First launched in the UK after the turn of the millennium, the Honda Jazz has blended seamlessly into an urban landscape. Setting about its daily duties with ease, this little car has never created a fuss thanks to strong reliability and more practicality than you would expect.
Although its silhouette has not changed a great deal over its generations, this Honda retains its stance as a mini MPV. There was a time when MPVs were all the rage, but somewhat less practical SUV’s have taken over in the last decade.
Looking similar in size to rivals such as the Ford Fiesta, the Vauxhall Corsa and the Renault Clio, the Honda Jazz offers a wealth of room inside when compared to others in this category.
The rear seating has been well thought out and designed, its flexibility allowing the Jazz to become almost van like and able to transport bulky items with ease.
Important equipment as standard on all models includes collision mitigation braking system, forward collision warning, lane departure warning, lane keep assist system, low speed following, road departure mitigation and traffic sign recognition.
Agile handling assist, hill start assist and electric parking brake feature alongside air conditioning, auto headlights and wipers as well as adaptive cruise control. Equipped with just four speakers, you can listen to DAB/AM/FM radio or music from a device via USB input as well as Bluetooth hands-free telephone.
LED front and rear lights offer coming home/leaving home function for added convenience alongside LED daytime running lights and high beam support system.
A total of four trims start with an ‘SE’ which is priced from £20,860 and features ECON mode and Honda sensing. Priced from £22,375 is an ‘SR’ which adds front and rear parking sensors, Honda CONNECT infotainment system, my Honda+ compatibility and wireless Apple Carplay.
Next in the line-up is an ‘EX’ which is priced from £24,015 and adds smart keyless entry and start, leather steering wheel, rear view camera and GARMIN navigation.
Priced from £26,850 is an ‘EX STYLE’ which adds whiplash lessening front headrests, cargo net hook, rear spoiler, chrome mirrors and 16-inch trim specific alloy wheels.
Just one engine is available across the range which is a 1.5-litre petrol/electric hybrid producing 97PS with 253Nm of torque. A 0-62mph dash can be expected in 9.4 seconds, with a top speed of 108mph.
Driving only the front wheels, the eCVT transmission that is paired to this engine makes for a surprisingly punchy package around town, where the Honda Jazz is most at home. That said, having completed the school run in EV mode, it will easily munch up a motorway commute with a surprising amount of comfort.
When asked to work hard for the likes of overtaking, the engine and ‘box combination does become a little rowdy, but it doesn’t take long to calm down once the manoeuvre has been completed.
With over 60mpg achievable, my real-world economy driving mostly on B roads over a week spent with the Honda Jazz pictured was in the early 50’s. This car will be easy on your wallet.
With a mammoth amount of room available for both front and rear occupants, an abundance of exterior features combined with added sound deadening help to keep some calm within the cabin.
Much of the plastics within the Honda Jazz are more durable than its rivals meaning it is nowhere near as luxurious. However this does mean that the interior will not fall apart at the first sight of kids jumping into the car having just left their Saturday field-sports with mucky studded boots on.
This latest Jazz from Honda does exactly what it says on the tin with comfort, convenience and affordable running costs. I was shocked at how well it absorbed family life, and with a slightly larger boot could quite happily see it as a second vehicle in the driveway.
Words and Photos: GRAHAM BAALHAM-CURRY
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