The word ‘Jazz’ conjures up fond memories, as this compact Honda automobile was the first to invent the term ‘luxury hatchback.’ This one, unlike others, didn’t have a traditional design, as the slanting hood line, large body, and small rear made it a one-of-a-kind at the time.
It makes a re-entry into the Indian market to boost Honda’s position in the compact car class. It is currently offered in more than 75 countries and has sold more than 5.5 million copies. With a fresh look on the outside as well as inside, as well as a new platform to support the modern architecture, the all-new third-generation Jazz receives a lot more than a whiff of an update. Aside from the petrol engine, there is also a diesel engine with a stated fuel economy of 27.3kmpl!!!
What better spot to do so than Goa, with its rhythmically waving palm trees, dazzling white beach, and clear water? Here’s our initial impression of the all-new Jazz.
The older Jazz was so appealing because it contained all of the necessary elements in the proper proportions. Even now, the prior design does not appear obsolete and compares favourably to others in the same price range. It simply appeared to have been created with patience, but the same cannot be said of the new generation.
Instead, the new one is more geeky and futuristic, with lines taken directly from the concept. It may be designed to seem like a daily driver, but it also has the ability to look like a wicked super hot hatch. To bring out its racing side, a single piece front with a short hood profile and a mono rear form with an elevated roof integrated spoiler requires something as simple as black matte alloy wheels, side skirts, and a pair of sporty exhaust.
Slender headlights flow in line with a mono style radiator grille, without getting too carried away and focusing on the present. The headlamps are connected by this piano black grille, which also houses the turn indicators. The Honda logo is firmly affixed to it. Underneath the radiator grille, there is a delicate chrome highlight. The front bumpers have additional muscle, with a deep scoop for fog lamps.
When viewed from the side, it appears to be more compact than previously, however this is an optical illusion because the new Jazz is 55mm longer. The wheelbase has been extended by 30mm as well. The goal of changing its dimensions was to increase the amount of space within the cabin and make the occupants more comfortable. The New Jazz is the same width and height as before.
It has a crisp look thanks to the short hood line and tiny front overhang. A wedge line rises along the length of the side, with a softly defined lower contour, to give it more character. As previously stated, the roof line does not taper down and continues to flow until it meets the integrated roof spoiler. New tornado inspired 15″ alloy wheels with 175 / 65 R15 tyres complete the athletic design, which would have been better if they were wider.
The side wedge line reaches the rear area, where it merges with the new combination LED tail lamps. With a broad back windshield, the roof spoiler is the nicest element in terms of appearance. The brand logo is highlighted by a thick chrome strip beneath the screen. Scoops with a closed wire mesh are also added to the rear bumper.
The New Jazz is a hatch, but it doesn’t come with the usual drawbacks. You won’t feel suffocated in it because Honda increased the length and wheelbase only to provide additional space and comfort to the occupants on both short and long excursions.
Honda has long prided itself on offering high-quality interiors, and the new Jazz is no exception. The steering wheel and instrument cluster, which take a lot of inspiration from its older sibling, are more modern than before. An analogue tachometer, speedometer, and information panel indicate fuel consumption, average, and distance to empty on the three-eye metre. The infotainment screen is the lone control on the fresh new steering wheel.
The pinnacle of the spec A 5-inch LCD screen with Bluetooth telephony and other entertainment choices such as iPod, USB, and Aux-in connectivity is standard on the petrol V version. The same screen also serves as a reverse camera, with three different views to choose from: wide, regular, and top down, making it simple to park in inclement weather. The VX model comes included with a larger 6.2-inch touchscreen and an Audio Visual Navigation system. It has an innovative AC control device that works via touch, just as the City.
Customers can choose between two interior trim options: dual tone or all black. The all-black interiors are available on both the petrol and diesel high-end models, with one thing in common among all variants: excellent fit and finish. The dashboard and door trimmings are made of plastic that isn’t particularly attractive, but it is extremely durable.
Large front and rear doors have made escape and entrance easier for even taller passengers. It is not necessary to crawl on one’s knees to enter the cabin, and the same is true when exiting. The increased wheelbase, reduced rear suspension travel, and the relocation of the fuel tank have all helped the knees, elbows, and shoulders of all occupants breathe easier.
‘Magic Seats’ are a category first feature that considerably contributes to convenience. The rear seats may be configured in four distinct modes to accommodate cargo of varying shapes, sizes, and dimensions, including Utility Mode, Tall Mode, Long Mode, and the refresh mode. This can be used to store a cooking gas cylinder, a bike, a chair, and a variety of other items. It’s also a good idea to recline seats to make it the most comfortable spot to sit inside.
The seats are both comfy and practical. The flattish rear seats lack under thigh support, which might be inconvenient on lengthy trips. In terms of pure space, a 139L increase in passenger volume has taken care of headroom, legroom, and kneeroom. The front shoulder space has increased by 35mm, the rear tandem distance has increased by 80mm, the knee clearance has increased by 65mm, and the rear legroom has increased by 115mm.
The load capacity inside the New Jazz is 354 litres, far more than its closest competitor, the Hyundai Elite i20. If that isn’t enough, you can fold down the second row seat to create 881 litres of boot capacity. Each of the door pockets may easily accommodate a litre class container. There are 9 cup holders in all. All of this adds up to a fantastic daily driver with plenty of utility.
Driven by Results
If you’ve driven the previous generation, you won’t need much convincing that this new geeky looking sporty feeling Honda is just as good as, if not better than, the previous model. It is not an exaggeration to say that the New Jazz handles better than any other Honda vehicle marketed in India.
On the outside, the grid of lines and flowing shapes has reduced resistance and made it more aerodynamic than previously. On the inside, thanks to the big front screen and shallow hood position, the driver has a good view of what’s coming up. The driver’s seat can also be adjusted in height if you want to obtain a better view of the surroundings.
The cat purr-like silent i-VTEC petrol engine, which was previously shown, has been tuned even further with efficiency in mind. I’ll go into more detail about this later, but one of the most notable new features in the 2017 Jazz is its diesel engine. The i-DTEC engine, which shares its architecture and practically everything else with City and Amaze, has been tuned further, according to the officials. Another important note is that the New Jazz is only available in diesel in India and nowhere else, making it a one-of-a-kind model.
It can’t be turned on with a touch of a finger like the Elite i20 because it has to be typed in. Yup! I’m not sure if the lack of a button Start/Stop is a hindrance. Once the motor is started, it is heard, though not to the same degree as Amaze, and it continues to be audible at greater decibels at lower engine speeds. As it approaches 1700 rpm – 1800 rpm in first gear, the coarse exhaust tone intensifies, indicating that it is gaining velocity.
The narrow roads of Goa, combined with a fair amount of traffic, necessitate frequent gear shifts to keep the engine revving. The i-DTEC offers a powerful low-range torque output, making it easy to transport anywhere with ease, provided the motor is kept afloat about 2000 rpm. The engine noise decreases as the revs increase as it hits midrange, and the unit feels extremely confident.
The 1498cc diesel engine produces 100 horsepower and 200 pound-feet of torque, and it comes with a 6-speed manual transmission. The motor’s higher torque rating makes it perfect for highway driving and long trips. Furthermore, at higher revs, the manual transmission’s rough shift feel, particularly when driving in the city, is obscured.
The i-VTEC petrol engine, which is Honda’s cherished armoury against any other gasoline engine, is the only method to drive in by lanes and manoeuvre city traffic. It is the best gasoline vehicle to drive, and only a few manufacturers have built a gasoline vehicle as spectacular as this one.
With a displacement of 1198cc, this engine produces 90 horsepower and 110 pound-feet of torque. A 5-speed manual transmission is paired with the engine. The resemblance to the previous model ends here. The new Jazz is also available with a CVT automatic transmission, owing to the popularity of AT versions in competitor cars. It also has paddle shifters, which adds to the fun.
When the valves operate over time to create a sporting note, it’s pure music, and it’s at its best when pushed harder. At low speeds, it feels nimble; the diesel’s higher torque is missed, but the petrol engine is quick. It’s also easy to manoeuvre, thanks to the light steering wheel’s excellent ability to spin the nose as needed.
The manual transmission adjusts to higher or lower speeds quickly and obediently, making it excellent for city driving. When you drive it rapidly and enter corners, it feels very much in control with very little roll, even at the slap of a turn. To make it exit the corner, downshift and increase the revs, and it does so without fuss. The tyres are the only minor fault, since they do not hold the tarmac well due to their poor grip. We were unable to test the CVT in Goa, but be assured that it will be featured in our next evaluations.
It’s a foregone conclusion that Honda intends to compete with the Hyundai Elite i20, Volkswagen Polo, and Maruti Suzuki Swift with the New Jazz. For a long time, the Japanese automaker had no presence in the premium hatchback sector, with the exception of the Brio, which was not an exact match for the competition.
Honda appears to be better prepared to take on the competition this time around. The manual petrol variant gets 18.7 kmpl and the CVT gets 19 kmpl, while the diesel gets a mind-blowing 27.3 kmpl, second only to India’s most fuel-efficient car, the Maruti Suzuki Celerio. Honda’s achievement of such values is extremely remarkable, especially considering its bigger displacement.
Another area where the Honda Jazz excels is its incredible practicality, making it a very practical mode of transportation. It will appeal to premium clients searching for a second car in the family, in addition to first-time buyers. With the wealthier elite, the Jazz has traditionally served as an aspirational vehicle. The main flaw in the previous offering was its overly optimistic pricing. With the unveiling of the New Jazz, we hope Honda improves on it.