Not that, for some Jazz owners, driving dynamics matter that much. What they want is admirably delivered by this spacious and economical little runabout.
A final word of warning, though: if you do buy one, don’t expect other people to be terribly interested in it, even if it is bright yellow. MP
RUNNING COSTS - Worst it returned was 38.1mpg, the best 44.6mpg. Not bad for mostly urban and fast motorway use. PRACTICAL INTERIOR - The Jazz’s trump card: useful-size boot was easily augmented by the versatility of the folding rear seats.
REFINEMENT - Road noise made motorway journeys tiresome. The engine was vocal and quite harsh, too. PERFORMANCE - Its 1.3-litre four-cylinder engine needed revs to give its best, but its best, frankly, wasn’t good enough. INFOTAINMENT - Touchscreen frequently needed a second prod and the logic of the menus wasn’t always that intuitive.
Honda Jazz review
Honda Civic review
Honda HR-V review
If youngsters dismiss the Honda Jazz as an old person’s car, I dread to think what they’d make of the CVT version, the transmission of which is about as highly regarded by the motoring press as a fart in a lift.
And yet a large proportion of Jazz sales are of the automatic version. With that in mind, and in the interests of providing good consumer advice, I decided to borrow one from Honda to compare it with our six-speed manual long-termer.
I must confess that I have never shared the view that there is something masculine or sporty or even vaguely mechanically efficient about the old-fashioned manual gearbox and its accompanying clutch pedal. It being 2017, I would no more expect to find a manual gearbox in any civilised car than I would to find a horse in my living room.
To a degree, I’m proved right by these two cars. The Jazz CVT is good in town, easy to drive and smart away from the lights, whereas the manual can be rather hiccupy if you fumble the clutch and touchy throttle (easily done). On the motorway, where the manual Jazz is a little too loud, the CVT is quieter thanks to its theoretically higher gearing when cruising, even if refinement still leaves something to be desired.