Put some Jazz into your life

Featured in:
June 2014

Honda is not your ordinary car company and the Jazz is not your ordinary supermini. This is a manufacturer that doesn’t believe in following the herd. It does what it thinks is best, and in many cases turns out to be right.
This is the thought process that gave rise to the Jazz. While other superminis are intent on being sporty and dynamic, the Jazz adopts a boxy shape and builds in practical MPV design features. While rivals campaign with vast, sprawling model ranges, Honda has assembled a small and simple one. Many people won’t understand the Jazz but it’s a car that rewards closer inspection.

There are two modern i-VTEC engines available: a 1.2 and a 1.4. There’s one body style – a practical, stylish five-door. Many manufacturers would mark this down as commercial suicide in a supermini market increasingly obsessed with coupe-like, three-door shapes and economical diesel engines. This is what Honda does though and while some rivals have both a supermini and a supermini-based MPV, the Japanese marque spans both sectors with a single model.

The 1.2 and 1.4 i-VTEC engines are some of the very best petrol units around. Like all Honda petrol powerplants, they are extremely eager to rev and the best performance is obtained higher up in the range. The engines are very refined, giving good performance levels while offering high levels of economy and refinement. The jazz is available with a manual or automatic gearbox.

As befits the MPV-look of the exterior, manoeuvrability is very good on the Jazz thanks to the visibility, short overhangs and the tight turning circle. There’s plenty of adjustment in the driving position and it shouldn’t be a problem for most people to get comfortable.

The car features the Honda Magic Seating system, by which the back seats can fold down in one fluid motion into the footwell with the headrests in place. What’s more impressive is that this action doesn’t involve scurrying around the car to manually slide the front seats forward; it can all be accomplished from the rear door thanks to a convenient set of levers.

Meanwhile, you can also load up the surprising, spacious Double Trunk boot which can divide its 399-litre capacity into four different configurations for carrying different loads. Fold the rear seats and there’s 883 litres of space.

Standard safety equipment is very generous, with dual front and side airbags, plus full length curtain airbags on all models. There are also five three-point seatbelts with reminders for the belts in the front and the back.

The Jazz is definitely an unusual supermini but we didn’t really expect anything else from Honda. It’s at the top of the class for practicality, even trumping some small MPVs, while the petrol engines are highly efficient and the driving experience is ideally suited for urban areas. The car is also very well built, at the UK Swindon Factory. A past winner of the JD Power Customer Satisfaction survey for a record eight consecutive years it is one of the most reliable cars in the marketplace.

Prices start at just £10,495. For just £500 you can benefit from five years servicing, warranty and roadside assistance making the ownership experience even more compelling. To test drive simply visit your local Vertu Honda dealership.

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