- Distinctive, modern styling
- Unmatched record for reliability
- Will stand out in the hatchback crowd
- Bizarre dashboard design
ROAD TEST by Nick Fletcher
THE HONDA JAZZ, Honda’s small hatchback, has long been a popular choice though some thought its conventional looks were too staid to attract younger buyers.
But that view has been demolished by the latest Jazz, which has distinctive modern styling which should certain widen its customer base.
Prices start at £11,695 and while not cheapest in the sector, you have to factor in Honda’s unmatched record for reliability and above-average re-sale values.
There is a choice of two VTEC petrol engines – an 89hp 1.2 litre and a 99 hp 1.4 litre – with standard 5-speed gearboxes, and with CVT auto transmission available on some models.
The short nose of the new Jazz helps it stand out in the hatchback crowd, and also helps create more interior space, a big plus-point for this model, which also offers a larger boot than its main rivals.
Our test model was a mid-range manual Si version with a 1.4 litre engine, and well-kitted with sports upholstery, front fogs, 16-inch alloys, revised bumpers and side skirts. It also has sports suspension.
Other features include cruise control, climate control, 4 powered windows, radio/CD/USB, and front side and curtain airbags. Price is £14,995.
The cabin is roomy, front and rear and the seating very comfortable. The dashboard is bizarrely designed using every line curve and angle in a geometry set, though the controls are well placed for ease of use.
Height adjustable drivers seat and adjustable steering wheels means most people can get a good driving position.
Bootspace at 337 litres is greater than class average, and the rear seats fold down quickly and easily (and with retractable headrests) to take the available loadspace to 883 litres. And unlike most rivals, the Jazz gives flat load floor.
Underway, the Jazz proves smooth and comfortable, though not that quick given its sporty looks. The 0-60 mph time is 11.8 seconds, top speed 113 mph. Fuel consumption is very good – 50.4 mpg combined and although we felt we drove it quite hard at times, we still got an impressive 46 mpg.
Ride quality is fine most of the time but the stiffened suspension on the Si model is a tad jiggly on rougher surfaces. Overall, the car came across as a neat, stylish, versatile package with a little more class than most in the sector.
This new-look better-equipped Jazz is going to attract more customers to the Honda brand, and they won’t be disappointed . Honda has finished top for customer satisfaction for almost a decade in the supermini class in the famous JD Power awards.
FOR: Attractive styling, great fuel economy, Honda dependability.
AGAINST: Over-fussy dashboard. •••••
An interior with a lot more to see
Inside the Honda Jazz, you’ll find plenty to set your eyes on. Like our cleverly designed windscreen. It helps you get a better view of what’s ahead, and allows more light in. But if you want to see even more, the panoramic glass roof* pulls back to reveal the sky above at the touch of a button.
- *Available on EX, EXL and HX
A choice of engine
that suits how you drive
Everybody’s different. It’s why the Jazz comes with a choice of engine — so you can pick the one that’s right for you.
Take our petrol models. First decide on the power — either a 1.2 or 1.4. Both our i-VTEC engines offer lively performance, excellent fuel economy and low emissions, which will make you feel good on every drive. You can even choose automatic transmission on our 1.4 model for a more refined drive.
Or if petrol isn’t your thing, why not try the Jazz Hybrid? It runs off a mixture of fuel and electricity — which will keep you going for longer. Then, where possible, it’ll run off electricity alone, all while maintaining a lively, efficient flow of power. And to keep fuel economy at its highest, automatic transmission comes as standard, ensuring the most efficient drive ratio is selected to consume less fuel and release fewer emissions.
Integrated hybrid system
The Jazz Hybrid’s Integrated Motor Assist (IMA) hybrid system combines an advanced electric motor with a conventional petrol engine. Under some conditions, the Jazz Hybrid can even run under electric power only, using its Electric Vehicle (EV) mode. The result is improved fuel economy and a more refined drive. So whether you’re accelerating, cruising or slowing to a stop, the electric motor and battery pack maintain a lively, efficient flow of power.
The Jazz Hybrid also comes with automatic Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) as standard, which delivers optimum fuel economy and ensures the most efficient drive ratio is always selected. This means your Jazz consumes less fuel, releases fewer emissions and, ultimately, saves you money.
One of the safest
cars in Europe
It’s good to know you’re in safe hands — don’t you think? It’s why we’re proud to say the Jazz was awarded the 5 star safety rating this year from Euro NCAP — that’s the highest award possible.
Designed to offer maximum protection to those in and out of the car, the body structure, technology and interior all work together to keep you safe.
Add to that safety features like ABS brakes, Electronic Brake-force Distribution and Brake Assist to keep you in control on the road, it’s clear the Jazz is more than prepared for when you need a helping hand.
at the touch of a button
See how you drive. Our Eco Assist system will accompany you around every corner. It’ll tell you when you’re driving well and when you could improve, helping you achieve better fuel economy — which means less visits to the petrol station, and more money in your wallet.
With you every step of the way — that’s our Guidance Function. It monitors how you drive and shows you how well you’re doing on the speedometer display. Brake or accelerate aggressively and the display changes colour from green to blue. Improve your fuel economy and the ‘flower’ emblem will grow. With the Guidance Function turned on, it’ll be hard to put a foot wrong.
as if by magic
Pick a seat. Any seat. In one simple motion you’ll see it lift up and fold over, giving you space to carry anything tall, long or a mix of both.
You can rearrange the seats in 180 different ways — giving you enough room for whatever comes your way. A bicycle, an ATV or a Shetland pony — they all fit. We’ve checked.
You’ll soon see there aren’t any illusions here. Just clever Honda thinking.