As one German sub-4 metre sedan (have a guess as to what it could be?) joins CarWale’s long term fleet, it’s time to bid goodbye to the ever-dependable Honda Jazz, a car that seamlessly integrated into my everyday work-slash-recreational routine right from day one. Over the last few months, it has carried my camera gear, my dog and took us on a couple of family trips without missing a beat. In fact, the Jazz has been to a lot of places far beyond the daily commute and each trip has only helped me get to know it better as a family hatch.
The Jazz, then, has been an extremely competent daily driver and I have grown to appreciate its light steering and super slick gearshift action. I also like its long-distance abilities courtesy of positives including a big boot (for a hatch), spacious interiors and a realistic range of over 850+ kilometres over highways.
That said, spending so much time behind the wheel of any car can eventually bring its weaknesses into focus, and there are a couple of things about the Jazz that I am not a fan of. First up, it’s 1.5-litre diesel engine, though incredibly tractable and punchy, isn’t the smoothest oil burner around – it sounds gruff across the rev range and gets really vocal when you are accelerating briskly.
But, and there is a big but, there is no denying the fact that it’s a highly efficient engine. I have averaged nearly 18kmpl over 8,000 kilometres across varied driving conditions which is nothing short of impressive. And with 200Nm of torque right from 1,750rpm, the Jazz has always felt lively even under full load.
The backrest on the rear seat isn’t much sculpted, thereby lacking lateral support. However, the trade-off here is that the rather flat backrest allows three occupants to be seated comfortably which isn’t something you can claim for a hatchback. As I found out over several occasions, there is no issue with shoulder space even when there are three generously-sized adults occupying the rear.
While we are on the subject of space, I have no criticism for the boot capacity either – we have summoned the Jazz as our support car on several shoots and the 355-litre boot has swallowed everything.
A noisy engine and a few squeaks aside, our top-spec diesel Jazz has handled all the tasks with ease while keeping me in comfort. It may not be particularly fun to drive or the most refined diesel hatch around but it is immensely practical and equally easy to drive, no matter whichever version you choose.
Fuel Efficiency: 17.9kmpl
Faults: Odd squeaks and rattles
Pictures by Kapil Angane