Honda Jazz Driving, Engines & Performance | Top Gear
Advertisement
BBC TopGear
BBC TopGear
Car Review

Honda Jazz

610
Published: 05 Jun 2020
Advertisement

Driving

What is it like to drive?

Most of the time (though of course not most of the miles) in town, the engine is off. Starting and stopping at low speed is heard but never felt. As speed varies, it aims either to be on and at efficient revs, or off. In a flat-out acceleration run to motorway speed, its revs rise and fall a bit as if through a multi-speed gearbox, but that's just a bit of management trickery to give a sense of acceleration.

Through corners or roundabouts, the revs see-saw drunkenly. Anyway, whenever the engine is working hard it's a bit of a rattly drone. And it doesn't have the instant response of an EV. (Not sure why; they could surely have tuned it to feel that way.)

Advertisement - Page continues below

It is not, then, a powertrain from which you can expect to extract fun.

But acceleration isn't too bad for a petrol car so economical: 0-62 in the mid-nines. Certainly better than the engine's 97bhp would imply, because of course when you floor it the battery is shoving in some help.

Anyway, while the Jazz is encouraging your right foot to treat things gently, the same applies to your cornering. It feels like a tall car, rolling onto its rear, and is guided by rather blurry steering. Strangely, the even taller Crosstar is nicer, its steering response and roll rate more harmonious.

The Crosstar also has a marginally softer ride; the basic Jazz can get fidgety, with a deficiency of mid-frequency damping that makes the chassis feel twangy.

Advertisement - Page continues below

No complaints about the brakes, which are more progressive than many in hybrids.

Highlights from the range

the fastest

Honda Jazz 1.3 S [DASP] 5dr
  • 0-6211.2s
  • CO2116.0g/km
  • BHP102
  • MPG56.5
  • Price£ N/A

the cheapest

Honda Jazz 1.5 i-MMD Hybrid SE 5dr eCVT
  • 0-629.4s
  • CO282.0g/km
  • BHP109
  • MPG78.5
  • Price£ 18,840

the greenest

Honda Jazz 1.5 i-MMD Hybrid SE 5dr eCVT
  • 0-629.4s
  • CO282.0g/km
  • BHP109
  • MPG78.5
  • Price£ 18,840
compare car finance
Powered byZuto Logo
more on this car
Take one for a spin or order a brochure
Powered byRegit Logo

Subscribe to the Top Gear Newsletter

Get all the latest news, reviews and exclusives, direct to your inbox.

By clicking subscribe, you agree to receive news, promotions and offers by email from Top Gear and BBC Studios. Your information will be used in accordance with our privacy policy.