Honda Jazz (2015 - )
Last updated 27 August 2016
Complaint of problems with Connect radio system of October 2015 Jazz, not resolved by a software update.
The Honda Jazz is something of an unsung hero among small hatches. Unfairly derided for its sensible image and traditionally more 'mature' owner - the average buyer age is ober 60 - the Jazz has never quite had the appeal of the likes of the Volkswagen Polo or Ford Fiesta. But maybe this third generation Jazz is the car that will finally change that.
This Jazz takes all the strengths of its predecessor - namely clever packing, an incredibly practical interior and Tardis-like amounts of space - and builds on them to create one of the best small hatches on sale.
It does of course retain Honda's ingenious 'magic seats' that fold and flip in various configurations to allow you to carry surprisingly large items - like plants, upright vacuum cleaners and bikes. Yet there's even more interior room, a larger boot and plenty of clever little touches to make everyday life easier. In fact, it has the room and versatility to shame much larger cars.
It has the feel of a much bigger car on the motorway too, with high comfort levels and a relaxed nature. Honda has managed to make the Jazz much better in corners too, with lots of grip and nicely weighted steering. There have also been big improvements to the interior quality and finish, while this Jazz is also one of the most refined small cars around with little road noise and a superbly forgiving ride.
Just one engine is available - a 1.3 i-VTEC - which does lack low down response as it's not turbocharged. But it has more than enough power for the little Jazz and is very quiet. It also works very well with both the standard six-speed manual or the optional CVT automatic.
The one thing the Jazz is not is cheap. New prices start north of £13,000 for the entry S model which is decently equipped, but a mid-spec SE model with the CVT gearbox will set you back more than £16,000. That looks pricey
But the Jazz is well equipped for that money and comes with pretty much all the extras you will ever need. Add in its big car feel along with a high quality finish and the Honda starts to justify its higher price tag. Plus of course no other small car offers as much interior space and practicality as the Jazz - helped by its clever 'magic seats'. It's simply the most versatile small car on sale and one that's easy to recommend.