There’s a lot to like about a Jazz, if you ignore your daughters
Mark Pearson Autocar
2 September 2016

Reactions to the Honda Jazz have been decidedly mixed so far.

One of my daughters called it “embarrassing” and the other asked that I don’t drive her to school in it just in case anyone in her class should see it. Whether their reactions are a comment on the colour of the car or the car itself, or a combination of the two, I haven’t asked. Certainly, people in the street find my Attract Yellow car amusing, and I’ve discovered it tones in quite nicely with parking tickets.

Back at Autocar headquarters, I haven’t noticed the keys flying off my desk with quite the same alacrity as when I ran a Lexus long-term test car, or a Jaguar, or even a Nissan Qashqai. Alas, the Jazz is often unfairly derided as a car for old people, and only my pride prevents me from wondering why, when the young people in the office decided who was going to run the Jazz, it came my way. I prefer to think it was to do with my need for an economical runabout. 

Such prejudice is a pity because, curious colour aside, I rather like the Jazz. Indeed, one advantage of that colour must be visibility, which can only add to the Jazz’s already excellent safety credentials; it was awarded five stars in the Euro NCAP safety ratings and set a benchmark in the supermini class. All Jazz models now come with an active city braking system that operates below 20mph. Our SE Navi adds forward collision and lane departure warnings, too.

There’s certainly no shortage of interior space, either, and its practicality is proving a boon. Dropping the Magic Seats is the work of seconds and the boot space with them down is so voluminous that it could probably house another supermini within it.

Best of all, though, I’m seeing diesel-busting figures of more than 50mpg on longer journeys on the digital dashboard readout and more than 40mpg for my six-mile urban commute, a personal best. Proof that, as with all good Hondas, there’s more to this car than meets the eye. Just don’t be put off by the colour. 

Honda Jazz 1.3 I-VTEC SE NAVI

Price £15,605 Price as tested £16,105 Economy 42.9mpg Faults None Expenses None Last seen 20.7.16

Read our first report here

Our Verdict

Honda Jazz

The Honda Jazz is a super-practical supermini that’s a doddle to drive and own, but lacking in excitement

Join the debate


2 September 2016
Normally I'd say ignore kids but in this case I think they're probably right. lol

typos1 - Just can’t respect opinion

2 September 2016
Some way to go on that economy - the 1.4 Jazz I sold on in 2009 did 56.5 over the last 600 miles I had it. More realistically, however, the "lifetime" consumption overall was 43.5mpg. Know just what you mean about image. I suffered many jibes, and the "game" of passengers was to spot other Jazz's on the road and estimate the driver's age (mostly, guesses were 70+). Great car for what it was intended (i.e. capacious, easy to use, small on the outside), the magic seats had the advantage that when occupied, squashy bags would go underneath out of the way of feet in the footwell.

2 September 2016
I always enjoyed Jazz courtesy cars, I always found people let me out junctions and were more patient on motorways when I pulled out to overtake as they were not expecting it to move quickly even if I wanted it to. I also found that if you went up into the realms of the rev's the usual demographic of driver would never see.. there was still a bit of a feisty VTEC in there that could show a surprising turn.

2 September 2016
Shame the Jazz looks so bad - overblown and under wheeled - because it's a fine car. I never sneer at Jazz drivers. I save that for SUVs...

2 September 2016
Managed an indicated 57mpg out of my Civic 1.8 on a 10 mile cross country trip the other day. In this warmer weather overall it does high 40s and 50+ is quite easy on a long motorway journey. So much for downsizing and turbo charging. Will be very interested to see how Hondas new turbo engines perform or whether Mazda had the right idea all along with right sizing.

2 September 2016
While the Jazz certainly did very well in the Euro NCAP tests, I think there are questions to be asked. I don't know if anyone saw the TV programme recently about cars in one market not getting modifications cars in other markets get to pass tests etc. This could be relevant to the Jazz.

Look at the crash test photos and videos from Euro NCAP and you clearly see that the curtain airbag does not extend all the way forward like it does on the Jazz modified for the US market after it badly failed the small overlap crash test. That's critical for good performance in small overlap crashes. The small overlap performance was so serious that Honda agreed to swap unmodified cars free for customers who were concerned. The structure was modified, not just the airbag, though perhaps only on one side, another little scandal starting to come to light that's especially relevant in the UK where we have right hand drive cars that may be less safe that left hand drive models.

I'd really like to know if the UK gets the unmodified Jazz that's less safe. Time for some investigative journalism.

2 September 2016
For any proper investigative journalism on this site, all too happy just to repeat what the PR guys tell them from the manufacturers. To be fair most of what passes for press these days is very low budget and mostly handed down from government departments and NGO's. You only have to look into the National Defence Authorisation Act to conclude that it is now legal to pass off as factual a load of propaganda when it comes to the news.

 Offence can only be taken not given- so give it back!

4 September 2016
Was the Toyota RAV 4 and Nissan Rogue. They put reinforcement on the drivers side because the IIHS crashtestsd this side. The Passengers side didnt have structural reinforcement. Hence it was found a the cars passed the small overlap crash test on the drivers side but failed the passengers side. Now the IIHS are thinking about small overlap crashing both sides. Again, its typical of car manufacturers crash engineering for independent tests, not the real world. Only Volvo take passive safety seriously.

2 September 2016
Mate, your girls are not alone. The Jazz sells crap all over the Europe, except in the UK (might be due to Swindon didn't need to fork much to load the market), where I can easily see dozens of pre-owned Hondas (Jazz & Civic) for sale at dealers. Both cars sell crap, again except UK. On the Jazz subject, do not know the current one, but judging by the previous 2, both folow the japanese formula: overall can be utterlly crap, except for mecanic reliability... but when you live the apple age, where everyday you change your underwear & every 2 to 3 years your PCP mobile, why bother with erratic mulfunctions & broken plastic parts??

See, the Fiesta is also crap looking, but judging by some of the current Jazz drivers, it is miles ahead in terms of perfomance & road composure.

Last but not least: the japanese really lack sense of presentation. For what purpose serve those two black holes at each corner of the rear bumper? Are they aiming to distract people from the tentative copy of current design language Volvo applies for rear light arrengement in their stations?

Yep, me too would prefer to arrive at school by walk (not to mention that stupid-Lilly and her friends arrive in the new Disco & Co SUVs...)

2 September 2016
Not sure about the Jazz selling well in the UK, for every Jazz sold Ford sell 7 Fiestas, VW sell 3 Polos (probably for a lot more per unit too). Also, every year since 2012 total sales have dropped, to such an extent in it’s heyday in 2006 they sold around 80% more than they did in 2015.

typos1 - Just can’t respect opinion


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