

- Dorchester, MA, USA

problem #5

Jan 072010


  • 16,585 miles
I own a 2008 Honda Fit. On 1-7-2010, while traveling at approximately 45 -50 mph, the vehicle in front of mine began to brake. My brakes were applied; however, the vehicle did not seem to be slowing. The brakes were then depressed all the way to the floor, however, the vehicle continued forward until it crashed into the vehicle in front of mine. The ABS did not engage during this incident. The air bag did not deploy. The seat belt broke. The insurance company was informed of the above noted failures. The vehicle was repaired, however, no brake problems were detected. In late February, 2010, I got my vehicle back from the repair shop. On 3-4-2010, I was traveling at approximately 45 mph when a vehicle pulled out in front of me causing me to slam the brakes as hard as I could. Again, the ABS system did not engage and my vehicle continued forward. The only reason I did not crash into the vehicle in front of me is because it cleared my path before impact. During this incident, my seat belt did not "grab" me. I took my vehicle to the Honda dealership the next day, explained the incident, and asked that the brake system and seat belt be checked out again thoroughly. The Honda service writer told me that they could find nothing wrong with the brakes or the seat belt. Due to my field of employment, I have had extensive training in emergency vehicle operation. I know how the ABS system operates and how a vehicle should respond when the brakes are applied in the manner described above.

- Jacksonville , FL, USA

problem #4

Apr 062010


  • 30,000 miles
I was driving home going about 50 mph, when traffic slammed on their brakes. I was following about 3 car lengths behind the person in front of me, and as soon as they slammed on their brakes I slammed on mine. When slamming on my brakes, the ABS didn't even come on because my brakes weren't working like they were supposed to. My brakes felt spongy, and should have stopped me with room to spare, but they didn't even come close.

- Kansas City, MO, USA

problem #3

Mar 092010


  • 5,000 miles


Anti-lock system activates inappropriately. Driving over rough pavement, bumps etc seems to activate anti-lock system. Brakes become squishy, and less effective during these incidences. This problem happens routinely.

- Brookline, MA, USA

problem #2

Aug 012009


  • miles
My vehicle's ABS system appears to be extremely sensitive and activates needlessly during light braking even on dry pavement. It can to be triggered consistently by lightly applying the brakes on uneven terrain, such as cracks in the road, small potholes or bumps. The brake pedal pulses for a short time, during which braking is ineffective and the vehicle continues to move forward for several feet. I drive several other vehicles on a regular basis, none of which exhibit this problem. A service rep at Honda of bloomfield, located in bloomfield hills, mi, characterized the condition as normal.

- Auburn Hills, MI, USA

problem #1

Oct 152008


  • 1,000 miles
Unsafe design - recall request I am the owner of a 2008 Honda Fit with standard transmission. The ten-minute test drive did not alert me to the insufficient legroom that makes me apply both the brake and the gas at the same time. The explanation follows. Long drives of over twenty minutes cause my leg to cramp and I need to shift my right heel to the right. That puts my heel directly behind the gas pedal instead of the normal position directly behind the brake pedal. When the toe of the foot moves to the brake pedal, the sole of the foot also covers the edge of the gas pedal and both pedals are pushed at the same time. The brake system is also partly at fault since after the initial application the brake continues to slowly sink to the floor instead of holding the pedal height. This results in even more gas being applied. Honda has inspected the brakes and has indicated they are working normally. I have driven standard shift cars many years including, Chevy, Plymouth, Pontiac, two Toyota, two vws, the 1991 Honda, and now this Fit. There are many hundred-thousand miles logged in these cars. I replaced my 1991 Honda dx with the Fit. The cars are essentially the same size length and width and the 1991 Honda was a comfortable car. You would think the Fit would be as well proportioned. I have checked other cars of the same size and style with the thought of trading. I have found the Nissan versa, Toyota Scion xd, and Toyota yaris to have the same or worse legroom as the Fit. I am 70 inches tall with a pant inseam of 31 inches. My guess is that anyone with an inseam of more than 29 would have the same problem. Recall the Honda Fit to force the company to adjust the seat so that it will move farther back from the gas pedal and/or higher. There is plenty of room in the car for that to happen. Honda added another few inches to the 2009 Fit but kept the same front seat clearance dimensions. Establish design rules to stop this design flaw.

- Colts Neck , NJ, USA

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