From £10,985
The Jazz finally gets the transmission its elderly fanbase has been waiting for
Autocar
7 December 2010

What is it?

Honda Jazz owners are the sort of people who like what they know – but who definitely aren’t keen on new and untried technology. It’s a lesson the company learned after dropping the option of a CVT autobox for the second-gen Jazz, despite the fact a massive 40 per cent of buyers of the original car had chosen it.

Instead there was a jerky single-clutch robomanual branded i-Shift. Two years later, and after a rebellion by the Jazz’s elderly fanbase, Honda has relented and introduced a CVT as part of a package of mid-term tweaks.

There are actually two different CVT-equipped Jazzes. The new Hybrid will use one with an automated clutch, while the standard car gets a torque converter. Despite that, the CVT still manages economy figures marginally better than those of the unloved i-Shift, thanks in part to the addition of a new, more aero-friendly bodykit. Suspension has also been softened slightly to improve compliance.

What's it like?

The CVT works well when used for the sort of gentle use most Jazz owners expect – the average buyer is 56 years old. It pulls away smoothly and deals well with gentle acceleration, the engine holding its revs as the transmission slurs its ratios to catch up.

Bigger throttle openings have the little motor screaming though – which has the curious effect of making the CVT Jazz feel slower than it actually is. And in a car like this the transmission’s even-revvier ‘Sport’ mode seems almost entirely pointless.

Should I buy one?

It will sell, though – and not just because of the pent-up demand among existing owners. At a £1000 supplement the CVT looks like good value over the manual 1.4, considering its ease of use and the fact it comes with no economy penalty.

Mike Duff

Honda Jazz 1.4 ES CVT

Price: £14,495;Top speed: 109mph; 0-62,ph: 12.8 secs; Economy: 52.3mpg; CO2: 125g/km; Kerb weight: 1140kg; Engine: 4cyls in line, 1339cc, petrol; Power: 98bhp at 6000rpm; Torque: 94lb-ft at 4900rpm; Gearbox: CVT

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Broughster 16 December 2010

Re: Honda Jazz 1.4 ES CVT

"Pre 2007 X-trails are torque converter automatics, in the case of yours it is a 4 speed. After 2007 it's a CVT that acts as a fully variable transmission, but also has 6 preset ratios as well if that floats your boat."

Thanks, Honest John in the Telegraph seems to have got it wrong then, as he thinks is is a CVT with a torque convertor...

theonlydt 13 December 2010

Re: Honda Jazz 1.4 ES CVT

Broughster wrote:
I have been led to believe that my 2004 Nissan X Trail 2.5 SVE automatic is also a CVT with a torque convertor. However, it also (weirdly) seems to have 4 speeds. Does this mean that these aren't 4 real gears and are just programmed in? Also, does this make it a true CVT, as it is always in 4 speed mode and you can't make it act like a 'true' CVT?

Pre 2007 X-trails are torque converter automatics, in the case of yours it is a 4 speed. After 2007 it's a CVT that acts as a fully variable transmission, but also has 6 preset ratios as well if that floats your boat.

Broughster 13 December 2010

Re: Honda Jazz 1.4 ES CVT

I have been led to believe that my 2004 Nissan X Trail 2.5 SVE automatic is also a CVT with a torque convertor. However, it also (weirdly) seems to have 4 speeds. Does this mean that these aren't 4 real gears and are just programmed in? Also, does this make it a true CVT, as it is always in 4 speed mode and you can't make it act like a 'true' CVT?

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