What's it like?
As ever, what you notice first inside is the space.
If anything, thanks to that extra length between the wheels, there seems to be even more room in here, especially in the back where a six foot passenger can sit behind a six foot driver and still have space to sprawl.
Obviously it lacks the cabin width to work as anything other than a quite cramped five seater, but if there’s only ever going to be four of you travelling, you may well question the point of spending more money on a car that’s larger only on the outside.
Frustratingly Honda Europe says it has not yet begun to think about which engines it will take so while Honda R&D boss Yoshiharu Yamamoto told me a diesel Jazz would be “a very attractive specification” in Europe, those who have seen the long-term product plan insist there’s no diesel involved.
Far more likely is a new 1.0-litre, three-pot turbo motor generating 105bhp. Irritatingly I was allowed only to drive it in a Civic but despite the extra weight it gave an excellent account of itself and subjectively seemed at least a match for Ford’s groundbreaking and similarly specified rival motor.
The Fit/Jazz I did drive had a new 1.5-litre hybrid engine offering a combined 133bhp and a seven-speed double clutch transmission in place of the old CVT from the current Jazz hybrid.
That power might imply junior hot hatch performance, but that’s not how it feels: it steps off smartly on electric power alone (and will do up to 50mph or around two miles – but not both – before the engine cuts in) but the petrol engine is noisy when extended and the double clutch transmission is sometimes slow to execute your instructions. It rides and handles well enough from what could be told from a featureless test track, but is unlikely to challenge for class best.
Should I buy one?
With the 1.0-litre turbo motor however I can see it as a highly credible next step in the Jazz story. It’s such a shame we have to wait so long for it to be told.
Honda Jazz Hybrid
Price na; 0-62mph 10.5sec (estimated); Top speed 115mph; Economy 85mpg (approx); Co2 85g/km (approx); Kerbweight n/a; Engine 4 cyls, transverse, 1500cc; Power 133bhp at 6000rpm; Torque 125lb ft; Gearbox 7-speed double clutch