Honda Jazz – a smart choice that sets you apart from the usual crowd

2020 Honda Jazz. Picture – Honda

Honda’s little Jazz has been in showrooms for 20 years and despite its compact looks, its dimensions are actually similar to rivals such as Ford’s Fiesta, Vauxhall’s Corsa, VW’s Polo and the Citroen C3.

In its latest version, the first thing that strikes you once inside the Jazz is the light, airy feel and excellent all-around visibility. This is largely due to the almost panoramic windscreen with large quarter lights and thin windscreen pillars. Compared to its rivals, the Jazz feels very spacious.

That interior space is excellent for headroom and legroom and although the boot is compromised due to hybrid batteries, it’s perfectly adequate for the weekly shop. The rear seat also slides to help with those slightly larger loads.

Power comes from a 1.5-litre petrol/electric hybrid unit which allows the car to choose the optimum circumstances to bring in electric power. An e-CVT automatic transmission is one of the better units although there is still the vocal interference from the engine under hard acceleration until the CVT transmission catches up. All of these units work the same way and the trick is to feather the throttle whenever possible. Hard acceleration apart from the Jazz is a smooth, refined ride with impressive economy and low emissions.

The range starts at €24,909 / £20,860 with basic equipment providing all the essentials such as automatic lights and wipers, adaptive cruise control, electric heated and folding door mirrors, Bluetooth and air conditioning . My test model was the SR version which is the second of five trim levels offered in the lineup.

Priced at €26,715 / £22,375, the SR adds front and rear parking sensors, wireless CarPlay and upgraded infotainment and touchscreens. Generally being a Honda the build quality is top notch and the cloth seats with soft touch materials on the dash and door panels make it a simple but comfortable place to travel. The combination of comfortable seating and generous interior space makes the Jazz eminently capable of more than just urban commuting.

If the Jazz has a problem, then that’s the price. Look at rivals from Ford, Vauxhall and especially Citroen and you’ll see why in times of economic downturn people may turn to lesser quality models. Even VW’s Polo is cheaper than the Jazz. Go over the price though and you know the Jazz will keep you reliably mobile for many years to come and is a smart choice that sets you apart from the crowd.

Quick Facts

Model: Honda Jazz SR

Engine: 1.5 litre, self-charging petrol/electric hybrid

Gears: e-CVT automatic

Price: €26,715 (£22,375)

Performance: 0-100 km/h (62 mph) in 9.4 seconds / top speed 174 km/h (108 mph)

Economy: 3.2 l/100 km (72.4 mpg) Combined WLTP driving

Emissions: 87g/km WLTP

The model tested was to UK specification and equipment levels and prices may vary in other markets.

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Ada J. Kenney