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Honda Freed, A Fit Mini-Minivan

Illustration for article titled Honda Freed, A Fit Mini-Minivan

Sure, they're not only not cool, but we really can't stand them, but some of the most efficient vehicles on the market are five-door subcompacts and eight-passenger minivans. So what happens what you combine the two? Well, if you're Honda, you start with a Jazz, or as it's known in America, the Honda Fit, and then make it just a touch bigger to fit a third row of seats. Then, swap in some rear sliding doors, and you've got yourself a compact minivan that can seat up to eight people. But just how mini is it?

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The Freed has a 107.8" wheelbase, which sits nicely between the 96.5" wheelbase of the Fit, and the 118.1" wheelbase of the American-market Honda Odyssey. Overall length is 166" compared to the Fit's 157" and 202" for the Odyssey. So, where does this stand on the Jalopnik Niche-Slap Machine-o-Meter? Well, it's no El Camino, but its certainly better than some of the ridiculously meaningless crossovers that are all the rage these days. The Freed has practicality to make up for its lack of cool — and that, is kinda cool. Alas, like all good JDM cars, there's no expectations for the Freed to ever be sold in America. Somebody call Japan and tell them we'll give them all the Jeep Compasses they want, if we can get the Freed. [NihonCar]

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DISCUSSION

graverobber
Rob Emslie

@Feds: I totally agree with you. I was really excited when the 5 came out because it's right in line with what I'd like in a daily driver - flexibility and economy.

However I found it too tight. Now, that's just me, and it may be more acceptable for someone else. I still really like the idea of being able to haul six passengers in a pinch in something with that small a footprint. Back when my kids were smaller it might have been more viable for me, but now that my eldest is taller than the wife (!) she wouldn't fit in that third row for long.

We have a Toyota van right now, and it works out perfectly for my wife, fitting a lot of Girl Scouts and their stuff. I drive a big-ass sedan, that we purchased before the van, and if I had thought we'd be getting the van, I'd have gone for something smaller.